Arab World English Journal
AWEJ Volume.3 Number.3, 2012                                                                                                    pp. 35 – 45

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Sources of Influence Affecting Adult Arab EAP Students’ Critical Thinking

Rachid Bendriss
Weill Cornell Medical College in Qatar
Doha, Qatar


This study reports the results of a survey of adult Gulf Arab students’ perceptions of influences that affect the development of their critical thinking skills. Drawing from Terenzini et al.’s conceptual model of college influence on student learning (1995), the study explores the impact of the three dimensions of integrated curricula, class-related activities, and out-of-class experiences on Arab students’ critical thinking abilities. The study participants are first-year college students enrolled in English for Academic Purposes (EAP) course in a foundation program that prepares them for premedical education at a private American medical college located in Qatar. The survey results indicate students’ attitudes towards integrated curricula and out-of-class experiences as the leading contributing factors to the development of their critical thinking skills.

Keywords: Critical thinking, Arab ESL learners, Integrated, curriculum, Arabic Speakers


Dr. Rachid Bendriss teaches English for Academic Purposes (EAP) at Weill Cornell Medical
College in Qatar. Prior to coming to Qatar, he taught ESL at the University of Central Florida
(UCF) and EAP at Valencia College in Orlando, Florida. He also served as Assistant Director of
the Center for Multilingual Multicultural Studies and International Services Center at UCF. Dr.
Bendriss’ research focuses on reading and writing, teaching with technology, and college
academic readiness.