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Running head: CULTURE AND EDUCATION IN MOROCCO

Culture and Education in Morocco


Moataz Aldayel
Keith Mulbery
INF-405G
5/2/2016

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Culture and Education in Morocco


Culture
Introduction
There are different ways in which the Moroccans express themselves. Some of the things
that say that you are in indeed in Morocco are carpets, clothing, jewelry, ceramics, carvings,
paintings, and calligraphy. The country even holds an international art festival to showcase their
talents to the outside world. The festival takes place once a year. It would be advisable to buy a
piece of the local artwork if people ever happen to visit the country. Their purchase would be a
valuable memento while at the same time people would impact the lives of the people who are
destitute.
One of the things that strike a first-time visitor in Morocco is the way they bargain while
shopping. The people haggle quite well during all their purchases (Ennaji, 2005). Making friends
is not hard by those who are courteous, but it would be crucial to master some of the local
customs. For example, one should take off their shoes as they enter houses. It is important for a
visitor to observe the behaviors of their host so that they don't embarrass themselves. During
visits in the urban areas, a gift of some sort would be highly appreciated. However, it does not
have to be an expensive gift, as pastries, or some small amounts of sugar would be appreciated.
On the other hand, if one is visiting the countryside, a live chicken would be appreciated by the
hosting family. The home invitations in the country offer the best opportunities to sample local

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dishes. The use of hands to eat is the standard behavior. If one is invited for a meal, it is
advisable to use the right hand as the left one is employed in the toilet (Wagner, 1993).
The mosque is considered a very holy place and therefore non-Muslims are not invited. It
is completely prohibited to visit mosques if one is not a Muslim. As a visitor to the country, it
would be advisable to ask for permission before taking photographs of the local people. Taking
someone's photo without their permission is quite offensive especially in the rural areas. Most
significant sites are available for viewing by the public at a fee. Visitors are also allowed to
observe individual celebrations including the Imichal' wedding fair.
The general practice in the country is that men take to the streets while the women take
care for their homes. The implication is that it is hard to find women having fun in the
restaurants. A female visitor who strikes a friendship would be invited to the friend's home for a
bath popularly known as Hamman (Choukr-Allah, 2000). The shower is meant to allow further
associations and is a sign of friendship. On the other hand, a man who strikes a friendship is
invited to the caf for tea or a meal. Moroccan culture could be quite exciting, and a visit to the
country would be a memorable experience. The people are quite friendly while the place is
colorful. Hospitality is part of the culture and hence a visitor who has the right attitude would
strike friendship anywhere. In all the aspects of the life of a Moroccan, the status of men is
higher than that of women. Women are subjected to privacy in the homes while those who appear
in public or on the streets are subjected to a lot of ridicule by the men. The worship in the
mosques is reserved for men, and all the Muslim leaders are males. On marriage issues, the
virginity of a woman is highly valued as it determines the status of her wedding. Ironically, the
male sexual activity before marriage is considered normal.

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Education
Introduction
Like in most of the Arabic nations, the education level in Morocco is average. The
schools lack the capacity to match the skills acquired with the developmental needs of the
country. Therefore, there exists a gap that the education has not been able to fill. However, the
advancement of technology has been experienced in the country just like it has happened in
several countries around the world.
There have been several attempts to improve the quality of education in Morocco to meet
the demands of the job market. The goal, however, has not been achieved, and there have been a
lot of reforms in the country's higher education sector, aimed at enhancing the quality to make it
more relevant to the dynamisms of the economy (Diyen, 2004). Currently, there is a growing
interest among the students to build the English language skills.
Despite a lot of promises by the government to address the concerns of the education,
reforms in the sector have been slow. Therefore, the problems of low adult literacy and high
youth unemployment still plague the nation. The adult literacy rates stand at 76% for men and
58% for the females (Diyen, 2004). There is also an acute shortage of the skilled workers, with
the government urging the Moroccan Diaspora community to return home and assist them in the
role of the national building (Diyen, 2004). Despite the fact that at least 95% of all school-aged
children are enrolled in school, the education is still faced with a lot of challenges. The school
dropout rates are very high with only 53% transition rates from the Middle School to high
school, while only 15% of those enrolled in the high school complete the course. The situation is

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quite dire. Even those who remain in the schools, there are small the daily attendance rates are
small; teacher absenteeism is the order of the day while a multilingual culture leads to low
literacy levels in the country. The adult literacy rates stand at 76% for men and 58% for the
females (Diyen, 2004).
It is paramount to mention the fact the literacy rates among the adults is determined by
the devotion of the adults to read and recite the Quran. Most of the research done in the past
reveals that the adults make the effort to read as an attempt to read and understand the Quran.
Most of those who are unable to complete secondary school have slim chances of securing
employment positions. The Lliteracy level gaps between men and women are quite huge, which
is mainly informed by the cultural orientations of the Moroccan society (Diyen, 2004). The place
of the Moroccan woman is in the house, to take care of children and perform the domestic
chores.

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Conclusions and Rrecommendations


Conclusions
From the research conducted it has been found out that the Moroccans are friendly people whose
ways of life revolve around the religion. Men are in charge of almost all aspects of life, while the
role of the women is to take care of the domestic issues and the children. Men are the providers
and are the heads of the families.
The education is experiencing a lot of reforms mainly by the government, but the private sector
has also played a significant role in the same endeavor. Changes in the education sector are
necessary so that the curriculum could be improved, and also to increase the enrollment rates,
both at the primary and secondary school levels. As a developing nation, it would be correct to
say that the development of education is on the right track and that soon, the country would
achieve its educational goals.
Recommendations
The culture of the Moroccans is quite flexible and has therefore embraced modernity in
all ways of life. Despite the fact that the people are highly religious, they are also friendly and

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relate well with the visitors. Therefore, as an IT entrepreneur interested in outsourcing and doing
business with the Moroccan people, it would not be hard to adapt to the culture. The people are
friendly and always willing to assist the visitors who are lost or those who just don't know the
directions. Furthermore, the locals do not coerce foreigners into practicing the traditions and is,
therefore, an open society.
The education may still not be advanced enough, compared with systems in the
developed countries. However, there are youths and other individuals who are highly skilled in
the areas of information technology, who could be of much use to investors in the field of
informatics. The literacy levels are quite reasonable and would just require a bit of orientation so
that they fully participate in various areas of the computer applications. Therefore, as an investor
or a business person in the area of IT, it is quite tenable to do business with the Moroccan people.

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References
Choukr-Allah, R. (2000). Protected culture in Morocco. Mediterraneans Books Options, 31, 9247.
Diyen, H. (2004). Reform of secondary education in Morocco: challenges and prospects.
Prospects, 34(2), 211-222.
Ennaji, M. (2005). Multilingualism, cultural identity, and education in Morocco. Springer
Science & Business Media.
Wagner, D. A. (1993). Literacy, culture and development: Becoming literate in Morocco.
Cambridge University Press.