Performance must be raised in Middle East Schools to prepare students for university

Performance must be raised in Middle East Schools to prepare students for university

10.03.2015: Expert from PA Consulting Group warns culture of valuing lifelong learning in education needs to

Expert from PA Consulting Group warns culture of valuing lifelong learning in education needs to be created in Middle East


Caption:     Paul Woodgates, education expert at PA Consulting Group.




he standard of education in the Middle East needs to improve drastically against international benchmarks in order to create more capable, qualified and developed students who can move on to tertiary learning.


While education is the single most important determinant of today’s economic, social and cultural prosperity, the biggest challenge for the region’s education sector is that the system has traditionally under performed at all levels compared to other markets, said Paul Woodgates, an education expert at PA Consulting Group.


“There has been a passive acceptance of this underperformance in recent years, however, it is no longer being tolerated,” said Woodgates.  “Performance and outcomes need to be raised at school level, where in many cases the quality of teaching needs to be improved, to create a cohort of students who are ready for undergraduate study and will exceed at that level and beyond.”


Working with management to support decision-making around the deployment of educational resources for teaching, research, estate and facilities, and intellectual property, Paul Woodgates has said that the biggest problem Middle East educational management face today is creating behavioural change.


“The focus of governments is often on new buildings, changed curricula and the introduction of technology – all very important.  Research shows, however, that these factors are secondary compared to improving the quality of teaching in terms of making an impact,” added Woodgates.


As technology is constantly advancing, providers in the Middle East have been urged to understand and make the most of new innovations to engage students and enhance the learning experience.  The education sector must pay more attention to capital efficiency and innovation rather than rely on incumbent models of learning services in order to keep up with the rest of the world.


PA Consulting Group understands the issues and challenges shaping government and public service organisations in the Middle East and is helping countries across the Gulf realise their version for education to support their economic, cultural and social aspirations.


The Group is leading the way on e-education and has worked closely with organisations to develop their visions for technology-enabled learning, and designed, piloted and implemented an ‘e-maturity’ model within an online tool in Qatar. 


The dual-language tool, the first of its kind in the region, provides schools in Qatar with an online self-assessment and improvement capability to assess their level of ‘e-maturity’ and guide them towards improvement in line with the overall e-education strategy.


PA Consulting Group has been operating in the Gulf region for the last 30 years, successfully delivering more than 150 projects in 13 Middle Eastern countries, across sectors including financial services, transport, energy, government, defence and security, healthcare, education and manufacturing.




- Lindsay Johnston, Total Communications Dubai - also photo

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10.03.2015 / MaP

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