Minnesota State Colleges and Universities

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1 Minnesota State Colleges and Universities Integrating Education Abroad into the Curriculum Lynn C. Anderson May 30, 2013 The Minnesota State Colleges and Universities system is an Equal Opportunity employer and educator.

2 Why Make Education Abroad a Major Focus of Expanding Campus Internationalization? Very direct and meaningful way to impact students and their global perspectives. Education abroad is frequently identified as students best educational experience! Education abroad returnees on campus contribute in new ways to classes, student life, and global perspectives. Satisfied alumni who are successful professionally. AND NOW we know that education abroad is associated with decreased time to GRADUATION & increased GPA s!! 2

3 Guiding Principles Partnerships Partners are teachers and learners Ownership outside of education abroad office Work within existing structures Focus on long-term impact 3

4 Perceived Barriers The 5 F s Fit Faculty and Adviser Support Fear Family and Friends Finances 4

5 UC San Diego Time to Graduation Data by Major (Fall 2005 Cohort is Similar) 5

6 Stakeholders and Why They Care Campus leadership: institutional profile, happy students and alum, reputation Faculty: curriculum, quality of students Academic advisers: students personal, academic, and career development Campus administrators: institutional profile and ease of processes (admissions, housing, financial aid, etc.) Education abroad and international education professionals: make it all possible 6

7 Faculty: Curriculum Institutional needs and doing the right thing by students: important but not the focus for all faculty Curriculum: learning outcomes, access to special educational opportunities, replacement or additive courses, internships, research International education engages on-campus students : courses, presentations, World Hunger Day, international events, International Education Week 7

8 Education Abroad Learning Outcomes Discipline-specific learning Placement of a discipline in its international context Country/Region-specific learning Language acquisition Student development 8

9 Kolb s Learning Styles 9

10 Why Develop Education Abroad Major Advising Pages? Reflect academic considerations and program selection priorities of each department based on learning outcomes Starting point for students Advising tool for academic departments and education abroad offices Everyone is on the same page (or website) 10

11 Methodology for Integrating Education Abroad into the Curriculum Step 1: Assess Step 2: Match Step 3: Motivate Step 4: Evaluate 11

12 Step 1: Assess Consider pre-requisites, electives, major requirements, etc. Is sequencing of courses critical? Are there courses that CANNOT be taken abroad? (Why?) Is there flexibility in the curriculum? Is fine-tuning necessary to facilitate education abroad? Are there options abroad that provide opportunities not available on-campus? 12

13 Step 2: Match Education Abroad (EA) professional researches options based on conversations with departmental faculty EA professional finds range of options language, location, length, internships, research, program types, and cost EA professional provides faculty with program descriptions and course syllabi Departmental faculty determine which courses may be taken as equivalent to, in lieu of, or in addition to required courses If helpful, suggest that faculty and advisors participate in a site visit to acquire a better sense of the program options 13

14 Site Visits for Faculty and Advisors Provides direct opportunity for faculty and advisors to learn about and experience education abroad programs and research options Can provide a parallel to the student experience Rapidly increases buy-in and enthusiasm for education abroad Provides feedback and insights to the education abroad office Funded in part by participant s department creates buy-in Opportunity for networking and establishing partnerships or collaborative initiatives that go beyond education abroad 14

15 Step 3: Motivate Major Advising Page prepared and available in departmental office, through faculty and advisors, and on-line Workshops for faculty and advisors so they are prepared to encourage students to go abroad and are aware of options and perceived barriers Information sessions, webinars, on-line tutorials for students, and departmental publications Communicate the message to prospective students and their parents as well as enrolled students Students report the greatest motivator is when their faculty members encourage them to go abroad 15

16 Step 4: Evaluate Are faculty and advisors getting the message out? Do more students declare majors in your departments? Are more of your students participating in education abroad? Is retention and time to graduation impacted? What do your students say about their experiences abroad? Do returnees engage more in departmental or campus activities? What do your alumni say about the experience and the impact it had on their lives and careers? Are you raising more money for scholarships? What do employers/grad schools/professional schools say about your graduates? 16

17 Next Steps 1. Determine who will do this work and with what resources. 2. Decide which departments might go first low hanging fruit, already engaged, logical (international relations, language departments, etc.), faculty known to encourage education abroad (your allies), or one department from each division? 3. Gather faculty, explain vision, gain buy-in, address concerns, set timeline. 4. Have EA professionals start assess, match, motivate, and evaluate methodology 5. Provide incentives (site visits, scholarships to students, meals) 6. Assess progress and keep going! Brag shamelessly! 17

18 Thank you Questions, Answers, Discussion Lynn C. Anderson

19 30 7th St. E., Suite 350, St. Paul, MN Toll free: (800) International: For TTY communication, contact Minnesota Relay Service at or The Minnesota State Colleges and Universities system is an Equal Opportunity employer and educator. 19

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