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|Title:||The underrepresentation of Muslim women in Higher Education: a case study of the causes and opportunities for change in Uganda|
|Authors:||Saad, Fatihiya Migdad|
|Presented at:||University of Leicester|
|Abstract:||A mixed methods research focusing on the feminist perspective was applied using an adaptation of Bronfrenbrenner’s (2005) ecological cycle to investigate the causes and appropriate responses to the underrepresentation of the Ugandan Muslim Woman in the field of higher education. The premise of the study was based upon human rights. The UN Millennium Development Goals Report (2007) suggested that despite the leaps and bounds female emancipation groups were taking toward a free, fair and equitable environment toward education, women still fared poorly in accessing higher education. Equality of access to and attainment of educational qualifications was necessary if more women were to become agents of change since education for girls was argued to be the single most effective way of alleviating poverty (King 1993). However, "Traditional cultures and sexist stereotypes diffused by media and religious extremists often affect girls' access to education; dropout rates and professional or higher education opportunities" (UN Report 2003). Notwithstanding Uganda’s affirmative action policies that openly favoured women’s progress in education, various factors adapted from Bronfrenbrenner’s ecological cycle (2005) were found to combine to lower the academic performance and aspirations of girls even when they did remain in school. An online questionnaire and semi structured in depth interviews captured women’s voices at Makerere University, Uganda and these were qualitatively analysed and coded into themes which were identified as enablers, barriers and strategies adapted by Muslim women in their pursuit of higher education. Interestingly enough religion and culture were perceived as both barriers and enablers depending on the attitudes and perceptions of different families. It is hoped that the findings of this study would subsequently make a significant contribution, so that women’s education is more effectively represented as a means towards achieving targets set by several mandates including the Millennium development goals (MDG’s), Education for All (EFA) and Widening Participation into higher Education.|
|Rights:||Copyright © the author. All rights reserved.|
|Appears in Collections:||Theses, School of Education|
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