College Students' Attitude Toward the Medium of Instruction: Arabic versus English Dilemma

Author/Creator ORCID





Citation of Original Publication

Ellili-Cherif, M., & Alkhateeb, H. (2015). College Students' Attitude toward the Medium of Instruction: Arabic versus English Dilemma. Universal Journal of Educational Research, 3(3), 207-213.



In 2012, the Supreme Education Council of the State of Qatar decreed a change from English to Arabic as a medium of instruction in four of the colleges of Qatar University. This surprise move created much controversy, especially among the students, the first stakeholders to be affected by this decision, related to the impact this change would have on their futures. The aim of this study is to investigate the attitudes of college students at Qatar University concerning the shift from English to Arabic as the language of instruction. The sample includes 295 students from the four colleges affected by this decision. Data were collected using an Arabic version of the standardized Student Attitudes Towards the Instructional Medium questionnaire. The findings of the study are interpreted in the light of students’ perceptions about the place of English in Qatari society, the role of Arabic and English in their educational careers, and the importance of each language for their futures. Findings are also interpreted in the light of a review of previous findings on the attitudes of students on this issue. Discussion and recommendations may inform language policy decisions.