Comparative Education
Online ISSN : 2185-2073
Print ISSN : 0916-6785
ISSN-L : 0916-6785
Volume 2018 , Issue 56
Showing 1-21 articles out of 21 articles from the selected issue
Articles
  • Yuji UTSUMI
    2018 Volume 2018 Issue 56 Pages 3-22
    Published: 2018
    Released: September 11, 2020
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS

      In 2000, at the World Education Forum in Dakar, known as one of the strongest mobilization forces formulating global education development policy, the Dakar Framework for Action was adopted. This successfully raised awareness of the growing need for education reconstruction in post-conflict countries among UN agencies, international aid agencies and academic research institutes. Since then, there has been research conducted in the field of education and conflict in developing countries, mainly by UN agencies and aid practioners that include findings from their project implementations.

      Although it is easy to imagine that conflict has a negative impact on most education sectors in general, it is rather difficult to analyze the mechanism of relations between education and conflict due to difficulty in collecting objective educational data under any conflict situation.

      However, in recent years, a comparative methodology has become increasingly popular in the field of education and conflict that captures the trend of educational situation in a country before and after conflict by matching education outcomes derived from social survey data conducted after the conflict to information of conflict areas as well as a range of subjects exposed to conflict. Those using this methodology tend to seek especially the changes in trends in educational performance indicators such as the completion rate or the schooling years when conflict occured.

      This study also aims to find the impact of conflict on education outcomes, and uses the cases of several conflicts experienced in Timor-Leste in the past. The study compares educational trends that can be drived from available existing educational data in each period of social changes under the occupation and rule of Portugal and Indonesia. In particular, the study compares the difference in education outcomes between primary and lower secondary schools in four different periods, namely, the conflict period immediately after the Indonesian occupation, the normalization period under Indonesian occupation, the further crisis period during the Timor-Leste independence referendum, and the reconstruction and development period after independence.

      More specifically, following a review of the recent and increasing amount of literature on the impact of conflict on education outcomes, this study briefly introduces the impact of the Portugese ruling policy in Timor-Leste on access to education by showing the change in the number of students and schools in this time period. The study next compares trends in the number of students and schools by year and also completion rates by birth cohort in respective primary and lower secondary educational institutions during the 10-year conflict period after the Indonesian occupation and the following 10-year normalization period in Timor-Leste. Furthermore, the impact of conflict on education quality is examined by comparing changes in the number of schools, teachers and students before and after the independence referendum held in 1999. Finally, the study analyzes how the various previous social and security situations have impacted the recent education outcomes in Timor-Leste after its independence.

      This study found, first, that the conflict occurring during the initial Indonesian occupation period from the mid-1970s and early 1980s had a negative impact on educational outcomes, particularly in lower secondary education. In addition, it was found that the impact of conflict affected not only the official age cohort in primary and lower secondary education at the time of conflict, but also the age cohort younger than the official school age group at the time of conflict who would be exposed to the impact of conflict in education after the conflict ended. The study also found a sudden decline in the quality of primary education occurring (View PDF for the rest of the abstract.)

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  • Seiko KANEKO
    2018 Volume 2018 Issue 56 Pages 23-45
    Published: 2018
    Released: September 11, 2020
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS

      This paper aims to reveal the journey of international students in Malaysia, from their decision regarding place of study, study experience, and transitions into the workforce. This study also investigates human resource mobility patterns, including those after graduation.

      Recently, skilled workers or professionals have been welcomed by developed countries that are experiencing a lack of human resources due to low birthrates. International students are getting attention from those countries as potential members of a skilled workforce. In fact, the number of international students who stay on in host countries after completing their studies has been rapidly increasing.

      Many studies have focused on international students who have studied in traditional host countries (mostly Western countries) and obtained jobs or permanent resident status in those countries. Studies comparing students who return home versus those who remain in the host country after graduation also exist, as do studies that consider the multiple geographic directions of such students. However, although Malaysia is an emerging nation that is now accepting large number of international students, the transition from university to the workforce of international students studying in Malaysia is not well researched.

      More broadly, the mobility patterns of international students using frameworks such as the Absorption of Developed Technology/Knowledge, Acquisition of a University Degree, Implementation of Area Studies, Promotion of Cross-cultural Understanding, Promotion of Community Understanding, Exploration of Second Chance, Stepping Stone, or Regional Tour, have been widely researched. However, these patterns generally focus only on mobility or student motivations before choosing study locations. As a result, research on the mobility patterns of international students after they complete their studies is insufficient.

      This study conducted fieldwork for a total of five weeks between 2015 and 2017 at four universities located in Kuala Lumpur and the surrounding areas. Interviews with 59 international students were conducted as well as with teachers, staff members, and graduates. The four universities involved in this study included public and private universities as well as a branch campus of a British university.

      The framework of transition of local students from university to the workforce was employed to analyze how international students transitioned from studying to working. This framework emphasizes the motivations for choosing a place of study, past work experiences, study experiences in Malaysia, work experiences on or off campus, smoothness of the transition process, and students’ utilization of respective specializations.

      This study revealed that international students who study at a branch campus have a completely different motivation than those studying in a conventional or twinning program. Those who studied at the branch campus first selected the Western university, then compared three campuses (in the United Kingdom, China, and Malaysia). They eventually selected the Malaysian campus because of affordability, entrance criteria, available subjects, class size, necessary school years, etc. Some students also chose Malaysia after realizing that their desired educational path was inaccessible to them in their home country.

      Some of the surveyed students had working experience in their home countries before pursuing a master’s or doctoral course in Malaysia. Two students had work experience in Malaysia and one in a third country. Quite a few students had studied at another university before entering their current universities in Malaysia; most of these students had attended a university in their home country, but some had entered another university in Malaysia and later transferred to (View PDF for the rest of the abstract.)

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  • Hiroko TAKE
    2018 Volume 2018 Issue 56 Pages 46-67
    Published: 2018
    Released: September 11, 2020
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS

      In recent years, the diversification of opportunities and places to receive university education has accelerated the importance of quality improvement and quality assurance in university education. Student engagement has become an important perspective for understanding the various shifts required for institutions and the content and framework of university education.

      In Sweden, students have been considered as a partner in the policy management of universities since the university education reforms of the 1970s. Students have been involved in higher education policy at a national and institutional level as key actors with the right of resolution. Students who are selected from the student union participate in committees and meetings as representatives. Student engagement at Swedish universities has been established based on efforts from the government, universities, faculty members and students. Student engagement in the quality assurance of university education is vital and already at an advanced stage, as student engagement has been ensured by law and students have the right to be involved in the decision-making processes of university management. However, students now have the right to choose if they will participate in the student union, something that was compulsory until 2010. This has led to a decline in student affiliation, with just 42% of students now participating in the student union. As a result, the decreased student influence on universities has become a concern (UKÄ 2017).

      This article aims to analyse the system with respect to student engagement in quality assurance in university education in Sweden and suggest how to promote student engagement in Japan. First, the author examines how the higher education law ensures that student engagement is a right of students, including student engagement in university education quality assurance. Based on the legal infrastructure regarding student engagement, the author considers the relevance of the student union, which functions as the representative of students and is responsible for direct and indirect forms of student engagement in university administration and education, to quality assurance. It then analyses how Sweden, where the number of students affiliated to student unions is declining, is attempting to enhance student engagement and improve students’ influence on universities. Finally, the study suggests approaches for student engagement in the quality assurance of university education in Japan.

      In Sweden, student engagement in institutional quality assurance is ensured as a right by the higher education law and student union regulations. Each university clarifies students’ role and position in quality assurance based on the law. Students are considered as an important partner in the improvement of university education and have the right to be involved in decision-making processes regarding university management, finance and education. Universities have to establish opportunities to engage students in issues ranging from the coordination of education programmes to management policy.

      Student unions have a role in activities related to students’ education and welfare. For example, they function as part of student services, supporting students’ health and welfare, preventing any kind of discrimination, making proposals about grades and examinations and participating in producing annual reports. Students involved in student union activity are not only involved in social participation or work experience but also function as co-workers who disseminate student views about the education content that is required and opportunities for improvement in education.

      The third national quality assurance framework was implemented in 2017. The new framework emphasises four points: (1) strengthening the connection with institutional quality (View PDF for the rest of the abstract.)

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  • Yumi FUKUNO
    2018 Volume 2018 Issue 56 Pages 68-90
    Published: 2018
    Released: September 11, 2020
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS

      The AVID (Advancement Via Individual Determination) program is a unique college readiness system for students from socioeconomically disadvantaged households. The program places disadvantaged students in advanced classes, such as Advanced Placement (AP) courses. Further, each student is enrolled in an elective class designed to increase the likelihood of entering a four-year college.

      Advanced Placement (AP) courses are college-level courses that are held in high school. Originally, AP courses targeted elite students. However, a wider target audience has caused an expansion in the number of AP students. According to previous studies, taking advanced courses in high school (e.g., AP courses), increases the possibility of college attendance. Therefore, to close the achievement gap, the U.S. Department of Education has made efforts to increase access to AP courses by disadvantaged students.

      However, the U.S. Department of Education is facing difficulties in achieving its goal. Although the overall number of schools and students who take AP courses has increased, minority and low-income students are less likely to enroll in AP courses than Caucasian and Asian students.

      Despite this situation, the AVID program is available in some schools in and around California, and AVID students take AP courses and go on to college despite their disadvantaged status. Special support provisions are applicable to such students through the AVID program; therefore, it would be pertinent to examine the assistance offered to them.

      This study clarified the actual state of the AVID program based on a case study of San Ysidro High School—recognized as a leading AVID school —in San Diego, California. Interviews were conducted at San Ysidro High School in San Diego, California, in March 2016.

      First, this paper includes an outline of the AVID program, which was first established at a public high school in San Diego in 1980. Since then, the program has spread to other schools. During the 2015–2016 school year, the AVID program was in effect at 4,273 school sites, and 463,435 students enrolled in the AVID program nationwide. The number of students who were qualified for free/subsidized lunches was 306,555 (66.1%). Despite their disadvantaged status, many AVID students enter four-year universities. In the 2014–2015 school year, 40,272 high school seniors joined the AVID program, and 31,296 of these (77.7%) were accepted at four-year colleges.

      The AVID program operates at school sites. School district offices and the AVID Center support these sites. The AVID Center, which is a non-profit organization, oversees the AVID program nationwide. The AVID Center sets the 11 elements of AVID program and offers materials to schools and professional development resources to teachers.

      Second, this paper clarifies the reality of the AVID program at San Ysidro High School. In the 2015–2016 school year, 331 students were enrolled in the school’s AVID program. Of these, 76.7% qualified for free/subsidized lunches.

      Staff members engaged in the AVID program include an AVID coordinator, AVID elective teacher, and AVID tutor. The AVID coordinator manages the program at the school site. The AVID elective teacher directs the AVID elective class, and the tutor is a college student who assists with the AVID tutorial session.

      Program participants are selected based on interviews with an AVID coordinator. The AVID coordinator investigates students’ backgrounds and their willingness to study diligently if selected for the program.

      The AVID program comprises three courses: AVID 9/10, AVID Junior Seminar, and AVID Senior Seminar. Students take advanced classes and an AVID elective class. The AVID elective class is held for five hours every week. Two hours are (View PDF for the rest of the abstract.)

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  • Naoshi KIRA
    2018 Volume 2018 Issue 56 Pages 91-112
    Published: 2018
    Released: September 11, 2020
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS

      In the United States, the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) was signed into law by President Barack Obama (Democrat) on December 10th, 2015, which rolls back federal authority in education and allows states more power over their accountability systems. ESSA is the latest reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) of 1965 enacted by President Lyndon B. Johnson (Democrat) in an effort to improve educational quality and opportunity for disadvantaged children. The previous reauthorization was the No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB) of 2001 signed by President George W. Bush (Republican) in 2002, but there was an unprecedented situation in which the law had not been reauthorized for as many as 8 years since its deadline for renewal in 2007.

      This article deals with rivalry and compromise between the two major parties, as is reflected in the latest ESEA reauthorization bills and voting records, and it examines exchanges between Democrats who attempted to expand federal education budget and maintain federal authority based on their principles of promoting social justice and narrowing achievement gaps and Republicans who sought to control federal authority and bring it back to state and local governments based on their principles of promoting local control and fiscal conservatism. This article aims to clarify the reasons why the ESEA was not renewed for 8 years as well as the background for the enactment of the ESSA—a Republican-leaning bill, which significantly rolls back federal authority in education.

      As a background to understanding the ESSA, federal aid to education targeted toward disadvantaged children had persisted for a few decades since the enactment of ESEA in 1965, while federal authority was limited at that time. Federal authority in education has expanded through outcome-oriented reforms since the 1990s with the enactment and implementation of an ESEA rewrite (the Improving America’s Schools Act) in 1994 and the NCLB in 2002, causing criticism from supporters of both parties. It was further expanded through the promotion of specific education policies by the Obama administration through the Department of Education in the forms of conditions for applying for federal competitive grants called the Race to the Top (RTTT) and waivers from NCLB requirements, which resulted in fierce criticism mostly from Republicans.

      As for the reasons why the ESEA was not reauthorized for 8 years, although the Democratic members of Congress held the majority in both chambers for two years under the Bush administration starting in 2007, no agreement was made between the two parties as to how to renew the NCLB, and the law was not renewed. The Democrats maintained a majority in both chambers under the Obama administration inaugurated in 2009, but they were not able to take advantage of the situation of unified party government to rewrite the law due to other legislative priorities, such as economic recovery and health care reform. The Republicans took back the majority of the House in 2011, resulting in a divided-party government, and they could not compromise with the Democratic majority in the Senate as to how to reauthorize the ESEA for the coming four years as their views were quite different. In the meantime, the Obama administration bypassed the Congress (legislative branch) to renew the ESEA, and promoted its education policies through the Department of Education (executive branch) as conditions to the state governments when they applied for the RTTT grants and the NCLB waiver, resulting in further expansion of the federal authority causing fierce criticisms especially from Republicans.

      In 2014, the Republicans won the midterm election, and took control of both chambers in Congress, leading the ESEA renewal to finally move forward. They were frustrated with federal overreach under the Obama (View PDF for the rest of the abstract.)

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  • Hiroko NAKAMURA
    2018 Volume 2018 Issue 56 Pages 113-135
    Published: 2018
    Released: September 11, 2020
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS

      Indigenous Maori and immigrant Pacifika students are referred to as “priority learners” in New Zealand. There lies a significant achievement gap between Maori and Pacifika students and those of European and Asian descent. The disparity is also conspicuous socially and economically, such as in suicide, unemployment and poverty rates.

      The above suggests a state of inequality restricting many Maori and Pasifika students’ capability to have the meaningful choice of life. For Maori who have had to suffer the grief as “the colonised” and Pasifika, who are sometimes referred to as “the most marginalised” in New Zealand, a society where one can, regardless of ethnicity, pursue the life one aspires, participate meaningfully in society and feel the positive bond with the society is yet to be realised.

      The issue of social integration lies in how we stem social division deriving from disparity, recognise cultural differences and develop a society where everybody can participate in mainstream society and its institutions. The design of the education system plays a key role in promoting the capability of the individual.

      As the New Zealand government introduced the charter school system as a means to achieve the level of education for “priority learners” including Maori and Pasifika students to succeed in work and life, this paper explores the possibility and the challenge of this new system in regards to social integration.

      The charter school system was proposed initially by the ACT (Association of consumers and taxpayers) party and introduced by the fifth national government and legalized in 2013. These schools can be established based on a contract between the sponsor and the ministry of education and funded by the government.

      Although the New Zealand school system has experienced a significant level of devolution and diversification since the “Tomorrow’s schools” reform of the 1980s, the ACT party who supports smaller government, deregulation, tax cuts and entrepreneurship has been advocating that charter schools promote further choice and diversification, innovation and freedom to school education.

      However, teachers unions have actively opposed the introduction of charter schools, which may well make one assume that implementation is creating another clash based on political ideologies.

      Nevertheless, the Maori and Pacifika students of New Zealand are the most disadvantaged and make up the majority of a long tail of underachievement. To eliminate this achievement gap and to promote social integration through education is still an imminent issue.

      In light of social integration, where those with different cultural backgrounds than the mainstream can participate meaningfully in society and understand oneself to be an equal citizen in a just society, this paper investigated the meaning of charter schools and the implications of conflicts surrounding these schools in New Zealand.

      As teachers unions argue, the national party did not mention implementation during the election campaign, charter schools do not have boards of trustees including parental representatives, and the obligation to disclose information is limited in spite of public funding, all of which work to restrict the chance to democratically scrutinize the legitimacy of institution and to lower accountability.

      The decline of democratic legitimacy could erode trust in the public education system as a whole, which would not make it a reliable source of social integration.

      On the other hand, for Maori educationists, and also for those working for charter schools, existant mainstream schools do not appear to be accountable as they are not taking responsibility to change results for many Maori students who have been failed. (View PDF for the rest of the abstract.)

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Open Symposium at the 53rd Annual Meeting
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