If you build it, they may not come

why Australian university students do not take part in outbound mobility experiences

Benjamin T. Jones, Anne Power, Tonia Gray, Greg Downey, Timothy Hall

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

6 Citations (Scopus)


Universities around the world seek to internationalise students to prepare them for an increasingly globalised world. Outbound mobility experiences (OMEs) are recognised as one of the most effective ways to foster independent thinking, cultural sensitivity, and a sense of ‘worldmindedness’. This article takes a case study from an Australian university and explores efforts to increase student participation rates in OMEs. Through a mixed-method study of three student cohorts (n=223), important data was gathered relating to how OMEs are perceived by undergraduate and post-graduate students. The results are filtered through thematic discourse analysis and suggest that the university needs to do more to build awareness, explain the professional and employability benefits, and create a travel culture where students are encouraged to grow their international skills and communication competencies. This research has important implications for universities seeking to increase international student mobility and prioritise a global outlook.

Original languageEnglish
Article number9
Pages (from-to)1-15
Number of pages17
JournalJournal of University Teaching and Learning Practice
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2016


  • Outbound Mobility
  • Study Abroad
  • Short Term Study Trips
  • Student Experience

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