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Thursday, May 13, 2021

Fewer Qataris getting into college, more dropping out

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Fewer Qataris are getting into college, and more of those who do are dropping out, according to the country’s five-year National Plan, which was released this week.

Qatar has world-class higher education institutions, but its people are not able or willing to take advantage of them, the plan states. 

The Gulf Times reports:

More attractive offers in the labour market or lack of sufficient qualification could be a reason behind low enrolment rates and high dropout rates in the higher education system.

Other reasons could be a misalignment between the subject matter taught and abilities developed in K-12 education and that many students need to take one or two years of foundation courses before starting college to catch up in knowledge and critical thinking abilities.

The (National Plan) has called for a proper alignment between higher education and needs of a knowledge economy.

The diminishing number of Qatari college students and graduates involves both Education City institutions and Qatar University, which the plan said has made entry requirements more stringent since 2003.

The plan proposes a slew of ways to tackle the gap between the number of Qatari college grads there are and the number the government needs.

They include:

  • A campaign to boost enrollment and provide incentives to nationals who enter college
  • Addressing shortcomings in the K-12 system that has thus far failed to prepare students for higher education
  • Looking into alternative educational opportunities like adult education, part-time education, distance learning and study abroad

By 2016, Qatar is aiming to increase the enrollment of Qatari nationals to 30% for men and 56% for women.

Does that 30% figure seem shocking to you? I wonder what the current higher education enrollment rate is for Qatari males.

Image courtesy of InnerSpirit

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