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Study abroad programmes designed to meet industry needs for graduates with inter-cultural skills and a global outlook have low participation rates in Canada and Ireland due mainly to financial barriers. Embedding the use of High Definition Interactive Videoconferencing (HD IVC) in higher education has the potential to create ‘Global Graduates’ with the skills sought by employers today. The ‘Global Class’ is a concept which has been developed at Durham College, Canada. Using HD IVC, students from different countries can participate in a ninety-minute class facilitated by Durham College and led by an invited thought leader with expertise in a specific domain. This paper documents the specific experience of first year undergraduate students from the Institute of Technology, Blanchardstown (ITB), Dublin, who participated in a Global Class dealing with business ethics in November 2015. Feedback from a sample of the ITB students who participated in the class is encouraging. It points to an enriched cross-cultural learning environment, suggesting the approach provides a basis for the creation of ‘Global Graduates’. Additional research will serve to further validate the approach and the practicalities of deploying the concept systematically and persistently in course curricula.
Appleby, L., & Dervan, P. (2016) Embedding High Definition Videoconferencing in Higher Education to Create Global Graduates. Higher Education in Transition Symposium, Oshawa, Ontario, Canada, November 2-6.