Category: Internationalisation

Responsible curiosity: what it means to be a global citizen

“I see global citizenship as involving a sense of open-mindedness and adaptability”

Global citizenship has become quite a political and controversial concept. In 2016, the UK Prime Minister at the time, Theresa May, declared “today, too many people in positions of power behave as though they have more in common with international elites than with the people down the road, the people they employ, the people they pass in the street…. But if you believe you’re a citizen of the world, you’re a citizen of nowhere. You don’t understand what the very word ‘citizenship’ means”.

And then, in 2019, Donald Trump told the United Nations General Assembly that “the future does not belong to the globalists. The future belongs to the patriots”.

I don’t agree with either of these statements, writes Martin Hall, head of school at ACS International School Hillingdon.

Read More

The importance of international collaboration in tackling climate change

“We are building international collaborations and working with experts/mentors to influence issues related to climate and environment”

The pandemic has shone a light on the vital role of higher education in providing solutions to society’s greatest challenges, thrusting the contribution of universities to the fore. And so, as we stare what is undoubtedly the most significant issue of our time in the face – climate change – there has never been a more critical time for global collaboration between institutions and faculty to find the answers and influence change.

The ACU Commonwealth Futures Climate Research Cohort, a partnership between the Association of Commonwealth Universities (ACU) and The British Council, was formed with this notion in mind. Scott J. Davidson, a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Waterloo in Canada, explains.

Read More

XJTLU: breaking barriers to reach the future

“We wanted to create an international university in China and a Chinese university recognised internationally”

The future of education is about bringing together multiple worlds. To create a robust higher education sector, universities need to form partnerships with each other, industry, and the community. It Is also beneficial to blend teaching methods and philosophies. Youmin Xi of Xi’an Jiaotong-Liverpool University explains.

Read More

The Asian universities working together to solve challenges in higher education

“In a highly globalised world, a country or region can rarely develop in isolation”

Over the last few years, we have observed some important trends that have already been changing the global landscape of higher education. Asian universities have accelerated in their development and started to enjoy a greater presence among the top global universities.

Being a network of prominent universities in the region, the Asian Universities Alliance (AUA) has the potential to lead intellectual scholarship and scientific discovery, pulling together the best minds from member institutions, each with their own expertise to contribute to joint initiatives. Arman Zhumazhanov of Nazarbayev University discusses the work of the regional university network.

Read More

Global partnerships: together we are an ocean

“Individual strengths joined together on a global level can, indeed, move mountains”

The esteemed Japanese writer Ryūnosuke Akutagawa once wrote: “Individually, we are one drop. Together, we are an ocean.”

As human beings, we know that we are stronger when we work together rather than when we work in isolation, says Class2Class’ Suzanne Orzech. Akutagawa’s words seem to have come to life on a global scale as we look at the plethora of global educational partnerships that have emerged recently, thanks to human ingenuity and the desire to keep moving forward despite extreme global challenges.

Class2Class is excited to provide the technology solutions to many global pioneers who have come together to develop virtually collaborative courses, projects, and internships as an affordable and inclusive model for international education with other universities, NGOs and businesses around the world during a time of limited physical mobility. What is truly inspiring to see is the evolution of collective thought.

As different and varied as all of these partnerships are, they have the same goal in mind: advance international education and make it accessible to all, despite some extremely severe obstacles.

The university promoting Mexico as a new study destination

“A lot of students come here and find love and career opportunities. If we combine this with high-quality education, I can’t think of any better selling points”

Paraphrasing one of the most important books in Latin American literature seems appropriate to describe Anáhuac Cancun University’s (ACU) internationalisation efforts in these very complex times.

Early in 2019, their president, father Jesús Quirce, noticed that nearly 18% of their four thousand student population was already international. He saw that a growing number of international admission enquiries was coming from places as distant as Hungary, Russia, Japan, the Philippines, Nepal, South Korea, India and China.

Being a man of action, father Quirce was quick to react. He brought Óscar Velasco into his team and asked him to lead on the planning and implementation of a comprehensive international strategy aiming to attract full-degree students from all world regions.

Read More

The challenges of employing international faculty

“International faculty’s lack of knowledge about local cultural contexts can be an insurmountable challenge”

Employing international faculty can have massive benefits for universities but it can also present a number of challenges, writes Tsediso Michael Makoelle, vice dean of research at Nazarbayev University’s Graduate School of Education.

Moving to any new country involves a new cultural environment which more often than not can cause international faculty to experience culture shock. When faculty experience this culture shock, many can struggle to adapt and adjust to this new cultural environment, including grappling with aspects such as language. In some cases, this could adversely affect their psychological and emotional well-being, leading to underperformance at work.

Read More

Student mobility needs to be more than just east to west

“Asian students appear to travel within Asia or to western countries, but western students are not yet studying in Asia at the same level”

The flow of students in higher education has historically been from Asia to western nations, with most international students studying in Europe, North America or Australia, writes Loretta O’Donnell, vice provost of Academic Affairs at Nazarbayev University in Kazakhstan. However, this trend has been changing for a number of years and is now more multi-directional.

In 2019 China hosted more international students than both Canada or Australia, with the top five highest intakes coming from South Korea, Thailand, Pakistan, India, and the US. Japan also saw an almost 11% increase in international student uptake compared to the previous year, while the UK saw a 2% decrease between 2018 and 2019.

Read More

Covid-19 an opportunity to truly internationalise Western education

“Little progress has been made in embedding non-Western ideologies and philosophies in current teaching”

There are currently more than 5.3 million international students furthering their education outside their home countries, writes Thanh Pham of Monash University.

The majority of which are non-Western students studying in Western countries. There have been growing calls for the need to support international students in Western countries, including providing financial aid, creating safe environments, and respecting cultural diversity.

Read More

Why virtual exchange is more important than ever

“Virtual exchange, when done correctly, can be an extremely enriching, engaging and rewarding experience”

Suddenly we find ourselves at a crossroads in higher education, writes Matthew Hightower, CEO and founder of Class2Class. Many educators worldwide don’t know which way to turn. We cannot exactly go back in the direction from which we came, but taking the path less traveled into the unknown can be equally as daunting.

As educators we have to ask ourselves: Isn’t one of our primary goals to foster the development of 21st century skill sets within our students? If our answer to that question is an emphatic “yes”, then shouldn’t we be encouraging open-mindedness and risk-taking from ourselves as well as from our students as we reimagine what higher education could and should look like?

Read More