Academic standards, Internationalisation, and the discursive construction of 'the international student'

Elsevier Science
Publication Type:
Journal article
Devos, A. 2002 'Academic standards, Internationalisation, and the discursive construction of 'the international student'', Higher education research and development, vol. 22, no. 2, pp. 15-24.
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The release in early 2001 of a study of Australian social science academics perceptions of the impact of commercialisation on academic freedom (Kayrooz, Kinnear & Preston, 2001) led to sustained public debate over the issue of academic standards and the internationalisation of higher education in Australia. This debate gave expression to growing disaffection amongst Australian academics with the pressures for increased commercialisation and entrepreneurialism in their work. In this paper I use the tools provided through the work of Michel Foucault to critically examine the terms of the debate as it was conducted in the public arena. The purpose of this analysis is to explore the ways in which international students were represented in the discourses of academic standards, and the conflation of the alleged decline in academic standards with the internationalisation of higher education, and in particular, with the presence of international students on Australian campuses.
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