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Gauging Disciplinary Engagement with Internationalization: A Survey of Geographers in the United States

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As higher education institutions worldwide seek to internationalize academic programmes, questions arise as to how institutions can effectively involve and support faculty in that process. The present study rests on the premise that professional development can play a decisive role in advancing two important components of internationalization—specifically international collaboration and the teaching of global perspectives by geography faculty. To explore this proposition, the AAG conducted a survey to determine how and why American geography professors have (a) pursued international collaboration in their work, and (b) incorporated global learning outcomes into the undergraduate geography curriculum. The analysis presented shows that faculty members who practise international collaboration and support global perspectives in their courses are more likely to do so when those practices are perceived to enhance the quality of teaching and research. Geographers who practice international collaboration also benefit from access to international networks and professional development activities that offer opportunities to gain experience in collaborative teaching and research. It was also found that departments and institutions play an important role in creating an academic climate that provides incentives for faculty to participate as agents in internationalization.
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Keywords: International collaboration; academic climate; global learning outcomes; professional development

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Texas State University, San Marcos, TX, USA 2: Association of American Geographers, Washington, DC, USA

Publication date: 2009-01-01

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