Foundations Reading List

To develop a deeper grounding

This list provides a historical and foundational introduction to the broader internationalisation of higher education, which is an important foundation for understanding research with international students. It is intended to provide a strong underpinning for understanding where the field started and how it has developed over time.

We recommend that researchers read the Essentials Reading List first before moving on the articles listed below. The articles on this list are not repeated below.

  1. Introductory texts about internationalisation
  2. Introduction to critical internationalisation studies
  3. Historical overviews of internationalisation and international students
  4. Macro influences on internationalisation and international students
  5. Coloniality and internationalisation

Introductory texts about internationalisation

Altbach, P.G., Knight, J. (2007). The internationalization of higher education: Motivations and realities. Journal of Studies in International Education11(3-4), 290-305.

Buckner, E., & Stein, S. (2020). What counts as internationalization? Deconstructing the internationalization imperative. Journal of Studies in International Education, 24(2), 151–166. 

de Wit, H. & Altbach, P.G. (2021). Internationalization in higher education: Global trends and recommendations for its future. Policy Review in Higher Education, 5(1), 28-46.

Jones, E., & de Wit, H. (2012). Globalization of internationalization: Thematic and regional reflections on a traditional concept. AUDEM: The International Journal of Higher Education and Democracy 3, 35-54.  

Knight, J. (1994). Internationalization: Elements and checkpoints. (Research Monograph, No 7). Ottawa, Canada: Canadian Bureau for International Education. Available at: 

Knight, J. (2004). Internationalization remodeled: Definition, approaches, and rationales. Journal of Studies in International Education, 8(1), 5-31. 

Leask, B. (2009). Using formal and informal curricula to improve interactions between home and international students. Journal of Studies in International Education, 13(2), 205-221. 

Mittelmeier, J., Rienties, B., Gunter, A., & Raghuram, P. (2021). Conceptualizing internationalization at a distance: A “third category” of university internationalization. Journal of Studies in International Education25(3), 266-282.

Rizvi, F., & Walsh, L. (1998). Difference, globalisation and the internationalisation of curriculum. Australian Universities’ Review, 41(2), 7–11.;dn=200001429;res=IELAPA 

Introduction to critical internationalisation studies

Beck, K. (2012). Globalization/s: Reproduction and resistance in the internationalization of higher education. Canadian Journal of Education, 35(3), 133-148.

Brandenburg, U., & de Wit, H. (2011). The end of internationalization. International Higher Education, 62, 15-17.

Cousin, G. (2011). Rethinking the concept of ‘western’. Higher Education Research and Development, 30(5), 585-594.

George Mwangi, C.A., Latafat, S., Hammond, S., Kommers, S., Thoma, H., Berger, J., & Blanco-Ramirez, G. (2018). Criticality in international higher education research: A critical discourse analysis of higher education journals. Higher Education, 76(6), 1091–1107.

Khoo, S-M; Haapakoski, J. and Hellstén, M. (2018). Moving from interdisciplinary research to transdisciplinary educational ethics: Bridging epistemological differences in researching higher education internationalisation(s). European Educational Research Journal, 18(2), 181-199.

Lipura, S. J., & Collins, F. L. (2020). Towards an integrative understanding of contemporary educational mobilities: A critical agenda for international student mobilities research. Globalisation Societies and Education, 18(3), 343–359.

Riaño, Y., Van Mol, C. & Raghuram, P. (2018) New directions in studying policies of international student mobility and migration, Globalisation, Societies and Education, 16(3), 283-294,

Rizvi, F. (2019). Global interconnectivity and its ethical challenges in education. Asia Pacific Education Review, 20(2), 315–326.

Shahjahan, R. A., & Kezar, A. J. (2013). Beyond the “national container”: Addressing methodological nationalism in higher education research. Educational Researcher42(1), 20-29.

Shahjahan, R. A. & Edwards, K. (2022). Whiteness as futurity and globalization of higher education. Higher Education, 83 (2), 747–764.

Stein, S. (2019). Critical internationalization studies at an impasse: Making space for complexity, uncertainty, and complicity in a time of global challenges. Studies in Higher Education 

Vasilopolous, G. (2016). A critical review of international students’ adjustment research from a Deleuzian perspective. Journal of International Students, 6(1), 283–307.

Vavrus, F., & Pekol, A. (2015). Critical internationalization: Moving from theory to practice. FIRE: Forum for International Research in Education, 2 (2), 5-21.

Waters, J.L. (2018). International education is political! Exploring the politics of international student mobilities. Journal of International Students, 8(3), 1459-1478.

Historical overviews of internationalisation and international students

Adnett, N. (2010). The growth of international students and economic development: Friends or foes? Journal of Education Policy, 25(5), 625-637.

Altbach, P.G., & de Wit, H. (2015) Internationalization and global tension: Lessons from history. Journal of Studies in International Education19(1), 4-10. 

Buckner, E. S. (2017). The changing discourse on higher education and the nation-state, 1960-2010. Higher Education, 74, 473-489.

Choudaha, R. (2017). Three waves of international student mobility (1999–2020). Studies in Higher Education, 42(5), 825-832. 

Indelicato, M. E., & Pražić, I. (2019). The legacy of cold war anti-racism: A genealogy of cultural distance in the internationalisation of higher education. Paedagogica Historica, 55(2), 295–313. 

Kramer, P. A. (2009). Is the world our campus? International students and US global power in the Long Twentieth Century. Diplomatic History, 33(5), 775-806.

McCartney, D. (2016). From ‘welcome sojourners’ to ‘dangerous immigrants’: Exploring discourse in international student policy talk, 1945-1975. Historical Studies in Education, 28(2), 1-27.

Paik, A. N. (2013). Education and empire, old and new: HR 3077 and the resurgence of the US university. Cultural Dynamics, 25(1), 3-28.

Perraton, H. (2017). Foreign students in the twentieth century: A comparative study of patterns and policies in Britain, France, Russia and the United States. Policy Reviews in Higher Education, 1(2), 161–186. 

Macro influences on internationalisation and international students

Bamberger, A., Morris, P., & Yemini, M. (2019). Neoliberalism, internationalisation, and higher education: Connections, contradictions, and alternatives. Discourse: Studies in the Cultural Politics of Education, 40(20), 203-216. 

Buckner, E. (2020). Embracing the global: The role of ranking, research mandate, and sector in the internationalisation of higher education. Compare: A Journal of Comparative and International Education.

Collins, H. (2018). Interculturality from above and below: Navigating uneven discourses in a neoliberal university system. Language and Intercultural Communication, 18(2), 167–183. 

Forbes-Mewett, H., & Nyland, C. (2013). Funding international student support services: Tension and power in the university. Higher Education, 65(2), 181-192.

Hagen, J. (2022) Queer feminist interruptions to internationalising UK higher education. British Educational Research Journal.

Hauptman Komotar, M. (2019). Global university rankings and their impact on the internationalisation of higher education. European Journal of Education, 54(2), 299–310. 

Kamola, I. (2014). US universities and the production of the global imaginary. The British Journal of Politics & International Relations, 16(3), 515-533.

Kondakci, Y., Bedenlier, S., & Zawacki-Richter, O. (2018). Social network analysis of international student mobility: Uncovering the rise of regional hubs. Higher Education, 75, 517-535.

Lomer, S. (2017). Soft power as a rationale for international education in the UK: A critical analysis. Higher Education, 74, 581-598. 

Marginson, S. (2006). Dynamics of national and global competition in higher education. Higher Education, 52, 1-39.

Marginson, S. (2021). What drives global science? The four competing narratives. Studies in Higher Education.

Martinez, C.A.F. (2022). University, neoliberalism and hegemonic bodies: narratives of international students in Chile. Gender and Education.

Roulleau-Berger, L. (2021). The fabric of post-Western sociology: Ecologies of knowledge beyond the “East” and the “West”. The Journal of Chinese Sociology, 8(10).

Sá, C. M., & Sabzalieva, E. (2018). The politics of the great brain race: Public policy and international student recruitment in Australia, Canada, England and the USA. Higher Education75(2), 231-253.

Shahjahan, R. A., Blanco Ramirez, G., & Andreotti, V. D. O. (2017). Attempting to imagine the unimaginable: A decolonial reading of global university rankings. Comparative Education Review61(S1), S51-S73.

Simpson, J. S., James, C.E., & Mack, J. (2011). Multiculturalism, colonialism, and racialization: Conceptual starting points. Review of Education, Pedagogy and Cultural Studies, 33(4), 285-305.

Stehr, N., & Ufer, U. (2009). On the global distribution and dissemination of knowledge. International Social Science Journal60(195), 7-24.

Suspitsyna, T. (2021). Internationalization, Whiteness and the biopolitics of higher education. Journal of International Students, 11 (S1), 50-67.

Yang, L., & Tian, L. (2022). Rethinking the ‘global’ in global higher education studies: From the lens of the Chinese idea of tianxia. Oxford Review of Education, 48(4), 536-553.

Coloniality and internationalisation

Chatterjee, S., & Barber, K. (2020). Between ‘here-now’ and ‘there-then’: The West and Asia’s colonial entanglements in international higher education. Higher Education.

Majee, U. (2020). Beyond the global-local binaries of higher education internationalization in post-apartheid South Africa. Journal of Studies in International Education, 24(1), 131-147.

Papoutsaki, E. & Rooney, D. (2006). Colonial legacies and neo-colonial practices in Papua New Guinean higher education. Higher Education Research and Development, 25(4), 421-433.

Thondhlana, J., Abdulrahman, H., Chiyevo Garwe, E., & McGrath, S. (2020). Exploring the internationalization of Zimbabwe’s higher education institutions through a decolonial lens: Postcolonial continuities and disruptions. Journal of Studies in International Education 

Udah, H. (2021). Coloniality of power and international student experience: What are the ethical responsibilities of social work and human service educators?, Ethics and Social Welfare, 15 (1), 84-99.

A helpful bank of research about decolonising the curriculum can be found here:

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