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Higher Education
Journal Prestige (SJR): 1.782
Citation Impact (citeScore): 2
Number of Followers: 198  
  Hybrid Journal Hybrid journal (It can contain Open Access articles)
ISSN (Print) 1573-174X - ISSN (Online) 0018-1560
Published by Springer-Verlag Homepage  [2624 journals]
  • In/visibility on campus' Gender and sexuality diversity in tertiary
    • Abstract: Abstract This paper draws on the largest and most comprehensive Australian research to date that explores the campus climate for sexuality and gender diverse (SGD) people at one university. Using a mixed-method approach that incorporated an online survey open to all students and staff (n = 2395), face-to-face in-depth interviews with key stakeholders (n = 16) and an online document analysis, the study explored participants’ perceptions and attitudes to sexuality and gender diversity on campus, experiences of in/exclusion, (un)safe places, visibility in public online documents, and the campus-based services available to support SGD individuals. The findings point to the ongoing exclusion experienced by SGD people across the university. We show how exclusion serves to silence individuals across multiple levels and how this, in turn, limits the visibility of, and redress for, exclusion, impacting on health and well-being. This tension, we posit, can only be addressed safely and holistically through proactive and strategic endeavours on the part of the institution; without which, exclusion will continue to prevail.
      PubDate: 2020-03-27
  • International mobility and education inequality among Brazilian
           undergraduate students
    • Abstract: Abstract This paper aims to understand the effect of international mobility in higher education on Brazilian education inequality by examining the Science Without Borders programme for undergraduate students. The SWB aimed to award 101,000 scholarships for Brazilian undergraduate students to conduct part of their studies in a foreign university between 2011 and 2015. This paper draws on research on education inequalities and international mobility to investigate the patterns of inequality among undergraduate students participating in the SWB, considering the period of higher education expansion in Brazil. Using the ENEM datasets, inequality of access and inequality within the programme were analysed. The results show that students with parents with higher levels of education and higher income were more likely to participate in the SWB programme. Moreover, students with higher parental education and family income tended to study at a prestigious university during the programme.
      PubDate: 2020-03-26
  • The ‘internationalisation’, or ‘Englishisation’, of higher
           education in East Asia
    • Abstract: Abstract In recent years, one of the most significant trends in higher education in non-anglophone countries has been the growth in English Medium Instruction (EMI). However, provision is rapidly outpacing empirical research. This study examined how macro-level education policy with regard to EMI is both implemented and conceptualised at the institutional and classroom level in Chinese and Japanese universities. Utilising questionnaires with home students (n = 579) and staff (n = 28), interviews with home students (n = 29) and staff (n = 28) and four focus groups with staff and four with home students, in addition to questionnaires (n = 123), interviews (n = 10) and three focus groups with international students, the study provides insights into how EMI policy is operationalised, including types of programmes and language use, and how it is conceptualised by different stakeholders. The results highlight contextual constraints to policy implementation, calling for the need for more research into this growing trend and curriculum evaluation to inform context-sensitive ways to implement EMI policy. It also calls for a critical examination of monolingual EMI policies and academic norms amidst growing multilingualism in the EMI classroom as well as clear goals and objectives due to varying conceptualisations of the purposes of EMI amongst staff and students.
      PubDate: 2020-03-26
  • Correction to: Ratings, rankings, research evaluation: how do schools of
    • Abstract: The article Ratings, rankings, research evaluation: how do Schools of Education behave strategically within stratified UK higher education', written by Marcelo Marques and Justin J. W. Powell, was originally published electronically in SpringerLink on 16 August 2019 without Open Access.
      PubDate: 2020-03-24
  • Predicting key educational outcomes in academic trajectories: a
           machine-learning approach
    • Abstract: Abstract Predicting and understanding different key outcomes in a student’s academic trajectory such as grade point average, academic retention, and degree completion would allow targeted intervention programs in higher education. Most of the predictive models developed for those key outcomes have been based on traditional methodological approaches. However, these models assume linear relationships between variables and do not always yield accurate predictive classifications. On the other hand, the use of machine-learning approaches such as artificial neural networks has been very effective in the classification of various educational outcomes, overcoming the limitations of traditional methodological approaches. In this study, multilayer perceptron artificial neural network models, with a backpropagation algorithm, were developed to classify levels of grade point average, academic retention, and degree completion outcomes in a sample of 655 students from a private university. Findings showed a high level of accuracy for all the classifications. Among the predictors, learning strategies had the greatest contribution for the prediction of grade point average. Coping strategies were the best predictors for degree completion, and background information had the largest predictive weight for the identification of students who will drop out or not from the university programs.
      PubDate: 2020-03-17
  • Rewiring higher education for the Sustainable Development Goals: the case
           of the Intercultural University of Veracruz, Mexico
    • Abstract: Abstract In the framework of the Sustainable Development Goals, higher education has been given a key role in addressing societal challenges, reducing poverty, ensuring sustainable livelihoods and protecting the natural environment. Yet there has been a singular lack of imagination as regards the institutional forms that might help support this vision. This article reports on the findings of an exploratory qualitative case study of the Intercultural University of Veracruz, one of a number of institutions created in Mexico to ensure access for indigenous populations, to promote local development and to provide a space for intercultural dialogue. The findings show a number of ways in which this innovative institution provides opportunities for supporting the SDGs that go beyond conventional universities. The university addresses SDG4 by enabling access for marginalised populations, and through its engaged teaching, research and community engagement also contributes to environmental protection, health, livelihoods, gender equality and a range of other goals. However, it also presents challenges to the global framework, highlighting the lack of attention to culture, language, identity and knowledge traditions, and in critiquing the very basis of its conception of development. Implications are drawn out more broadly for the relationship between higher education and international development in the contemporary era.
      PubDate: 2020-03-14
  • Vectors of knowledge exchange: the value of industry engagement to HASS
    • Abstract: Abstract This article investigates the value of Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences (HASS) candidates’ prior industry networks and experiences as they intersect with doctoral study, as assessed by a group of HASS PhD graduates. While the phenomenon of industry engagement in PhDs across HASS and STEM is widely recognised, the value of these relationships to the PhD experience is less understood. This is particularly the case in HASS PhDs given the opportunities afforded to this predominantly mature-aged cohort of pre-existing professional networks. In our previous work on this topic, we showed that engaging with industry throughout the HASS PhD research lifecycle is widespread, and that networks may have their genesis prior to commencement and persist into careers post-graduation. In this article, we subject these networks to finer-grained analysis. Based on 16 in-depth interviews, we investigate the value HASS PhD graduates ascribe to their industry networks pre-, during and post-graduation. Our analysis suggests industry engagement during the PhD contributes value in two key ways: by facilitating candidate learning, in the form of research design and data collection related activities, and for knowledge exchange. These insights are further enhanced by development of a novel analytical model that measures the extensiveness, or continuity, of industry engagement across the PhD lifecycle. Comparative analysis reveals a correlation between enduring industry engagement and academic careers post-graduation, suggesting additional value in the form of a highly industry integrated HASS academic labour force. Our findings suggest HASS PhDs can function as an important and hitherto under-recognised industry engagement vector, contributing added value to the research process with multiple potential beneficiaries.
      PubDate: 2020-03-14
  • The impact of person-environment fit on grades, perceived gains, and
           satisfaction: an application of Holland’s theory
    • Abstract: Abstract Holland’s theory of vocational choice is a powerful framework for studying academic environments and student development in college. This study tests Holland’s third proposition that students flourish in academic environments (i.e., majors) that are congruent with their personality types. In addition, we examine the extent to which student characteristics influence person-environment fit. Findings indicated that student characteristics and personality type were significantly related to person-environment fit. Moreover, person-environment fit is positively related to self-reported grades. However, person-environment was not significantly related to either perceived learning gains or satisfaction with college.
      PubDate: 2020-03-13
  • Inward international students in China and their contributions to global
           common goods
    • Abstract: Abstract This study identifies the (global) common goods produced and augmented by inward student mobility and its relevance to national policies and strategies in China by interviewing 27 policy-makers, university leaders, and academics, as well as international students. Most importantly, it develops a new framework for interpreting inward student mobility through the lens of (global) common goods, with benefit, influence, and balance as the three key elements. The findings of this study indicate that inward international students contribute to global common goods in the aspects of cultural diversity, global talents, improved policies, and practices, etc. (benefit). Key policies related to inward international students are generally supportive, and meanwhile compatible with these global common goods to a large extent (influence). Though some problems and tensions are observed in this study, constructive solutions have already been proposed by both the Chinese government and HEIs (balance).
      PubDate: 2020-03-11
  • State formation and higher education (HE) policy: an analytical review of
           policy shifts and the internationalization of higher education (IHE) in
           China between 1949 and 2019
    • Abstract: Abstract State policies regarding the internationalization of higher education (IHE) in China have undergone significant shifts between 1949 and 2019. This paper advances the proposition that these shifts in policies pertaining to IHE can be understood as part of a process of ongoing Chinese state formation in relation to national and global developments and does so by examining the history of IHE policy and policy changes between 1949 and 2019 to demonstrate this possibility. We consider three specific periods to make this case, including (1) the period of Marxist-Leninist Socialist nationalism, patriotism and proletarian internationalism and the early engagements of IHE (1949–1976); (2) neoliberal globalization and opening-up: a return to the international stage and further IHE (1977–2002); and finally, (3) state developmentalism and the era of globally engaged higher education (HE) (2003–2019). In conclusion, the current implications of a neoliberal (capitalist) globalization are discussed in terms of real and potential implications for Chinese state formation, Chinese HE and society. The paper aims to investigate the historical underpinnings and formation of international HE in China and contribute to the significant gap in our current literature regarding IHE in China as a socio-historical phenomenon. It not only offers a detailed documentation of how policy on IHE has evolved and shifted in the context of significant changes in political and economic directions in China but also teases out influences of national concerns such as ideological and cultural considerations as well as neoliberal globalization.
      PubDate: 2020-03-02
  • Change and continuity in the academic profession: Finnish universities as
           living labs
    • Abstract: Abstract The academic profession is challenged by the changing environment. Global trends, such as managerialism and new public management, have been influencing all public organizations, including universities. The academic profession is dynamic by its nature; it reflects any changes in its environment. However, the academic profession is also characterized by continuity. In this study, we describe the current changes and continuities of the academic profession in Finland, as perceived by top and middle managers employed in Finnish Universities. We found out that logics and values by organizational professionalism are emphasized; however, occupational professionalism is also deeply rooted in the practices of Finnish universities. Additionally, we found out that changes are often associated with managerial values, such as control and evaluation, and in contrast, the continuities of academic work are commonly related to professorial authority and academic identity. These two aspects of the profession and organization are not opposite, they occur simultaneously; however, there are tensions between them. In this article, we would like to emphasize that change of the academic profession is a hybrid, there exists both, changes and continuities in the logics and values related to the profession and the organization.
      PubDate: 2020-03-01
  • The public good and accepting inbound international students in Japan
    • Abstract: Abstract The purpose of this study is to depict how the public goods of internationalizing higher education in Japan, especially inbound international students, are viewed by various stakeholders based on the main findings from semi-structured interviews. The interviewees include key persons from different levels or fields in Japan: officials from MEXT (the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science, and Technology), national agencies in relation to international students and international cooperation, a national-level professional association of higher education research, both top-level and middle-level leaders of one research-intensive national university, academics from Humanities, Engineering, and Economics, administrators in charge of internationalization of their respective universities, and international students from diverse backgrounds. The study begins with a brief introduction to the research background, before presenting the analysis and main findings from the interviews. It concludes by arguing how the public good and its relationship to the internationalization of Japanese higher education are viewed and interpreted by different stakeholders, and offering brief implications for research and practice.
      PubDate: 2020-03-01
  • Towards an actor-centered typology of internationalization: a study of
           junior international faculty in Japanese universities
    • Abstract: Abstract This paper offers new qualitative insights into ongoing internationalization processes in Japanese higher education. Drawing on ideas from migration studies and informed by analysis of junior international faculty members’ (JIFs) experiences in Japanese universities, we posit a novel, actor-centered typology of internationalization that delineates between integration, assimilation, and marginalization of mobile actors, and considers their implications in practice. Twenty-three interviews were conducted with JIFs from a variety of disciplines and institutions across Japan. Findings indicated a pattern of disillusionment with their role in internationalization, as many perceived themselves to be tokenized symbols of internationalization rather than valued actors within it. Participants identified various barriers which prevented them from participating in the academic “mainstream” and confined them to peripheral roles. We argue that their experiences are indicative of assimilative and marginalizing forms of internationalization, which pose persistent barriers to reform in Japanese universities despite decades of state-sponsored internationalization.
      PubDate: 2020-03-01
  • Reciprocity in international interuniversity global health partnerships
    • Abstract: Abstract Interuniversity global health partnerships are often between parties unequal in organizational capacity and performance using conventional academic output measures. Mutual benefit and reciprocity are called for but literature examining these concepts is limited. The objectives of this study are to analyse how reciprocity is practiced in international interuniversity global health partnerships and to identify relevant structures of reciprocity. Four East African universities and 125 of their international partnerships were included. A total of 192 representatives participated in key informant interviews and focus group discussions. Interviews were transcribed and analysed thematically, drawing on reciprocity theories from international relations and sociology. A range of reciprocal exchanges, including specific, unilateral and diffuse (bilateral and multilateral), were observed. Many partnerships violated the principle of equivalence, as exchanges were often not equal based on tangible benefits realized. Only when intangible benefits, like values, were considered was equivalence realized. This changed the way the principle of contingency—an action done for benefit received—was observed within the partnerships. The values of individuals, the structures of organizations and the guiding principles of the partnerships were observed to guide more than financial gain. Asymmetry of partners, dissimilar perspectives and priorities, and terms of funding all pose challenges to reciprocity. In an era when strengthening institutions is considered crucial to achieving development goals, more rigorous examination and assessment of reciprocity in partnerships is warranted.
      PubDate: 2020-03-01
  • Examining the race for world-class universities in China: a culture script
    • Abstract: Abstract In this article, we examine how the concept of world-class universities has emerged in Chinese higher education at both the sectoral and institutional level. We examine policy decisions related to creating world-class universities on China’s mainland and institutional responses to these policies. We then read these policies through “cultural scripts”—an analytic approach focused on visible and hidden cultural properties (Tan 2012, 2015) that may inform policy direction. First, we examine the intersection of Confucian values and Communist history in China as they relate to higher education. Second, we critically analyze the role of neoliberalism in higher education development worldwide and specifically in China. Third, we investigate utilitarianism as a feature of higher education in China. Finally, we draw critical conclusions about the emergence of world-class universities in China and their overall impact on the higher education sector there.
      PubDate: 2020-03-01
  • Strategies of social (re)production within international higher education:
           the case of Swiss hospitality management schools
    • Abstract: Abstract Globalisation has led to the transformation of the field of higher education, including an increase in international students’ mobility and new offers of internationalised educational curricula “at home”. This evolution provides new opportunities for both intentional and non-intentional strategies of educational internationalisation, which are a potentially important part of the social mobility and reproduction of the middle and upper classes. This article investigates the students of Swiss hospitality management schools (SHMSs)—institutions of higher education that are often privately run and characterised by a high degree of internationalisation. We explore the configurations of these students’ “cosmopolitan capital” (a combination of cultural, linguistic, social, and institutionalised assets acquired through transnational mobility or exposure to an international environment), and we ask how these configurations vary with regards to their social backgrounds, specifically concerning their proximity to the cultural versus the economic pole of the class structure. We carried out a multiple correspondence analysis of three dimensions of cosmopolitan capital of 381 students, used cluster analysis to identify five configurations of cosmopolitanism and then tested for the social characteristics of these students’ parents by using a multinomial regression model. Our results showed various strategies of the accumulation, conversion and legitimation of cosmopolitan capital, and they emphasised the role that this form of capital plays in the mobility and reproduction strategies of these students’ families.
      PubDate: 2020-03-01
  • Institutional perspectives in transition: research groups’ profiles and
           embeddedness in organisational and national context
    • Abstract: Abstract Research into differentiation and profiling of knowledge producing institutions through the lenses of institutional logics and field embeddedness have proliferated in recent years. By discussing this process in the context of research groups, as those basic units in which knowledge production epistemically and practically takes place, this article offers a contribution to the theoretical discussion on organisational differentiation. Based on a small-N comparative case study of research groups operating in different national and organisational contexts on a single, highly competitive and interdisciplinary applied sciences field, nanosciences, the article proposes research group profiles as heuristic devices to explore both the embeddedness and strategic agency of research groups.
      PubDate: 2020-03-01
  • Student-centred digital game–based learning: a conceptual framework and
           survey of the state of the art
    • Abstract: Abstract Student-centred learning forms a major driver behind educational policy and practice in the modern day. With a drive towards embracing the possibilities of technology within the classroom, especially digital video games, it is vital to have an understanding of where such games are delivering and where their potential has yet to be explored. With this in mind, it is important to survey the existing literature to establish the level to which the promise of student-centred learning is being delivered through digital video games. This study presents a conceptual framework based upon a systematic literature review of developments in student-centred digital game–based learning, and seeks to establish the extent to which all tenets of student-centred learning and principles of digital game–based learning are embraced within such applications. A thematic analysis identifies the common themes of game and intervention design while integrating and conceptually linking the key concepts of student-centred learning and digital game–based learning. This leads to the development of a conceptual framework allowing classification of the literature according to common themes. Inclusion criteria include the presence of student-centred learning concepts, with a game-based focus including specifically digital video games. Inclusion was limited to papers published since 2007. The literature analysis identifies a number of themes; these were primarily the types of player engagement: single player, mixed and multiplayer, along with principles of game design and the key tenets of student-centred learning. A preponderance of games and interventions utilising single player experiences and focusing on implementing the active learning tenet of student-centred learning were observed. Areas relating to multiplayer engagements and the social aspects of student-centred learning such as mutual respect receive comparatively less attention in games and research. In order to fully embrace the possibilities offered by student-centred digital game–based learning, it is important not to neglect lessons learned in the development of student-centred learning to its current state. Aspects such as peer-based learning and building relationships between students and teachers have been found important in traditional learning and must be investigated and adapted to new media, including games, as new technologies enter the educational mainstream. Further research into the effects of designing games around these multiplayer aspects, and better defining the role of teachers and educational staff in digital game–based learning, may demonstrate ways to develop and create educational experiences that better engage and prepare students.
      PubDate: 2020-03-01
  • Portuguese university students’ conceptions of assessment: taking
           responsibility for achievement
    • Abstract: Abstract After 20 years of the Bologna Declaration, Portuguese universities claim to be implementing student-centred and involved assessment practices. Student conceptions of assessment matter when innovations and reforms in assessment practices are being implemented. This study is part of a larger research project entitled “Assessment in higher education: the potential of alternative methods” funded by the Portuguese Foundation for Science and Technology (Government Funding Agency) (PTDC/MHCCED/2703/2014). This paper surveys a large sample (N = 5549) of Portuguese students in five public universities with a Portuguese version of the Students Conceptions of Assessment (SCoA-VI) inventory, previously validated in Brazil. Confirmatory factor analysis recovered the eight SCoA factors reported in the Brazilian context. Differences in mean score for the eight factors were trivial for institutional and student factors. Overall, students agreed that assessment for student improvement was not ignored. Scale inter-correlations revealed interesting inverse relations between improvement and irrelevance functions.
      PubDate: 2020-03-01
  • Mapping deaf academic spaces
    • Abstract: Abstract This article focuses on the experience of signing deaf academics working in higher education institutions (HEIs) in the UK. I utilise a research method previously unused in this context, eco-mapping, to explore the ways in which deaf academics see themselves and their involvement in their home HEIs and in the academic field more generally. I review the available literature of deaf academic experience in the UK before using extensive quotes from research interviews to illustrate how the burden of making their own workplaces accessible usually falls on the shoulders of deaf academics. I also show that there is a lack of appreciation of the emotional labour and time demands that such work requires from the academics’ workplaces using a Lefebvrian understanding of time. I end with some reflections on the method used and on the implications of the barriers deaf academics and those from other linguistic minority communities can face in HEIs in the UK.
      PubDate: 2020-02-23
School of Mathematical and Computer Sciences
Heriot-Watt University
Edinburgh, EH14 4AS, UK
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