Mini skirts and headscarves: undergraduate student perceptions of secularism in Turkish higher education

Research paper by Reitumetse Obakeng Mabokela, Fatma Nevra Seggie

Indexed on: 05 Oct '06Published on: 05 Oct '06Published in: Higher Education


This article is based on a qualitative study that examines the perceptions of advanced undergraduate students in five Turkish state universities regarding their understanding of the concept of secularism and its manifestation within the higher education sector. The study further illuminates these students’ perspectives of how the university may change in relation to their understanding of secularism. This inquiry was guided by four central questions posed to the students: (1) what is your understanding of the concept of secularism?; (2) how does secularism manifest within universities in Turkey and your institution in particular?; (3) are there aspects of your university you would like to see change as a result of secularism?; and (4) in what ways has your identity influenced your academic decisions?