International Education

The term international education has two general meanings. The first refers to education that transcends national borders through the exchange of people, as in study abroad. The second, explored in depth here, is a comprehensive approach to education that intentionally prepares students to be active and engaged participants in an interconnected world. Understanding of a broad array of phenomena is enhanced and deepened through examination of the cultures, languages, environmental situations, governments, political relations, religions, geography, and history of the world.

While definitions vary in the precise language used, international education is generally taken to include:

1. Knowledge of other world regions and cultures;

2. Familiarity with international and global issues;

3. Skills in working effectively in global or cross-cultural environments, and using information from different sources around the world;

4. Ability to communicate in multiple languages; and

5. Dispositions towards respect and concern for other cultures and peoples.

International education is not an additional, separate subject of study, but rather a constellation of knowledge, skills, and dispositions with relevance to all the major curriculum areas.

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