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Afterword Rethinking the Notion of Chinese Students Abroad: The Need for a New Research Agenda

Xiangyun Du

With the increasing growth of its population, Chinese students and scholars abroad have received growing research attention in the past years. This volume responds to the need to understand how Chinese teachers and students overseas face the challenge of teaching and learning in a context that is different from that to which they are accustomed. It assembles research by a group of scholars from different backgrounds and disciplines in education. Their studies have examined teaching and learning in diverse intercultural contexts. Contributors have used diverse approaches to analyse student learning, pedagogy practice, and teacher learning in the global context. They have made significant contributions by addressing the following aspects: How do the intercultural experiences of the Chinese students and scholars improve their personal development in becoming global citizens? How do the individual development processes contribute to the new knowledge creation process in the society of the host countries as well as impact the Chinese society in the global context?

The volume is unique in two aspects. Firstly, instead of only looking into students as the target group, it embraces studies on Chinese teachers and scholars working abroad, which is a less common research area. This inclusion not only opens up the field of the Chinese learner to a broader group, but also contributes fresh input to the overall discussion of diversity and complexity in the field of intercultural learning and education. Secondly, although the volume focuses on Chinese students and scholars abroad, it raises questions that prompt researchers to examine learning, interculturality, and change, with broad implications for education in diverse social and cultural contexts. In this way, the teaching and learning experiences of Chinese students, teachers, and scholars are related to a broader social transformation in the development of the knowledge society and in the process of globalisation.

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