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Friday, June 19 • 9:30am - 10:15am
CON11.13 - Engaging international students in a technology-enabled, collaborative classroom: Shifting the dialogue from rhetoric to reality

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Interest in international students has produced an ambitious research agenda in Canada, where it is estimated that they comprise ten percent of the country’s postsecondary population (Canadian Bureau for International Education, 2015). Although numerous queries contribute to this growing body of scholarship, few address the potential for classroom technology to transform the academic experience of international learners. To remedy this gap, Humber College has undertaken an initiative to measure the impact of a technology-enhanced, collaborative classroom on student engagement with a particular interest in levels of engagement among international learners. Student engagement as a locus of inquiry is derived from interdisciplinary scholarship that posits that the consistent demonstration of engagement-related behaviours is one of the greatest predictors of scholastic achievement (Kahu, 2013). It is broadly defined in our study as “the time and physical energy that students spend on activities in their academic experience” (Robinson & Hullinger 2008, p. 101). Although our study will measure levels of engagement among all students, our ultimate interest in international learners recognizes that this particular demographic continues to experience unique scholastic barriers in spite of institutional efforts to mitigate these challenges (Bartram, 2008). Consequently, this session will illuminate how Humber’s technology-enabled collaborative learning environments influence basic engagement-related behaviors among all Humber students, including our international student population. By the end of this interactive session participants will: (1) understand how the purposeful use of various classroom technologies, such as those used in our project, can contribute to student engagement among diverse groups of learners and (2) apply selected strategies to practice to shift the dialogue from rhetoric to reality. 

Bartram, B. (2008). Supporting international students in higher education: constructions, cultures and clashes. Teaching in Higher Education, 13(6), 657 – 668

Canadian Bureau for International Education (2015). Facts and figures: Canada’s performance in international education, 2014. Retrieved from http://www.cbie.ca/about-ie/facts-and-figures/

Kahu, E.R. (2013). Framing student engagement in higher education. Studies in Higher Education, 38(5), 758 – 773

Robinson, C. & Hullinger, H. (2008, November/December). New benchmarks in higher education: student engagement in online learning. Journal of Education for Business, 101 – 108

Friday June 19, 2015 9:30am - 10:15am PDT
Cypress 2 Room

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