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Article
Publication date: 12 March 2018

Carrie Amani Annabi, Amanda L. McStay, Allyson Fiona Noble and Maha Sidahmed

High levels of absenteeism have been observed amongst male students attending two transnational higher education (TNHE) institutions in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). One…

Abstract

Purpose

High levels of absenteeism have been observed amongst male students attending two transnational higher education (TNHE) institutions in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). One reason offered is an obligation to attend engagement ceremonies. Many ceremonies are linked to arranged marriages. The purpose of this paper is to contradict assumptions that suggest that higher education reduces arranged marriages, and to highlight that university policies overlook cultural nuances.

Design/methodology/approach

Semi-structured interviews were conducted with 25 male postgraduate students aged between 22 and 45. Content analysis was used to analyse and interpret the data.

Findings

Several interviewees chose to have an arranged marriage and some saw their postgraduate studies as an opportunity to have a better chance of securing a wife. Equally, several students felt that university policies were unsympathetic to cultural obligations.

Research limitations/implications

This research was restricted to male students from two TNHE institutes in the UAE.

Practical implications

This research provides insight for TNHE managers by providing student-centric research into cultural reasons that prevent student attendance.

Social implications

TNHE is not fully responsive to familial obligations within collective societies. In consequence, there has been a lack of sympathy within policies regarding students’ requirement to fulfil cultural commitments.

Originality/value

The paper explores the challenges of creating culturally sensitive educational policy and practices.

Details

International Journal of Educational Management, vol. 32 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0951-354X

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 6 March 2017

Carrie Amani Annabi and Olufunbi Olajumoke Ibidapo-Obe

The aim of this paper is to investigate the role that halal certification organisations (HCOs) play in the UK in assuring quality in halal cosmetics.

Abstract

Purpose

The aim of this paper is to investigate the role that halal certification organisations (HCOs) play in the UK in assuring quality in halal cosmetics.

Design/methodology/approach

The study evaluates whether halal certification assures the quality of halal cosmetic products. This research evaluated the quality assurance systems of major UK HCOs, using a hypothetical product as a test vehicle. The investigation considered whether these organisations differ in their definition of “halal” and “halal cosmetics” and also considered how effectively their certification signals quality assurance.

Findings

The study indicated that there is a failure to adopt holistic halal terminology which implies that within the UK halal cosmetics industry, manufacturers may not be working within agreed standards for halal product integrity.

Research limitations/implications

This study focussed on UK certification for halal cosmetics by three HCOs and disregarded other forms of halal businesses. The literature review is based solely on literature available in the English language. The study lacks generalisability, as only one hypothetical product was tested; therefore, it was not possible to reach an understanding of all the costs involved in UK HCO certification.

Practical implications

This study undertook a comprehensive literature review on halal certification to produce a comparison of halal sanctioning laws, certification processes and the level of supply chain verification by UK HCOs.

Originality/value

This study adds value to the knowledge on UK halal certification.

Details

Journal of Islamic Marketing, vol. 8 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1759-0833

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 8 August 2016

Carrie Amani Annabi and Stephen Wilkins

The purpose of this paper is to investigate how, and the extent to which, massive open online courses (MOOCs) might be used in the accreditation of students’ prior…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to investigate how, and the extent to which, massive open online courses (MOOCs) might be used in the accreditation of students’ prior learning, in programme delivery at international branch campuses, and for lecturers’ professional development (PD) in transnational higher education.

Design/methodology/approach

The data were obtained from two international branch campuses in the United Arab Emirates. The research adopted a qualitative methodology that involved 20 lecturers participating in semi-structured interviews and ten lecturers participating in a focus group. A rigorous process of content analysis was used to analyse and interpret the data.

Findings

Lecturers in transnational higher education perceived that MOOCs were not suitable for accredited prior learning but that they might be useful as a supplementary resource for student learning and for personal PD. There was a strong belief that as international branch campuses offered a commodified product, MOOCs were unlikely to be adopted as a replacement for traditional programme delivery methods, as students strongly prefer face-to-face teaching and support.

Practical implications

The research has identified a number of recommendations for higher education institutions operating in transnational settings, which might improve both institutional and individual performance. Institutions that intend to use MOOCs in programme delivery should consider how their students and staff would react to such a move, and how this might impact upon institutional image and reputation.

Originality/value

Surprisingly, there has been little academic research published on the use of MOOCs in higher education, and to the authors’ knowledge, this is the first study conducted in a transnational education setting. The uniqueness of the environment in which international branch campuses operate, as well as their different objectives and student profiles, provide the rationale for this research.

Details

International Journal of Educational Management, vol. 30 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0951-354X

Keywords

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