Ever thought how an experience has improved your practice? Ever felt stressed because things aren’t working out as expected?

Welcoming Students (Video 22)


How can staff help international students to built their confidence and believe in their own ability? Here’s some ideas.

Language and Learning Skills Advisor (International Student Services, QUT):
When students come to me usually we’re working with their academic work and it’s quite a practical job to work with writing, and so on, making suggestions. When students come to me who have problems with practicum who’ve been referred for language work, I get some students who are referred for accent reduction or so on. I feel it’s a much more important role that I build their confidence. Usually while I don’t do this exclusively, we focus on what’s gone well, not what’s gone badly, and we build on that. And I try to make them more confident in what they are doing and to show them, that they can build on what they’ve done well and try not to worry too much on what’s gone wrong - as that may have been interpreted in different ways. So essentially yes, building, looking for solutions to clear problems, that’s the way I work really.

Programs Educator (International College, QUT):
So one of the strategies I use in classrooms to create a sense of friendliness and a sense that the students are not alone in what they’re dealing with is quite simple, it takes about five minutes at the end of a lecture and I just ask them to draw how they are feeling and write a sentence about what they drew and why they drew it. But the interesting thing is the following week at the beginning of the lecture I feed that back to them, so sometimes I put them up around the room or other times I’ll select what is a balance and I found that I usually get about 85 percent - this is in week five, of a thirteen week semester - will be feeling, I’ll get prisons and time clocks and people saying they want to sleep and feeling miserable generally, but I always get about 15 percent who have the more rainbow light at the end of the tunnels, sun peeping out from behind the cloud. And just feeding that back to them, I’ve found even in large groups of students, the students come to me at the end of semester, (I do reflective writing as well which is another strategy I use) but the students come to me and say “They sensed that I knew them” even though I didn’t “cause” there were 160 of them, and I have them one hour a week. So simple strategies, it may take five minutes that aren’t difficult for the staff member, actually have quite a profound effect on the students.

International Student Advisor (International Student Services, QUT):
I think students are very sensitive to the tone of voice and students read the body language very carefully because in many Asian countries, for example; they read body language first before they open their mouth. So sometimes they read the body language here incorrectly so they read a different message than was intended really.

Programs Educator (International College, QUT):
Talking to the students and saying “Yes, that’s huge, yes, suddenly not being as successful as you thought you were going to be is something you’re going to face and I can’t take that away”. Just saying “I can’t change that, that something, that is part of the deal you’ve chosen to come here, and I’ll support you in any way I can and you will be dealing with huge changes in your life”.

Clinical Facilitator (School of Nursing and Midwifery, QUT):
I would like the students to know that we want them to be registered nurses, and we want them to be good registered nurses, we want to help them, we’re not there to stop them achieving their goal, we want to help them achieve their goal.