How is an Academic English Skills (AES) module, delivered in a UK Higher Education (HE) setting, understood, and experienced by Chinese students?

Watson, Clare (2024) How is an Academic English Skills (AES) module, delivered in a UK Higher Education (HE) setting, understood, and experienced by Chinese students? Ed.D thesis, University of Glasgow.

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In the academic year 2021/22, the UK Higher Education (HE) sector welcomed 679,970 international students into its space which is equivalent to 24% of the total HE student population and received an associated gross economic benefit of £41.9 billion (London Economics, 2023). It is reported by London Economics (2023) that China continues to be the ‘largest sender’ of students, with one out of four international students being Chinese who are embarking on undergraduate or postgraduate study in the UK. In this context a number of international education pathway providers whose main activity is controlled by the UK, USA and Australian markets are partnered with universities to provide international students routes into partner university study. Together, they offer a choice of over 1,400 programmes that in 2016 generated a global income of USDollars825 million (ICEF, 2016). This study investigates how some Chinese students understand and make meaning of studying the English for Academic Purposes (EAP) component (Academic English Skills module) of their pathway programme. It explores some tensions that exist in the teaching and learning contexts that involve Chinese students, set against a backdrop of cultural and historical considerations, and explores Chinese education reform initiatives. Consideration is given to the internationalisation of Western HE, the economic role that international students play in this environment and the positioning of EAP in this education context. Using a narrative inquiry approach, the study offers opportunities for six participants to tell their stories of how they make meaning of studying AES. The findings that are analysed using inductive reflexive thematic analysis highlight that attention needs to be focused on improving the AES module (and other EAP programmes, as relevant) to provide a positive and intrinsically rewarding education experience for our visiting Chinese students. It aims to elevate an appreciation of Chinese students who are studying at HE level in the UK that sees them more than key income contributors to the HE sector.

Item Type: Thesis (Ed.D)
Qualification Level: Doctoral
Subjects: L Education > LB Theory and practice of education
L Education > LB Theory and practice of education > LB2300 Higher Education
Colleges/Schools: College of Social Sciences > School of Education
Supervisor's Name: Wardle, Dr. Georgina and Hedge, Professor Nicki
Date of Award: 2024
Depositing User: Theses Team
Unique ID: glathesis:2024-84364
Copyright: Copyright of this thesis is held by the author.
Date Deposited: 19 Jun 2024 10:24
Last Modified: 08 Jul 2024 08:46
Thesis DOI: 10.5525/gla.thesis.84364

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