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ISANA Vic/Tas & Vision International: “Longing for Belonging” – An investigation into International Student Secondary Student Experience

March 17 @ 3:30 pm - 4:30 pm AEDT

Registration:  CLICK HERE


The pre-COVID-19 five-year period of national enrolment data shows a 25% increase, from 20,523 international students in Australian schools in 2015 to 25,564 in 2019. Statistics from Department of Education, Skills, and Employment indicates there remained 20,424 international students in Australian schools in November 2020 despite continued COVID-19 impacted travel restrictions. Yet, the majority of research in international education in Australia and internationally has concentrated on international students in tertiary settings.


This seminar reports on a research project funded by the Australian Research Council that addresses the teaching, learning and connectedness of an un(der)examined cohort of young people who complete their secondary school education as international students. The project involves: (1) a survey with international secondary students in Queensland, New South Wales and Victoria; (2) in-depth interviews with 60 international secondary students in 8 Australian schools (4 government and 4 private schools) in Queensland and Victoria; (3) focus group interviews with domestic students who were in the same year level as the international students; (4) in-depth interviews with school principals and/or international coordinators; (5) in-depth interviews and/or focus groups with small groups of teachers, and (6) interviews with homestay providers.


This seminar will discuss the key findings about international students’ experiences—be they face-to-face, online, within or beyond the boundaries of schooling. In particular, it analyses the impacts of English language competence and online activities on their wellbeing, belonging and academic performance. It will then address recommendations for practice based on the good practice examples and initiatives that the 8 participating schools are adopting to enhance international students’ learning, wellbeing and belonging. Links will be made across the school, VET, and HE sectors based on parallel projects on international students in these sectors.

The seminar is most relevant to international coordinators/international program managers, teachers, leaders and practitioners from schools and other education sectors who are concerned about enhancing international students’ experiences and internationalisation of education. The session will be of interest to professional organizations, government representatives, and agencies who work with schools and education providers to support international students.



Ly Tran (PhD) is a Professor in the School of Education, Deakin University, Australia and an Australian Research Council Future Fellow. Her research focuses on international students’ experiences, internationalisation of education, student mobility, and staff professional development in international education. She leads a couple projects funded by the Australian Research Council and other organisations on enhancing international students’ experiences and graduate employability. Her research has won a range of awards, including the 2020 Shining Star Achievement in Research Award in the Noam Chomsky Global Connections Awards.



March 17
3:30 pm - 4:30 pm AEDT

ABN: 42 335 124 078


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