Information and Communication Technology and Educational Policies in Primary and Secondary Education in the Middle East and North African (MENA) Region
The chapter refers to policies toward information and communication technology (ICT) in primary and secondary education from the perspective of Middle East and North African region (MENA). The MENA region includes countries that vary in culture, language, religion and resources. Since it is quite difficult to cover the whole region, the researchers excluded some countries (i.e. Cyprus, Iran, Israel, & Turkey) that only share the geographical location with the other countries in the region. The analytical approach had been used to provide information on how policy deals with integrating ICT in teaching and learning in primary and secondary education in MENA region. Trends and developments are identified by analysing policy plans and strategies. Six main trends were identified in the region. The trends include using ICT in primary and secondary education to increase access to formal education, using ICT to improve teaching and to prepare students for future jobs, using data to align learning with job market, analysing performance for personalize learning, and utilizing online learning for learning and skills development. The most important finding of this section is that countries in the MENA region are willing to move forward the adoption of ICT in education by increasing their spending on planning and implementing ICT in education. However, the process of planning and implementation is not always successful due to different factors. The main challenges were: financial challenge, less attention given for the pedagogy behind ICT integration, resistance from actors, lack of cooperation, contextual challenges, technical challenges, and social and political challenges.
KeywordsICT MENA region ICT policy Primary education Secondary education K12 education ICT integration in education
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