Advertisement

Globally Transformative Student Experience: Challenges and Opportunities in Learning and Teaching in the Transnational Business Education Program

  • Margaret HeffernanEmail author
  • Nattavud Pimpa
Chapter
Part of the Intercultural Studies in Education book series (ISE)

Abstract

As universities internationalize and attract students from multiple transnational locations, more innovative curriculum design is developed that enables students and staff to communicate and act globally. When developing a global perspective in universities, creating the capacity to deliver programs in diverse international arenas is essential. Academic teaching staff strive to design collaborative learning experiences that enable students to engage in activities that deepen their cross-cultural knowledge, a capability that is required for future employment. However, the reality of designing and implementing learning activities in a transnational education program with culturally unfamiliar contexts that engages students is challenging. This chapter will use the lessons learnt from a case study of a transnational education project designed as part of a university global program. This project involved undergraduate students across an umbrella course (Global Learning by Design which incorporated international business and strategic management) within the management discipline, offered in Australia, Vietnam, and Singapore. It presents the key challenges for universities in implementing learning experiences that develop cross-cultural competencies. These challenges include resource management and allocation; pedagogical challenges in learning and communication; and management of normative values and students’ expectations, particularly in group tasks. The course aimed to empower students through the development of skills in cross-cultural management to contribute to decisions within diverse political, economic, environmental, and social contexts; and to work collaboratively and pursue continuous personal development related to their future as management professionals. The case study reflects the complexity of business and team engagement on multiple dimensions and provides opportunities for analysis and reflection at a deeper learning level, and a reduction of cross-cultural bias. The authors suggest that to address these challenges universities will need to consider issues of power and inequality inherent in teaching partnerships, and undergo a mindset change in order to develop global perspectives.

Keywords

Management education Feedback Transnational education 

References

  1. Altbach, P. G. (2009). Higher Education: An Emerging Field of Research and Policy. In M. Bassett & A. Maldonado-Maldonado (Eds.), International Organisations and Higher Education Policy: Thinking globally, Acting Locally? (pp. 9–25). New York: Routledge.Google Scholar
  2. Andrade, M. S. (2006). International Students in English-speaking Universities. Journal of Research in International Education, 5(2), 131–154.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Australian Government. (2017, October 11). Guidance Note: Transnational Higher Education into Australia. TEQSA. Tertiary Education Quality Standards Agency. https://www.teqsa.gov.au/latest-news/publications/guidance-note-transnational-higher-education-australia. Viewed 29 October 2018.
  4. Australian Government. (2018a, June). Export Income to Australia from International Education Activity in 2017. Department of Education and Training, Research Snapshot. https://internationaleducation.gov.au/research/research-snapshots/pages/default.aspx. Viewed 29 October 2018.
  5. Australian Government. (2018b, April). Offshore Delivery of Australian Higher Education Courses. Student 2016 Full Year: Selected Higher Education Statistics. Department of Education and Training. https://www.education.gov.au/selected-higher-education-statistics-2016-student-data. Viewed 29 October 2018.
  6. Bannier, B. (2016). Global Trends in Transnational Education. International Journal of Information & Education Technology, 6(1), 80–84.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Barnett, R. (2000). University Knowledge in an Age of Supercomplexity. Higher Education, 40(4), 409–422.Google Scholar
  8. Bengtsen, S. S. E. (2018). Supercomplexity and the University: Ronald Barnett and the Social Philosophy of Higher Education. Higher Education Quarterly, 72(1), 65–74.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Boon, G. C., & Gopinathan, S. (2006, June 18–30). The Development of Education in Singapore Since 1965. Background Paper Prepared for the Asia Education Study Tour for African Policy Makers. Available at http://siteresources.worldbank.org/EDUCATION/Resources/278200-1121703274255/1439264-1153425508901/Development_Edu_Singapore_draft.pdf. Viewed 20 September 2018.
  10. Bovill, C., Jordan, L., & Watters, N. (2015). Transnational Approaches to Teaching and Learning in Higher Education: Challenges and Possible Guiding Principles. Teaching in Higher Education, 20(1), 12–23.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Brydon, K., & Liddell, M. (2011). Supporting International Students Undertaking Australian University Studies. Social Work Education, 31(8), 995–1011.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Caruana, V. M., & Montgomery, C. (2015). Understanding the Transnational Higher Education Landscape: Shifting Positionality and the Complexities of Partnership. Learning & Teaching, 8(1), 5–29.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Cohen, L., Manion, L., & Morrison, K. (2007). Research Methods in Education. London: Routledge and Falmer.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Debowski, S. (2008). Risky Business: Effective Planning and Management of Transnational Teaching. In L. Dunn & M. Wallace (Eds.), Teaching in Transnational Higher Education (pp. 204–215). New York and London: Routledge Taylor and Francis Group.Google Scholar
  15. De Vita, G. (2002). Learning Styles, Culture and Inclusive Instruction in the Multicultural Classroom: A Business and Management Perspective. Innovations in Education & Teaching International, 38(2), 165–174.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Dobos, K. (2011). “Serving Two Masters”: Academics’ Perspectives on Working at an Offshore Campus in Malaysia. Educational Review, 63(1), 19–35.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Dunn, L., & Wallace, M. (2006). Australian Academics and Transnational Teaching: An Exploratory Study of Their Preparedness and Experiences. Higher Education Research & Development, 25(4), 357–369.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Egan, M. L., & Bendick, M. (2008). Combining Multicultural Management and Diversity into One Course on Cultural Competence. Academy of Management Learning & Education, 7(3), 387–393.Google Scholar
  19. Egege, S., & Kutieleh, S. (2008). Dimming Down Difference. In L. Dunn & M. Wallace (Eds.), Teaching in Transnational Higher Education (pp. 67–76). New York, NY, USA: Routledge Education. (Chapter 7).Google Scholar
  20. Eisenberg, J., Lee, H. J., Bruck, F., Brenner, B., Claes, M., Mironski, J., et al. (2013). Can Business Schools Make Student Culturally Competent? Effects of Cross-Cultural Management Courses on Cultural Intelligence. Academy of Management Learning & Teaching, 12(4), 603–621.Google Scholar
  21. Fletcher, T., & Coyne, C. (2017). Globalisation of Higher Education: A Guide for Transnational Higher Education Providers Looking to Operate in Australia. Insight. Minter Ellison. https://www.minterellison.com/articles/globalisation-of-higher-education. Viewed 29 October 2018.
  22. Gribble, K., & Ziguras, C. (2003). Learning to Teach Offshore: Pre-Departure Training for Lecturers in Transnational Programs. Higher Education Research & Development, 22(2), 205–216.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Heffernan, T., & Poole, D. (2005). In Search of “the Vibe”: Creating Effective International Education Partnerships. The International Journal of Higher Education & Educational Planning, 50(2), 223–245.Google Scholar
  24. Heng, T. T. (2018). Different Is Not Deficient: Contradicting Stereotypes of Chinese International Students in US Higher Education. Studies in Higher Education, 43(1), 22–36.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Hoare, L. (2013). Swimming in the Deep End: Transnational Teaching as Culture Learning? Higher Education Research & Development, 32(4), 561–574.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Jackson, J. (2005). An Inter-University, Cross-Disciplinary Analysis of Business Education: Perceptions of Business Faculty in Hong Kong. English for Specific Purposes, 24, 293–306.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Johnson, J. P., Lenartowicz, T., & Apud, S. (2006). Cross-Cultural Competence in International Business: Toward a Definition and a Model. Journal of International Business Studies, 37(4), 525–543.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Joy, S., & Poonamallee, L. (2013). Cross-Cultural Teaching in Globalized Management Classrooms: Time to Move From Functionalist to Postcolonial Approaches? Academy of Management Learning & Education, 12(3), 396–413.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Kim, T. (2009). Transnational Academic Mobility, Internationalization and Interculturality in Higher Education. Intercultural Education, 20(5), 395–405.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Kolb, D. A. (1984). Experiential Learning. Englewood Cliffs: Prentice-Hall.Google Scholar
  31. Kosmützky, A., & Putty, R. (2016). Transcending Borders and Traversing Boundaries: A Systematic Review of the Literature on Transnational, Offshore, Cross-Border, and Borderless Higher Education. Journal of Studies in International Education, 20(1), 8–33.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Lamers, A. M., & Admiraal, W. F. (2018). Moving out of Their Comfort Zones: Enhancing Teaching Practice in Transnational Education. International Journal for Academic Development, 23(2), 110–122.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Leask, B. (2008). Transnational Education and Intercultural Learning: Reconstructing the Offshore Teaching Team to Enhance Internationalisation. Proceedings at the AARE Conference.Google Scholar
  34. Ledwith, S., & Seymour, D. (2001). Home and Away: Preparing Students for Multicultural Management. International Journal of Human Resource Management, 12(8), 1292–1312.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. Leung, M., & Waters, J. (2013). British Degrees Made in Hong Kong: An Enquiry Into the Role of Space and Place in Transnational Education. Asia Pacific Education Review, 14(1), 43–53.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. Levatino, A. (2017). Transnational Higher Education and International Student Mobility: Determinants and Linkage: A Panel Data Analysis of Enrolment in Australian Higher Education. Higher Education, 73, 637.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Li, M., & Campbell, J. (2008). Asian Students’ Perceptions of Group Work and Group Assignments in a New Zealand Tertiary Institution. Intercultural Education, 19(3), 203–216.Google Scholar
  38. Lim, F. C. B., & Shah, M. (2017). An Examination on the Growth and Sustainability of Australian Transnational Education. International Journal of Educational Management, 31(3), 254–264.Google Scholar
  39. Lourenço, M. (2018). Global, International and Intercultural Education: Three Contemporary Approaches to Teaching and Learning. On the Horizon, 26(2), 61–71.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. McGee Banks, C. A., & Banks, J. A. (1995). Equity Pedagogy: An Essential Component of Multicultural Education. Theory into Practice, 34(93), 152–158.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  41. Otten, M. (2003). Intercultural Learning and Diversity in Higher Education. Journal of Studies in International Education, 7(1), 12–26.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  42. Pathak, S. (2018). Encouraging Development of a Global Mindset Among Students in Online International Management Courses. Journal of Teaching in International Business, 29(1), 20–48.  https://doi.org/10.1080/08975930.2018.1455920.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  43. Reid, R., & Garson, K. (2017). Rethinking Multicultural Group Work as Intercultural Learning. Journal of Studies in International Education, 21(3), 195–212.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  44. RMIT. (2017). RMIT Statistics at a Glance, 2016. RMIT University Annual Report. Available from http://mams.rmit.edu.au/dvcrrbz9qu4e.pdf. Viewed 30 October 2018.
  45. RMIT. (2018). Partner with RMIT. RMIT University. Available from https://www.rmit.edu.au/about/our-locations-and-facilities/locations/overseas/international-partners/partner-with-rmit. Viewed 30 October 2018.
  46. RMIT Vietnam. (2018). RMIT Vietnam Background. Available from https://www.rmit.edu.au/about/our-locations-and-facilities/locations/overseas/vietnam/rmit-vietnam-background. Viewed 4 November 2018.
  47. Saint-Hilaire, L. A. (2014). ‘So, How Do I Teach Them’? Understanding Multicultural Education and Culturally Relevant Pedagogy. Reflective Practice, 15(5), 592–602.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  48. Silverman, D. (2005). Doing Qualitative Research (2nd ed.). London: Sage.Google Scholar
  49. Smith, K. (2009). Transnational Teaching Experiences: An Under-Explored Territory for Transformative Professional Development. International Journal for Academic Development, 14(2), 111–122.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  50. Song, X. (2016). Educating Asian International Students: Toward a Transcultural Paradigm. East Asia, 33(1), 1–8.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  51. Stafford, S., & Taylor, J. (2016). Transnational Education as an Internationalisation Strategy: Meeting the Institutional Management Challenges. Journal of Higher Education Policy & Management, 38(6), 625–636.Google Scholar
  52. Summers, M., & Volet, S. (2008). Students’ Attitudes Towards Culturally Mixed Groups on International Campuses: Impact of Participation in Diverse and Non-Diverse Groups. Studies in Higher Education, 33(4), 357–370.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  53. Sweeney, A., Weaven, S., & Herington, C. (2008). Multicultural Influences on Group Learning: A Qualitative Higher Education Study. Assessment & Evaluation in Higher Education, 33(2), 119–132.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  54. Tran, L. T. (2016). Students’ Academic, Intercultural and Personal Development in Globalised Education Mobility. In C. Ng, R. Fox, & M. Nakano (Eds.), Reforming Learning and Teaching in Asia-Pacific Universities, Education in the Asia-Pacific Region: Issues, Concerns and Prospects, 33. Singapore: Springer. (Chapter 5).Google Scholar
  55. Tran, L. T., & Marginson, S. (Ed.). (2018). Internationalisation in Vietnamese Higher Education, 51, Springer, ProQuest Ebook Central. Available at https://ebookcentral.proquest.com/lib/RMIT/detail.action?docID=5426709. Viewed 4 November 2018.
  56. Treleaven, L., Freeman, M., Leask, B., Ramburuth, P., Simpson, L., Sykes, C., et al. (2007). Beyond Workshops: A Conceptual Framework for Embedding Development of Intercultural Competence in Business Education. HERDSA News, 29(3), 9–11.Google Scholar
  57. UNESCO. (2002). UNESCO Universal Declaration on Cultural Diversity: Cultural Diversity Series No. 1, 4.Google Scholar
  58. Universities Australia. (2017, March 27). Key Facts & Data. https://www.universitiesaustralia.edu.au/australias-universities/key-facts-and-data#.W9fbS3v7Spo. Viewed 29 October 2018.
  59. Volet, S., & Jones, C. (2012). Cultural Transitions in Higher Education: Individual Adaptation, Transformation and Engagement. In Transitions across Schools and Cultures (pp. 241–284).  https://doi.org/10.1108/S0749-7423(2012)0000017012.Google Scholar
  60. Wilkins, S., & Juusola, K. (2018). The Benefits and Drawbacks of Transnational Higher Education: Myths and Realities. The Australian Universities’ Review, 60(2), 68–76.Google Scholar
  61. Wong, J. K. (2004). Are the Learning Styles of Asian International Students Culturally or Contextually Based? International Education Journal, 4(4), 154–166.Google Scholar
  62. Wood, C. M. (2003). The Effects of Creating Psychological Ownership Among Students in Group Projects. Journal of Marketing Education, 25(3), 241.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  63. World Bank. (2011). Vietnam: High Quality Education for All by 2020. Washington, DC: World Bank (License: CC BY 3.0 IGO). Available at https://openknowledge.worldbank.org/handle/10986/27450. Viewed 4 November 2018.
  64. Yin, R. K. (2003). Case Study Research: Design and Methods. London: Sage.Google Scholar
  65. Zhao, H., & Coombs, S. (2012). Intercultural Teaching and Learning Strategies for Global Citizens: A Chinese EFL Perspective. Teaching in Higher Education, 17(3), 245–255.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  66. Zhou, Y. R., Knoke, D., & Sakamoto, I. (2005). Rethinking Silence in the Classroom: Chinese Students’ Experiences of Sharing Indigenous Knowledge. International Journal of Inclusive Education, 9(3), 287–311.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  67. Ziguras, C. (2008). The Cultural Politics of Transnational Education: Ideological and Pedagogical Issues for Teaching Staff. In L. Dunn & M. Wallace (Eds.), Teaching in Transnational Higher Education (p. 4454). New York and London: Routledge Taylor and Francis Group.Google Scholar
  68. Ziguras, C. (2016, November 9–11). The Changing Face of Australian Transnational Education. OBHE Global Forum ‘Brain Gain: Charting the Impact and Future of TNE’, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of ManagementRMIT UniversityMelbourneAustralia
  2. 2.Mahidol UniversityBangkokThailand

Personalised recommendations