22 SES 04 B, Teaching, Learning and Assessment in Higher Education
This study aims to explore the rationales/reasons of Balkan students in choosing Turkey as a higher education destination for studying abroad. Internationalization is one of the key concerns of scholars and policy makers in higher education. Although internationalization in higher education is conceptualized as an outcome of globalization, it is a multi-dimensional process and it is as old as the history of higher education organization (Enders, 2004). Academic, cultural, political, social, and economic rationales explain the extensive interest of higher education organization in internationalization (Knight, 1999). Hence, almost every higher education organization has been involved in one or another version of internationalization in higher education. Accordingly, higher education organizations are commonly obliged to adapt their processes according to the requirements of internationalization. Conceptualization of internationalization in higher education, its development trends, strategies, and rationales behind it have been widely discussed by several scholars (Knight, 1997, 1999; van der Wende, 1997; Zha, 2003). These discussions handle internationalization as an issue of economically developed countries. Besides, the dominant discussions handle internationalization of higher education as a global issue. Thus, there is a need to focus on the economically developing and non-Anglophone periphery of higher education, which requires adequate assessment of the concept of regional schemes for internationalization (Denman, 2001). Recent analyses suggest that there are emerging regional schemes facilitation internationalization in higher education (Knight & Altbach, 2007).
Like other parts of the world, in the Balkan region, there are growing dynamics accelerating regional cooperation in higher education. In this frame, Turkey emerges as a center of attraction for students and faculty in the Balkans. The study conducted on the foreign students studying in Turkey showed that personal motivations are prominent for students coming from Western and economically developed countries while economic and academic rationales are more prominent for students from Eastern and economically developing countries, including the Balkans, behind their choice of Turkey as a destination for study abroad (Kondakci, 2011). This study focuses on students coming from Balkan countries since the historical and cultural ties between Balkan countries and Turkey are strong (Friedman, 2005). Moreover, according to 2010 statistics, from 25838 incoming students studying in Turkey, 3737 of them were Balkan students (UNESCO, 2012). Therefore, revealing the contribution of the ties on student mobility between Turkey and the Balkans is expected to illuminate other regional cooperation schemes, which share the same dynamics. Based on this brief discussion, this study aims to reveal the rationales attracting students from Balkan countries to Turkey. The political, economic, academic and cultural/social typology, developed by Knight (1999), was used in analyzing the rationales of Balkan students’ preference for Turkey. More specifically, the study utilized the pull-push terminology (Wilkins et al., 2012) in the analysis of the rationales. As a result, different social, political, economic dynamics pulling to Turkey are identified.
Altbach, P. G., & Knight, J. (2007). Internationalization of higher education: Motivations and realities.Journal of Studies in International Education, 11(3/4), 290–305. Denman, B. D. (2001). The emergence of trans-regional educational exchange schemes (TREES) in Europe,North America, and the Asia-Paciﬁc Region. Higher Education in Europe, 26(1), 95–106. Enders, J. (2004). Higher education, internationalization, and the nation-state: Recent developments and challenges to governance theory. Higher Education, 47, 361–382. Fraenkel, J.R., & Wallen, N.E. (2006). How to design and evaluate research in education. New York: McGraw-Hill. Friedman, V.A. (2005). From orientalism to democracy and back again: Turkish in the Balkans and in Balkan Languages. In Detrez, R. & Plas, P. (Eds.).Developing Cultural Identity in the Balkans: Convergence vs. Divergence. Peter Lang: Germany. Knight, J. (1997). Internationalisation of higher education: A conceptual framework. In J.Knight & H. de Wit (Eds.), Internationalisation of higher education in Asia Pacificcountries. Luna Negra, Amsterdam: The European Association for InternationalEducation (EAIE). Knight, J. (1999). Internationalization of higher education. In Knight,J. & De Wit, H. (Eds.) Quality and Internationalization in Higher Education. Paris: OECD Kondakci, Y. (2011). Student mobility reviewed: attraction and satisfaction of international students in Turkey, Higher Education, 62, 573-592. UNESCO (2012) Global Education Digest 2010.Montreal: UNESCO Institute for Statistics. http://www.uis.unesco.org/Pages/default.aspx. van der Wende, M. (1997). Missing links: The relationship between national policies forinternationalisation and those for higher education in general. In T. Kalvemark & M.van der Wende (Eds.), National policies for the internationalisation of higher education in Europe. Stockholm, Sweden: National Agency for Higher Education. Wilkins, S., Balakrishnan, M.S, & Huisman, J. (2012). Student choice in higher education: motivations for choosing to study at an international branch campus. Journal of Studies in International Education, 16(5), 413-433. Zha, Q. (2003). Internationalization of higher education: Towards a conceptual framework. Policy future in education, 1(2), 248-270.
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