Patch 4: Good Practice Guidance Notes – Teaching InternationalStudents. The following guidance notes are designed to help create andmaintain inclusivity for international students in higher education.
An “internationalstudent” is defined as student who is studying abroad, which is now almost onein five in the UK, there is a perceived negative connotation of the term whichimplicitly labels international students as different to UK students (Scudamore,2013). However, being based outside of the UK, and with less than 10% of ourstudents from the UK, we use the term inclusively. Even though this internationalcultural diversity creates an extremely rich learning environment forundergraduate designers, it is not without its challenges for both students andtutors. Inclusivity and legislation.
Under the UK Equality Act, 2010 it is unlawful for any educationprovider to discriminate between students. Inclusive learning and teachingseeks address this problem by creating a learning environment which engages allstudents equally and fully, regardless of background (Equality Act, 2010; Thomas& May, 2010). By ascertaining the challenges that international studentsface, problems can be addressed and solutions found by making “reasonableadjustments” (Thomas & May, 2010).
Having a firm commitment to inclusive teachingand learning through curriculum content design and delivery, assessment andfeedback will make all learning relevant to students entering a global society (Montgomery,2008). Challenges faced by international learners. International students will often face problems adjusting to a newenvironment which can differ greatly from their home country. Students with afirst language other than English may encounter difficulties in lectures andwith academic writing, they may also struggle with differences in learningstyles such as a greater focus on independent learning. We have also found thatassessment criteria and marking systems can vary widely from what theypreviously understood, causing confusion over grades. Of course, there may alsobe wider issues, such as an international student being homesick or feelingalienated socially which will also have an impact on their learning and studentexperience.