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Towards a systematic approach to international students - Eriksson & Igelstrom

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Presented at LILAC 2018

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Towards a systematic approach to international students - Eriksson & Igelstrom

  1. 1. Towards a systematic approach to international students Per Eriksson & Peter Igelström Linköping University Library
  2. 2. 4/17/2018 2Towards a systematic approach to international students Student services building, Campus Valla, Linköping (to be finished in 2019)
  3. 3. Linköping University (LiU) • 27,000 students • 4 campuses in 3 cities • 4 faculties: Arts and Sciences, Educational Science, Medicine and Health, Science and Engineering • 31% (1570) of new students are internationals (2016/17) • A majority of those are from European countries (France, Germany and Spain the ”big three”) 4/17/2018 3Towards a systematic approach to international students
  4. 4. Project timeline • Learning and Knowledge course for teaching staff at LiU (Sept 2016- March 2017) • Academic writing course (Sept 2016-June 2017) • Orientation Programme slot + guided tours of the library (Aug-Sept 2017) • Seminars with library staff (Dec 2017) • Findings presented at the library director’s council (Jan 2018) • Policy/guideline assignment regarding international students (Jan 2018-) 4/17/2018 4Towards a systematic approach to international students
  5. 5. Comments from international students at LiU On library instruction: • “Some of the search tips were useful, but most of those things were not really new to me since I have been through a lot of that when I wrote research reports as part of my PhD-studies” On previous experiences with academic libraries: • “I don’t think we have contact librarians or anything like that and I think most students don’t have any personal contact with librarians in general” 4/17/2018 5Towards a systematic approach to international students
  6. 6. Comments from international students at LiU Room for improvement: • “The copying system [can be improved]. I always need help. The printing-account is complicated too. The rest is good.” On differences in ways of learning: • “Here focus is on reflection rather than memorizing a bunch of facts. For me, the biggest challenge has been learning how to argue because it is so much about arguing here. I also noticed that Swedish students have a greater habit to discuss and twist and turn concepts” 4/17/2018 6Towards a systematic approach to international students
  7. 7. Questions midway… • What’s the next step? • ”Best practice” for academic librarians to engage with international students: What can we learn from the LIS literature? • How do we make our efforts durable and systematic? 4/17/2018 7Towards a systematic approach to international students
  8. 8. Some answers, but also new questions • What is an international student? • Internationalization – what does it mean to libraries? • How go from single projects to a systematic approach? 4/17/2018 8Towards a systematic approach to international students
  9. 9. Common activities and targeted efforts towards international students 4/17/2018 9Towards a systematic approach to international students Language and cross- cultural training Online guides & tutorials Bilingual information Pre- assessment
  10. 10. We suspect a connection between: How we see the group and… where we tend to put focus in our efforts International students is as a problematic The international students user group with specific needs International students is a permanent Library ”internationalization” and significant user group among others 4/17/2018 10Towards a systematic approach to international students
  11. 11. 4/17/2018 11Towards a systematic approach to international students Student ”adjustment” approach ”Internationalization” approach Filling a knowledge gap Librarians language and communcation skills Understanding how ”they” think Awareness of differences in library practice in an international perspective Directed outreach activities Library Internationalization strategy
  12. 12. Policy, strategic plans Leadership commitment Partnerships Language and cross-cultural communication training Outreach activities Online guides University strategies and policies; level of campus internationalization Organizational conditions User education Bilingual information Coordination Resources Towards an integrated approachActivities Competences
  13. 13. Action Plan Level 1 Library participation in welcoming/orientation programmes Guided tours Review & revise guides and information resources Checklist for educators Level 2 Include in ongoing UX-projects Review all signs in the library Spreading knowledge about this user group among functions Coordinate efforts in Master’s programmes Level 3 Library internationalization policy Coordinator/liaison Formulate measurable goals Long term plan for staff language and cross cultural commmunication skills Hire international students as library helpers/ambassadors
  14. 14. 4/17/2018 14Towards a systematic approach to international students Suggested reading Witt, S.W., Kutner, L., Cooper, L. (2015) Mapping academic library contributions to campus internationalization, College and Research Libraries, 76 (5), pp. 587-608
  15. 15. www.liu.se per.eriksson@liu.se peter.igelstrom@liu.se

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