IIE Network - Spring 2012 - (Page 28)

FACULTY ENGAGEMENT IN INTERNATIONALIZATION Engaging Science Faculty in Internationalization: Teaching Innovations at UW-Madison By Masarah Van Eyck, Laura Van Toll, Michel Wattiaux, and John Ferrick1 IN NOVEMBER 2009, the College of Agricultural and Life Sciences at the University of Wisconsin-Madison received support to establish a small office devoted to “globalizing the undergraduate experience in the sciences.” With backing from both central administration and the undergraduate student population, our office was charged with finding ways to enrich international education in the sciences and to support science faculty who wish to introduce their undergraduates to the international aspects of their field. Thus far, we have identified three “core challenges” that faculty encounter when internationalizing science curriculum: 1) the rigid curricular structure of science education; 2) the conviction that science and, by extension, a science education exist outside of cultural influence; and 3) a general lack of incentive for faculty to engage in international education. Ways we have found to accommodate these challenges include: 1) advancing the partnerships that science faculty already enjoy with their colleagues in other countries; 2) tailoring study-abroad programs to the unique needs of science students; 3) focusing internationalization efforts on the applied (as opposed to basic) sciences; and 4) supporting, rewarding, and recognizing instructors who engage in curriculum internationalization. Challenge One: Rigid Curriculum Science education entails imparting a core set of disciplinary knowledge and applied skills in a particular sequence over the course of an undergraduate curriculum. Employers and graduate or professional schools expect applicants to arrive with this set of competencies. Curriculum committees and individual instructors recognize this pressure and prepare their undergraduates accordingly. One consequence of this rigor may be a hesitancy to take risks in curricular innovation. Semester and yearlong study abroad programs prove particularly hard to fit into structured sequences, partly because students are unlikely to earn equivalency credits from outside institutions. Moreover, because many science students regard their undergraduate career as preparation for graduate or professional school, they can be loath to enroll in a foreign learning environment where they might be graded differently or not perform at their academic best. Solution: International Partnerships, In-Class Internationalization, and ShortTerm Study Abroad Our faculty’s longstanding international research partnerships offer a natural route to internationalizing their teaching. Through a small grants program, we have helped faculty develop, for example, gaming simulations for students that compare conservation efforts of wolf populations in Sweden and Wisconsin, case studies on dairy and beef cattle in Mexico, and new courses on the international aspects of food science and the global food supply. By asking award applicants to articulate the “global learning outcomes” their students will gain from these projects, we demonstrate the ways that international content can complement the assessment and learning strategies they have already set for themselves.2 Integrating global learning outcomes into already-established diversity requirements helps incorporate—not add on—international content. We are also working with communications technology units on our campus to help faculty coteach courses with their colleagues around the world. Our faculty’s strong partnerships with colleagues overseas also encourage students to study abroad. By connecting with institutions that our faculty know well, we can sometimes secure course equivalencies prior to a student going abroad. A more targeted and methodical approach to these partnerships could help us identify majorspecific equivalencies, while stopping short of having to establish a formal dual or joint degree program. Students in associate professor Michel Wattiaux’s Dairy Agrosystem class sit in on a bilingual video conference with college students in Mexico (Credit: Bryce Richter/ UW-Madison). 28 http://www.naylornetwork.com/iie-nxt/

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of IIE Network - Spring 2012

A Message from Allan E. Goodman
News
2012 IIE Andrew Heiskell Awards for Innovation in International Education
IIENetworker University Presidents Interview Series: Renu Khator, University of Houston
Overcoming “Publish or Perish”: Fostering Faculty Engagement in Internationalization through Tenure Codes and Other Employment Policies
Engaging Science Faculty in Internationalization: Teaching Innovations at UW-Madison
Early-College Study Abroad: A Gateway for Faculty Engagement in Internationalization
Promoting Engagement in Curriculum Internationalization
The International Network of Universities (INU): The Consortium for Global Citizenship
Ten Elements of Faculty Involvement in Global Engagement
Building an Interculturally Competent Faculty
A Shrinking World with Expanding Visions: Faculty as Key Players in Internationalization
China’s Policies on Overseas Faculty Recruitment
Overcoming the “American Bubble”: The Norwegian Partnership Programme (PPNA) for Collaboration in Higher Education with North America
Advertisers Index
IIE Program Profi le: Fulbright Visiting Scholar Occasional Lecturer Fund

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