ThePlace: The Prophet’s Mosque in Madinah

Pilgrims walking through the courtyard at the Prophet's mosque in Madinah. (SPA)
Updated 16 October 2018

ThePlace: The Prophet’s Mosque in Madinah

  • The Green Dome is in the south east corner of the Prophet’s Mosque, and was first painted green in 1837
  • Last Ramadan, the Prophet’s Mosque made arrangements to accommodate 10,000 worshippers who performed the ritual of “Itikaaf”

The Prophet’s Mosque is one of the largest mosques in the world and the second holiest site in Islam after the Grand Mosque in Makkah. Located in Madinah, it was built by Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) in the year 1 AH (622 AD) near his home after building Quba Mosque (the first mosque in Islam). The mosque was expanded many times over the years, in the reign of the Caliphs and the Umayyad, Abbasid and Ottoman states, and then finally in the span of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia in 1994 when the largest expansion operation took place. The Prophet’s Mosque is considered to be the first place in the Arabian Peninsula to be lit electrically using lightbulbs in 1327 AH (1909). The original mosque was an open-air building, and served as a community center, a court and a religious school. The mosque is also home to the tomb of Prophet Muhammad (pbuh), and the mosque is a significant Islamic site to pilgrims for its strong affiliation and connection to the life of the Prophet.
Many pilgrims who perform Hajj also travel to Al-Madinah to visit the Prophet’s mosque. Last Ramadan, the Prophet’s Mosque made arrangements to accommodate 10,000 worshippers who performed the ritual of “Itikaaf” (Seclusion and staying in the mosque with the intention of worshipping). Many hotels and local/traditional markets can be found near the mosque. One of the mosque’s most prominent features is the Green Dome; it is built above the prophet’s tomb and the tombs of early Muslim caliphs Abu Bakr As-Siddiq and Omar bin Al-Khattab. The Green Dome is in the south east corner of the Prophet’s Mosque, and was first painted green in 1837, becoming known thereafter as “The Green Dome.”


Global organizations commend Saudi Arabia’s role in e-learning

Updated 23 October 2020

Global organizations commend Saudi Arabia’s role in e-learning

JEDDAH: Six international organizations have completed two studies on e-learning in the Kingdom and praised its efforts in providing a rapid response, multiple options and continuous improvement during the coronavirus pandemic.
The studies involved the participation of 342,000 respondents and were conducted under the supervision of the Kingdom’s National Center for e-Learning.
The center said that the global organizations completed two comprehensive studies on the experience of public and higher education in Saudi Arabia during the pandemic, with the aim of documenting and studying the reality of the experience and coming up with initiatives to develop e-learning practices in accordance with current global practices and standards.
The studies were conducted with the participation of students, faculty members, teachers, parents and school leaders.
The number of participants in the public education study reached 318,000, while the number of participants in the higher education study reached 24,000.
The first study was prepared by the Online Learning Consortium (OLC), with the participation of the International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE), Quality Matters (QM), the UNESCO Institute of Information Technologies in Education (IITE), the National Research Center for Distance Education and Technological Advancements (DETA) in the US.
The second study was prepared by the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) with the cooperation of the Harvard Graduate School
of Education.
In the studies, reference comparisons were made with more than 193 countries. The two studies showed the Kingdom’s distinction in the diversity of options, including, for example, electronic content and satellite channels available for e-learning in public education.

NUMBER

342k

The studies on e-learning involved the participation of 342,000 respondents and were conducted under the supervision of the Kingdom’s National Center for e-Learning.

The percentage of countries that succeeded in providing these at the national level was only 38 percent.
The study conducted by the OECD and the Harvard Graduate School of Education included a comparison of the Kingdom’s response to education during the COVID-19 pandemic with 37 member states.
The results showed the Kingdom’s progress in 13 out of 16 indicators on the average of
these countries.
The study also revealed that teachers received significant support to overcome obstacles to e-learning.
The study of public education indicated that there was a clear strategy for the Ministry of Education to reopen schools in the Kingdom and address any issues.
OLC hailed the efforts of the Saudi Ministry of Education in dealing with the crisis by providing a variety of options for e-learning, and the quick response to the pandemic and immediate shift to remote instruction.
The two studies recommended 71 proposed development initiatives for public education and 78 proposed development initiatives for higher education.
The National Center for e-Learning is working in coordination with the Ministry of Education to present the initiatives and begin their implementation.
The center announced that the organizations that conducted the studies would publish their results and complete the second phase at the end of the current semester.