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On Campus: A celebration of learning

I have to admit that in retrospect, and irrespective of any assignment or given job title, it seems that I’ve spent my entire career in international education as I learned early on that what is commonly called comprehensive internationalism in academe is really an integral component of any dynamic and proactive educational environment.

Education
By The Phuket News

Saturday 24 December 2022, 11:00AM


Photo: Pexels

Photo: Pexels

Integrating a global perspective into the teaching, research and service missions of higher education is critical to the viability of the institution and to the core learning it provides its students. It goes without saying that the presence of international students on campus facilitates the exchange of people and ideas while serving to enrich the overall learning environment in which we all participate.

Choice of College or University

Factors that typically influence a student’s choice of a college or university include, but are not limited to, the perceived reputation/academic quality of the institution, the international dynamic of the institution, the availability of the desired programme of study, the individual student’s potential for success and job placement, the availability of extracurricular and recreational opportunities (including sports, leisure and athletic facilities, student clubs, etc), and the overall affordability of the institution.

There are also a variety of outside influences which to a greater or lesser degree affect a student’s choice and these include the perspective of parents, the advice of close friends and peer influence, school location and the perceived quality of teaching.

The factors influencing a student’s choice are remarkably similar for international students, and with the addition of distance from the student’s home country and the perceived safety of the institution, differ only in priority of importance. For international students, the recommendation of close friends, overall cost and transportation expenses, the availability of recreational/leisure activities either on campus or in the immediate proximity, and institutional reputation typically impact an international student’s choice of a college or university.

Student Satisfaction

The factors influencing student satisfaction are many and diverse, including campus climate/campus life, the availability/accessibility of co-curricular leisure activities, support services available on campus, the quality of academic advising, the approachability of faculty members, the perceived quality of instruction, and campus security and safety. 

Often overlooked in the many empirical studies of university student satisfaction is the importance of the environment in which the institution is located. The rigours, demands, and stress inherent in university study bespeak a complementary and supportive environment that is designed to provide opportunities for students to relax, engage in recreational activities and find enjoyment outside of the classroom. The research in this area is overwhelmingly conclusive – an environment that includes these components positively correlated with student satisfaction, student persistence, academic completion and overall student success.

C and C Marine

A Celebration of Learning

A lot of the accepted research on student satisfaction, student recruitment, student retention (and yes, student attrition) was based on the late Dr Ernest Boyer’s book ‘College: The Undergraduate Experience in America’. He often said that our colleges and universities should emulate what he called a celebratory environment… which he concluded would do much to positively impact both college satisfaction and student success.

In this context, I often wondered where it is written that university studies (and student learning) should be onerous, difficult and even at times painful? Perhaps a good litmus test of how well we are doing – in student recruitment, in enhancing student satisfaction, in student retention and in the internationalisation of our campus – is directly related to whether students are benefitting, and yes, enjoying, our efforts on their behalf both in the classroom and in the extra-curricular recreational opportunities we provide for them.

And I can’t help but wonder: Have our students learned to celebrate learning? And equally important, are they having fun?

By Dr Richard L. Carhart


NOTE: The opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of PSU Phuket and its employees or official policies.

This article was featured in ’The Phuket Collegiate Magazine’, the university magazine published by Milla Budiarto at PSU Phuket. For more information, visit https://www.phuket.psu.ac.th/en/magazine or email milla.budiarto@gmail.com.

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Pooliekev | 25 December 2022 - 14:12:41

Well, @Oldguy, they tend not to put such complex words in early years readers, so you shouldn't be surprised. Keep learning though. 

Old guy | 24 December 2022 - 13:48:26

Wow! I haven't seen so many multiple syllable words in a long time. Unfortunately, they add up to nothing, just gobblygoop.
Thailand needs to teach reading, writing, math, and English to all its youth for 12 years. 
It doesn't.
Why not? 

 

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