Exploring the Factors Influencing Omani Students Academic Achievements in the Higher Education Sector

  1. Introduction

The academic achievements of students belonging to any nationality, culture, religion or ethnic background depends on a variety of factors. These academic achievements are mandatory to any individual as they come under the individual’s skill set. They contribute to increasing the knowledge and abilities of the students. Pursuing higher education doesn’t just help the students achieve their own personal goals but it also allows the students to efficiently contribute to the community. (Kapur, 2018) For Omani students in particular, a pattern has been noticed regarding their academic achievements upon pursuing their education in the higher education sector. Some students are observed to be open to different cultures and hence move forward at a faster rate as compared to other Omani students. There are also several barriers that hold back a large population of the Omani students pursuing education in the higher educational sectors. Not all Omani students seem to have the skill set required to overcome these barriers in order to move ahead in life to produce better results for themselves and the community. (Al-Ghafri, 2018)

  • Rationale

The studies that have been conducted in the past have explored several factors that play a vital role in the ability of the students to attain academic achievements while studying in the higher educational sector.The studies confirmed that it is necessary to look at the classroom in such a way that it appears to be complex and dynamic with a social context that is unique within which the teachers play a vital role. Most researchers argued about various factors that affect the academic performance are the belief systems, traditions, cultures, religion, the identities of both the teachers as well as the students. Not much of the research focuses on other factors such as the type of education provided to the students since early age, the behaviors incorporated in them at the beginning, etc. These factors need to be addressed properly in order to get a proper understanding of what really impacts the level of achievements in the higher educational sector.

  • Research Questions
  • How do the performance levels of the Omani students studying in the higher educational sector vary?
  • What are the factors that affect the academic achievements of Omani students studying in the higher educational sector?
  • What are the benefits and challenges of the factors that influence the academic achievements of the Omani students studying in the higher educational sector?
  • Objectives
  • To analyze the performance levels of various Omani students studying in the higher educational sector.
  • Todetermine the factors that influence the academic achievements of the Omani students studying in the higher educational sector.
  • To evaluate the benefits and challenges of the factors that influence the academic achievements of the Omani students studying in the higher educational sector.
  • Literature Review
    • Performance of Omani Students Studying in the Higher Educational Sector

Over the past several years, Oman has witnessed several Omani students graduating with several academic achievements. These Omani students have scored high in terms of being innovative, they have set a higher standard for the next batch of Omani students to reach, they have won several competitions that are not just extracurricular but are also related to their field as well. The Omani students have scored so well in their higher educations in Oman that they’ve been selected to study in some of the most prestigious universities abroad as well. (Islam, 2014)

Apart from those students who have proven themselves to be extremely capable of scoring high academically, there are also those who don’t have a very long list of academic achievements. These students are found in every country, regardless of their nationality. Omani students too have found themselves looking at fewer academic achievements due to various reasons that affected their performance levels. But compared to students of other nationalities, the academic achievements of the Omani students have been observed to be lower in the higher educational sector. Most researchers and even the general society tend to blame this on the student. They do not broaden their view to notice that if there are more students with poor academic performance then it is probably not the mistake of the student alone. (Ghallani, Muthalath, Wahaibi and Sudairi, 2018)

It has been observed that Omani students that pursue their higher education after attaining schools that have a higher review or are well known for their standard of education perform better than those Omani students that study at schools where the education level is not challenging enough. In today’s world, most students are pursuing their education in schools that are well known for their ability to toughen a student. Students don’t opt for the schools or colleges that provide knowledge that is easy to grasp at all times. They expect there to be a challenge for them so that they can grow their minds in order to attain more academic achievements when studying in the higher educational sector.(Islam, 2014)

When analyzing the performance levels of the students, the female Omani students have been observed to perform better than the male Omani students in most cases in the higher educational sector. There are ofcorse various reasons for this such as the fact that more males students are asked to go for work and study at the same time as compared to the females who have to do the same. The Omani females have the drive to prove themselves which is why they try to perform as well as they can academically. The recognition of Omani women in Oman does not come as easily as the recognition of Omani men in Oman. For this reason, the Omani women try to fight the stereotypes in order to prove themselves to be better or equal to the Omani male students. (Danny, 2012)

  • Factors that Influence the Academic Achievements of the Omani Students

There are several factors that impact how academically well one will perform. These factors cover a wide range of aspects of a students life. Not many researchers look into the fact that the gender of the student does affect how well they will perform. In some households of Omani students, not much focus is given to the education of the females. This is due to the fact that the men are considered to be the earners in the family. For this reason, some female students begin their education late, are not motivated to do well in class, etc. Despite this fact, several Omani females tend to ignore the traditional concept of educating the girl child and go on to motivate themselves in order to Attain a large amount of academic achievements. If the females are not motivated at an early age then they will not have many academic achievements while pursuing their higher education. (Al-Busaidi, 2017)

Another factor that affects the Omani students is the reason behind why they are trying to complete their higher educational studies. Some students complete it for the sake of the certificate that will attain them a proper job in the future. Some do it for the sake of fulfilling the wishes of their families.  There are very few who do it with complete passion in order to attain high academic results. (Craig, 2019)

People often refuse to understand the fact that not all the Omani students studied in schools with excellent standards of education that has the ability to match with the international standard of education. The standard of education in most Omani schools is low which causes the student to graduate high school with little experience about how to pursue higher education. Although it is manageable for those students who emerge from these types of schools, it still does not get them very far in terms of academics. The importance of being open to people of all cultures, different gender, races, etc. is not taught in all schools. Some schools pay very less attention to making the students confident. Many Omani schools teach topics of various subjects in the later years of the students lives when the students belonging to schools with higher educational standards will have already learnt those topics years ago. This leads to the slow growth of the grey cells of the Omani students as compared those Omani students studying in better schools. The same students tend to perform less efficiently in terms of academics after they have entered higher educational institutions. (Ghallani, Muthalath, Wahaibiand Sudairi, 2018)

Several parents of the Omani students who have more financial capacity and better knowledge of the importance of attaining education that is up to the international standards will try their best to make sure that their children receive education in the schools that provide them with exposure to different topics related to communication with people of different backgrounds, higher education in lower classes in order to have minds that are capable of adapting to the difficult topics taught in the higher educational sectors, exposure to different languages, ability to speak in public confidently, etc. All these factors have played a vital role in increasing the academic performance of many Omani Students when they decided to study further in life. (Islam, 2014)

A factor that has played a big role in discouraging the Omani students from gaining more academic achievements is their inability to speak in fluent English. There several Omani students who speak in English as if it is their mother tongue but at the same time, there are several students who lack the understanding of the language. This is again due to the fact that the educational system of the Omani students was not good enough. Teaching Omani students English since the age 4 just like all the other students around the world contributes largely in bringing up their academic achievements level. (Alami, 2016)

The environment encouraged in a classroom must be of the disciplinary sort. A disciplined classroom allows students to focus on what is being taught by the teachers. What most people don’t realize is that when students perform well or not so well, it says a lot about the teacher in the classroom as well. The teachers must create an environment in the class that makes the students feel enthusiastic to learn more about what is taught in class.  If the classroom is well organized, the students can understand their lessons better, they will incorporate the discipline into themselves wherever they go and when they prepare for their examinations, they will prepare with determination and discipline. (Kapur, 2018)

The social circle of the individual who has chosen to pursue his higher education seriously must be clean. He must be surrounded with people who are encouraging, who are self-motivated, those who want the best for the student, those who don’t constantly find themselves in trouble, those focus on achieving not just academically but socially, physically, mentally, etc. The mental health of the individual and the physical health also determine how much the individual will achieve academically. Some disabilities will naturally affect the performance levels of the students. But there are several Omani students who don’t let mental or physical problems get in the way of achieving their dreams. (Craig, 2019)

The environment inside the homes of the Omani students are not all the same. Whether the student has received his education from the best schools and Universities from around the world, the home environment must be stable or at least close to stable for the student to explore his capabilities. A negative home environment reduces the concentration level of the student. The student focuses on visualizing a better life rather than creating a better life for himself by studying well and moving on. Some students move away from the negative environment in the house and stay outdoors most of the time giving very little time for their education. Other students are focused on making the environment in the house bearable. But despite these negativities, there are some Omani students who don’t give up and try to reach their goals of scoring high academically. A positive environment in the house does contribute to a better environment for the student but that doesn’t necessarily mean that the student will make use of it. Sometimes it depends entirely on the nature of the student. Not everyone can attain high grades and not everyone chooses to. (Alami, 2016)

The Omani students who are new to higher education institutions or those who have problems with understanding with what is being taught in class must meet the counselor. The higher educational institutions must provide all students with counselors or supervisors who are willing to help the students out. They can motivate the students to perform better in order to attain a high academic result. (Kapur, 2018)

  • Methodology
  • Methods of Collecting Data

The data necessary to carry out this research was obtained from both primary and secondary sources of information. The primary source of information was a questionnaire comprising of 5 open-ended questions and 5 close-ended questions. The secondary data collection methods used to gather data are books and journals.

  • Sample Size

30 students pursuing higher education in Sultan Qaboos University were selected at random in order to analyze what factors determine their level of academic achievements and to what extent they have an effect on those them.

  • Research Design and Research Method

The research design that was chosen to carry out this research is the descriptive research design as it provides the benefit of explaining the important parts of the research using the literature formed by the researchers who have conducted their studies in the past. The quantitative research method will the research method of choice for the researcher as it helps in gathering relevant data that is required for the study.

  • Variables

The study is affected by multiple variables. Understanding each variable is the key to successfully completing the study.

Dependent Variable:Omani students academic achievements in the high educational sector.

Independent Variable: Gender of the student, standards of education in schools, financial capacity, ability to speak in fluent English, Environment encouraged in a classroom, social circle of the student, environment inside the home, motivation level, concentration level, nature of the student.

  • Limitations of the Study

 The access to secondary sources of information regarding Omani students studying in the higher educational sector was difficult to attain as very limited research was done regarding this topic. Not all the research that was conducted on the topic could be attained as it was not available easily. This is the only limitation that was faced in order to complete the study.

Time Plan

Task Week
Introduction Week 6
Rationale Week 6
Objectives Week 6
Literature Review Week 7
Methodology Week 7

Budget

Item Price
Printing 1.5
Transport 1
Internet 25

References


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