Universities double standards for international students

Professor Bob Birrell believes that our tertiary education system is lowering standards to accommodate more international students including re-writing the curriculum and assessment, according to a Herald Sun article.

Prof Birrell told the paper “A number of lecturers, particularly in the accounting area, have said to me they had to change the curriculum, and the way they assessed performance, in order to accommodate the limited English skills of many of their students.”

While universities need to adapt to new students' varying abilities, Prof Birrel is concerned that academics are being ignored on this issue. “I have got a file full of [academic staff] telling me that this sort of thing is happening, but usually they don’t want to go public on it.”

But in the ‘user pays’ model of education universities are courting an international education market. “There is a reluctance to do anything about this because of the pressure from the international student industry.”

Professor Birrell is the director of the Centre for Population and Urban Research at Monash University and part of tonight’s Intelligence Squared debate: Has Australia Escaped its Racist Past?