UK Strategy for Outward Student Mobility Callista Thillou Assistant Director UK HE International Unit
Session outline • The UK Higher Education International Unit • UK outward student mobility • Background • The consultation • The proposal – Outward Student Mobility Unit • Questions / Feedback
UK Higher Education International Unit • Mission: To represent the UK higher education sector internationally and to empower, with skills and knowledge, the sector to secure maximum value from international opportunities.
Shape international and European policy • Supporting and influencing UK Government system to system approach • Representing the sector on delegations • Influence European Union decision-makers: • Bologna Process, Horizon 2020, Yes Europe (Erasmus for All)
Science without Borders UK • Up to 10,000 Brazilian students will study in the UK over four years: • Strong business and industry support • Applications received from over 70 Brazilian universities and placed at 71 UK universities • Over 500 students placed in first cohort and offered over 600 places for January 2013 • Engineering (42%) most popular followed by biology, biomedical and health sciences (23%)
Outward student mobility Background • Sector concern on Erasmus Fee Waiver in 2011 • Established joint BIS and Universities UK/International Unit National Steering Committee and Expert Working Groups • Review of current UK outward student mobility • Recommendations to Minister for Universities and Science in March 2013 • Sector consultation on outward student mobility July to August 2012 • Proposal for a UK strategy for outward student mobility overseen by an independent sector-led coordinating body
Sector Consultation • 88responses in total • majority of respondents UK HEIs(69); but also sector organisations (including BUTEX), individuals, academic associations, student associations, a mission group, private companies, government department, non-departmental public body and officers of a funding council
Sector Consultation Respondents Break-down by Mission Group, where applicable Break-down of respondents by country
Q 1: What are the benefits of the UK developing a sector-led national strategy for outward mobility? • raising awareness of student mobility and its benefits • providing the UK HE sector with a coherent and coordinated approach • Improving the UK’s image internationally
Q 1: What are of the challenges of the UK developing a sector-led national strategy for outward mobility? • Successful implementation of a national strategy or obstacles to increasing mobility more generally • diversity of the UK HE sector • UK’s language provision deficit • issue of funding
Q 2: What are the necessary featuresof any national strategy in your opinion? • advice and guidance for HEIs • stakeholder involvement • the sharing of best practice • promotional activities • data collection • financial resources for students and institutions
Q 3: How would you define a period of mobility? • flexible definition that includes shorter and non-credit bearing stays abroad WP agenda • Quality more important than quantity NB. Bologna Process Definition = 3 months
Q 3: What would be a credible minimum length for a mobility period? • preference for flexibility and quality re-emphasised • two to four weeks as a credible minimum length • ‘Other’: credibility of a mobility period depending on outcomes rather than length
Q 3: Do you envisage this definition including volunteering, as well as work and study? • 89% of respondents saw volunteering included • Again emphasis on quality: volunteering should be quality assured by the home university
Q 4: Which existing initiatives would you like to see feed in to work on a national strategy? • International: • 67% of respondents mentioned the European Union mobility agenda • 52% mentioned the Lifelong Learning Programme or its successor, Erasmus for All • International mobility organisations, such as the European Association for International Education (EAIE) (9%), NAFSA: Association of International Educators (6%) and the Forum of International Education (2%), European University Association (EUA) and the Association for Sandwich Education and Training (ASET) • international best practice countries: Australia, Germany and the United States
Q 4: Which existing initiatives would you like to see feed in to work on a national strategy? • National: • Prime Minister’s Initiatives for International Education • devolved administration strategies: Scottish Government and NUS Scotland - Scottish Year of Study Abroad and the Saltire Scholarships for Outward Mobility • British Council programmes: Connecting Classrooms, Language Assistantship Scheme, the International Association for the Exchange of Students for Technical Experience (IAESTE) programmes and Scholarships for Excellence, Hong Kong scheme • Institutional: • examples of best practice from own institutions
Q 5: How do you envisage a national strategy intersecting with the employability agenda?
UK Outward Student Mobility Unit Develop and coordinate a UK strategy to include activities such as: • Promoting mobility, including the social mobility and widening participation agenda in this • Sourcing business and industry sponsorship and philanthropic support • Providing scholarships • Conducting research • Coordinating stakeholder engagement and dissemination of best practice • Website Portal (cooperation with British Council) The Unit will be based in the International Unit and work closely with sector agencies.
Next Steps • Government support: financial and in-principle • Mobility Unit to have 2-3 staff • Operational by May/June 2013 • Institutions invited to discuss their engagement and support of the Unit and its aims over coming months
Now to the important part... Questions and feedback • what would you like to see the Outward Student Mobility Unit doing? • What activities would add benefit to the work of your institution? • Potential research projects? • Guidance - generic institutional guidance – HR, safety, security?
Register your interest in keeping informed: contact firstname.lastname@example.org www.international.ac.uk