Distance Education under Oppression: The Case of Palestinian Higher Education
2. Literature Review
- Being deprived of our freedom, privacy, respect, and humanity.
- Instability due to strikes, checkpoints, killing, imprisonment, closure.
- Any area that’s under occupation will surely suffer many obstacles among which are those on education. like the challenges of travelling to the educational institutions, the cut off of study because of institutions’ closure, physical barriers, etc.
- Every person must resist in order to reach his dreams.
- We are raided by the Israelis often. Sometimes our students protest by throwing rocks near the so-called separation wall, but they invade our campus and shoot our students. We have many martyrs.
- My brother and my father were arrested by the occupation authorities. We lived through very difficult moments in the Israeli displacement.
- I had an experience two months ago when Israeli forces blocked all of the internal roads of ***** Town because Palestinians kept raising the Palestinian flag in the town, so I could not go to my workplace and teach my students due to the roadblocks. The next day I had to take a long road. Yesterday, similar experience happened to me. This time, I was taking my newly born baby to the town’s clinic, but roads were blocked again for the same reasons. Thus, it took me 45 min to get to the clinic whereas it usually takes seven minutes
- It is our window to the world, our source of strength and dignity, and therefore an obligation.
- Palestine is a country that is well-known for its care about education
- It gives us human capital
- Palestinian attach great value to education and this cannot be viewed separately from the situation after 1948. Education is a weapon to show the reality and convey the real picture to the whole world and understand our history and rights
- It is our long-term weapon
- Palestinian people in general value education over anything else. That’s why there are over 20 universities and colleges.
- It opened many closed doors and gave us the chance to represent our country in workshops and conferences. Distance Education also helped us to make up for any missed classes due to the pandemic and political situation.
- It has a fruitful hand on my education as it was enough to contact professors online especially during the pandemic
- Keep in touch with my students and continue the teaching
- Help student and teachers to get rid of the barriers that prevented them or made it difficult for them to reach educational institutions
- There were positives to the development of technology, its use and investment in education during the closures, and the prevention of the access of lecturers and students to universities and schools, where universities and schools were able to volunteer technology. Therefore, there was ease in communicating with students during the closures, raising educational materials for them, making lectures and providing some exams through the use of various technological programs such as zooming and facilitating the process of communication between the student and the teacher. Thus, Palestine succeeded in completing the school years on time, despite the obstacles and challenges faced by our Palestinian people.
- It helps in situations mentioned in Question 1. When getting to the workplace is not an option due to roadblocks, it becomes crucial to have a distance learning platform.
- Where there is a will there is a way. Knowledge can be obtained in many ways and distance education can unlock many closed doors for Palestinians.
- First of all, computer and internet skills, then the importance of distance learning as a vital solution and alternative for traditional education
- Addressing problems regarding our situation in Palestine because of occupation not only for the pandemic
- Saving money
- Technology has been well invested [in] during the crises we went through, whether from the occupation or during the pandemic, but the results were not the best, as we sometimes had to use distance education completely, and the infrastructure was not fully prepared for its use, whether in terms of rehabilitating staff and students or in terms of owning equipment.
- Not all students have access to electronic devices, electricity, and the Internet, all of which has a negative impact on their use of technology and obtaining the best results, in addition to the fact that distance education completely does not enable us to get to know students closely and refine their personalities, so it is better to combine distance education with face-to-face education. But if we talk about lessons learned, we can say that we have been able to challenge crises and adapt technology and invest in it as much as possible.
- We should develop our e-learning system to be an essential and primary tool for teaching
- We need to be more prepared.
- 1. Continuous training for teaching staff; and 2. Being up-to-date with new teaching strategies
- Computer experts, MOOC Courses, cost- effective technology tools
- Changing Faculties beliefs and training them to use suitable e-teaching and e-learning methodologies
- Check in with your students regularly.
- Help your students’ families get connected.
- Choose tools that are mobile friendly or can be used offline.
- More awareness over teachers and students
- Qualifying and enabling students and staff to fully use technology, in addition to rehabilitating the infrastructure and equipping it with electricity, the net, computers, and support programs for all students and teachers to make the educational process successful.
- Decent internet speed, training workshops for teachers and students.
4. Limitations of the Study
- Lack of generalizability: the results of our study may not be representative of the full population of Palestinian Higher Education teachers, but we present these findings as truly representative of the views of those who participated in the project.
- Some responses were given in Arabic and were translated by our Palestinian co-authors. Although this has the potential for bias, we see no reason to doubt the accuracy of the translation.
- Limited technology access: the sample may not fully represent diverse groups of people with varying access to technology, which is particularly true in Palestine, but we believe we reached a good cross-section of HE teachers.
- Cost and time constraints: conducting a larger-scale study would be time-consuming and expensive, which was not feasible for this unfunded research, but we believe that our convenience sample of participant responses is credible for this study and its conclusions.
5. Discussion and Conclusions
Institutional Review Board Statement
Informed Consent Statement
Data Availability Statement
Conflicts of Interest
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Smith, M.; Scott, H. Distance Education under Oppression: The Case of Palestinian Higher Education. Educ. Sci. 2023, 13, 729. https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci13070729
Smith M, Scott H. Distance Education under Oppression: The Case of Palestinian Higher Education. Education Sciences. 2023; 13(7):729. https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci13070729Chicago/Turabian Style
Smith, Matt, and Howard Scott. 2023. "Distance Education under Oppression: The Case of Palestinian Higher Education" Education Sciences 13, no. 7: 729. https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci13070729