Exploring Intercultural Awareness: International Student Mobility in China and the UK through a Non-Essentialist Lens
Foster, M. (2016) Exploring Intercultural Awareness: International Student Mobility in China and the UK through a Non-Essentialist Lens, , , no. 20, pp. 349-369,
In the research literature regarding international students' learning experiences, a frequently studied theme is the 'Chinese culture of learning' as contrasted by the 'Western/United Kingdom (UK) culture of learning'. This essentialist approach tends to reduce culture of learning to a static, nationally-bound object that exists a priori. A cross-faculty study examined the complexities underpinning culture of learning in the context of student mobility, using a non-essentialist lens. Using individual experiences, unique perspectives on own and host cultures of learning by students from China studying 'business' in the UK and students from the UK studying 'design' in China are captured in seven distinct themes, including good teaching, good learning, peers and assessment. The results inform the design of student mobility programs with aspects of intercultural empathy, as well as preparation for and benefits from study abroad as a feature of the internationalised of Higher Education (HE).