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Impact of Globalization on Education

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Today everyone around the globe is interconnected in some way through the amazing thing we call globalization. Around the world people can learn about other cultures and their identities through media, communication and technologies. From these our society can meet the needs of the citizens and maintain sustainability. Throughout history the term globalization has developed into not just an idea but an evolution in society, changing the economy, making it stronger than ever before and shaping the world in which we live in today.

As defined by The Globalization Website, globalization broadly refers to the expansion of global linkages, the organization of social life on a global scale and the growth of a global consciousness, hence to the consolidation of world society. Such an ecumenical definition captures much of what the term commonly means. The term is most closely associated with the term economic globalization, the integration of national economies into the international economy through trade, foreign direct investment, capital flows, migration, the spread of technology, military presence and often educational systems.

Historically access to education in Jamaica and other colonized territories had been restricted to the elite since the days of slavery. Before emancipation only children of wealthy, white planter class got an education through tutoring at home and then by being sent abroad to boarding school in England (Motherland). Slaves were considered property for labour. Schooling was seen as 'dangerous' for slaves as it might give them radical ideas.

After emancipation provision of limited schooling for non whites was achieved by religious groups. Very few, only exceptionally bright children, from poorer classes, were able to get more than a basic primary education. Advancement was limited and focused on preparing black/brown Jamaicans to accept their status in the hierarchical social system based on race and colour. In pre-independence era of 1900's to 1950's, dual system continued with very bright and wealthier children attending traditional high schools that were established. Access was through payment of fees or for a few through scholarships. Education, curricula, text books, examinations and so on provided was still British and there was little valuing of local knowledge.

Globalization may be seen as a revolutionary concept, which can solve many world issues and benefit society. By examining the effects of education and knowledge in terms of globalization, one is able to identify its detrimental effects on the global society. First, one can see how education reproduces inequality on a global scale all in order for countries to compete economically. Educational globalization devalues the work of marginalized groups and puts emphasis on only academic achievement and economic gains.

Globalization attempts to position education as the source of prosperity and a great social equalizer. As globalization intensifies, Jamaica is actively reforming its educational policies in order to reap the benefits of the new "knowledge economy." However, significant policy approaches, which accompany the emerging policy changes - referred to as policy discourses - have the unintended consequence of perpetuating disempowerment of low income Jamaicans.

Education is undergoing constant changes under the effects of globalization. The effects of globalization on education bring rapid developments in technology and communications and foreseeing changes within learning systems across the world as ideas, values and knowledge, changing the roles of students and teachers and producing a shift in society from industrialization towards an information-based society. It reflects the effect on culture and brings about a new form of cultural imperialism. The rise of new cultural imperialism is shaping children, the future citizens of Jamaica into 'global citizens', intelligent people with a broad range of skills and knowledge to apply to a competitive, information based society. Globalization and technological advancements are delivering and increasing access to the world and to more information and subsequently subjects should reflect this global outlook.

Given the increasing economic globalization and restructuring in the world political and economic systems and the requirements for knowledge and information within that system, educational needs (in terms of structure, function, curriculum and approach) at all levels, especially at the tertiary level, have changed. These educational requirements for the workforce



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