Jisc launches Global Connect and Global Partnership at TNC18.
The demand for UK transnational education (TNE) programmes has seen unprecedented growth in the past decade, with an 81% increase in the number of UK higher education (HE) TNE students since 2008-09.
According to the 2018 report from Universities UK, this equates to 1.6 times the number of international students studying within the UK in the same year.
While this growth presents huge opportunities for universities, it also presents some new challenges. One of the key challenges to meet at the outset is providing seamless connectivity between home and overseas sites.
One solution is Global Connect, a new service which is already successfully linking UK institutions with branch campuses in Malaysia and Malta, providing students and staff with the connectivity they expect.
Global Connect will ensure students can access course materials in real time, and not be waiting for better bandwidth out of hours.
Esther Wilkinson, head of international at Jisc, said:
"We know from the student digital experience tracker, a recent survey of more than 22,000 UK students, that 80% of HE students believe reliable wifi to be critical to accessing digital services. With TNE, the connectivity needs of students are no less, and these students are more likely to be reliant on virtual learning environments, powered by their internet service.
"Our members know how important it is to get the learning environment right and to deliver a seamless experience, which is why we’re launching both services now."
Designed to reduce the risks and challenges of working internationally, the service:
- Provides advice and guidance to optimise connectivity and integrate IT operations across global sites
- Removes many of the headaches of working across time zones and borders
- Saves HE institutions time and money
Esther Wilkinson added:
"The Janet Network, is one of the only national research and education networks (NREN) and internet service providers (ISP) in the world to offer dedicated services to support transnational education. We are encouraged by the ongoing requests for collaboration and look forward to working closely with in-country NRENs to deliver these new quality services to members."
The Global Connect and Global Partnership services were developed as pilot projects with Jisc members, through the TNE support programme. More services will be developed through this process to support UK higher education institutes with their ongoing TNE needs. The current TNE licensing pilot, which is due to finish in July 2018, will launch as a further new service shortly after.
For further information about these services, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Esther Wilkinson and Richard French will be running a GÉANT-supported Special Interest Group meeting and a stand at TNC18, where delegates can find out more about Jisc’s work in supporting transnational education.