Thursday, June 28, 2007

Ethical Dilema

Situation: A male Indian international student became a familiar face at our international counter, appearing with new students as a sort of mentor/friend/guide for any issues or queries they may be having. This was initially a positive thing as his English was clear and he already had some understanding of the university policies and guidelines. One day he brought with him a female Indian student who he said was his cousin, and asked us to have a look at her award certificate for the bachelor she undertook in her home country. The female student had not achieved the equivalent grade for entry into her masters program in our Institution, and had already been aware of this prior, as it was stated as a condition in her offer letter. Needless to say the Indian male student, thought there would be a way we could just 'let' his female friend in with the grades she had. I explained to both students that this was the requirement for entry into her program, and its university regulations we have to abide by. I suggested options were to choose another program or apply for credit and undertake a similar bachelor degree. As this was not the answer either students hoped for, things became quite 'heated' and they asked to speak to my manager. Our Admissions manager then called the 2 students into her office and reiterated what I had already explained. The outcome was as I had already explained, and the male student realised that he can't solve 'all' issues for his friends.

Four ethical principles that relate to the above situation (as outlined in the Code of Ethics from Charles Darwin University):

Integrity: The male student had already earned our staff's trust as had previously been very helpful for newly arrived students, this turned into a negative when he became disappointed with the answer I had provided.

Respect: Our staff always respect the ideas and values of our international students, and the male Indian student was aware of this, however he became disrespectful when he did not receive the answer he wanted.

Accountability: I took professional responsibility for my actions when the male student was unhappy with my response by approaching my manager. In turn my manager achieved the result needed by reinstating what had already been addressed.

Service Focus: I demonstrated relevant service skills by first listening to what the students had to say, then providing answers and options to their query. When this failed to please the students, seeking guidance from a higher level of authority solved the problem.

What would you do in this situation?

Author: Kylie Wilson - PIER Online Diploma student

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Factors that influence international students in Australia

What factors do you think are currently having a major influence on the numbers and types of international students that are studying in Australia?

* The proactive federal government approach to attracting international students and demonstrating a commitment to quality of education and support services has boosted numbers.

* The encouragement for industry to develop and deliver a diversity of programs and services for international students has helped broaden the industry to accommodate greater numbers.

* Current DIAC regulations are having an affect on types of students – e.g. greater opportunities for students to take up permanent residency have boosted numbers of students from countries with propensity to seek PR, in sectors and courses of study lined to skilled occupation shortages in Australia.

Author: Suzy Trier - PIER Online Diploma Student

Events that have influenced International Education in the last decade

Which historical elements have effected the numbers and nationalities of students over the past ten years?

Over the past 10 to 15 years a lot more pressure has been placed on education institutions to source revenue through overseas student enrolments due to industry competitiveness and changes to government funding. Additional elements which have impacted upon the numbers of overseas enrolment and nationalities include:

* ESOS Act and National Code - protecting international students
* Transnational Education - recognition for greater student diversity, raising Australia's profile, improving relationships, and availability of International Study Programs funded through the Australian Government
* AVCC Code of Practice

Are there any additional factors that have been influential?

* Seeking 'PR' status - points system
* Quality education - recognition of Australian qualifications worldwide
* Terrorism - Australian a recognised as a relatively 'safe place' in comparison to other destinations
* Tertiary entrance pathways
* Stronger relationships with offshore partners
* Australian culture - multicultural

Author: Tricia Hughes - PIER Online Diploma student

Education Agent Training Course Workshop 2007

International Education Services, the provider of the EATC, is pleased to announce the first ever EATC workshop

We anticipate that the Workshop will be held in a different location and/or region every year, to facilitate the growth and development of the EATC and to allow education agents from those regions to network and professionally engage with staff from various sectors of the Australia government and education providers.

The 2007 Workshop will be held in India, and is primarily aimed at education agents from India, Nepal, Pakistan, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka.

The workshops will be broken up into three parts:

Session 1
Professional Development session, with speakers from the EATC, AEI and DIAC


Session 2
Offering the EATC formal assessment in two sessions

Session 3
Afternoon cocktail reception

Attendance at Sessions 1 and 3 is free, although individuals wishing to attend do need to register. Lunch and refreshments will be provided.

Attendance at the Formal assessment test will incur the standard AUD$400 fee to take the test.

For more information and to book your place now, visit

One week to go!

It is only one week to go before the closing date for applications and re-enrolments for the PIER Online Diploma.

Semester 2, 07 will commence on 16 July, and this semester will bring two new exciting subjects, giving students the opportunity to enhance their skills in different areas of international education.

Applications and re-enrolments deadline is Wednesday, 4 July. For further information please go to or email us on

PIER is looking forward to welcoming you to next semester.