Blog

Stories of how education can build a better world.

  • What makes an effective teacher? UAE educators, parents, policymakers and learners have their say.

    by Sue Mainey

    As the UAE implements a new teacher licencing system and new national teacher standards, it is timely to reflect on what it is that actually makes a teacher great, explains Sue Mainey, Pearson’s Middle East Director of Marketing.

    When it comes to defining what makes a teacher great, who better to ask then teachers themselves? Along with teachers, Pearson has recently asked parents, policymakers, administrators, researchers, and of course, learners, what they believe makes a teacher most effective.  

    This Global Survey of Educator Effectiveness questioned thousands of stakeholders from across the globe, asking participants to list, in their own words, between three and fifteen qualities that they felt were most important in making a teacher “effective”. Participants were asked to indicate what type of teacher they were thinking of in making this list, that is, what level of education the teacher taught at, and what subject the teacher taught. The survey did not define “effective” for participants, other than that it meant “good,” allowing respondents to define what an effective teacher meant for themselves. The majority of survey participants in the UAE came from Dubai (54%), followed by Abu Dhabi (39%), with the rest of the Emirates making up the remaining 7% of participants.

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  • Blended learning: getting the right mix

    by Sue Mainey

    Demand for high levels of English proficiency among school leavers, graduates and workers is on the increase in the Middle East. How can the boom in digital learning innovations help to fill this demand, and how can we ensure that these innovations are having the greatest impact on learner outcomes?

    Blended learning is a buzz word commonly heard throughout schools, universities and other learning institutions throughout the Middle East. It is rapidly becoming a staple of educational offerings in the region, as in many other parts of the world. As it becomes more and more commonplace, it is perhaps timely to consider what blended learning actually means and what elements of blended learning are more successful in actually promoting learner outcomes.

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  • Taking female attainment in the Arab world to the next level

    by Sue Mainey

    Great gains have been made in educating girls across the Middle East over recent years, but what can be done to translate this achievement into better equality in the workplace?

    As we celebrate Women's Equality Day, it is timely to reflect on the progress women and girls have made in the Middle East when it comes to education. In the space of just a generation, educational attainment levels for females in many parts of the region have risen dramatically. In fact, in some parts of the Middle East women and girls are powering ahead in the education stakes – surpassing their male counterparts when it comes to school performance and higher education attainment. However, these great gains in female education are not necessarily being translated into greater representation and progression in the workforce. This Women's Equality Day we look at the hard won progress of female education in the Middle East and what is being done to convert academic success into workforce participation.

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  • The Arab Youth Bulge: Challenge or Opportunity?

    by Sue Mainey

    The Arab world is experiencing a unique demographic transformation. Never before in the history of the region has there been such a large percentage of young people making up the overall population. In other words, the Arab world is experiencing a youth bulge. And this is not just any youth bulge. The Brookings Institute has put the population of people between the ages of 15 and 29 in the region at 30% (that is 100 million people)[1]  - the highest youth population in the history of the region.

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  • Female education in the Middle East – successes, challenges and the future

    by Sue Mainey

    The education of women in the Middle East is, by any standard, a sensitive and complex issue. Part of the complexity of the issue is demonstrated in the vast disparity in standards and outcomes in female learning across regions, countries, and even between neighbouring communities. What is true for Yemen or Syria might be very different for the UAE or Bahrain. In some parts of the Middle East women and girls are powering ahead in the education stakes – surpassing their male counterparts when it comes to school performance and higher education attainment. In other areas basic educational indicators for girls are painfully low, with severe consequences for her chances of independence, health and longevity. One significant commonality that we do see across the region at large, regardless of female educational performance, is the enduring underrepresentation of women in the workforce. So, even where education systems are working for females, workforce participation remains a problem. How do we address these issues? First, an understanding of the dynamics and complexities helps…

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  • New Pearson Middle East Education Blog

    by Sue Mainey

    New Pearson Middle East Education Blog

    In 2014, the Brookings Institute released a report into the state of education in the Middle East, examining educational data which indicated the success or otherwise of education systems in the region. Whilst the data in some cases pointed to positive developments, the results overall suggested that (in common with many parts of the world) there is still much to be done before access to meaningful education is a reality for all in the Middle East.

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