While most Australians are culturally competent various domestic students have a parochial and ethnocentric scope of society. Internationalizing education has furthermore allowed an expansion of cultural competence and a breakdown of communication through the building of relationships and an understanding of ones identity. Marginson (2012) conveys the idea that our identity is never fixed. It is what a person understands themselves or others to be. It is like an item of personal clothing that we choose to wear, a badge or brand. Though this part of us does not define who we are as a person. The experience of interaction by an international student or domestic student may find himself or herself as a different person, for example; feeling more culturally acceptable.
However internationalizing education not only allows us to experience and immerse ourselves amongst the cultures but also allows individuals to be a cosmopolitan person, allowing us to accept diversity and be open to change. Having the ability to define ourselves as being a truly global citizen and not just learning about what it means to be a global citizen.
Australia is heavily influenced by globalisation and now the world we live in now participates in international workforces , globalizing industries and it is currently important to understand global issues from multi facets and not just know about them. The international ties we have with other countries is imperative in order for Australia to continuously succeed in international education. Marginson (2012) States that ‘ If international education is to continue to succeed as a business in this country, the student experience must keep improving. As for international students Novera (2004:475) states that ‘While academic success may heighten a student’s confidence, social and cultural adjustment can be important factors that lead to this academic success’.
Many facts of adjustments include:
-Problems dealing with university staff and other authorities
-Isolation from other classmates and anxiousness about speaking in the classroom in front of other classmates and lectures.(Leader & Forgaz, 2004:1995; Novera, 2004:476; Robertson et al., 200:94; Scheyvens et al., 2003)
Kell & Vogl (2007) under went research and found that some international students believed that it was not the local students were unfriendly but rather that they also did not know how to initiate conversations with international students. Though once the ‘ice was broken’ a relationship developed.
The relationships we build now, may play a role in our future. It is therefore important to take the opportunity to make connections with everyone around you as the future is headed in the direction of constant interaction with individuals from other countries.