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What is International Education and Why is It Important For You?

The debate surrounding what ‘international education’ actually means is ongoing, with many believing it signifies a new strategic direction in comprehensive education where it broadens perspectives, builds diverse connections and encourages innovation and ideas across borders.

International schools traditionally cater to internationally mobile expatriate families who work in international businesses, foreign embassies and so on. However, local students may also attend the schools, not least in order to learn the language used as the medium of instruction at the school (usually English).

For those who are currently studying, or hoping to study an education degree, understanding the concept of international education is twofold. During your studies, you’ll automatically become part of a genuine and dynamic international community, where you’ll have invaluable access to a wide range of cultures, faiths, languages and perspectives.

Beyond your studies and into your career, you’ll want to consider the academic environment you’re teaching in – encouraging diversity and inclusivity among students where culture and language may have once been obstacles.

International education is a catalyst for leading change around the world

The world of international education is a melting pot of individuals and learning with a global perspective ensures students are exposed to different cultures, ethnic groups, religions and languages, enriching society in the process and broadening the academic experience for everyone.

It also, of course, establishes a multicultural learning environment which makes it the ideal setting for increasing students’ cultural awareness and fostering their understanding and appreciation of those who come from a different background to their own.

A growing global trend

Education is at the forefront of global development and, with globalization making it easier than ever for families to move abroad for work and study opportunities, it’s easy to see the appeal of pursuing an international education.

In January 2019, ISCResearch reported that there were 10,282 international schools, 5.36 million students and 503,000 staff members around the world, with those numbers only set to rise as the demand for access to international education heightens.

Asia is a rising star in international education, thanks to the rapid growth of English-medium internationals schools in the region with Hong Kong in particular, having long been regarded as a thriving international city ideally situated at the crossroads between east and west, north and south.

Demand for a ‘Western-style’ education, and the growing prominence of the International Baccalaureate and Cambridge Assessment system, mean the education landscape in Asia and elsewhere is undergoing a progressive transformation.

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