Categories · International Media and Communication

Internationalising Education and Cultural Competance

Internationalising experiences can be hard, there are lots of social and moral hurdles to jump and tripping could lead to the destruction of a business. But done right, and you might just win the race. A simple example of internationalisation of a business done RIGHT would be apple. All of their products are the same price in every state on the planet, maybe within a 5 USD difference, but to say that all stock is the same price regardless of area is pretty astounding, I’d be hard pressed to find another company that does the same thing on such a large scale. Now while this form of internationalisation doesn’t directly have positive effects on the consumers experience, it does rid the business of the negative effects of region specific pricing and the issues it comes with.

Internationalisation can go wrong for a whole bunch of reasons, some common ones are listed here (http://venturevillage.eu/international-expansion-fail). However one I think they missed out was falsely assuming things about the place of expansion. Just because you think your product, be it crocs or education would work in India, does not necessarily mean it will, India is entirely different to Australia, the US, or anywhere else on earth for that matter. Sure you might hear of interest in your product over there, or see a target market, but simple cultural differences that you don’t know about could mean the end of that global business venture.

The issue of internationalising education is entirely different. While education is still a product, the issue isn’t selling it transnationally, it’s molding the product to be accepted and be effective on an international level. The International Baccalaureate, for example is accepted by uni’s across the globe. Is this because it’s an outstanding course? Nope, it’s just well tailored for a rounded education, one that fits in in other countries, general knowledge, an education without religious bias or political influence. This is what internationalism looks like, and as a result the students who graduate within the IB system get higher regards from universities, one could say that’s because it’s a harder system, but to say it’s nothing to do with it being internationalised would be wrong.

The issue with internationalising a product like education is that it’s a moral minefield. Do you teach those students about the political influence of religion if they live in that country? If you do you might end up offending those people, and if you don’t you’d be leaving out vital information for a subject. The only way you can circumvent these effects is to have to have a very tailor made experience, one that will teach that student those controversial topics, but in a way that is logical to them. Sounds easy right?

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