Globalization and the Reform of Faculties of Education in Egypt: The Roles of Individual and Organizational, National and International Actors


  • Mark Ginsburg Academy for Educational Development
  • Nagwa Megahed Ain Shams University & Southern Mississippi University



Teacher Education, Reform, Globalization


In this paper we outline the history of institutionalizing pre-service teacher education in Egypt, and then examine efforts in the mid-1990s to the mid-2000s to reform faculties of education. We document previous criticisms of and proposed changes in teacher preparation programs, but note that concerted reform efforts occurred only after the Egyptian government in the 1990s focused on improving educational quality, including teacher preparation, and the World Bank and USAID also put the issue pre-service teacher education on their agendas – and committed funds for this purpose. We also describe how the proposed reforms of policy and practice (e.g., improving assessments of entrants and graduates, increasing a focus on practice versus theory in coursework, expanding the amount of time devoted to field experiences, and organizing “induction” programs to support and guide new teachers) reflected global teacher education reform discourses characteristic of the 1990s and 2000s. However, rather than treating globalization as a process without real actors, we trace how these ideas were promoted by many Egyptians and non-Egyptians (e.g., faculty of education staff and Ministry of Higher Education personnel, but also World Bank staff, USAID personnel, and members of the two international organization-funded project teams). In examining the planning and implementation of two internationally funded faculty of education reform projects, we explore the interplay between and among local and global actors and identify individual and organizational factors that enabled or constrained these efforts to achieve significant and sustainable improvements in the quality of pre-service teacher education in Egypt.


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Author Biographies

Mark Ginsburg, Academy for Educational Development

Mark Ginsburg is a senior advisor for research, evaluation, and teacher education at the Academy for Educational Development (AED, USA) and coeditor of the Comparative Education Review. He previously was a faculty member at the University of Aston in Birmingham (England, 1976-78), the University of Houston (Texas, USA, 1978-87), and the University of Pittsburgh (Pennsylvania, USA, 1987-2004). He directed the Faculties of Education Reform project of the USAID-funded Educational Reform Program in Egypt (2004-2006). He has published extensively on topics of policy/institutional reform, teachers/teacher education, and policy/practice-oriented research and evaluation.

Nagwa Megahed, Ain Shams University & Southern Mississippi University

Nagwa Megahed is an Assistant Professor at Ain Shams University in Egypt, and is currently a Fulbright “Scholar-in-Residence” for Middle Eastern Cultural and Language Studies at the University of Southern Mississippi. Prior to that, she worked as a Senior Technical Advisor for Research and Evaluation at USAID-Funded Education Reform Program in Egypt in cooperation with Michigan State University and the Academy for Educational Development. During her Ph.D. studies at the University of Pittsburgh she worked in the Institute for International Studies in Education on projects related to educational reform and teacher education. She has published articles and book chapters on the reform of educational policy and practices, teacher education and work, gender inequality, and Islam and education.




How to Cite

Ginsburg, M., & Megahed, N. (2011). Globalization and the Reform of Faculties of Education in Egypt: The Roles of Individual and Organizational, National and International Actors. Education Policy Analysis Archives, 19, 15.




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