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Accepted paper:

From COIL to curriculum transformation in South Africa


Jos Beelen (The Hague University of Applied Sciences)
Cornelius Hagenmeier (University of the Free State)
Katherine Wimpenny (Coventry University)

Paper short abstract:

The paper discusses how Collaborative Online International Learning (COIL) can contribute to internationalised home curricula, which can in turn help to achieve transformation of curricula at South Afican universities.

Paper long abstract:

This paper draws on the Erasmus+ project iKudu, which is aimed at building capacity for Collaborative Online International Learning (COIL) at five South African universities. As part of the project, these universities were asked to assess how online collaboration contributes to achieving their aims for internationalised curricula, using Appreciative Inquiry (Cooperrider, Whitney & Stavros, 2008). We will present the five South African self-assessments but also a comparison with self-assessments of the European project partners. The South African self-assessments were followed up by on line interviews with stakeholders, as an alternative for the originally planned site visits. We will present the expectations of stakeholders on the contribution of COIL practices to transformation of curricula, as outlined in Policy framework for internationalisation of higher education in South Africa (2017).

Conceptualising the iKudu project enables us to define our focus on COIL. Extrapolating the role of COIL as a subtool for internationalisation of formal home curricula requires appreciation of the integration of existing curriculum transformation initiatives across the SA and European partners to discover the best of what exists. This includes awareness of strategies focused on curriculum decolonisation with focus on the roles of strategic leadership, COIL practitioners, and its impact on student/graduate experience - and to dream of what might be.

Finally, it will also allow us to reflect on the value of Appreciative Inquiry in a South-North project.

panel H50
How can curriculum decolonization operate in the third space in Global South-North collaborations?