Helen N. Boyle, Ph.D. is an Associate Professor of International and Comparative Education in the Department of Educational Leadership and Policy Studies at Florida State University.
She holds a joint appointment with the Center for International Studies in Education Research and Development (CISERD) at FSU’s Learning Systems Institute. Her research explores the evolving role that Islamic educational institutions in North and West Africa and the Middle East are playing in advancing national and international development goals vis a vis education and literacy. She is currently working on a project to explore the role of Qur’anic memorization in facilitating early grade reading skills in Arabic, in Morocco. Boyle has over 20 years of experience as a senior technical advisor on international education and development projects focused on teacher training, early grade reading and literacy, program monitoring and evaluation and Islamic education; she has worked in or managed education projects in Yemen, Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon, Morocco, Haiti, Guinea, Mali, Nigeria, Ghana, DRC, Zambia, Uganda, Ethiopia and South Sudan.
She holds a doctorate in Comparative and Social Analysis in Education from the University of Pittsburgh, with a focus on International Development Education and a minor in anthropology. Her doctoral dissertation, funded through a Fulbright Dissertation Fellowship, is an ethnographic study of the phenomenon of Quranic preschools in the town of Chefchouan, Morocco. Her dissertation received the Gail P. Kelly Award for Outstanding Dissertation from the Comparative and International Education Society in 2001 and formed the basis of her book, Quranic Schools: Agents of Preservation and Change. She has also published articles on Islamic education in refereed journals such as the Comparative Education Review and The Review of Faith in International Affairs and acted as a guest reviewer for article and book submissions from Sage Open and Palgrave. She is a member of the Comparative and International Education Society, the American Anthropological Association and the Middle East Studies Association. She teaches Education in Islamic Societies, Design and Management of International Development Education Projects and Schooling in Developing Countries.