Education in English
Today, English is a vehicle language. In fact, English is
the language of the international communication and people
use this language worldwide, even though for many of them
English is not their native language. At the same time, English
is the main language with the help of which people can gain
success on the international level. Obviously, the language
competence opens huge career opportunities for people worldwide
since, today, the knowledge of English language may be a key
to the professional success, especially for those people who
are employed in multinational corporations. In such a context,
the number of foreign students, who choose to study overseas,
is constantly growing because, along with the higher education
and qualification they get English language competence that
means that they can work on the international level. However,
the growing number of foreign students at Universities of
English-speaking countries, such as Australia, raises a serious
problem. On the one hand, the involvement of foreign students
is beneficial for Universities from financial, marketing and
academic points of view, while, on the other hand, the question
concerning the quality of education naturally arises.
First of all, it is important to underline that Universities
often stimulate foreign students to enter. In this respect,
numerous programs and scholarships allow foreign students
to enter Universities and continue their studies in English-speaking
countries, such as Australia. At this point, it is worth mentioning
the fact that often such programs and scholarships do not
bring any direct financial benefits to Universities. Nevertheless,
Universities are interested in the involvement of the larger
number of foreign students.
In such a context, it is necessary to take into consideration
two factors which are beneficial for Universities. Firstly,
the growing number of foreign students improves the brand
image of Universities. In other words, the more foreign students
a University is able to attract the more prestigious the education
at this University becomes since foreign students, who are
about to choose a University to study at, prefer Universities
where the number of foreign students is high because these
Universities have well-developed language programs and courses
which can facilitate the studies of foreign students. In addition,
students believe that these Universities can provide the education
of the higher quality, though, in actuality, the involvement
of foreign students is a pure marketing strategy of many Universities
in English-speaking countries. It is not a secret that the
competition between Universities of English-speaking countries,
especially the UK, the US and Australia, grows dramatically
and the more foreign students Universities are able to attract
the better will be their competitive position in the educational
market, which, similarly to other markets, tends to globalization
Secondly, Universities get an excellent opportunity to involve
most prospective students who have huge academic potential,
which they cannot realize in their native countries. In such
a way, the process of brain-drain occurs and Universities
of Australia and other English-speaking countries are desirable
destinations for many students from countries of the third-world
(Blimling, 518). At this point, it is important to underline
the fact that it is high standards of education in such countries
as Australia that attracts foreign students that means that
the quality of education is crucial for students and, therefore,
for Universities which development is impossible without students.
At the same time, the growing number of foreign students brings
considerable financial profits to Universities which often
suffer from the lack of the state support. At any rate, foreign
students paying for the education provide stable and substantial
revenues for Universities in English-speaking countries, such
as Australia (Yagelsh, 204). Obviously, it is mainly due to
the language and its spread worldwide foreign students prefer
English speaking countries. For instance, many European universities
in such countries as Switzerland, Germany, France, have high
standards of education and the quality of education is not
much worse or better in Europe than in Australia, but students
prefer Australia, as well as the UK or the USA, because these
countries are English-speaking. Therefore, Universities in
Australia and other English-speaking countries can use language
as an additional attraction for foreign students. The latter
are ready to pay more for their education than they would
normally do in non-English-speaking countries, such as Germany,
for instance. In such a way, Australian Universities can benefit
financially from foreign students.
However, the huge involvement of foreign students is inevitably
accompanied by the risk of the decreasing quality of education
in Australian Universities. It proves beyond a doubt that
the quality of education of foreign students, especially if
they arrive from countries of the third world, is consistently
lower compared to the level of education of Australian students.
In fact, Australian system of school education has larger
opportunities than educational systems of developing countries
which suffer permanently from poor financing and low professional
level of educators.
In such a situation, Australian Universities need to focus
on the quality of education that means that they should control
thoroughly the educational level of students entering the
Universities since their educational level should meet high
standards of Australian Universities. At the same time, Universities
often to spend time and financial resources to organize and
introduce special educational programs or courses for foreign
students to allow them to catch up with Australian students.
This refers not only to the language competence but also to
the general educational level of foreign students. Consequently,
the drawback of the wide involvement of foreign students is
the necessity of additional financial expenses and development
of specific educational programs in order to maintain the
high quality of education of Universities.
Nevertheless, from the financial point of view, the benefits,
Australian and other English-speaking universities receive
from foreign students, outweigh costs. This is why the trend
to increase the number of foreign students at Australian universities
still persists and it is likely to continue growing in the
nearest future since the competition between English-speaking
Universities of Australia, the UK and the US tends to increase.
In such a situation, it is important for Universities to maintain
high standards of education in their pursuit of benefits,
both financial and intellectual.
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