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Internationalisation: case studies of two Australian and United States universities

Ruddy, Annie (2008) Internationalisation: case studies of two Australian and United States universities. PhD thesis, Murdoch University.

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Higher education has undergone significant change as universities have sought to respond to government reforms in a period of globalisation. One major reform that globalisation has introduced is the reduction in state funding for higher education. Universities have turned to other resources to provide funding and one of these is the recruitment of international students. The focus of this thesis is on contrasting the internationalisation policies of two nations, Australia and the United States, by analysing published policies, statistics and carrying out interviews on two campuses. Two universities, one in Australia and the other in the United States, served as case studies to examine the strategies used to implement these policies. Approximately 100 participants were interviewed, including administrators and faculty members, international and domestic students.

Each university featured internationalisation as a goal in its mission statement. By integrating intercultural and global dimensions into the teaching, research and service functions of a university, internationalisation encompasses a multitude of activities that provide an educational experience. While administrators generally stated that the implementation of strategic plans to achieve international goals had been successful, many faculty members, domestic and international students were of the view that international goals were yet to be realised. These contrasting discourses revealed that each university was falling short of achieving its internationalisation goals. Faculty members and domestic and international students expressed dissatisfaction about cultural insensitivity, lack of adequate services that offered housing and emotional/social support, and language barriers. At the same time, each university was achieving some of its internationalisation goals. In conclusion, strategies are suggested that might improve the implementation of internationalisation at both universities.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Murdoch Affiliation(s): School of Education
Supervisor(s): Pearce, Jane and Currie, Jan
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