Teacher journal archive (2008-2011)

Article Title

International education


In light of the increasing importance of international students to Australia's economy, researchers are turning their attention from provision of an international education experience to the imperative of internationalising education. They argue that offering an 'international' education is much more than enrolling overseas students and hoping for the best. If students are to be prepared operate successfully in a complex global environment, educators, school leaders and policymakers must also be prepared. Teachers, schools, parents and communities need to be 'internationalised'. Several researchers are quoted, many drawing a clear distinction between 'globalisation' and 'internationalisation'. Internationalisation refers to institutional policy, teaching and learning processes and procedures for recruiting international students, as well as investing time and infrastructure in creating 'world citizens'. In order to develop such internationally-minded students, we need internationally-minded teachers. The article puts forward Lesley Snowball's seven domains which are essential to the internationalisation of teachers: understands the international context of education; is familiar with student characteristics, including stage theories of development, age-level characteristics and variability in learning; uses strategies that facilitate achievement of students from diverse cultures; values students' multilingual abilities; is sensitive to transition difficulties and is skilled in supporting students; actively seeks to enrich both what and how she or he teaches with multiple international perspectives; and, is a reflective practitioner who continually evaluates the effects of his or her choices and actions on students and seeks out opportunities to grow professionally and extend his or her horizons. [Author abstract, ed]

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