INTRODUCTORY COURSE TO BUILDING INTERNATIONALISATION IN UNIVERSITIES IN PAKISTAN
In the context of the Erasmus+ B-International Project, led by Cardiff Metropolitan University, in the UK, this course, coordinated by the University of Salamanca, in Spain, is the result of collaborative work by all partners in the consortium, in Pakistan (National University of Science and Technology, COMSATS University Islamabad, Pakistan Institute of Fashion and Design and Lahore University of Management Science) and in Europe (Cardiff Metropolitan University, University of Salamanca, Ecole Central de Nantes and University of Bologna).
The course introduces the target audience to several important concepts of internationalisation, dealing, more specifically, with the reasons that justify the efforts to internationalise higher education institutions and the methods to achieve this challenge in an efficient way. The course covers different angles, from an overview of how the challenge is faced in universities in other countries to an introduction of how to implement and organise day-to-day activities related in different ways to internationalisation: mobilities, recognition and credit transfer, quality assurance, finding partners or managing partnerships, or the so-called ‘internationalisation at home’.
The main goal of this course is to familiarise staff members in Pakistani universities with different degrees of experience with internationalisation implementation methods, something that could end up being significantly beneficial for their institutions. In connection with other activities planned and implemented as part of the B-International project, staff with specific responsibilities for internationalisation at the Pakistani Higher Education Institutions will build on the training and strategy development that they completed previously in this project to develop a programme (in collaboration with the European partners) designed to bring the concept of internationalisation to all staff members in their institutions. This course is the result of this work.
Staff members of all the participating institutions have cooperated to develop this course, focused on concepts such as internationalisation of the institution, mobility, recognition, quality assurance, international partnerships and supporting international students. This approach will support the practical implementation of internationalisation and provide all staff with the knowledge to support and encourage their own internationalisation. The programme and materials have been developed once the internationalisation strategies at each university have been drafted (they are currently being ratified).
Building Internationalisation in Pakistan (B-International) is a project co-funded by the European Union under the Erasmus+ Programme, Key Action 2 Capacity Building in Higher Education.
It aims to provide staff at universities in Pakistan with a framework by which to implement international strategies that support the wider aims of the universities and to provide staff with knowledge and practical tools to implement international activities that support the strategic aim of both the university and the wider Higher Education sector.
The project will therefore examine traditional components of internationalisation such as mobility, TNE and international research, but will also include more contemporary concepts such as developing international campuses that explore the wide tapestry of international cultures.
More specifically, B-International aims at:
- Providing a foundation of knowledge to staff with responsibility for Internationalisation that will enable them to develop a strategy and policies to support staff in the wider implementation of Internationalisation and achievements of the HEIs’ measures of success.
- Inducting staff to consider an international element to their work, enhancing the quality of international engagement and preparing staff to participate effectively in international collaboration. It will also consolidate the understanding of staff with international responsibilities and build capacity in the management of Int within the PC HEIs.
- Providing a comprehensive online learning programme to support understanding of key concepts, such as Bologna processes, mobility, international research and partnership management, and Transnational Education.
- Fostering an international campus that will introduce staff and students to global perspectives. This will directly enhance the experience of staff and students, supporting their global skills development and set a culture within the university to encourage more and varied participation in international activities.
- Supporting Internationalisation through a dedicated centre that will become a hub for activities and that will host the training activities. The centres will be equipped with technology that will enable them to become virtual learning hubs and global classrooms, allowing for collaborative learning and networking.
- Developing a toolkit on strategies and initiatives for Internationalisation will provide universities from across Pakistan with practical examples and ideas to implement some or all the initiatives of the project.