What are benefits of course Internationalization?

The benefits of internationalization in the context of higher education were clearly articulated by the American Association of State Universities and Colleges in its 2004 report, A Call to Leadership: The Presidential Role in Internationalizing the University:

  • Internationalization helps students develop the global critical thinking skills that are essential to contributing as citizens of the world and competing in the international marketplace.
  • Internationalization links communities to the world, expanding opportunities for university service and engagement while also enhancing their global competitiveness.
  • Internationalization contributes to national security and a vital economy and prepares world leaders who know and value American democracy.
  • Internationalization enlivens faculty scholarship and teaching, expands research opportunities, and provides a pathway to national and international distinction.
    Source: National Communication Association.
How complicated is the internationalization process at Alamo Colleges?

We've worked really hard to make the process as seamless as possible. Many of the courses we already offer at Alamo Colleges District can be easily enhanced to add or adapt the components needed. By completing this course, faculty members will have a full understanding of the benefits, techniques, and options available to implement their course.

Is it better to use a course I am already teaching or create a new course?

As the subject expert, we rely on the faculty to decide this. Some faculty may find the internationalization process to be easier with a course they truly know well, but starting a new course also has its advantages as keeping the competencies in mind from the beginning has multiple advantages such as the ability to apply backward design, making sure the activities implemented as part of the course support the learning and development of the Alamo Global competencies, etc.

I already have learning objectives in my course that must be covered. I can’t add anything else.

Internationalizing your course does not require you to add new content or assignments to your course but rather to enhance what is already there with a global perspective. You can do this in many ways such as through adapting an existing assignment to focus on a more global lens. To help you determine the focus of the global lens you want to add to your course, this Canvas course will help you create a learning outcome separate from your required learning objectives.

I’m not sure I can add objectives to my state-mandated course objectives (SLO).

Our administration has verified that it is possible to add additional SLO's to your courses. To distinguish them from learning objectives, we call them global learning outcomes.

The following was taken from the guide published by the Texas Higher Education Board for academic courses, ACGM's Lower-Division Course Guide Manual published by the Texas Higher Education Board for academic courses, and ACGM's Lower-Division Course Guide Manual.

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"...Institutions may not delete any topics in the course descriptions or any of the student learning outcomes as provided in the ACGM. Based on local needs, an institution may include additional topics and learning outcomes. Additional topics and learning outcomes should not change the focus and primary function of the course as represented by the topics and learning outcomes in the ACGM."

Source: THECB for academic courses/ACGM – Lower-Division Course Guide Manual.

My subject is not suited to adding a global perspective.

We currently live in an interconnected world where everyone is connected in some way globally.

You can see examples of internationalized courses at Florida International University here. Use the search options to find your particular subject area.

I want to talk to someone about my packet or about my plan for course internationalization.

The Office of International Programs is here to help! They can assist you with procedural questions in the submission of your packet. They will also be able to connect you with a faculty colleague from the Working Group for the Internationalization of the Curriculum to assist you with any pedagogically-focused questions you may have.

Reach out via email or phone: Sherrie Radicke, 210-485-0814

How long does the course internationalization designation last?

The designation is valid for three years. After that time, the course is reviewed to make sure the current documentation meets administration requirements and/or follows new best practices that may have been adopted by the District. If any small editions are needed the Office of International Programs and/or the Faculty Working Group will assist faculty to be aware of this and work together to make any updates.

Are there examples of internationalized courses I can take a look at?
  • Faculty can see additional examples kindly provided by Florida International University here.
    • Note: The search options will assist faculty to find an example in their subject area. 
  • Examples of internationalized courses from Alamo Colleges District: Coming soon!
  • You can view some examples of course internationalization strategies by Waterloo faculty here. Download here
Do I need to complete the internationalization process for each course I teach?

You need to submit a packet for each course to obtain the designation.  You do not need to submit a separate packet if you teach multiple sections of the same course.

You only need to take this Canvas course once and you can then use the knowledge and tools to complete and submit a packet for each of the courses you want internationalized.

Can I only internationalize one course?

You can internationalize as many courses as you want.

What is Course Internationalization?

Course internationalization is “a process by which international elements are infused into course content, international resources are used in course readings and assignments, and instructional methodologies appropriate to a culturally diverse student population are implemented" (Schuerholz-Lehr et al., 2007, p. 70).

There are a variety of approaches to how to internationalize a course, from the addition of a module or assignment that is international in scope to a complete course re‐design where the entire course is structured around the learning and assessing of global (global, international, intercultural) learning outcomes. (Indiana University Center for the Study of Global Change.