Educational Research

Educational Research (ISSN:2141-5161) Vol. 2(8), pp. 1341-1355  August 2011         
Copyright © 2011 International Research Journals


Full Length Research Paper


Students’ expectations of and motivations for studying comparative education:  A comparative study across nine countries in North America, Europe, Asia, Africa and Latin America


*1C. C. Wolhuter, 2M.O’ Sullivan, 3E. Anderson,  4L. Wood 5K.G. Karras 6Prof M. Mihova,7A. Torres, 8W.A.L. Anangisye, 9R.F. Maarman, 10Hamood K. Al-Harthi, 11S. Thongthew

1North-West University Potchefstroom Campus Private Bag X6001 Potchefstroom 2520, South Africa

2University of Limerick, Ireland

3/4American University of Washington DC, United States of America

5University of Crete, Greece

6University of Veliko Tarnova,  Bulgaria

7Enrique José Varona University, Cuba

8University of Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania

9University of the Western Cape, South Africa

10Sultan Qaboos University, Oman

11Chulalongkorn University, Thailand

*Corresponding author email:

Received 05 June, 2011; Accepted 25 July, 2011


The aim of this research was to determine what comparative education students expect from comparative education courses.  Students from nine countries in North America, Europe, Asia, Africa and Latin America were surveyed.  These countries were the United States of America, Ireland, Greece, Bulgaria, Oman, Thailand, Tanzania, South Africa and Cuba. The results showed startling differences regarding students’ perceptions of and motivations for studying comparative education.  Their diverse motivations, the study concludes, are linked to contextual factors.  In conclusion the implications of these findings for comparative education course curricula, for the conceptualization of the significance of comparative education, and for the comparative education research agenda are highlighted.   


Keywords: Comparative education, teacher education, student teachers, education systems, curricula.

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