Teaching international students

The resources on this page include both theoretical and practical strategies for preparing international students for the workplace (see Arkoudis et al., 2014),  teaching international students (see Arkoudis et al., n.d. and Griffith University), and insights into staff attitudes towards having international students in the classroom (see Sawir). All of these can assist you with incorporating new approaches to teaching and learning into your practice while reflecting on your own perceptions and attitudes.


Report: English language proficiency and employability framework: For Australian higher education institutions (Arkoudis et al., 2014) (pdf, 1.3mb)

This report was "designed to inform and support higher education institutions'…policies and practices on ELP and graduate employability."  The research was initiated in direct response to feedback from employers who placed "highly developed written and oral communication skills" as the number one desirable attribute of graduates.  Some employers had also indicated a level of dissatisfaction with the English language proficiency of some international students. Hence the focus of this report evolved to identify what processes and programs were in place, if any, at higher education institutions to prepare students for the workplace and improve their language proficiency.  Case studies and examples of practice are outlined in the context of a developmental continuum, which outlines the 'student lifecycle': Entry, University experience and Exit.  There are some great ideas in this document on how to re-examine the curriculum, incorporate co-curricular activities and work integrated learning opportunities.


Handbook: Teaching international students: Strategies to enhance learning (Arkoudis, n.d.) (pdf, 309kb)

This document was originally developed for University of Melbourne staff.  'It contains practical suggestions for teaching strategies that will assist international students. Some of the suggestions may seem self-evident as they represent widely accepted principles of effective teaching in higher education. Nonetheless they are worth reiterating.'


Paper: Dealing with diversity in internationalised higher education institutions (Sawir, 2011) (pdf, 138kb)

This paper examines attitudes of academic staff towards having international students in their classrooms. 'Using interview data from 80 academic staff from different disciplines in one higher institution in Australia, this study examines whether the presence of international students has an impact on staff teaching practice.'


Helpsheet: Managing communication and language issues (Griffith University, 2010) (pdf, 71kb)

This excerpt (reproduced here with permission) from Griffith's Good Practice Resource Booklet on Designing Culturally Inclusive Learning and Teaching Environments outlines 'strategies, tips and good practice examples' for 'tackling communication and language barriers in the classroom environment.'