The Repository @ St. Cloud State

Open Access Knowledge and Scholarship

Date of Award


Culminating Project Type


Degree Name

English: Teaching English as a Second Language: M.A.




College of Liberal Arts

First Advisor

James Robinson

Second Advisor

John Madden

Third Advisor

Semya Hakim

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.


The aim of this study is to identify the reality of Wasta in some Iraqi educational institutions and determine its impact on learning the English language and on the personal lives of individuals. The study data is collected to answer the research questions. The researcher conducted 30 interviews using a semi-structured and background survey with students who came to America to study in U.S universities. The students reflected their views on Wasta and how practicing Wasta became a part of their personality, noting its impact on studying both before and after arrival arriving in America. In analyzing the data, this study concludes the following: Iraqi students agree on multiple definitions of Wasta, including as a breach of the law, and corruption. The most prominent reasons for Wasta are: weak religious faith, lack of legal accountability, and the absence of penalties the supremacy of the tribal social system, the absence of a good example, and the decline in the value of work. As well, Wasta has negative effects on education in Iraqi schools, especially learning English. This is due to several factors, the most important of which are: economic weakness, inequality between students, weak motivation to study, and the role of Wasta in getting a job.



To view the content in your browser, please download Adobe Reader or, alternately,
you may Download the file to your hard drive.

NOTE: The latest versions of Adobe Reader do not support viewing PDF files within Firefox on Mac OS and if you are using a modern (Intel) Mac, there is no official plugin for viewing PDF files within the browser window.