Commitment to international education : structural influences and actors' perceptions of international education in the USA and the European Community
This thesis examines undergraduate international education in the USA and the EC. It establishes that significant differences in international education do exist in the two areas, then goes on to pose two related questions in explanation: how do they differ and why do they differ? A dual explanatory approach is explicitly engaged throughout, one emphasising macro-level factors, the other stressing micro-level perspectives. A preliminary discussion of these two explanatory modes appears in Chapter One, together with an argument for the significance of the topic beyond its educational ramifications. In Chapter Two, the range of meanings attached to 'international' is applied to international education. This is followed by a review of salient developments in both practice and research into tertiary level international education. Chapters Three and Four illustrate how and why regional variations in international education arise, building a detailed picture of the themes and modes of advocacy characteristic of each region. Both chapters adopt a structural analysis emphasising social, cultural, and political factors. The second explanatory approach is deployed in Chapter Five, where similarities and differences in international education are explored from an institutional perspective. Case studies are used to show the extent to which actors' accounts of institutional developments in international education reflect the themes anchored in a macro-level or structural framework. The evidence suggests that intermediate and institutional agendas have equal heuristic potential in accounting for variations in international education. Focusing on institutional perspectives and local accounts of international education grounds the macro-level analysis of regional differences and continuities; a mid-range explanatory approach is thus suggested in Chapter Six.