Anderson (2015). Seeking Internationalization: The State of Canadian Higher Education.

Anderson, T. (2015). Seeking Internationalization: The State of Canadian Higher Education. The Canadian Journal of Higher Education, 45(4), 166–187.


“Although the differential fee structures for international and Canadian students are in part due to the public subsidization of higher education in the country, they also reveal the ongoing corporatization of higher education as universities search for alternative revenue sources (Altbach & Knight, 2007) …. This ongoing neoliberal imagining of Canadian higher education, while certainly not a new phenomenon, can pose challenges for universities regarding the need to balance fiscal pressures with their social and educational responsibilities to students.” (p 169)

[“Global Perspectives”]

“Predictions for future growth suggest few signs of abatement, with estimates ranging from 6.4 to 8 million students studying outside their countries of citizenship by the year 2025 (Goddard, 2012; OECD, 2009).” (p 169)

“The regions of origin for global foreign tertiary students, however, paint a significantly different picture from the regions of destination, with the vast majority of foreign students (approximately 75%) [page break] originating from non-OECD countries (OECD, 2013b). This outlines the disproportionate amount of symbolic and economic capital that OECD countries and their postsecondary institutions have for both fellow members and non-members alike. … China is the largest single-country supplier of foreign tertiary students, with 722,915 people engaged in cross-border study as of 2011; comprising almost 17% of global totals, more than three times higher than its closest rival country, India …” (p 169-170)

[“Canadian Perspectives”]

“In addition to the more tangible economic benefits, internationalization positively impacts Canadian universities by providing domestic students access to a variety of perspectives, languages, cultures, and experiences that foreign students bring with them to campuses — perspectives that have potential entrepreneurial, educational, and intellectual impacts.” (p 170)

“The Canadian Minister of State at the time, Gary Goodyear, speaking of this program, noted that ‘[d]octoral graduates play a unique role in the economy. They drive research, encourage innovation and pass on their knowledge through teaching…. And quite simply, Canada needs more of them’ (Citizenship and Immigration Canada, 2011, p. 2).” (p 171)

[“Challenges of Canadian Internationalization: Macro and Micro Perspectives”]

[“Macro Perspectives”]

“The promotion of the internationalization of higher education has not been without critique, particularly regarding the role it plays in the spread of (neo)colonial and neoliberal discourses from the west ‘outwards,’ and the standardization of English-mediated and Anglocentric epistemologies and ontologies, including a bias towards western-based knowledge creation, research methods, methodologies, and academic discourses. What constitutes ‘legitimate’ research and knowledge has long been determined by colonial powers, who act as gatekeepers to academic communities, both within the west and outside it (Smith, 1999).” (p 176)

“… _academic neocolonization_ …” (p 176)

“In the UK, for example, it has been suggested that nearly two-thirds of recently admitted international undergraduate students might lack the language proficiency needed to thrive in classes (Paton, 2012). … controversial opinion piece from the online magazine of the Association of Universities and Colleges of Canada, _University Affairs_, titled ‘Internationalizing the Canadian Campus: ESL Students and the Erosion of Higher Education’ (Friesen & Keeney, 2013). The authors, both Canadian professors at the time of the article’s publication, argue that the challenges of underperforming ‘ESL students’ in their classrooms outweigh any potential benefits …” (p 177)

[Rejection of neoliberal pressure for alternate funding models? –oki]

“Pedagogically, an inclusive, adaptive approach can lessen potential tensions and misunderstandings by encouraging greater reflexivity, understanding, and communication between teachers and CLD students. This reflexivity and responsiveness can facilitate the possibility of further internationalizing course curricula and teaching and learning approaches. In this sense, both students and teachers (foreign and domestic alike) can achieve greater degrees of understanding and co-operation by being receptive to each others’ perspectives while at the same time acknowledging and (co)constructing what types of academic expectations are typically preferred in their specific Canadian contexts.” (p 178)

[“Micro Perspectives”]


Selected References

  • Altbach, P., & Knight, J. (2007). The internationalization of higher education: Motivations and realities. Journal of Studies in International Education, 11(3–4), 290– 305.
  • Citizenship and Immigration Canada. (2011). Attracting and retaining international PhD students the focus of new initiative. Retrieved from
  • Friesen, N., & Keeney, P. (2013, August 7). Internationalizing the Canadian campus: ESL students and the erosion of higher education. University Affairs. Retrieved from
  • Goddard, B. (2012). Future perspectives: Horizon 2025. In D. David & B. Mackintosh (Eds.), Making a difference: Australian international education (pp. 398–414). Sydney, Australia: UNSW Press.
  • OECD. (2009). Higher education to 2030. Volume 2: Globalisation. Retrieved from
  • OECD. (2013b). Table C4.7. Number of foreign students in tertiary education, by country of origin and destination (2011), and market shares in international education (2000, 2011). Retrieved from
  • Paton, G. (2012, August 24). Universities “admitting foreign students with poor English”. The Telegraph. Retrieved from
  • Smith, L. T. (1999). Decolonizing methodologies, research and indigenous peoples. Dunedin, New Zealand: University of Otago Press.
See this page at