AIEA Research Agendas For The Internationalization of Higher Education
In 1996, AIEA published a Research Agenda for the Internationalization of Higher Education in the United States in response to post-cold war concerns about the future of internationalization. Continuation of federal supports for internationalization was uncertain, and leaders in internationalization were justly concerned that the outcomes of internationalization were neither clear nor well-documented. Despite changes in funding, the internationalization of higher education has taken on even greater prominence in the U.S. and elsewhere since the report’s publication, and research on internationalization has burgeoned.
The aim of AIEA’s new series is to reflect on existing research, identify gaps, and encourage new research to address the gaps. Further, while the series begins with two papers focused on questions pertaining primarily to the U.S. context, perspectives from outside the U.S. are very much needed and welcomed.
This paper provides SIOs with a number of research questions to consider related to students coming to the U.S. to enroll in institutions of higher education. The intention is to give SIOs a broad understanding of questions pertaining to this important aspect of the internationalization higher education, and to help them become effective stewards of inbound mobility at their institutions. The paper begins by setting the context for a discussion on inbound mobility during the decade since the 1996 AIEA publication, A Research Agenda for the Internationalization of Higher Education in the United States.
It then examines seven topics identified in the research and by participants in a 2013 AIEA Roundtable discussion as the most pertinent for a U.S.-focused research agenda on inbound mobility:
Recruitment strategies and international student decision-making
This paper builds on the 1996 AIEA publication, A Research Agenda for the Internationalization of Higher Education in the United States, and provides SIOs with a concise overview of research in the area of U.S. education abroad. Beginning with a brief discussion of the changing role of U.S. higher education and the ever-increasing momentum toward assessing and documenting outcomes, it then looks at the major trends in contemporary education abroad research and provides an overview of the major methodological and design challenges. Brief attention is given to the major theoretical models that have traditionally informed education abroad research and conceptual frameworks from related disciplines that may further extend education abroad research. Commonly used instruments are discussed in context of measuring outcomes. Some notable gaps in the existing research and needed directions are also discussed and a preliminary research agenda is proposed. The document concludes with a brief discussion of the major publication venues for research on education abroad. Appended to the paper is a list of key terminology and related definitions.
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