Canadian university internationalization: selective perceptions of five faculty members

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Friesen, Rhonda J.
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Internationalization of post secondary institutions has been suggested as one of the most critical undertakings of higher education today. Despite growing interest in this phenomenon as an institutional initiative, relatively few studies consider internationalization from the perspective of faculty members whom some have identified as key catalysts of the internationalization process. Using a phenomenological research approach to examine the experience of five faculty members actively engaged in the internationalization process of their Canadian university I seek to understand how participants define internationalization, what motivates them to engage in this process and how the institutional and individual efforts to internationalize influence each other. I compare faculty motivations with institutional positions through an analysis of strategic institutional documents using de Wit’s (2002) internationalization rationale categories. Results suggest that institutional internationalization might be more effective in engaging faculty members when faculty perspectives and priorities are considered in the development of institutional strategies.
internationalization, faculty member, higher education, Canada, university, phenomenology, document analysis, globalization, strategic document, intercultural