Vol. 32 No. 1 (2017)
Research Articles

Towards a Framework for Virtual Internationalization

Elisa Bruhn
Carl von Ossietzky Universität Oldenburg
Bio
Published July 11, 2017
Keywords
  • virtual internationalization,
  • theoretical framework,
  • digitalization,
  • higher education,
  • virtual mobility,
  • collaborative online international learning (COIL),
  • information and communications technology (ICT),
  • transnational education,
  • online distance education
  • ...More
    Less

Abstract

Internationalization and digitalization – how do these two higher education trends go together? Projects dealing with virtual mobility, collaborative online international learning (COIL), or virtual transnational education (TNE) have shown that the link between the international and the digital is not only a theoretical possibility, but already a reality in many higher education institutions. There is a considerable amount of literature about Open and Distance Education and Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) crossing national borders, and about supporting students in gaining intercultural competence and global awareness with the help of virtual media. Still, there remains a gap in the literature when it comes to conceptualizing a framework encompassing the manifold ways in which information and communications technology (ICT) can be used to internationalize higher education. In order to address this gap, this paper proposes an approach of drafting a framework for virtual internationalization in higher education, by focusing on its global, intercultural, and international dimensions.

 

Résumé

Internationalisation et numérisation – comment ces deux tendances de l’enseignement supérieur s’associent-elles ? Les projets traitant de la mobilité virtuelle, de l’apprentissage international collaboratif en ligne, ou de l’éducation virtuelle transnationale ont montré que le lien entre l’international et le numérique n’est pas seulement une possibilité théorique, mais déjà une réalité dans bon nombre d’institutions d’enseignement supérieur. Il existe une vaste littérature, qui dépasse les barrières nationales, concernant la Formation Ouverte et A Distance (FOAD) et les Cours en Ligne Ouverts et Massifs (CLOM) aussi bien que le soutien apporté aux étudiants pour développer une compétence interculturelle et une conscience planétaire à l’aide des médias virtuels. Pour autant, une lacune demeure dans la littérature quant à la conceptualisation d’un cadre englobant les multiples manières de prendre en compte les Technologies de l’Information et de la Communication (TIC) pour internationaliser l’enseignement supérieur. Afin de combler cette lacune, cet article propose une approche permettant d’esquisser un cadre pour l’internationalisation virtuelle dans l’enseignement supérieur en se centrant sur ses dimensions mondiales, interculturelles et internationales.

References

  1. Amirault, R. J., & Visser, Y. L. (2010). The impact of e-learning programs on the internationalization of the university. New York, NY: Nova Science Publishers.
  2. Beelen, J., & Jones, E. (2015). Redefining Internationalization at Home. In A. Curaj, L. Matei, R. Pricopie, J. Salmi, & P. Scott (Eds.), The European Higher Education Area: Between Critical Reflections and Future Policies (Vol. 1, pp. 59-72). doi:10.1007/978-3-319-20877-0_5
  3. Boubsil, O., & Carabajal, K. (2011). Implications of globalization for distance education in the United States. The American Journal of Distance Education, 25(1), 5-20.
  4. de Wit, H. (2013, June 1). COIL - Virtual mobility without commercialisation. University World News, (274). Retrieved from http://www.universityworldnews.com
  5. de Wit, H., & Hunter, F. (2015). Understanding internationalisation of higher education in the European context. In H. de Wit, E. Egron-Polak, L. Howard, & F. Hunter (Eds.), Internationalisation of higher education (pp. 41-58). doi:10.2861/444393
  6. de Wit, H., & Hunter, F. (2016). Trends, issues and challenges in internationalisation of higher education: Where have we come from and where are we going? In S. McGrath & Q. Gu (Eds.), Routledge handbook of international education and development (pp. 340-358). Abingdon: Routledge.
  7. Edmundson, A. (2009, May 18). Culturally accessible e-learning: An overdue global business imperative. Retrieved from https://www.td.org/Publications/Newsletters/Learning-Circuits/Learning-Circuits-Archives
  8. Ess, C. (2009). When the solution becomes the problem: Cultures and individuals as obstacles to online learning. In R. Goodfellow & M.-N. Lamy (Eds.), Learning cultures in online education (pp. 15-29). London: Continuum.
  9. Gunawardena, C. (2014). Globalization and cross-cultural aspects. In O. Zawacki-Richter & T. Anderson (Eds.), Online distance education: Towards a research agenda (pp. 75-108). Edmonton: AU Press.
  10. Guri-Rosenblit, S. (2014). Distance education systems and institutions. In O. Zawacki-Richter & T. Anderson (Eds.), Online distance education: Towards a research agenda (pp. 109-130). Edmonton: AU Press.
  11. Guth, S. (2013). The COIL Institute for Globally Networked Learning in the Humanities. Final report. New York, NY: SUNY COIL Center.
  12. Klöpper, H. (2014, July 9). Online-Erasmus für alle [Online Erasmus for all]. The European.eu. Retrieved from http://de.theeuropean.eu/
  13. Knight, J. (2003). Updating the definition of internationalization. International Higher Education, 33(Fall 2003), 2-3.
  14. Knight, J. (2004). Internationalization remodeled: Definition, approaches, and rationales. Journal of Studies in International Education, 8(1), 5-31.
  15. Knight, J. (2014). Three generations of crossborder higher education: New developments, issues and challenges. In B. Streitwieser (Ed.), Internationalisation of higher education and global mobility (pp. 43-58). Oxford: Symposium Books.
  16. Knight, J. (2016). Meaning, rationales and tensions in the internationalisation of higher education. In S. McGrath & Q. Gu (Eds.), Routledge handbook of international education and development (pp. 325-339). Abingdon: Routledge.
  17. Leask, B. (2015). Internationalizing the curriculum. Abingdon: Routledge.
  18. Marginson, S. (2011). Imagining the global. In R. King, S. Marginson, & R. Naidoo (Eds.), Handbook on globalization and higher education (pp. 10-39). Cheltenham: Edward Elgar Publishing.
  19. Marginson, S., & van der Wende, M. (2007). Globalisation and higher education OECD Directorate for Education (Ed.) Education working paper No. 8 doi:10.1787/173831738240
  20. Mishra, T. P. (2011). International student curricular preferences in U.S. institutions of higher learning. (Doctoral dissertation). Available from ProQuest Dissertations and Theses database. (UMI No. 482202)
  21. MOVINTER. (2010). In praise of virtual mobility: How ICT can support institutional cooperation and internationalisation of curricula in higher education. White Paper proposed by initiative of the MOVINTER Project Retrieved from http://www.epics-ve.eu/images/stories/Documents/EMundus_MOVINTER_WHITE_PAPER.pdf
  22. Naidu, S. (2003). Designing instruction for e-learning environments. In M. G. Moore & W. G. Anderson (Eds.), Handbook of distance education. Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.
  23. O'Mahony, J. (2014). Enhancing student learning and teacher development in transnational education Retrieved from https://www.heacademy.ac.uk/system/files/resources/enhancingtne_final_080414.pdf
  24. Palfrey, J. G., & Gasser, U. (2008). Born digital. Understanding the first generation of digital natives. New York, NY: Basic Books.
  25. Raybourn, E. M., Kings, N., & Davies, J. (2003). Adding cultural signposts in adaptive community-based virtual environments. Interacting with Computers, 15, 91-107.
  26. Sadykova, G. V. (2012). Learning experiences of international students in online courses: Mixed methods study. (Doctoral dissertation). Available from ProQuest Dissertations and Theses database. (UMI No. 3549575)
  27. Schachtner, C. (2010). Digitale Medien und Transkulturalität [Digital media and transculturality]. In P. Grell, W. Marotzki, & H. Schelhowe (Eds.), Neue digitale Kultur- und Bildungsräume (Vol. 12, pp. 61-76). Wiesbaden: VS Verlag für Sozialwissenschaften.
  28. Snyder, T. D., de Brey, C., & Dillow, S. A. (2016). Digest of education statistics 2014 (NCES 2016-006). Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Education / National Center for Education Statistics.
  29. Spitzberg, B. H., & Changnon, G. (2009). Conceptualizing intercultural competence. In D. K. Deardorff (Ed.), The SAGE handbook of intercultural competence (pp. 2-52). Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE Publications.
  30. Teichler, U. (2004). The changing debate on internationalization of higher education. Higher Education, 48, 5-26.
  31. UNICollaboration. (2014). Position paper: Virtual exchange in the European Higher Education Area. Retrieved from http://uni-collaboration.eu/sites/default/files/Position paper_1.pdf
  32. Urry, J. (2007). Mobilities. Cambridge: Polity Press.
  33. van der Wende, M. (2002). The possibilities and limits of virtual mobility in international cooperation. In B. Wächter (Ed.), The virtual challenge to international cooperation in higher education (pp. 27-40). Bonn: Lemmens.
  34. Villar-Onrubia, D., & Rajpal, B. (2016). Online international learning: Internationalising the curriculum through virtual mobility at Coventry University. Perspectives: Policy and Practice in Higher Education, 20(2-3), 75-82. Retrieved from doi:10.1080/13603108.2015.1067652
  35. Virtual. (2013). OED Online (3rd ed.). Retrieved from http://www.oed.com/view/Entry/223829
  36. Vriens, M., & van Petegem, W. (2011). Make it work! Integrating virtual mobility in international work placements Retrieved from http://www.euvip.eu/resources/Manual_ONLINE.pdf
  37. Wang, C.-M., & Reeves, T. C. (2007). The meaning of culture in online education: Implications for teaching, learning, and design. In A. Edmundson (Ed.), Globalized e-learning cultural challenges (pp. 1-18). Hershey, PA: Information Science Publishing.
  38. Wang, M. (2007). Designing online courses that effectively engage learners from diverse cultural backgrounds. British Journal of Educational Technology, 38(2), 294-311. doi:10.1111/j.1467-8535.2006.00626.x
  39. Ziguras, C. (2008). Cultural and contextual issues in the evaluation of transnational distance education. In T. Evans, M. Haughey, & D. Murphy (Eds.), International handbook of distance education (pp. 639-653). Bingley: Emerald.