Degree programmes taught through a foreign language in Finnish higher education

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1 Kansainvälisen liikkuvuuden ja yhteistyön keskus Centret för internationell mobilitet och internationellt samarbete Centre for International Mobility IRMA GARAM Degree programmes taught through a foreign language in Finnish higher education 1B/2009 FACTS AND FIGURES REPORT

2 IRMA GARAM MIRA JORTIKKA PIRJO ZIRRA ISBN ISSN /2009 Centre for International Mobility CIMO

3 Contents 1 Foreword 2 Introduction 2.1 Education and training given through a foreign language as part of Finnish higher education policy 2.2 What research and evaluations say about education and training given through a foreign language 3 Aims, objectives and implementation of study 3.1 Aims and objectives 3.2 Implementation 4 Education and training given through a foreign language in higher education institutions strategy 5 Statistics on degree-level education taught through a foreign language 6 Questionnaire and interviews about degree programmes taught through a foreign language 6.1 Questionnaire respondents and programme interviews Who were the respondents? Which programmes did we interview? 6.2 Rationales driving degree programmes taught through a foreign language 6.3 Organisation of degree programmes taught through a foreign language Collaborative arrangements Funding Teaching and staff Quality assurance 6.4 Students and student recruitment Target group of programme Student recruitment Methods of student selection Applicants and accepted students 6.5 Services to international students 6.6 Ties with working life 6.7 Help and support from higher education institutions 6.8 English-taught degree programmes: problems and successes 7 Conclusion Bibliography and sources 1

4 1 Foreword Since the late 1980s, Finnish higher education institutions (HEIs) have made great strides in international mobility, teaching and research. Initially, the institutions focused on student and teacher exchanges, which were designed to be reciprocal from the very start. In order to attract international students to Finland, our HEIs began to offer teaching through a foreign language, most notably English. Internationalisation has since become a key concern in higher education policy. At the same time, the focus has extended from student exchanges to recruiting international degree students to Finland. High-quality education that draws international talent is seen as a key to a competitive nation (for example, Ministry of Education 2007; 2009). Finland shares this view with other industrial countries. The growing demand in the developing countries for an international education has created an international education market. In 2006, over 2,6 million higher education students studied abroad - most of them in North America and Western Europe (Unesco 2008, 118). Higher education institutions find that access to this market and the recruitment of international students are ever more crucial issues. International cooperation now has a new undertone, as institutions compete over students, reputation and funding. (Scott 2004; Knight 2004; Wächter 2004.) Concepts and definitions The Finnish higher education system comprises two complementary sectors: universities and the professionally-oriented universities of applied sciences, sometimes also known as polytechnics. The universities engage in academic research and give research-based instruction at the highest level. The basic university degrees are those of Bachelor s and Master s, complemented by postgraduate degrees at the Licentiate and Doctoral level. The Bachelor s degree comprises 180 credits or around 3 years of full-time study, while the 120 credits in a Master s degree take about 2 years of fulltime study. Of the 20 Finnish universities (spring 2009), 10 are multi-field institutions, 3 represent technology, another 3 specialise in economics and business administration and 4 are arts academies. The universities of applied sciences are mostly multi-field institutions of higher education, training professionals in response to labour market needs. They engage in applied research and development, conferring basic degrees at the Bachelor s level (3.5 to 4.5 years of full-time study). Some universities of applied sciences also award Master s-level degrees, which aim further to enhance working life skills and competencies. The prerequisite for Master s-level studies is a Bachelor s degree at a university of applied sciences or similar and at least three years of work experience. Finland currently (spring 2009) has 28 universities of applied sciences. 2

5 While student recruitment has extended to degree students, there is now more focus also on creating and developing entire degree programmes taught through a foreign language. This is clearly evident from the number of such degree programmes in Finland. In fact, in relation to the size of the higher education system, the top European countries to offer academic programmes in a foreign language are Finland and the Netherlands (Maiworm & Wächter 2002; Wächter & Maiworm 2007). In terms of foreign degree student numbers, however, Finland fares less well: absolute numbers have grown all through the first decade of the twenty-first century, but the relative share of international degree students in the whole higher education student population (4 %) is still below the international average (6,9 %) (OECD 2008). Degree programmes taught in a foreign language have mainly been examined from the demand angle: studies and surveys have tended to focus on the rationales and experiences of the international degree students. Much less studied has been the supply side of education and training conducted in a foreign language in Finnish higher education. That is, what kind of education is being offered and why, and what are its premises? It is precisely because of the need further to develop education and training given through a foreign language that we need a clear and up-to-date picture of the provision as a whole. This study will focus on the neglected supply side of degree programmes taught through a foreign language. What drives such programmes, who are they aimed at, what and where are the labour markets that the students are educated and trained for and what experiences have the programmes yielded? We have sought answers to these questions primarily through a questionnaire to, and interviews with, the heads of Finnish degree programmes taught in a foreign language. The survey has been part-funded by the Ministry of Education. The survey work has been backed up by a steering group with the following members: Ms Ulla Ekberg, Director, Centre for International Mobility CIMO; Chair until December 2008 Ms Hanna Boman, Head of Unit, CIMO; chair since January 2009 Ms Marita Aho, Senior Adviser, Confederation of Finnish Industries EK Ms Elli Heikkilä, Research Director, Institute of Migration Mr Karl Holm, Senior Adviser, Finnish Higher Education Evaluation Council Ms Henna Juusola, International Affairs Secretary, Union of Students in Finnish Universities of Applied Sciences SAMOK Ms Helena Kasurinen, Senior Adviser, Ministry of Employment and the Economy Mr Esko Koponen, International Education Adviser, University of Helsinki Mr Juuso Leivonen, Educational Officer, National Union of University Students in Finland 3

6 Mr Mika Tuuliainen, Liaison Manager, Career Services, University of Helsinki Ms Ulla Weijo, Director of International Affairs, Lahti University of Applied Sciences Ms Birgitta Vuorinen, Senior Adviser, Ministry of Education Many thanks to the steering group for your lively input! A warm thank you also to all those in charge of the degree programmes taught in a foreign language who responded to our questionnaire and/or participated in the interviews. Your active participation is proof of the topical nature of internationalisation in higher education. 4

7 2 Introduction 2.1 Education and training given through a foreign language as part of Finnish higher education policy Education and training conducted through a foreign language are part of the overall internationalisation process of Finnish higher education. Key international influences include European integration, the Bologna process and the support of the European Union member states to educational partnerships, channelled through programmes such as Erasmus. The purpose of the Bologna process the creation of a common European education area by, for example, increasing mobility and by devising transparent and compatible degree structures ties in with the development of education taught in a foreign language. This is all the more obvious in a small language area such as Finland. Education and training given in a foreign language facilitate mobility, while comparable degree structures make it more feasible to create international joint and double degrees. In Finland, this means developing joint and double degrees taught through a foreign language. International joint and double degrees are also encouraged by many funding programmes fostering the internationalisation of higher education. Such projects are prioritised, for example, by the European Erasmus programme (curriculum design), Erasmus Mundus programme and the Nordplus programme of the Nordic countries. Erasmus Mundus also supports student recruitment. Talk of the internationalisation of Finnish higher education started in the late 1980s. The main focus lay initially on student exchanges. The Ministry of Education set quantitative goals to student mobility (Ministry of Education 1989), and Finland s entry in the European Union Erasmus programme in 1991 initiated wide-ranging student exchanges in higher education. To start with, there were many more outgoing than incoming students. This was partly because higher education in Finland was mostly taught through the national languages of Finnish and Swedish. Very soon, however, Finnish higher education institutions created English-taught courses and programmes to meet the needs of student exchange. The Ministry of Education also granted the institutions supplementary funding to do so. In addition, when the Finnish university of applied sciences system was being built in the 1990s, a key objective was the international input of the new programmes (Ministry of Education 1994). This is why so much of the education and training through a foreign language in the 1990s was launched in the universities of applied sciences. 5

8 By the turn of the millennium, the focus had extended to recruiting international degree students. The 2001 strategy for the internationalisation of Finnish higher education outlined targets for the volume of student exchanges and the number of foreign degree students. (Ministry of Education 2001.) The recruitment of degree students also shifted the focus to degree programmes taught in a foreign language (Lahtonen & Pyykkö 2005, 32). The 2004 amendments to the universities law established English-language degree titles and enabled the universities to offer English-taught degrees, which is what they have since done in a range of international Master s programmes. This is where the numbers have grown most vigorously in the past years. Year Total Bachelor Master s Doctoral Table 1: Degree programmes taught through a foreign language in Finnish higher education (Study in Finland database) Today, internationalisation and the development of education through a foreign language as a constituent part features prominently in Finnish higher education policy. International mobility, education and research are among the criteria of performance-related funding granted by the Ministry of Education. They are also keenly monitored in the annual performance negotiations (budget round) between the higher education institutions and the Ministry. Targets have mainly been set on the volume of international student exchanges and the number of foreign degree students, but the negotiations have also addressed the development of education and training given in a foreign language. In future, this will figure more closely in the steering and funding of HEIs. The Programme of the second cabinet of Prime Minister Matti Vanhanen envisages a Finnish higher education system able to respond to global challenges. Related to the provision of education and training given in a foreign language is the government s wish to enhance top international know-how and the mobility of students, researchers and teachers, and pave the way for introducing student fees in individual Master s programmes. The national Development Plan for Education and Research for charts the key areas of the Finnish educational system, singling internationalisation out as a priority (Minis- 6

9 try of Education 2008). That internationalisation is at the centre of Finnish higher education policy is also seen in the Ministry of Education s new national strategy for the internationalisation of higher education (Ministry of Education 2009). Among the international priorities of higher education institutions, the Development Plan specifies student, teacher and researcher mobility; international research and development projects; and, also, the development of joint and double qualifications (Ministry of Education 2008). From the Finnish perspective, joint and double qualifications equal to degree programmes taught in a foreign language. For its part, the new national strategy of internationalisation encourages Finnish higher education to create and develop high-quality international education and training in their core areas of strength. Such education, conducted in a foreign language, is seen as 1) enhancing the recruitment of an international workforce, 2) facilitating reciprocal student exchange and 3) making Finns more international. Education through a foreign language should be genuinely international: higher education institutions need co-operation, an international personnel and a multicultural student community. Degree programmes ought to co-operate more closely and extensively with the world of work, making the career prospects clear and transparent. (Ministry of Education 2009.) And finally, the institutions should ensure that their teaching personnel have adequate language skills, also through staff development training in languages and cultural competencies (Ministry of Education 2008; 2009). According to the national strategy, the share of international undergraduates should rise from 4 per cent to 7 per cent and should increase to 20 per cent from the current 15 per cent in graduate schools. These targets have a direct bearing also on the development of education and training conducted in a foreign language, as the students will in practice study in English-taught programmes. Also, higher education administration and the provision of services and information should be improved to foster the creation of an international community. A major concern is the integration of foreign students and researchers into the Finnish society. The strategy recommends providing immigrant and foreign students with a range of services, including study guidance, training placements and other measures improving their employability; foundation year studies; accreditation of prior learning; and the teaching of Finnish and Swedish. In seeking to increase the appeal and expertise of Finnish higher education, we could also benefit from learning more about marketing. (Ministry of Education 2009; 2008.) 7

10 2.2 What research and evaluations say about education and training given through a foreign language The literature on education and training in a foreign language is grouped here under three headings: the Academic Cooperation Association ACA conducted two broad comparative surveys one in 2002, the other in 2008 on English-taught degree programmes in non-anglophone countries in Europe. In Finland, the state of education through a foreign language has been evaluated twice (1999 and 2005) by the Finnish Higher Education Evaluation Council. And third, several dissertations and surveys have been written on the experiences of international degree students in Finnish higher education. Degree programmes taught in English in Europe English-taught degree programmes in non-anglophone countries were still very much in the pipeline in Most of the programmes had been established within the last four years. In comparison to 2002, however, the number of English-taught degrees had grown and the programmes had become more common. The geographical division runs along the Alps: north of the mountain range, provision is plentiful, while there is less on offer south of the Alps. Against the European average, Finland has a lot to offer by way of English-taught programmes, sharing the top position with the Netherlands in relation to the size of the educational system. (Wächter & Maiworm 2008, 10 12; Maiworm & Wächter 2002, 30.) Big, old and multidisciplinary university-like institutions have the most teaching through a foreign language, but this does not necessarily translate into large numbers of international students. English-taught programmes are not an automatic guarantee of an influx of students from abroad. (Wächter & Maiworm 2008, 11.) This also applies to Finland where education through a foreign language continues to be driven by the need to internationalise home students, too. English-taught degree programmes in Europe have traditionally been most widely available in Business and Technology. By the year 2008, Social Sciences had joined the ranks of top fields (Wächter & Maiworm 2008, 46). Programmes taught through a foreign language had been created to attract international students, to make home students more international and to raise institutional profiles (Wächter & Maiworm 2008, 79; Maiworm & Wächter 2002, 67.) One of the most striking trends between 2002 and 2008 is evident in marketing practice: while under half of the programmes were marketed at home or abroad in 2002, six years later al- 8

11 most all of the programmes were being promoted one way or the other (Wächter & Maiworm 2008, 72; Maiworm & Wächter 2002, 84). The questionnaire respondents also identified major problems with their English-taught programmes, such as finding it hard to attract both home and foreign students, and students turning down offers of a place of study (Wächter & Maiworm 2008, 82). The state of teaching through a foreign language in Finland The Finnish Higher Education Evaluation Council has carried out two evaluations of education and training conducted through a foreign language in Finland. The first, in 1999, encompassed 15 such programmes in the universities and universities of applied sciences, paying particular attention to language issues. This was also made clear in the national action plan recommendations, which included the following (Tella et al. 1999, 65 66): Teaching through a foreign language has an integrity of its own; Finnish-taught programmes should not be translated into English as such Other languages should feature, too; not only English the Ministry of Education should establish guidelines and standards for the teachers language skills Correspondingly, the higher education institutions were instructed as follows (Tella et al., 66 70): Pay attention to the teachers language skills, pedagogical competence and intercultural awareness. Compensate staff for extra work from teaching through a foreign language. Language requirements on students should correspond to their future professional needs. Improve co-operation between the international office and the departments. Make sure that all material and information is also available in a foreign language. Create an application procedure which will demonstrate the applicant s true language proficiency. Recruit enough foreign students to foster an international community in the department. Pay attention to the differing needs of different foreign students (such as graduate students, exchange students etc.). Pay attention to study guidance and advisory services. Six years on, in 2005, many things had changed. More than previously, students were now given instruction through a foreign language as part of their everyday education; language was seen as a tool in content-oriented teaching. This was also evident in the funding base of the 9

12 programmes: they were funded from the same source as the rest of the first degrees. The trend has clearly been away from non-degree programmes to programmes leading to one. (Lahtonen & Pyykkö 2005, 26 and 32.) According to the programme heads, the teaching staff now had better language skills, and the teachers also had opportunities for further education and training in languages. In addition, there were more teaching materials available in the languages of instruction, aided by more extensive virtual teaching environments than previously. The programmes also sought to improve the integration of foreign students through orientation weeks, study guidance, cultural awareness classes, tutoring, foster families and visits to the world of work. Typically, however, such measures would only be available at the immediate outset of the programme. (Lahtonen & Pyykkö 2005, ) Study guidance was seen as adequate on the whole. Guarantees of the quality of teaching through a foreign language were it appeared professional and knowledgeable teachers, a successful student selection, a systematic evaluation of teaching, and student feedback. (Lahtonen & Pyykkö 2005, ) The evaluation also concluded that even if education through a foreign language was seen as an important channel of internationalisation, such education nevertheless remained homeless in the various strategies. While education through a foreign language was related to reinforcing international mobility and exchange, it was also being used to respond to the needs from abroad for an international education and to make the HEIs themselves more appealing. (Lahtonen & Pyykkö 2005, ) International students experiences of studying in Finland Surveys of international degree students experiences are a valuable source of information about education and training through a foreign language, as they provide a much-needed user s view to such education. Foreign students in Finland value a good education and a decent career. They are drawn here by training and education rated highly, the experience of a foreign country, the opportunity to study without fees, and by good career prospects (Niemelä 2008, 31 33; Union of Students in Finnish Universities of Applied Sciences SAMOK 2008, 36; Kinnunen 2003, 33). Those doing their degrees in the university see their HEI as a proper learning environment: the students appreciate the standard of teaching, course contents, study guidance and various support services. They are less happy about the availability of English-taught courses and language courses in Finnish and Swedish. (Niemelä 2008.) 10

13 Foreign students at universities of applied sciences are more critical than university students of the teaching offered in their HEIs. For some, teaching is good and the contents interesting, but others criticise the teachers language skills and superficial contents, and feel that there are not enough courses to choose from. The lack of information in English made international students at the universities of applied sciences feel left out, but they, too, rated study guidance and support services very positively. (Union of Students in Finnish Universities of Applied Sciences SAMOK 2008; Hirvonen 2007.) International students perceived that both higher education sectors lived in a world of their own: the links to the Finnish society and working life were few and far between, leaving very little room for integration into the Finnish way of life. 11

14 3 Aims, objectives and implementation of study 3.1 Aims and objectives This study seeks to survey the provision of degree programmes taught through a foreign language in Finnish higher education institutions. How are the programmes spread by level and field of education and geographically? How do the Finnish programmes compare with those in other European countries? What is the strategic rationale behind these degree programmes? What are the goals and target groups? How do education and training through a foreign language link up with labour market needs and where does the demand for a workforce figure in the development of such programmes? Where are the graduates employed? To what extent do the programmes strive to aid the students integration? How are the teaching, student recruitment and student services organised? What are the quality assurance mechanisms? By answering such questions we seek to produce knowledge and information which will help further to develop the degree programmes aimed at international students and boost the promotion of this education. We also hope that the information will help the recruitment and integration of international degree students to Finland. 3.2 Implementation The survey data comes from many sources. We started off by mapping the strategies of higher education institutions to see how they addressed the development of education and training given through a foreign language. Secondly, various statistics have helped to establish the provision of such education in Finland. These reviews underlie the primary data of a questionnaire to the heads of degree programmes taught through a foreign language and interviews with some of them. 1 Mapping of strategy We examined the higher education institutions strategic perspective to education and training through a foreign language by looking at their overall strategic plans and, if available, at their strategies of internationalisation. Our attention was drawn to the following: 12

15 Do the institutional strategies make the development of education and training through a foreign language explicit and visible? In which contexts is such education and training discussed? What are the goals and policy definitions of this education and training? Read more about the mapping of strategies in chapter 4. 2 Statistical review An overall view of the degree programmes taught through a foreign language can be gleaned from the statistics in the Study in Finland database maintained by the Centre for International Mobility CIMO. This database contains key information about all education and training conducted in a foreign language in Finnish higher education. We examined the statistics of these degree programmes by different variables, looking at the fields, levels and the programmes geographical spread. We also compared the Finnish programmes profile to that elsewhere in Europe. Comparative data was provided by surveys on English-taught degree programmes in non-anglophone European countries (Maiworm & Wächter 2002; Wächter & Maiworm 2008). See chapter 5 for a more detailed statistical review. 3 Questionnaire This study analyses degree programmes taught through a foreign language from the vantage point of an individual programme. The main data was collected in a questionnaire directed at degree programmes taught in a foreign language at Bachelor s or Master s level. These programmes had been launched by the year 2008 at the latest. Responses were requested from persons in charge of the programme s curriculum development in a department or unit. Ours was an online survey. The covering letter, with a link to the questionnaire, was sent by in October 2008 to addresses listed in the Study in Finland database 1. You will find more information about the respondents in chapter 6. 1 The Study in Finland database listed as contact details addresses of both individuals and the admissions office of the HEI. 13

16 The questionnaire addressed the following: Key information about the programme Rationale for creating and developing the programme Support from the HEI to the programme Students and student recruitment Services to international students Teaching and teaching staff Quality assurance Ties with working life Challenges in the organisation of the programme 4 Interviews We fleshed out these themes by selecting 7 programmes to be interviewed. The interviewees were persons in charge of the development of a degree programme taught through a foreign language. The programmes were selected from differing fields of education within the universities and the universities of applied sciences to represent three different profiles: 1) programmes primarily aimed to international students, 2) those directed mainly at Finnish and/ or immigrant students, and 3) programmes aimed both to international and Finnish students. You will find more information about these programmes in chapter 6. Our express aim was to seek special characteristics of the degree programmes taught in a foreign language as compared to programmes taught in Finnish or Swedish. The interview themes included: Criteria for the creation and development of the programme Profile, content and teaching of the programme Status of the programme within the HEI Students and student recruitment Future prospects of the programme 14

17 4 Education and training conducted through a foreign language in higher education institutions strategy According to the 2005 evaluation report of the Finnish Higher Education Evaluation Council on education and training given in a foreign language in Finland, our HEIs lack specific action plans for the creation and development of such education. Nor do the institutions particularly demand such plans, as the development of education and training through a foreign language is often incorporated in other institutional strategies. Although recognised as a major tool of internationalisation, it had nevertheless failed to win a fixed place in the institutional strategies. (Lahtonen & Pyykkö 2005, 24.) In our study, we chose to examine the following issues relating to institutional strategic plans: 1) do the strategies address the development of education and training conducted in a foreign language, 2) in which context is this discussed, and 3) what are the goals and policy definitions for such education and training? The mapping of the institutional strategies opens up prospects to the development of education through a foreign language on the level of the whole institution. The strategies review included the general strategic plans of the HEIs and any possible complementary action plans. We also examined strategies and plans for international operations if these were available. Several HEIs have specific strategies for the development of teaching, pedagogy or administration, which may touch on the development of education and training in a foreign language and international student recruitment, but these documents were excluded from our review. The universities review included a general strategy for each of the 20 universities a complementary action plan for 18 institutions a specific strategy of internationalisation for 7 institutions. The review of the universities of applied sciences included a general strategy for 18 institutions (not all submitted their strategies) a complementary action plan for 6 institutions a specific strategy of internationalisation for 15 institutions. 15

18 Education and training conducted through a foreign language and its development are clearly highlighted in the strategy documents of the HEIs. All universities and nearly all universities of applied sciences address the developing, directing, increasing or marketing of education and training through a foreign language or English. Also, the strategic plans of nearly all HEIs mention the recruitment of international students and researchers, the need to increase the recruitment and/or the demand for developing international student services. This is not sur- Universities of applied sciences Universities Justification for developing education through a foreign language 1. serves international student mobility 2. responds to labour market needs 3. encourages internationalisation at home 4. boosts international competitiveness 5. makes internationalisation a natural part of our work as a whole 6. serves recruitment of international degree students 7. makes education more attractive Justification for developing education through a foreign language 1. serves international student mobility 2. serves recruitment of international degree students 3. encourages internationalisation at home 4. raises institutional profile 5. boosts overall internationalisation 6. encourages educational export 7. responds to customer needs Steering criteria for education through a foreign language 1. create joint and double degrees (or preconditions for them) 2. set quantitative goals (such as number of programmes) 3. set emphases by field of education 4. create Master s level programmes, too 5. develop programmes at both Bachelor s and Master s levels 6. improve virtual education 7. design tailor-made education and training 8. devise English-taught modules as part of other teaching Steering criteria for education through a foreign language 1. create Master s level programmes 2. list individual programmes to be developed 3. create joint and double degrees (or preconditions for them) 4. create programmes at doctoral level 5. set quantitative goals (such as number of programmes) 6. develop smaller, non-degree, programmes, too 7. focus on fields of strength 8. set emphases by field of education 9. set geographical emphases 10. develop specialisation studies in a foreign language 11. improve virtual education Principles guiding the development of education given in a foreign language 1. development in cooperation with international partners 2. investment in language skills and cultural competence of staff and faculty 3. monitoring and assurance of quality of education 4. strengthening marketing and recruitment 5. development in cooperation with other HEIs locally 6. development in cooperation with working life 7. development in cooperation with programmes taught in Finnish/Swedish 8. development in cooperation beyond departmental boundaries Principles guiding the development of education given in a foreign language 1. developing cooperation with leading international universities 2. developing high-quality modules and programmes 3. developing innovative programmes (interdisciplinary, new learning solutions) 4. monitoring and assurance of quality of education 5. investment in cultural competence of staff and faculty 6. incorporating programmes into overall development of teaching and studies 7. improving competitiveness 8. seeking to recruit Finnish students, too 9. trengthening recruitment 10. consideration of resources 11. developing coordination of programmes within HEI 16

19 prising. After all, the development of education through a foreign language and international student recruitment are also emphasised in national strategies and the performance negotiations between the HEIs and the Ministry of Education. The context in which education through a foreign language appears in the strategies also tells us where the institutions feel that these programmes belong. The strategy documents usually place this education in one of the three following contexts: 1) as part of the internationalisation process of the HEI, 2) as part of the overall development of education, or 3) as part of the development of teaching and studies. The strategies of universities of applied sciences also make fairly frequent mention of such education as a regional impact factor or as a separate theme altogether, while university strategies highlight it as part of institutional profiling. The development, goals and policy definitions of education through a foreign language came under four main categories in the strategic plans: 1) general statements about creating, developing, increasing, consolidating or proceeding with education and training in a foreign language, 2) justification for developing such education and training, 3) steering criteria of such education, and 4) general principles guiding the development of education conducted in a foreign language. Below is a subdivision of categories 2 4 in the two sectors strategies in order of stated frequency. Education conducted through a foreign language is most of all developed to serve the needs of international mobility (without making a distinction between student exchanges and the recruitment of international degree students). This applies to both sectors of Finnish higher education. However, university strategies in particular often specify that education in a foreign language makes it possible to recruit international degree students, while HEIs also have several other strategic rationales for developing such education. Other major factors in both sectors include support for internationalisation at home and the need to strengthen international cooperation in general. The universities of applied sciences also appreciate working life demands. It appears that education given through a foreign language is steered toward double and joint degrees in both sectors of Finnish higher education. The universities tend to steer their foreign-language programmes toward the Master s level and to some extent also toward doctoral studies. Slightly surprisingly, perhaps, university of applied sciences strategies talk about creating Master s level programmes, too, taught in a foreign language. 17

20 The primary objective is to develop degree programmes: if the strategic plans list individual programmes or more specific quantitative targets, they will usually apply to whole degrees. Some strategies also mention a readiness to develop smaller, non-degree programmes conducted in a foreign language. Above all, the institutions wish to develop education conducted through a foreign language with international partners. This makes sense considering that they also wish to steer the programmes toward joint or double qualifications. University strategies typically stress the willingness to cooperate with leading institutions in particular. The monitoring and quality assurance of the programmes also stands out, as does attention to the personnel s language skills and international competencies in both higher education sectors. University strategies tend to pay special consideration to the development of high-quality education and innovative, non-traditional programmes making use of interdisciplinary approaches and new learning methods. On balance, the strategic policies of the HEIs correspond to those in the national strategic plans: both seek to create, develop and increase the amount of education taught in a foreign language. This is seen to serve the students international mobility, internationalisation at home and the overall internationalisation process of the higher education institution. The strategic targets stress international cooperation, joint or double qualifications, quality assurance and staff competencies. 18

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