Thoughts in the Third Space

Thoughts in the Third Space is the official blog of IIIT, the International Institute of Islamic Thought. The purpose of our blog (Thoughts in the Third Space) is to hear from experts and stakeholders in the field of education policy reform regarding the most pressing problems they are facing and best solutions they have found or are advocating for. These contributors can include policy advisers, governmental officials, academics, teachers, and parents.

The policy department is seeking 500-900 word blog entries which can be written op-ed style by experts or stakeholders in the field of education reform, values-based approaches to policy making, and holistic education policy writing on their reflections and observations concerning the impact of their own work or of another project or policy they have been monitoring/researching. Blog writers also have the opportunity to be interviewed/featured on IIIT’s podcast, Third Space Thoughts to Policy, a Top & Trending show on Messy.FM, also available on Apple Podcasts, Stitcher, Spotify, iTunes, Castbox, Google Play, and Podcast Mirror.

The Department is particularly interested in entries that discuss how education policies (which can include those at the local administrative level) have demonstrated an ability to improve community mindedness, moral reasoning, forgiveness, sense of belonging, and empathy in students. The blog entries can be written op-ed style, including reflections and observations concerning the impact of the writer’s own work or of another project or policy they have been monitoring/researching. Specialists in other areas outside of education policy are also welcome to submit pieces on other areas such as pedagogy, curriculum, governance and leadership, as well as assessment and evaluation, though are encouraged to submit pieces with an emphasis on policy.

If you’re interested in submitting an entry, please email with pdf versions of your blog post as well as a brief bio with your name, organizational affiliation, and areas of interest within holistic education reform. If you are part of an organization but your writing is representing your own views, please specify that as well. Please click here for an example.

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Thoughts in the Third Space

In Fall 2019, IIIT’s AEMS Research Team partnered with Dr. Tavis Jules who teaches Introduction to Educational Policy and Practice at the Department of Cultural and Educational Policy Studies at Loyola University Chicago. Students from this graduate class were assigned to submit a blog post submission for prompts created by IIIT in response to any of the following questions or themes below:

  1. If you were to propose plans for policy changes to advance education in Muslim societies and developing countries which area/s would you address first and why?
  2. When looking at the curriculum of a specific country, what are the specific changes in policy guidelines you think are necessary to promote 21st century skills?
  3. What are the best ways to incorporate religious education into the curriculum in a way that is compatible with 21st century skills, and which policy changes would be necessary to achieve this?
  4. Can you identify successful case studies (in Muslim societies or others) where a policy or policies promoting values-based education are directly contributing to improvements in human development?

The best submissions have been chosen to be a part of IIIT’s blog, Thoughts in the Third Space and are accessible below.

The observations and conclusions below represent the author’s own personal views and experiences, not the organization’s.