AN ECOLOGICAL STUDY OF BEDOUIN ELEMENTARY SCHOOL EDUCATION IN HAIL PROVINCE: SAUDI ARABIA (CULTURAL ECOLOGY).
AuthorAL-EISA, ABDULAZIZ AHMED.
KeywordsBedouins -- Education (Elementary)
Bedouins -- Social life and customs.
Saudi Arabia -- Social conditions.
Human ecology -- Saudi Arabia.
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PublisherThe University of Arizona.
RightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
AbstractThe purpose of this study was to ascertain the relationship of formal elementary education to the social, cultural, economic and physical environment of the Bedouin in Hail Province, Saudi Arabia. Saudi Arabia has modernized rapidly, but the Bedouin have remained isolated from the urban changes. A total of 240 Bedouin elders were interviewed in group meetings in the Bedouin camps. Eight teachers who taught hygiene, history, geography, mathematics, and reading and forty students selected by the use of random tables were interviewed at Al Zahra elementary school in Mawqiq village which was near the Bedouin camps. The researcher designed a set of questions to find cultural characteristics of the tribe as well as attitudes toward education and the value of formal education to the Bedouin either in their nomadic existence or in the village. A cultural ecology approach was used in analyzing the data. Much of the information obtained through fieldwork was not available from other sources at this time. The researcher observed the social environment, analyzed school textbooks, and reviewed current literature on the subject of Bedouin education. The Bedouin environment was found to be a harsh desert setting, but the Bedouin had a long and proud history. Neither local geography nor history of the Bedouin was included in the school curriculum. Textbooks did not include Bedouin culture, and teachers did not encourage discussion or applications of learning to the Bedouin students. It was discovered that the Bedouin had not changed as much as the rest of the country, and were in need of special educational programs in order to enable them to fit into the modern world of Saudi Arabia whether they stayed in the desert or went to find jobs in the city. Using a cultural ecological perspective, it was found that the school was not integrated into other features of Bedouin society. The information developed by this study can be used by other researchers to enable them to plan programs especially for the Bedouin children in school, to write new textbooks, to train teachers to work with Bedouin students, and, in general, to understand and appreciate the Bedouin culture as it exists today and has existed for many centuries.
Degree ProgramEducational Foundations and Administration