A number of courses have used technology to enable communication between inter-institutional and international cohorts of students. This communication has included University of Auckland students presenting their ideas and findings to international students for feedback, as well as engaging students from different institutions in discussions (both synchronous and asynchronous), and directly collaborating with students internationally and inter-institutionally.
Access to international or inter-institutional cohorts provides opportunities for students to articulate their thoughts to individuals from different backgrounds, and to gain an insight into different perspectives on their thoughts and ideas. These sessions also allow students to connect with other pre-service individuals, expanding their future professional networks.
There are a variety of technological solutions that can assist with international and /or inter-institutional interaction, so the most effective tool will depend on the types of activities that students will undertake. This choice must allow for a shared space accessible to students from different locations. Some tools that have been used include Google Sites, Google Hangouts, online discussion forums, MOOC-style activities, social media (e.g. Facebook, Twitter, Instagram) Skype and Skype-like applications.
Tools and Tips
Guo, S., & Möllering, M. (2016). The implementation of task-based teaching in an online Chinese class through web conferencing. System, 62, 26–38. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.system.2016.07.003
Kear, K., Chetwynd, F., Williams, J., & Donelan, H. (2012). Web conferencing for synchronous online tutorials: Perspectives of tutors using a new medium. Computers & Education, 58(3), 953–963. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.compedu.2011.10.015