This activity is a case discussion and is offered as a further resource linked to the module Introduction to the International Classroom, following up on the discussions about the Good Practice Principles in activity 7. The activity presents situations in which the lecturer is faced with some tensions that seem to be rooted in the diversity of the student cohort. The cases are meant as conversation starters among EDs about what they may advise the lecturer to do.
The other modules in the full EQUiiP programme will address issues similar to those described in the cases, but this activity may be considered a short introduction to those issues for participants not immediately moving on to the next modules of the full programme.
There are six slightly different cases situated in different countries and local contexts.
The activity has two main purposes: (i) to bring together different potential issues in the international classroom and invite participants to reflect on and discuss viable solutions to the problems that the lecturer faces; (ii) to make participants aware of the issues that may arise if or when lecturers are not properly prepared for teaching diverse student cohorts.
In such situations, a lecturer may take a ‘blame the students’ stance rather than seeing the opportunities for learning in the international classroom and seeking appropriate solutions.
The cases have been developed for discussion at a late stage in this workshop, pointing towards some of the key content to be discussed in the following modules of the full EQUiiP programme. They may, however, also be used to connect the content of this module to the participants’ specific local context(s) by discussing a scenario that could play out in their own higher education institutions.
- Participants have been asked to read the case chosen before the beginning of the workshop and (i) to identify the issues that the lecturer is confronted with as well as (ii) to consider what advice they would offer to a lecturer in this situation.
- Participants are placed in their small groups.
- They are then given the following instructions:
- Appoint a group member to take notes and present your suggestions to the large group.
- Identify the issues that Lecturer X is faced with. You may use the Good Practice Principles as a framework for explaining these issues.
- If Lecturer X came to you for advice, what would you suggest that s/he does
- Before the beginning of next term (semester)?
- During the term (semester; while teaching the course)?
- At or after the end of the term (semester)?
- The facilitator asks one group to present the result of their discussions and takes further comments or questions from the other groups. Wraps up the discussion.
Worksheet with the case – use one of the following:
- Further Resources I worksheet Germany
- Further resources I worksheet Denmark
- Further resources I worksheet Spain
- Further resources I worksheet France
- Further resources I worksheet Netherlands
- Further resources I worksheet United Kingdom
15-20 minutes for the discussions in the groups, and 20-25 minutes for the reporting and discussion. Altogether a 45-minute session.
There are a number of ways that the facilitator can take suggestions (responses) from the groups and facilitate classroom discussions on this issue.
Instead of oral reporting from the groups, the facilitator may choose to have all groups write their suggestions in a digital tool such as Padlet (Padlet.com) and then wrap up based on the written contributions that all participants can see on the screen.
Participants may also be asked to write their solutions on the Padlet wall as part of their preparations before the workshop. The groups then discuss and prioritise possible solutions in their discussions.
If there are participants with no prior knowledge and experience, they should be paired (or grouped) with more experienced colleagues if/when possible.