The Politics of International Education International education is a natural outcome of economic globalization, immigration and movement of people across countries. Since the end of the World War II, and particularly over the last couple of decades, higher education has become internationalized through international content in the curricula, movement of scholars and teachers across campuses in different countries, cross-border technical assistance and educational programs and promoting of different cultures in campuses as well as in outreach programs beyond campuses (Arum, 1987, Rivers, 1994, cited in Ishiyama and Breuning). While some scholars of education consider providing an international perspective to teaching, learning and research functions, others consider it to be an all-encompassing policy of internationalizing the campus that would integrate different cultural perspectives (Khalideen, n.d).
International education, though always considered to be a necessary attribute for enhancing knowledge, has become all the more important in the context of globalization. It increases cultural and linguistic skills of students, which is necessary for them to work in the global workplace. Through international education, students acquire inter-cultural competencies that enable them to understand the other point of view and see problems from different dimensions. Particularly in the context of global political tension, international education at all levels – higher as well as secondary - has become increasingly crucial to bring international faculty and develop curricula incorporating global issues in order to develop awareness of global politics, economy and society in students who had so long not been exposed to issues beyond the community or country.
Educators from different parts of the world need to be engaged to develop an global awareness to make the world a just one. Besides the curricula, policies, programs and practices all need to be geared towards this end. A truly international campus would mean that all traditional courses be taught and learnt from an entirely global perspective so that broad national and international attitude can be understood.
Lecturer, Education College, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
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