Internationalizing Teacher Education: Resources from NAFSA's 2013 Colloquium


Expanding our Vision: International and Cross-Cultural Experiential Learning for Pre- and In-Service Teachers and Faculty

Deans, faculty members, and other international educators met at the NAFSA 2013 Colloquium on Internationalizing Teacher Education to outline goals, benefits, logistics, and outcomes of international internships, field work, and study abroad for preservice teachers. Through collaborative discussions, participants in this two-day program deepened their understanding of opportunities offered by overseas experiences for preservice teachers and explored strategies, tools, materials, and on-campus resources to help them plan for integration of experiential learning into their programs. Participants also recognized a variety of incentives and tools for helping faculty members increase their global awareness and expertise and developed action plans for transformation of their program.

Presentation Materials

All links are to PDFs Adobe PDF

Colloquium Program
The colloquium was held in St. Louis, Missouri, in May 2013. Eighty-four participants from teacher education programs and related organizations heard presentations, reviewed materials, and participated in collaborative work, discussions, and networking opportunities. The program provides the schedule of events, session titles and descriptions, and the presenters' names and institutions.

Cultural Immersion Projects: Global Gateway for Teachers
Laura L. Stachowski, Indiana University, offered insights into the professional development and personal growth of teacher candidates gained in carefully planned study- and teach-abroad programs. She provided information on the transformative processes of overseas experiences that continue to impact the participants’ lives and their current perspectives and practices.

Study Abroad Partnerships and Curricular & Developmental Goals
Representatives from three U.S.-based teacher education programs and an overseas partner described how they developed study-teach-abroad programs with partners and the contribution of the programs to curricular and developmental goals. Their insights provided inspiration to participants to seek out new partnerships. Participants were offered a student’s perspective on practicum experience, as well as a non-U.S. institutional view on student exchanges and study abroad.

  • Sharon Brennan, University of Kentucky, discussed building overseas student teaching programs with international partners, using the U.K., Sweden, and Australia as examples.
  • Fred Carter, Western Kentucky University, explored reasons why student teacher exchange partnerships are valuable to the individual teacher candidates, the partnership institutions, and to the future of American classrooms.
  • Lena Örnestrand, University of Linköping, Sweden, discussed her institution’s exchange programs with University of Kentucky and Western Kentucky University and noted benefits including preparing teachers for diverse classrooms.
  • David Moss, University of Connecticut, discussed how studying abroad enhances teachers’ professional tool kit, providing examples from a fully integrated program in London including internship, course work, and an assigned cultural guide. He noted how learning about other systems of education deepens teachers’ understanding of their home system.

Before, During, and After: What Preparation is Necessary Before Students Go Abroad?
David M. Moss, University of Connecticut, led participants in small group discussions about the key considerations for planning a successful study abroad experience for pre-service teacher educators. Participants joined groups according to their experience or interest in short-term or semester-long programs and the type of institution they represent, and they discussed types of support needed and assessments indicated before, during, and after experiences abroad.

How Can We Help Faculty Build Their Global Readiness?
Dean Bill McDiarmid, University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, discussed strategies, incentives, and support for helping faculty expand their global awareness and commitment in teacher education.

Resource Roundtables
Participants visited with table leaders to hear about their experience and work. The leaders covered topics ranging from consortia for practice teaching abroad, forming partnerships with organizations, universities, and schools abroad, research on the impact of practicum/field teaching abroad, and state initiatives on internationalizing PK-12 education.

Discussions with Study Abroad Leaders
Participants met with education abroad leaders to discuss support that study abroad offices can offer colleges of teacher education.

Action Planning
Helen Marx, Southern Connecticut State University, discussed how to help colleges and departments of education develop opportunities for teacher candidates and faculty to build their global competence. She offered five critical components, including leadership, infrastructure, faculty development, curriculum integration, and resources.