The pedagogical dimension of internationalisation? – A challenging quality issue in higher education for the 21st century.

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article


What are the pedagogical impacts of internationalisation on the development of higher education in Europe? How can we proceed in this process and take a pedagogical stance on the issue? This theoretical paper is partly based on a series of empirical studies conducted by the author, investigating students’ and teachers’ experiences and understanding of an internationalised educational context in Sweden. Here, some further implications of these studies are examined, and discussed in relation to recent publications and research concerned with internationalisation in higher education in various ways. Underpinned by the findings of earlier studies, this paper argues that even though the internationalisation of higher education has been extensively researched in recent decades, more qualitative studies are needed. In particular, there is a lack of studies from the perspective of teachers and students, concerned with their experience of internationalisation, and with how they interpret various aspects of this process in relation to their respective educational contexts. The empirical results of the series of studies, conducted earlier in this area by the author, showed that teachers’ and students’ experience of internationalised contexts varied, and that they were experienced as ambiguous and difficult to grasp. Both teachers and students experienced such contexts as difficult to evaluate in terms of learning outcomes. This paper argues in favour of a shift in research perspective, from an overall external perspective, to a relational, experienced and context-based perspective, to understand how internationalisation in higher education is developed in practice. Adopting this perspective not only throws light on issues of meaning making in learning and understanding knowledge content, but also raises significant questions of a general order, concerned with the nature of knowledge development in international educational contexts.


Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Educational Sciences


  • developmentSoTL, Higher education, experienced and context-based perspective., internationalisation, relational
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-13
JournalEuropean Educational Research Journal
Issue numberISSN 1474-9041
Publication statusPublished - 2009
Publication categoryResearch

Bibliographic note

Also in collaboration with BTH, Blekinge Institute of Technology This article draws from several empirical studies research conducted by the author. The information about affiliations in this record was updated in December 2015. The record was previously connected to the following departments: Education (012013003), Division of Nursing (Closed 2012) (013065000)