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BEST PRACTICE WHEN LECTURING TO INTERNATIONAL STUDENTS MARIE AINSLIE, LESLEY EDMONDSON & LORRAINE PICKETT-ROSE University of Portsmouth.

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Presentation on theme: "BEST PRACTICE WHEN LECTURING TO INTERNATIONAL STUDENTS MARIE AINSLIE, LESLEY EDMONDSON & LORRAINE PICKETT-ROSE University of Portsmouth."— Presentation transcript:

1 BEST PRACTICE WHEN LECTURING TO INTERNATIONAL STUDENTS MARIE AINSLIE, LESLEY EDMONDSON & LORRAINE PICKETT-ROSE University of Portsmouth

2 HYPOTHESIS Lecturers across the University feel 'unprepared' when lecturing to large cohorts of international students. This is a result of the cultural gap that exists.

3 AIMS To identify the difficulties faced by staff when lecturing to large groups of international students To identify difficulties encountered by international students when attending lectures To identify areas of 'good practice' within the university when lecturing to international students To gather all the responses and attempt to disseminate ideas (across the university) for 'best practice' when delivering lectures to international students

4 METHODOLOGY We invited (via ) a random selection of staff to take part in the study Observations of lectures took place in weeks 3-5 of Semester /06 in the Business School. We recorded lectures and interviewed lecturers and international students directly afterwards We considered all responses and sent immediate feedback to all lecturers observed if requested. In Semester /06 we set up focus groups to encourage students to discuss their experiences of lecturers.

5 MAIN FINDINGS OF STUDY TO DATE– student comments In some cases, understanding of the observed lectures was BELOW 50%. Speed of delivery proved problematic for most students interviewed. Students often claimed that examples used in lectures were 'alien' to them e.g. Viagra. (Contd … )

6 Students indicated it would be useful to have all the handouts week(s) before the lecture. Vocabulary lists of specialised terms requested in preparation for the lecture. Many requested more detail on slides/OHTs. They claim their reading skills are better than listening comprehension skills. Major difficulty for students is when lecturers refer back to content of a lecture in Week 2 or 3. They claim their level of understanding was 'weaker' in the early stages of Semester 1. Positive comments were made regarding the negotiation between lecturer and students re. The approach to the lecture.

7 CONCERNS OF LECTURERS (in response to feedback given) In Semester 1, 50% (or more) of what has been taught in lectures has NOT been understood. To what extent should lectures 'slow down'? Many claimed they had already! 'Alien' examples are also problematic for home students e.g. Bhopal. Lecturers do not feel 'equipped' with knowledge of the cultural background of all their international students (Contd … )

8 Should 'lists' be given at post graduate level on topics studied at under graduate level = 'dumbing down'? If students hadn't understood much during first 3 weeks, then this surely means that ONE THIRD of Semester 1 has been wasted. Concerns about lecturing to mixed groups of home and international students.

9 FOOD FOR THOUGHT Should we, as lecturers, reconsider how much content we include in lectures in the first few weeks? How and when are we assessing? Should international students be taught separately? Ghettoisation? Should we use more visual or more verbose slides/OHTs? When should we give handouts? Do students really do preliminary reading? (Contd … )

10 To what extent is it a lecturer's duty to research the background of each group of international students? (educational and cultural experience) To what extent should lecturers adjust their vocabulary? How can we 'slow down' further and still speak 'naturally?' Should lecturers place more emphasis on teaching the 'critical skills' necessary for studying at a UK University? (If students claim reading is better - let them do the reading & we teach the skills!)

11 Should some information be given to students in their first language? E.g subtitles, key technical vocab etc? This suggestion has been made by some of the lecturers we have had discussions with. How far can we adapt our lecturing styles to accommodate international students and still maintain the interest of home students? With the growing internationalisation of universities, is the traditional lecture still the best medium for transmitting knowledge at university level?


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