Student Experience of Access to Egyptian Higher Education.

Abou-Setta, Amal (2015) Student Experience of Access to Egyptian Higher Education. PhD thesis, UNSPECIFIED.

[thumbnail of 11003489.pdf]
PDF (11003489.pdf)
11003489.pdf - Published Version
Available under License Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivs.

Download (11MB)


Focusing on the relationship between Higher Education (HE) and social justice in Egypt, this study attempts to identify the main socioeconomic factors affecting HE access in Egypt from the students' perspective through tracing and comparing students' narratives of their access processes in distinctively different socioeconomic settings. The study investigates the perceived effects of the General Secondary Education Certificate (GSEC) students' socioeconomic conditions on determining their academic choices. Different socioeconomic dimensions, such as culture, social conditions and finance are examined. The study also looks at the way students incorporate issues of social justice such as fairness, distribution of resources and social connections into understanding the process of HE access. Following a snowballing approach to recruiting the research participants, 55 students of the Egyptian GSEC took part in the research. The analysis is based on two sets of data: 1) Quantitative data were derived from two questionnaires examining the participants' socioeconomic classes, their perception of their academic experience, their aspirations and attitudes towards HE, determinants of their HE access process, and their views of the (in)equality of the access process. Allocating the participants into 3 socioeconomic groups, the Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS) was used and cross-tabulation and comparisons were made between the three groups and correlations were examined. 2) Qualitative data were derived from interviews: Narratives of 17 students were sought through comprehensive semi-structured interviews that aimed at capturing the students' perceptions of their journeys through GSEC and the HE access process. The interviewed cases were regarded as instruments to dig into the impact of the socioeconomic factors onto the HE access process. Bourdieu's theory of social and cultural reproduction was drawn upon to explain social inequality as an outcome of inequitable access to HE and socially differentiated educational attainment. The theory provides a framework of understanding that explains how education, rather than becoming a means of social reform and equality, has become a tool for the reproduction of classism. The study also examines social media as a research tool and discusses its potentialities and limitations in social sciences research.

Item Type:
Thesis (PhD)
Additional Information:
Thesis (Ph.D.)--Lancaster University (United Kingdom), 2015.
ID Code:
Deposited By:
Deposited On:
02 May 2019 16:28
Last Modified:
29 Sep 2023 23:59