Student starts Saudi Arabian research journal

By Satta Kendor

The first ever Saudi Arabian instructional and technology research journal, launched by an NIU student, is currently accepting submissions for its January 2016 publication.

Adel Qahmash, NIU doctoral candidate for Instructional Technology, founded The Saudi Journal of Educational Technology, a quarterly online journal accredited by the Saudi Arabia Ministry of Culture and Information on Aug. 1. It specializes in peer-reviewed studies and reviews articles that are related to technology integration and educational computing and research, according to its website.

The first volume was published Aug. 1, and submissions for the second volume will be accepted until Nov. 30, Qahmash said.

The idea for the journal came to Qahmash while he was working on his doctoral dissertation on how teachers in Saudi Arabia can help special education students learn through technology. There are only a few journals in his country that focus on education, but nothing that focuses on instructional and technology research, and so it was difficult to find research and articles within an Arabic context, Qahmash said.

“So I said, ‘Why don’t we have our own journal … [and] contribute to the educational technology field, and I’m sure there’s many people back home [that] want to write research papers and get published and add knowledge to the literature about our field,’” Qahmash said.

The Saudi Arabian government is financing Qahmash’s education because they want the best teachers for their citizens, said Russell O’Brien, doctorate candidate in instructional technology. O’Brien said he has known Qahmash since January 2013.

“When I first heard about this, I thought, you know, this is something that should be [given] recognition,” O’Brien said. “I felt that it was a very unusual thing for somebody to have the vision and, you know, put forth the effort to create the first journal for their country, and that’s something that is very admirable.”

Research is done by people, like Qahmash, who are very devoted to the instructional technology field of study, O’Brien said.

“This is a wonderful thing [to] happen for him,” O’Brien said. “We train people to become a researcher, and having a recognition in the research and to be able to become a founder of the journal, I think this is a testament of the department,” said Wei-Chen Hung, department chair of Educational Technology, Research and Assessment.

Hung talked with Qahmash about the process of getting a journal approved and Qahmash was very determined to make it happen, Hung said.

“I am very proud of him. I think this is a wonderful opportunity for us, but also for him because this is a chance that we can build a strong community with Saudi Arabia,” Hung said.

Go to to find out more about the Saudi Journal of Educational Technology research and to submit manuscripts.