Tag Archives: Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia Educational Map- From Sand Dunes towards Western Skyscrapers Platforms (Published)

This paper explores the emergence of the concept of education and its ideological roots vis-s-vis Islamic principles and pedagogy in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. Hence, a general description of the Saudi Arabian educational system and a general account of how and when education was first introduced into the KSA is a necessary step to provide a complete picture the system of education and its rapid developments towards E-learning and/or distance learning status. In fact, all legal decisions within the Kingdom; however, are based on the Sharia Law-Islamic law as set forth by the Holy Qur’an, as stated in the Education Policy document. Therefore, according to Islamic studies constitute a major portion of the curriculum at the educational levels, and even science textbooks emphasize Islamic notions. This, in turn, may propose some obstacles in learning and teaching distance education from a Western ideological perspective. Therefore, the paper will lay out some of these hindrances and pedagogical implication in how to transition from traditional towards a more modern pedagogical education paradigm within the KSA.

Keywords: Education, Ideology, Islamic, Pedagogy, Policy Documents, Saudi Arabia, Western

The Features of Effective English Teachers as Viewed by English Language Teachers and High School Students in Saudi Arabia (Published)

This paper aimed to study the features of effective English teachers as viewed by English language teachers and high school students in Saudi Arabia. The study consists of 17 English language teachers and 17 secondary school students, all from Saudi Arabia. The study depended on the descriptive approach to evaluate English teachers language proficiency, pedagogical knowledge and socio-affective features. The results asserts that the teachers advocated socio-affective skills, English proficiency, and pedagogical knowledge in order of importance, whereas the students advocated English proficiency, socio-affective skills, and pedagogical knowledge. The results show that the features of effective English teachers within the language proficiency are reading, writing and comprehension proficiency. For pedagogical knowledge, the research indicates the significant of preparing the lesson and using various teaching aids. Finally, the socio-affective features of English language effective teachers are “listening to the students” and “to be fair with all students”.

Keywords: English Teachers, High School, Language, Saudi Arabia, Student

E-Commerce Activities through E-Banking Services: A Comparative Analysis of the Perceptions of Saudi Islamic and Conventional Banks Customers (Published)

Purpose – The aim of this paper is to explore and evaluate customers’ use of e-commerce activities through e-banking services in Saudi Islamic and conventional banks through analysing the perceptions of their customers. Design / methodology / approach -This paper presents the initial findings with the objective of developing a better understanding of customers’ preferences based on their opinions and perceptions expressed through a questionnaire survey with a sample of 198 Islamic and conventional bank customers representing six banks in the country. Findings – The findings indicate that the order of preferences in terms of mean ranking is similar in both types of banks in five out of six cases. Based on the application of K-W and MW-U tests, the findings also show that independent variables have turned out to be more significant in Islamic banks than in the conventional banks. Research limitation / implications – The study has considered six banks out of the total of 12 in Saudi Arabia. In addition, the research is based on a limited selection of bank customers in three main regions of Saudi Arabia.Practical implications – With reference to practical implications, the findings suggest that e-commerce activities can play a significant role in expanding the dealing of e-commerce through e-banking services in Saudi Arabia. Originality/value – This is the first paper in the area of exploring and evaluating customers’ use of e-commerce activities through e-banking services on a comparative analysis of Islamic and conventional banks in Saudi Arabia. The findings and implications of the research offer invaluable information to the industry and policy-makers.

Keywords: E-Banking services, E-Commerce, Islamic and conventional banks, Saudi Arabia

Relationship between Teachers’ Effective Communication and Students’ Academic Achievement at the Northern Border University, Saudi Arabia (Published)

Effective Communication between faculty members and students is one of the concerns of the educational stakeholders at the Northern Border University, Saudi Arabia. This study investigates the relationship between teachers’ effective communication and students’ academic achievement at the Northern Border University. The survey questionnaire containing 26 items was administered on 100 students, 50 males and 50 females to ask about their perception towards the effective communication of the faculty members and their academic achievement at the Faculty of Education and Arts, Northern Border University in the City of Arar, Saudi Arabia. The results of the Descriptive statistics method showed that, almost more than half of the students agreed that, the friendly and understanding position maintained by their faculty members had helped them to highly achieve academically. The results of the independent sample T-test found no statistically significant differences between the students ‘academic achievement and their faculty members’ verbal communication across the respondents’ gender and year of study. The study recommended for the Northern Border Authority as well as the Saudi Government looking into other areas that might bring about the effective communication of the staff and the students’ academic achievement in the University.

Keywords: Academic Achievement, Effective Communication, Northern Border University, Saudi Arabia

Relationship between Teachers’ Effective Communication and Students’ Academic Achievement at the Northern Border University, Saudi Arabia (Published)

Effective Communication between faculty members and students is one of the concerns of the educational stakeholders at the Northern Border University, Saudi Arabia. This study investigates the relationship between teachers’ effective communication and students’ academic achievement at the Northern Border University. The survey questionnaire containing 26 items was administered on 100 students, 50 males and 50 females to ask about their perception towards the effective communication of the faculty members and their academic achievement at the Faculty of Education and Arts, Northern Border University in the City of Arar, Saudi Arabia. The results of the Descriptive statistics method showed that, almost more than half of the students agreed that, the friendly and understanding position maintained by their faculty members had helped them to highly achieve academically. The results of the independent sample T-test found no statistically significant differences between the students ‘academic achievement and their faculty members’ verbal communication across the respondents’ gender and year of study. The study recommended for the Northern Border Authority as well as the Saudi Government looking into other areas that might bring about the effective communication of the staff and the students’ academic achievement in the University.

Keywords: Academic Achievement, Effective Communication, Northern Border University, Saudi Arabia

AN EMPIRICAL STUDY OF FACTORS AFFECTING CUSTOMER LOYALTY OF TELECOMMUNICATION INDUSTRY IN THE KINGDOM OF SAUDI ARABIA (Published)

This research aims to evaluate the effect of the variables; namely, price, service quality, brand image and trends on customer loyalty of service providers of mobile phones in Saudi Arabia. A questionnaire was developed and distributed to a convenient sample throughout the major cities of Saudi Arabia. A total of 775 were returned representing a response rate of 89.6%. The study showed that the majority of respondents had prescribed to more than one service provider at the same time. Additionally, it was revealed that all the variables tested; price, service quality, brand image and trends, had a direct effect on customer loyalty of service provider. Results obtained from this research will offer necessary feedback for improving a company’s strategy, marketing mix, services, and product offerings, thereby, achieve customer satisfaction and improve their customer loyalty while attracting new ones.

Keywords: Brand Image, Customer loyalty, Price, Saudi Arabia, Service Quality, Trends, mobile phones

LEARNING ENGLISH IN SAUDI ARABIA: A SOCIO- CULTURAL PERSPECTIVE (Published)

This study aims at investigating the cultural factors which predispose Saudi students towards learning English in Saudi Arabia from the point of view of Saudi teachers and students. The researcher attempts to examine these factors from Islamic social perspectives by raising questions that examine how positive these factors are and how they encourage and motivate students to learn English language. These cultural factors are : Islam, national identity, globalization, westernization, Saudi teenagers’ attitudes and beliefs, motivation, travelling, social websites, knowing the purpose of learning, need for communication, native speakers’ teachers, and the learning of Arabic language by native speakers of English .The qualitative descriptive research method was used. Two data-gathering tools were used for data collection: a questionnaire and an interview. The total number of the subjects was 226 participants. The analysis of the collected data shows that the most influencing factors upon learning English in Saudi Arabia are traveling abroad to learn English, knowing the purpose of learning English and Saudi teenagers’ beliefs and attitudes . The least influencing factors upon learning English in Saudi Arabia are Islam and westernization.

Keywords: English Language Learning, Islamic Culture, Saudi Arabia, Western Culture

CONCEPTUALIZING THE VIRTUAL LEARNING SPACE(S) IN SAUDI ARABIA: A FOUCAULDIAN PANOPTIC APPROACH (Published)

In a place-conscious culture where marked spaces define national identity and social order, the move from a teacher-centred educational system to the virtual classroom resulted in re-drawing the map of power relations. From the practices of the early Saudi classroom, the Halaga, with its panoptic circle structure, to the modern school classroom with its carefully-drawn rows and set of disciplinary techniques, the Saudi teacher had always exercised his authority from/as the centre. Yet, the educational phenomenon of the virtual-space-based distance learning has left the instructor feeling ‘out of place’. As the setting for the physical presence and the disciplinary gaze is shifted/cancelled in the online classroom, the balance of power has also shifted in favour of the student. This paper explores the hierarchical structure of the virtual space in the not-so-modern Saudi teaching practices and the position of the teacher which has (d)evolved into the power struggles of the 21st century modern ‘educational technological phenomenon’. Applying Foucault’s concept of the panoptic in educational settings, we posit that the traditional power and discipline the teacher used to claim has been transmuted in the reverse panoptic gaze of the students who are in control of the virtual classroom and its time and space. The invisibility of the students in the current distance learning setting, compared to their visibility as a disciplinary tool in the physical Saudi classroom, poses a serious challenge not only to the teacher’s authority, but also to his/her style and methods. On the other hand, some might argue that the students might gain more understanding of a subject via their ‘spatial freedom’ of the online material access. However, we hypothesize that the virtual space in distance learning needs to be teacher-friendly and visual contact between the teacher and the students should still be applied freely.

Keywords: Foucault, Saudi Arabia, distance learning, early Islamic pedagogy, panopticism, spatial freedom, virtual classroom, virtual space

MANAGERIAL CREATIVITY AND ITS RELATIONSHIP WITH EMPLOYEES PERFORMANCE LEVEL IMPROVEMENT IN SAUDI TELECOMMUNICATION COMPANIES (Published)

This study aims to investigate the application status managerial creativity components among employees namely originality, Ideational Fluency, mental flexibility, risk taking ability to analyze, problems sensitivity, unfamiliar and its impact in improving performance of telecom companies employees in Saudi Arabia. The questionnaire is developed to measure the impact of managerial creativity on telecommunications company’s employees in Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. 210 questionnaires were distributed and 180 were restored, that is 85.7% of the total sample.The results showed that there is a positive relationship between managerial creativity elements, and employees performance of telecom companies in Saudi Arabia, which confirms adopted study hypothesis and there is appositive relationship between them. This indicates that as long as appropriate stimulating environment of managerial creativity elements is available within these companies as long as this level of employees’ performance level is increased. Finally, the study recommended that the importance of pay special attention to all managerial creativity as an important variable that contributes in influencing employees job performance, which will lead to higher morale and increase their loyalty and belonging to these companies.

Keywords: Managerial Creativity, Saudi Arabia, Telecom Companies

OBSTACLES TO TEACHING ENGLISH IN SAUDI ARABIA PUBLIC SCHOOLS: TEACHERS’ AND SUPERVISORS’ PERCEPTIONS (Published)

This study aims at identifying the obstacles to teaching English in public schools in Saudi Arabia from the perception of teachers and supervisors. A mixed-method approach was adopted: two instruments were used for data collection, a close-ended questionnaire and an open-ended interview. A total of 50 copies of the questionnaire have been distributed to teachers and supervisors of English language, followed by open-ended interviews with six chosen English language teachers and supervisors. Qualitative and quantitative data have been elicited to aid in the evaluation. The findings of the study have revealed that: There is a scarcity of development programs, scarcity of in-service training, weakness of in-service training programs, low students’ motivation, overuse of traditional teaching methods, scarcity of using teaching aids and modern technology, weakness of school supplies, and scarcity of language laboratories. These are the major obstacles to teaching English in public education schools in Saudi Arabia from the teachers’ and supervisors views

Keywords: Public Schools Teachers, Saudi Arabia, Teaching English

ASSESSMENT OF MULTIDRUG RESISTANT ORGANISM RELATED PREVENTION AND CONTROL POLICIES AND ENVIRONMENT AT KFHH, SAUDI ARABIA (Published)

Worldwide, Healthcare Associated Infections (HAIs) and Multidrug Resistant Organisms (MDROs) cause a significant clinical and economic burden. One of the strategies that have been implemented to reduce antimicrobial resistance is the development of healthcare settings with specific MDROs control policies and guidelines. The aim of this study was to perform an audit in order to assess whether, at the time of writing, the relevant policies and procedures were in place at the King Fahad Hofuf Hospital. The Carter and colleagues’ model, which uses a matrix of acknowledging, auditing, stating of aims, and setting out of actions was used as a model for the assessment of the policies. The researchers conducted site visit rounds of the ICU and the general wards to report on the ratio of rooms for patient care, and the general areas in which hand washing sinks and alcohol-based hand rub products were available. Eight policies related to multidrug resistant organisms were analysed. Inappropriate scientific references were presented in the policies and there were no acknowledgements, auditing, or recommended actions in the majority of these policies according to the Carter and colleagues’ method. The sink to bed ratio was 1:6 in the ICU and 1:25 in the general ward. As well, the sinks were not equipped with non-manual control equipment. In conclusion, An audit of policies in the healthcare setting indicated a number of deficiencies regarding best standard policies and guidelines for infection control. Moreover, there were also inadequate environmental control measures for HAIs and MDROs, including hand hygiene facilities

Keywords: Environment, Infection control, KFHH, MDROs, Saudi Arabia, policies

Multi-Drug Resistant Organisms and Patients’ Risk Factors in the Intensive Care Unit of King Fahad Hofuf Hospital, Saudi Arabia (Published)

Introduction: Healthcare Acquired Infections (HAIs), including Multi-Drug Resistant Organisms (MDROs) are significant global public health problems. This paper analyses a surveillance system dataset in order to describe the epidemiology of HAIs (MDROs and non-MDROs) in the intensive care unit (ICU), King Fahad Hofuf Hospital (KFHH), Saudi Arabia.

Methods: The three year period (2010 to 2012) of KFHH surveillance system data (both sporadic and outbreak) were analysed.

Results: There were 496 notifications of HAI cases, with 68.2% being MDROs and 31.8% non-MDROs. A total of 758 organisms were identified with 90% being Gram Negative Organisms (GNO). Of the GNOs, 51% were MDROs. Device-associated infections were detected in 48.9% of patients. The most common device-associated infections were ventilator-associated pneumonia, central line associated blood stream infections, and catheter-associated urinary tract infections. The most frequently isolated MDROs were Acinetobacter species at 57.4%, extended spectrum beta lactamase producing Klebsiella pneumonia at 13.2%, MRSA at 9.8%, and Pseudomonas aeruginosa at 6.5%.

Conclusion: HAIs cause a significant burden of disease at KFHH. The high prevalence of risk factors including pre-existing medical conditions, invasive procedures, and the long duration of hospital stays, are more prominent in ICU. This study highlights the changing trend of MDROs towards MDR gram negative organisms. High rates of multidrug resistant Acinetobacter baumannii were prominent in the ICU

 

Keywords: ICU, Infection control, KFHH, MDROs, Saudi Arabia, Surveillance