International student connectedness with local teachers and peers: insights from teachers

Ly Thi Tran, Lien Pham

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


The mobility processes associated with the dynamic formations of locality shape and reshape international students' connectedness with teachers, peers, families, institutions and the broader community. This chapter considers the academic and social connectedness of international students in vocational education and training (VET) from teachers' perspectives. This research includes 155 interviews with international students and staff as well as fieldwork in Australian dual-sector universities and VET colleges. The chapter draws on Vertovec's idea of transnationalism and Hall's notion of identity to examine international students' connectedness with teachers and peers in international VET classrooms. The findings of the research point to the ways VET teachers view their relationships with international students and the connectedness among all students through a functional lens. Placing the functional goals of developing students' vocational and cultural skills and hands-on experiences at the centre of their pedagogy, these teachers engage in practices to foster the interaction of international and domestic students inside and outside the classroom. The research found that meaningful connectedness in international VET spaces moves beyond the mere condition for interaction between domestic and international peers to the real opportunities for international students to share, negotiate and contribute to building practical hands-on skills, vocational knowledge and cultural experiences on a more equal basis. This process enhances not only vocational capabilities but also mutual learning for all.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationInternational student connectedness and identity
Subtitle of host publicationtransnational perspectives
EditorsLy Thi Tran, Catherine Gomes
Place of PublicationSingapore
PublisherSpringer, Springer Nature
Number of pages20
ISBN (Electronic)9789811026010
ISBN (Print)9789811025990
Publication statusPublished - 2017

Publication series

NameCultural studies and transdisciplinarity in education
PublisherSpringer, Springer Nature
ISSN (Print)2345-7708
ISSN (Electronic)2345-7716


  • Connectedness
  • Domestic students
  • Engagement
  • International students
  • Local teachers
  • Vocational education and training


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