Discourses of Im/possibility: International Students at a Canadian University

  • Author / Creator
    Fredeen, Shirley M.
  • The purpose of this study is to describe international English as an additional language (EAL) students’ experiences in relation to their academic work, as effects of university policy at a western Canadian university. Data from interviews with students and employees were analyzed in relation to key policy documents, using Foucauldian poststructural discourse analysis and a policy sociology approach (Ball, 1997). The analysis provides a description of how these policies and practices operate discursively at the local level to create conditions of im/possibility and shape subjectivities. It reveals complex effects of internationalization policy in general and, in particular, policies in the areas of admissions and registration, English proficiency assessment, language and literacy, academic integrity, and evaluation; it then suggests implications of these effects for international EAL students’ academic achievement and success. In addition to their effects on students, internationalization policies and the increased presence of international students have a range of effects on this Canadian university, including shifts in the role of the university in the areas of monitoring international students and their vetting as potential immigrants. Finally, what is im/possible in postsecondary education in Canada is changing in part as a result of internationalization policy and the presence of international EAL students.

  • Subjects / Keywords
  • Graduation date
    Fall 2013
  • Type of Item
  • Degree
    Doctor of Philosophy
  • DOI
  • License
    This thesis is made available by the University of Alberta Libraries with permission of the copyright owner solely for non-commercial purposes. This thesis, or any portion thereof, may not otherwise be copied or reproduced without the written consent of the copyright owner, except to the extent permitted by Canadian copyright law.
  • Language
  • Institution
    University of Alberta
  • Degree level
  • Department
  • Specialization
    • Educational Administration and Leadership
  • Supervisor / co-supervisor and their department(s)
  • Examining committee members and their departments
    • Guo, Yan (Education, University of Calgary) (External Examiner)
    • Kachur, Jerrold (Educational Policy Studies)
    • Dunn, William (Secondary Education)
    • Wallace, Janice (Educational Policy Studies)
    • Taylor, Alison (Educational Policy Studies)