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Kuwait unversity is loosing its ranking - Essay Example

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Kuwait University has seen its worldwide ranking drop significantly. The University Ranking by Academic Performance (URAP) Center in 2011 ranked the…
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Kuwait is losing its Ranking The Kuwait government must endeavor to fast track the implementation of information technology within the higher education sector. Kuwait University has seen its worldwide ranking drop significantly. The University Ranking by Academic Performance (URAP) Center in 2011 ranked the university at position 779 in the world. However, this has plummeted to 1,199th in January, 2012 (Ranking Web of World Universities). The Ministry of Higher Education estimates that an average of 60% of the population’s 18-24 year olds attend their higher education at Kuwait University. This population accounts for at least half the population of Kuwait; thereby raising alarm amongst scholars and educators alike as to whether this drop in world rank is representative of a drop in the quality of skills and competency transfer within the institution? What does this portend on the institution’s capacity to attract international students in light of an ever globalizing world?
To a country whose population comprised almost half by teens aged 18-24 years, the youth represent a significant component towards the future development of Kuwait as a country. The former Minister for education in Kuwait, Noria Al-Sabeeh ably identified that, “investing in young people is actually investing in the future.” But this is not so evident at the university. In a 21st century environment, the use of ICT learning is one of the most revolutionary concepts for all proactive educators. According to the Kuwait University 2011-2012 catalogue, there seems to be a failure to reconcile this thought in its academic policies. Emphasis is still being placed on student’s physical attendance in class without providing clear stipulations as to how open-distance learning can be effected.
Subsequently, with the high levels of student intake it seems clear that the existing four campuses were inadequate for the increasing student level approximated at over 19,000 in 2005. The continued falling of teacher-student ratio nationally which currently stands at a paltry 0.06:1 may have contributed to a decline in the state university ranking (StateUniversity.com). The educational statistics for 1997-98 shows a greater decline of Kuwaiti educators at university level; the tendency to rely on foreign educators has an indirect impact on the student performance because learning cannot be effectively “localized” in the sense of practical exemplification of theoretical concepts; development and assessment of student projects and proposals.
Finally, the occurrence of religious intolerance against Muslim students who do not don veils (a religious cloth prescribed by the Islamic faith for women) by a campus group advocating for the dress code and who have political connections with the Constitutional Movement. The group resorted to open harassment of said students through verbal slurs “sparking political tension between anti-government MPs and the prime minister”-Kuwait City, 4th January, 2011. This intolerance to freedom of choice and religion undermines the basic harmony for which universities are founded.
The ministry for higher education must place priority to ICT incorporation within state universities. In response to hiring of educators, government and lecturers’ union must take active steps towards employing more local educators in the university. Students are called to be more tolerant towards individual rights and liberties in so far as they don’t impede those of others or rules of the institution.
Works Cited
Al-Sharaf, Adel. "New perspectives on teacher education in Kuwait." Journal of Education for Teaching: International research and pedagogy (2006): 105-109.
Ranking Web of World Universities. Ranking Web of World Universities. January 2012. 23 March 2012 .
StateUniversity.com. Kuwait - History & Background, Constitutional & Legal Foundations, Educational System—overview, Preprimary & Primary Education, Secondary Education. 23 March 2012 .
University Ranking by Academic Performance. World University Ranking. 11 November 2011. 23 March 2012 . Read More
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