Featured Country: Iran

Photo of Iran (Credit: Getty).

Education in Iran has a complex history characterized by ideological struggle, competing agendas, and contrasting methods. Until the twentieth century, the Islamic seminary system led education until being eclipsed by the state-run education system popularized in Europe. Before the Revolution, Iranian leaders promoted nationalism and the glory of pre-Islamic Persia before the new regime attempted to unite the population under Islam. Following the Islamic Revolution in 1979, seminaries once again grew in influence, eventually producing most of the country’s political elite. The cultural revolution dramatically altered the nation’s educational framework, impacting institutions at all levels with a particular focus on universities.

Today, gender equality, instruction quality, and academic achievement remain the greatest issues facing the nation’s educational development. Following weeks of protest in September 2022 in support of women and against governmental oppression, Iran seems poised for more transformation.

Featured Theme: Higher Education Access

Photo of students throwing graduations hats in the air (Credit: Pexels).

In honor of World Access to Higher Education Day on November 17th, this theme explores global challenges in equitable higher education access. Higher education access is monitored by studying participation in higher education by students, particularly those who are disadvantaged due to their age, race, gender, religion, sexuality, or economic class, and by the outcomes of their education, on both the individual socio-economic level and globally.

In Serbia, Roma remain underrepresented in higher education due to racial and economic discrimination. Learn more about the obstacles that they face and how this inequality can be overcome.

Over the last two decades, China has rapidly grown into a global economic superpower. Read about how this and other developments have impacted higher education access.

How does being first-generation impact students’ experiences in higher education? How can embracing students from a wider variety of social and economic backgrounds cultivate diversity? Read this study on the experiences of first-generation Māori and Pasifika students at university in New Zealand.

Explore the theme here.

Article Spotlight: Access to Higher Education

Photo of a college at Oxford University (Credit: Pixabay).

Canada: Read here

Japan: Read here

Egypt: Read here