This paper considers issues of diversity and community in Australian higher education as it becomes increasingly globalised and internationalised. As globalisation transforms higher education through market competition, universities worldwide are responding through internationalising all facets of their research and education. The development by many universities of export-oriented ‘transnational’ programmes, where students are located in a different country to the institution providing their course, is part of this response. Within this context, learning communities are becoming more diverse as different populations of students in different locations experience different modes of programme delivery. This paper draws on research into student experiences of transnational programmes offered by Australian universities in Southeast Asia. The focus of the paper is on how these students negotiate difference and diversity in their learning communities. In particular, strategies for constructing an international identity, gaining membership of the learning community, ‘fitting in’ to a diverse ethnic and cultural student cohort, and negotiating the competing roles of family, work and study are identified.
|Keywords:||Diversity, Community, Transnational Education, Higher Education|
Associate Professor, Graduate School of Education, The University of Western Australia, Perth, W.A., Australia
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