ERIC Number: ED368298
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1993-Sep
Reference Count: N/A
Equity or Equality? Students with Language Backgrounds Other Than English. Centre for the Study of Higher Education Research Working Papers, 93.8.
This paper reviews participation patterns of migrants, refugees, and permanent residents with language backgrounds other than English (LBOTE), at Australian universities in general, and the University of Melbourne in particular. It critically examines the effectiveness of current measures designed to improve the opportunities and university experiences of LBOTE students. Finally, the educational outcomes of this target group are considered in an attempt to establish whether equity policies actually facilitate equality in the case of LBOTE university students and what indicators can be used to gauge the effects of these policies. The report has four main findings: (1) it is important not to treat LBOTE people as a single set when considering the disadvantages they may experience and to maintain disaggregated data on these groups; (2) academic difficulties are caused both by language barriers and culturally-dissonant learning styles as well as the specific social pressures faced by the target groups; (3) students have difficulty accessing specialist provisions due to an overall fragmentation of equity initiatives between institutions, and sometimes within them; and (4) there is a dearth of documentation on the outcomes experienced by the target groups. Findings show that obstacles posed by conflicts between LBOTE students' home and educational cultures and by having to develop proficiency in academic language skills and adapt to new learning styles are disadvantages to many of these students. Contains 35 references. (GLR)
Descriptors: Academic Achievement, Access to Education, College Students, Cultural Differences, Cultural Influences, Equal Education, Ethnic Groups, Foreign Countries, Higher Education, Limited English Speaking, Minority Groups, Outcomes of Education, Special Needs Students, Undergraduate Study
Department Secretary, Centre for the Study of Higher Education, University of Melbourne, Parkville, Victoria 3052 Australia ($10 Australian).
Publication Type: Information Analyses; Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: Administrators; Teachers; Practitioners
Authoring Institution: Melbourne Univ. (Australia). Centre for the Study of Higher Education.
Identifiers: Australia; Diversity (Student); University of Melbourne (Australia)
Note: Paper prepared in the Centre for the Study of Higher Education's Master of Education course "Higher Education Institutions and Their Functions." For related documents, see HE 027 308-318.