22 SES 12 A, Internationalisation: Experiences and Support
The number of Chinese students around the world is rising considerably. Research on Chinese students has mainly focused on the influence of culture on their academic performance and the challenges they experience during their transition at the university (Huang 2012). There is lack of study on how the practice of curriculum design and development affects Chinese students’ learning experiences. This research will address the gap by exploring how Chinese postgraduate taught (PGT) students experience curriculum internationalisation at a Scottish and an Australian university. Scotland and Australia are chosen for study, because they are popular study destinations for Chinese students, due to perceived academic reputation and prevalence of English language (Iannelli and Huang 2013).
This paper considers that there is increased awareness of the importance to internationalize the curriculum in the higher education sector (Yemini and Sagie 2015), because it has been perceived as a main approach to develop students’ global perspective of their subject area and the competences they will need in their future career (International Association of Universities 2012). However, there is limited practical guidance on how the curriculum can be internationalized (Edwards et al. 2003), in particular, what to teach, how to teach it, when and to whom, in what sequence, and of what quality and quantity (Bell 2004).
Furthermore there are reported barriers to academics being engaged with that, especially in modifying and adapting the formal curriculum (Leask 2005). One barrier is that academic staff’s understanding of the meaning, purpose, relevance and approach to internationalizing the curriculum may vary with subject areas (Sawir 2011). This lack of agreement often leads to fragmented and individual academic approaches as well as the lack of institutional cohesion in addressing internationalized curriculum (Caruana and Hanstock 2003). Another barrier is that cultural differences within a cross-cultural learning environment can fragment class groups and inhibit promotion of cross-cultural interaction (Turner, 2009). Furthermore, the lack of academics’ proper international experiences is regarded as a key constraint to curriculum internationalisation (Wamboye et al. 2014). Some other barriers, including the lack of consideration of academics’ engagement with teaching in an institution’s tenure and promotion, also limit academic staff’s propensity to adopting an internationalized curriculum (Andreasen 2003).
On consideration of the importance of curriculum internationalisation and the challenges in implementing that in practice, this paper will use the threefold typology proposed by Edwards et al. (2003) as a framework to explore and compare the practice of internationalizing the curriculum in a Scottish and an Australian university. This typology is chosen because it has a focus on curriculum designers (academic staff) and students, and it provides higher education institutions with practical approaches to internationalize the curricula (Caruana and Hanstock 2003). According to Edwards et al. (2003), international awareness, international competence, and international expertise are the keys to curriculum internationalisation. International awareness aims to foster an understanding that knowledge does not emerge from a single cultural base and requires that teaching is integrated with international examples, cases and perspectives. International competence refers to building cross-cultural interaction into students’ university experience. The aim of developing international expertise is to prepare students to become global professionals through promoting student mobility experiences, such as study abroad and international work placements. Using this typology of curriculum internationalisation as a framework, this research explores how Chinese postgraduate taught students in Scottish and Australian universities are supported to develop international awareness, international competence, and international expertise. It will reveal whether the practice and strategies of curriculum internationalisation vary with disciplines and countries.
Andreasen, R. J. (2003). "Barriers to international involvement." Journal of International Agricultural and Extension Education, 10(3), 65-69. Bell, M. (2004). "Internationalising the higher education curriculum: Do academics agree." Presented at Transforming Knowledge into Wisdom: Holistic Approaches to Teaching and Learning: 2004 Annual International Conference of the Higher Education Research and Development Society of Australasia (HERDSA). 4th – 7th July, 2004: Milperra, NSW, Australia. Caruana, V., and Hanstock, J. (2003) "Internationalising the curriculum: From policy to practice." Presented at Education in a Changing Environment 17th-19th September, University of Salford, United Kingdom. Edwards, R., Crosling, G., Petrovic-Lazarovic, S., and O'Neill, P. (2003). "Internationalisation of Business Education: Meaning and implementation." Higher Education Research & Development, 22(2), 183-192. Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE) (2014) Decline in global demand for English higher education. http://www.hefce.ac.uk/news/newsarchive/2014/news86922.html. Accessed on 10 October 2015 Huang, Y. (2012). "Transitioning Challenges Faced by Chinese Graduate Students." Adult Learning, 23(3), 138-147. Iannelli, C., and Huang, J. (2013). "Trends in participation and attainment of Chinese students in UK higher education." Studies in Higher Education, 39(5), 805-822. Leask, B. (2005). "Internationalisation of the curriculum", in C. J and R. J, (eds.), Teaching international students. Improving learning for all. London: Routledge, pp. 119-129. McKee, A. (2001). A beginner’s guide to textual analysis. http://emsah.uq.edu.au/courses/ccst1000/supplementary/analysis.htm? Accessed on 5 Oct 2015. Punch, K. F. (2013). (3rd Eds). Introduction to Social Research: Quantitative and Qualitative Approaches. London: Sage. Sawir, E. (2011). "Academic staff response to international students and internationalising the curriculum: the impact of disciplinary differences." International Journal for Academic Development, 16(1), 45-57. Turner, Y. (2009). "“Knowing Me, Knowing You,” Is There Nothing We Can Do?: Pedagogic Challenges in Using Group Work to Create an Intercultural Learning Space." Journal of Studies in International Education, 13(2), 240-255. Wamboye, E., Adekola, A., and Baldwin, A. (2014). "Internationalising business education curriculum in a'flat world': the scope and constraints." International Journal of Trade and Global Markets, 7(2), 99-115. Yemini, M., and Sagie, N. (2015). "Research on internationalisation in higher education – exploratory analysis." Perspectives: Policy and Practice in Higher Education, 19(1) 1-9.
- Search for keywords and phrases in "Text Search"
- Restrict in which part of the abstracts to search in "Where to search"
- Search for authors and in the respective field.
- For planning your conference attendance you may want to use the conference app, which will be issued some weeks before the conference
- If you are a session chair, best look up your chairing duties in the conference system (Conftool) or the app.