The Winding Road to a New Identity: Saudi Arabian Curriculum 2016-19
IMPACT-se — February 2020
This interim report on Saudi Arabia’s national curriculum covers 2016-19 textbooks, analyzed by IMPACT-se according to UNESCO-derived standards of peace and tolerance. The Saudi curriculum, at this stage, should be viewed as a reflection of the efforts being made to transform an exclusively traditionalist Islamic society into one that incorporates more Western economic values and its pre-Islamic heritage. However, while the curriculum tries to evolve with such inherent contradictory elements, the radical orthodoxy of the Wahhabis remains dominant. The narrowing of the gap between the kingdom’s modernization goals and their practical application—both within the curriculum and throughout Saudi society—is in the beginning stages of a work in progress. Interim ReportExecutive Summary
Research Update Reveals Lack of Change in Saudi Curriculum
IMPACT-SE — July 2008
The Saudi Arabian school curriculum has recently been at the eye of a media storm due to the controversy surrounding the Islamic Saudi Academy in Virginia, and the pledge made by the Saudi government in 2006 to remove texts promoting intolerance, hatred and extremism from its curriculum by the beginning of the 2008-2009 school year. In July, IMPACT-SE completed an update on its 2003 report on the Saudi curriculum. Its findings are striking: Significant progress has yet to be made, in stark contrast with the Arabian kingdom’s effort to present itself as a leading moderate power in the Middle East and the proponent of the 2002 Arab peace initiative.