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Blind spots of internationalization

Publikation: Bog/antologi/afhandling/rapportPh.d.-afhandlingForskning

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In recent decades, there has been a noticeable trend at traditionally non-English speaking universities towards English Medium Instruction (EMI) in order to attract more international students. As a consequence, the student population is more heterogonous than ever before. This increased diversity of the classroom in regards to linguistic and cultural repertoires (including educational background) means that the setting for content learning has changed. This thesis contributes to an understanding of “the international classroom” as seen from the perspective of students. I have explored the lived experiences of students in the international classroom through linguistic ethnography in three different courses. All three courses were taught in English but offered three different versions of the international classroom. The courses were taught at three different facultiesat the University of Copenhagen as a part of international master’s level programs. The students in these three courses were followed from course start through to the exam in different forms of coursework, e.g., group work, lectures, during coffee breaks, supervision and ultimately at the oral examination in two of the courses. All students completed a questionnaire and a number of students were interviewed. The study thus rests upon a great amount and variety of data, including video and audio recordings of students in different situations and in three different disciplinary settings. Through analyses of oral exam interaction and classroom interaction with a specific focus on active participation, especially group work, I reflect with the students on their experiences, and I demonstrate international (and local) students’ encounters with multifaceted expectations of what constitutes learning. These analyses uncover a number of “blind spots” of university internationalization, including the challenges involved – for students as well as examiners – in running oral exams when students have limited experience with this exam form. This in turn sheds light on assumptions taken for granted by both teachers and local students regarding what constitutesa “decent oral exam”. Furthermore, the study shows how students navigate in the setting of an international classroom, how they use Facebook for obtaining information and how they assign each other different roles in a more or less successful way. Lastly, by looking at three different disciplines,this thesis sheds light on how internationalization means something different in different contexts and what challenges are exclusive for the international classroom.
OriginalsprogEngelsk
ForlagDet Humanistiske Fakultet, Københavns Universitet
Antal sider281
StatusUdgivet - jun. 2019

Note vedr. afhandling

Ph.d. afhandling forsvaret 18. juni 2019

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