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ERIC Number: EJ1176270
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2018
Pages: 23
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0951-354X
Internationalization of the Higher Education System: An Interpretive Analysis
Alsharari, Nizar Mohammad
International Journal of Educational Management, v32 n3 p359-381 2018
Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to explore the process of internationalization of higher education (HE) in the United Arab Emirates by examining the development of its HE system, and analyzing the components and results of internationalization. Design/methodology/approach: The study adopts a qualitative research methodology to analyze primary evidence from interviews with academics in the UAE, and uses documents and archival research as secondary evidence to provide a comprehensive view of the UAE's internationalized HE sector. A review of the literature is undertaken to inform discussion and analysis which focuses on the internal and external environments of the UAE. A strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats analysis identifies the benefits and challenges for the UAE of internationalized HE. Findings: The study finds that internationalization of HE in the UAE has grown rapidly in the last decade, and that the UAE has sought to establish and promote itself as an "education hub" in the Middle East. However, this may subsume the government's parallel goal of educating its citizenry to the level of skills necessitated by globalization. Three major forces promoting internationalization in the UAE are neoliberalism, quality assurance, and imported internationalization, an approach seeks the prestige conferred by international accreditation that is predominant in the UAE as well as other Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) member states. An area of concern is the governance of systems to ensure high quality for universities that may be state-owned, privately owned, or international branch campuses. The study concludes that regional integration could provide the way forward for these countries in their internationalization efforts, not by standardizing but by better formulating study programs across the range of state, private and international higher education institutions. Research limitations/implications: The study has important implications for HE policy and governance in the development of internationalized HE in the UAE. It provides theoretical perspectives with practical implications, focusing on some of the critical issues in this developing field for HE administrators and practitioners alike. It also has implications for the UAE's national social values and cultural identity. This may be a reflection of the UAE's relatively recent unification as a state whose HE system, developed to skill its population, has been overtaken by the imperative to compete in a globalized world. The research is limited by the absence of longitudinal data to review longer-term outcomes. Originality/value: The UAE, like other GCC countries, is striving to take its higher educational system to a higher level of performance. This study can be considered as one of the very few studies in the area of the internationalization of HE in the UAE. It contributes to the HE literature by identifying factors and circumstances that facilitate, and hinder, the development of internationalization of HE in the UAE. Globalization can be considered as one of the history's most significant social processes, and the HE sector plays a vital role in the delivery of knowledge and skills to societies, and thus its socio-economic development.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: United Arab Emirates
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A