The Impact of Globalization on Educatio

Topics: United Nations, World Bank, Globalization Pages: 12 (9083 words) Published: December 18, 2014
Literacy Information and Computer Education Journal (LICEJ), Volume 2, Issue 4, December 2011

The Impact of Globalization on Education Policy of Developing Countries: Oman as an Example
Khalaf Al’Abri
Sultan Qaboos University, Oman

Globalization can be thought of as the speedy,
free movement of people, services, capital, goods,
ideas and knowledge across national borders,
encompassing the entire globe. It is claimed that
globalization makes the world akin to a small village
through time and space compression with new
technologies being an important facilitator of this
interconnectivity. Accordingly, national systems, in
particular education systems, of nation-states have
been affected critically by these processes. By
reviewing the literature and analyzing some
education policy documents, this paper investigates
how globalization has reshaped the terrain of
education policy in developing countries. Such
changes in education policy of developing countries
will be illustrated through the case of the Sultanate
of Oman. An argument is presented that education
policy in Oman has been affected seriously by
globalization processes, leading to deep shifts and
changes in the ways in which education policies are
developed, implemented and evaluated. This paper
will contribute to future research on similar topics.

1. Introduction
Globalization as a concept has been used in both
positive and negative way by different people in
different situations. Everyone looks at the concept
from his or her point of view and interests. However,
there is an agreement among all theorists that
globalization has had enormous impact on societies
at economic, political, and cultural levels. From the
literature on globalization, it seems like everything is
globalizing in this world as a result of the
transformation of the world to a small village, a
global village. This means borders are not any longer
insurmountable barriers to any kind of connections
and integration between nations. It is argued in the
literature that such impact of globalization reaches
both developing and developed nations. All of their
governmental systems are believed to be affected by
the various processes of globalization. The focus in
this study is on globalization and its impact on
education systems, particularly on education policy.
Regarding the linkages between globalization and
education, much has been written in recent years
examining how education has been affected. For

Copyright © 2011, Infonomics Society

example, Marginson [27] mentions that education
“has become a primary medium of globalization and
an incubator of its agents” (p. 19). In addition,
Priestly [33] argues that national education systems
have been changed quite noticeably by the processes
of globalization and that most changes happening
recently in education can be attributed to the effects
of and responses to globalization. Correspondingly,
Jones and Coleman [25] state that no education
system globally can survive and stay unaffected by
Indeed, policy making in education is much
affected by the phenomenon of globalization.
Traditionally, policy has been produced within the
authority of the nation-state. However, over the last
two decades globalization has witnessed some
challenges to such nation-state bound policy making
in education [41]. To make it clear, globalization has
resulted in the strengthened influence in policy terms
of international organizations such as the UN, the
World Bank, and OECD. The decisions of these
institutions to varying degrees today shape and
constrain the policy options for any particular nationstate. This leads us to acknowledge that globalization impacts education policy development and
production around the world. However, these
impacts are mediated in different ways across
developed and developing countries with
international organizations having...

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