10 SES 11 B, Programmes and Approaches: Inter- and Transcultural experiences and contexts
This paper explores the findings of a project that investigated the impact of the International Professional Experience (IPE) program within the Faculty of Education, Monash University, Australia, in developing the capacity of preservice teachers to work and teach amidst culturally diverse environments. In particular, the project emphasised the importance of pre-service teachers developing a transcultural competence rather than being limited to the prevailing ideas of interculturalism and/or multiculturalism. Within a transcultural educational frame, acknowledgment of cultural variation is accepted and perceived as the normative state (Casinader and Walsh, 2015; Casinader 2016a & b, 2017); there is not the inherent identification of the ‘Other’ as an issue that is embedded in the notions of multiculturalism and interculturalism. It is also more reflective of the embedded transnational demographic nature of 21st century society, in which transnational behaviour is more accurately characterised as ‘trans-spatial’ movement (Casinader, 2017).
The world of education, together with the working context into which teacher graduates seek to practise, has changed over the last two decades. The globalisation of world society has been reflected in diversity that is reflected among students in classrooms and their families and the aspirations invested in education. These have altered the educational environments within which teachers work and for which preservice teachers are prepared by their teacher education programs. As a consequence of this shifts, there has been a developing discourse around the need for cultural competence as an essential professional attribute of a practising educator, whether school- or university-based (de Oliveira Andreotti, Biesta, & Ahenakew, 2015; Piątkowska, 2015; Portera, 2008). Central to the many threads of this exploration is that effective teacher in a 21st-century society need to be culturally engaged and aware (le Roux, 2002).
Educational globalisation has alsoencouraged Australian educators and schools to see working and learning in countries outside Australia (transnational experiences) as key experiences that support readiness for of a professional career. In the wider context, there is also a need for Australian graduate teachers to have the skills and capacities to relate to, engage with and teach students from a wide variety of cultures. As of 2016, nearly half of Australia's population has a parent who was born overseas, and the Australian school student population is increasingly beginning to reflect the wide diversity of cultural backgrounds that recent migration patterns have reinforced. In order to support the social cohesion of Australian society as it undergoes such change, Australian teachers need to be prepared to teach culturally heterogeneous classrooms as the norm, and not, as it has been the case in the past, as the exception (Rizvi, 2011). They also need the capability to respond to cultural diversity in other contexts, as they are being educated to work in both local and global labour markets, where a wider repertoire of skills will support their employability.
Callan, V. (2003). Generic skills: Understanding vocational education and training teacher and student attitudes. Adelaide, South Australia. Casinader, N. (2014). Culture, Transnational Education and Thinking: case studies in global schooling. Milton Park, Abingdon: Routledge. Casinader, N. (Under Review, submitted July 2016). Transnational learning experiences and teacher transcultural capacity: the impact on professional practice – a comparative study of three Australian schools, Intercultural Education. Casinader, N., & Walsh, L. (2015). Teacher Transculturalism and cultural difference: Addressing racism in Australian schools. International Education Journal: Comparative Perspectives, Special Edition: ANZCIES Conference Proceedings,, 14(2), 51-62. Clemans, A., & Newton, A. (2016). Framing employability: A case from Australia. In S. S. Bohlinger, T. K. A. Dang, & M. Klatt (Eds.), Education policy: Mapping the landscape and scope. Frankfurt: Peter Lang. de Oliveira Andreotti, V., Biesta, G., & Ahenakew, C. (2015). Between the nation and the globe: education for global mindedness in Finland. Globalisation, Societies and Education, 13(2), 246-259. doi:10.1080/14767724.2014.934073 Jones, E. (2013). Internationalization and employability: The role of intercultural experiences in the development of transferable skills. Public Money and Management, 33(2), 95-104. Leh, J. M., Giuseppe, J. A., & Grau, M. (2015). Navigating the development of pre-service teachers’ intercultural competence and understanding of diversity. Journal for Multicultural Education, 9(2), 98-110. . Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development [OECD]. (2012). Better Skills, Better Jobs, Better Lives: A strategic approach to skills policies. Retrieved from from http://dx.doi.org/10.1787/9789264177338-en Piątkowska, K. (2015). From cultural knowledge to intercultural communicative competence: changing perspectives on the role of culture in foreign language teaching. Intercultural Education, 26(5), 397-408. doi:10.1080/14675986.2015.1092674 Portera, A. (2008). Intercultural education in Europe: epistemological and semantic aspects. Intercultural Education, 19(6), 481-491. doi:10.1080/14675980802568277 Rizvi, F. (2011). Experiences of Cultural Diversity in the Context of an Emergent Transnationalism. European Educational Research Journal, 10(2), 180-188. doi:http://dx.doi.org.ezproxy.lib.monash.edu.au/10.2304/eerj.2011.10.2.180 Stachowski, L. L., & Sparks, T. (2007). Thirty Years and 2,000 Student Teachers Later: An Overseas Student Teaching Project That Is Popular, Successful, and Replicable. Teacher Education Quarterly, 34(1), 115-132. Walsh, L. (2016). Educating generation next : young people, teachers and schooling in transition. Basingstoke, Hampshire: Palgrave MacMillan. Widegren, P., & Doherty, C. (2010). Is the world their oyster? The global imagination of pre-service teachers. Asia-Pacific Journal of Teacher Education, 38(1), 5-22. doi:10.1080/1359866090347415
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