Tag Archives: internationalisation

International student integration: the students’ view (2014)

Krassimira Teneva

International students expect and value the opportunity to make friends with other students, but are rarely satisfied with their integration with UK peers.

Sheffield Hallam University, like many other universities in the UK, has put in considerable investment in developing and promoting extracurricular activities to encourage UK/international student integration. But while we notice steady improvement in the student satisfaction with their experience of integration, we are still lagging behind other institutions.

This prompted us to undertake an impact evaluation of our social integration work, and investigate further international students’ expectations and experiences of meeting and integrating with UK and other international students. The research involved an online survey sent to all international students and two focus groups run by an external moderator.

The findings from this study unsurprisingly showed that international students wanted to meet and make friends with other international and UK students, but had found integrating with UK students more difficult than expected for a number of reasons. The most interesting finding from the research however shows that international students are happy with the level of support they get to integrate socially, but are dissatisfied with the integration at course level – all students who took part in the research expected they would study alongside UK peers on their course. It is the mismatch from this expectation and the reality of studying in predominantly international (sometimes monocultural) courses that leads to their greatest dissatisfaction. Delivering to this expectation will mean we have to provide a multicultural learning experience to all students, not just international.

 

2012 Enhancing students’ employability through foreign study and work placements

Chris Lyne and Rachel Bower

Developing employability skills has always been at the core of the language degree programme at Sheffield Hallam University, with a combined 18 month study and work placement abroad being a key component of this philosophy. This extended period abroad is unique amongst H.E. institutions and has played a key role in continuing to attract students to the languages programme at a time when numbers nationally have been in decline.  

This paper will describe how employability is embedded into the curriculum of the languages degree programme at SHU.  It will focus specifically on the central role of foreign study and work placements in developing a range of employability, entrepreneurship and intrapreneurship skills and how the curriculum is designed to prepare and support students during the period abroad.  It will also examine the specific skills and attributes which students acquire through studying, living and working abroad.  These include not only high level language skills and the ability to operate across cultures, but also a range of personal attributes such as the ability to deal with uncertainty, independence, resilience, flexibility, self-reliance and personal efficacy. 

As these skills are highly prized by employers, the paper will look at the opportunities to extend the offer of study and work placements  to students in other subject areas in order to further internationalise the curriculum at SHU and prepare students to compete in the global workplace.

Presentation:  Developing the Global Graduate

A6 – (FU39 and FU33) 11.00