Research digest for practitioners: November 2015

Research digest for practitioners: November 2015

The latest volume of the Journal of Studies in International Education, published in November 2015, tackles some hot topics in the field of internationalisation. From digital learning to employability to international student satisfaction, these articles will make you think deeply about various dimensions of international education. The aim of this blog series highlights the main takeaways that may be relevant to practitioners in the field. The topical theme of each article will help you locate the most applicable research for your work.

The Potential of a Mobile Group Blog to Support Cultural Learning Among Overseas Students

Topic: Digital learning for cultural learning

By: Yinjuan Shao and Charles Crook

Can digital learning be a tool for cultural learning and adaptation? This study examines two groups of Chinese students and how they experienced a mobile group blog ‘moblogging’. The first group consisted of 12 Chinese students who just arrived in the UK to begin studies; they volunteered to participate in a mobile group blog. The other group included 13 prospective students living in China who followed the blog. The findings suggest that mobile group blogging can facilitate cultural learning and adaptation.

Respondents in the UK expressed that the moblogging made them more aware of cultural transition issues, gave them a sense of belonging to the moblogging community, and helped with their English language learning. Respondents in China explained that the authentic experiences of Chinese students abroad shared via the moblogging community and the co-creation of knowledge – via comments –  encouraged cultural learning.

Internationalization Motivations and Strategies of Israeli Educational Administration Programs

Topic: Perceptions of Internationalisation

By: Miri Yemini and Aviva Giladi

Do higher education academics operate from a global or local perspective? In this research in Israel, 12 senior academics working in diverse higher education institutions were interviewed about their perception of the educational leadership towards internationalisation. Each respondent worked in various educational administrative programmes responsible for training future school principals.

Three major themes emerged from the data of how the respondents perceive internationalisation:

– The global vs. local purpose of programmes

– Relations of this programme with higher education institution goals

– The different meanings of internationalisation

Understanding the Early Career Benefits of Learning Abroad Programs

Topic: Employability and international education

By: Davina Potts

Employability continues to be a hot topic in the field of internationalisation. This study explores recent graduates’ perceptions of the impact that international education has on early career benefits. A survey instrument was used to collect data from graduates in Australia.

Respondents ranked the following skills as the greatest perceived benefits:

  1. Communication skills
  2. Teamwork skills
  3. Problem solving skills
  4. Self-management skills (ie maturity and personal development)

Overall, 63% of respondents believed that their international education experience has a positive or very positive impact on their long-term career prospects. Although it is difficult to isolate the impact international education has on employability, this study finds that respondents in this sample perceive a connection.

Beyond Host Language Proficiency: Coping Resources Predicting International Students’ Satisfaction

Topic: Resources for international student satisfaction

By: Anita S. Mak, Peter Bodycott, and Prem Ramburuth

What coping resources may facilitate international students’ satisfaction? This study discovers that specific internal and external resources contribute to increased levels of satisfaction for Asian-born international students in Australian universities. The internal and external resources that seem to impact personal and university satisfaction include:

  1. Academic self-efficacy
  2. Intercultural social self-efficacy
  3. Self-esteem
  4. Social support (specifically from host institutions and nationals)

English proficiency and non-host social support were significant, but became insignificant when other factors were taken into account.

Exploring Intercultural Pedagogy: Evidence From International Faculty in South Korean Higher Education

Topic: Teaching styles of international faculty

By: Peter G. Ghazarian and Mia S. Youhne

Survey data examines the teaching styles of international faculty in South Korea. The results suggest that international faculty who have recently arrived in South Korea report using more teacher-focused styles – more aligned with the Confucian philosophy of education in Korea. Conversely, international faculty who have been teaching in South Korea for a longer period of time report that they are less likely to use teacher-focused styles perhaps because they feel more comfortable with cultural norms and are better prepared to deviate from the student expectations.

Leasa Weimer is Knowledge Development Adviser at the EAIE

If you are an EAIE member, you can contact our office to subscribe to the Journal of Studies in International Education for a special price of only €10 per year.

Leasa Weimer
EAIE, the NetherlandsLeasa is Knowledge Development Adviser for the EAIE.