Keynote sessions

International education: Perspectives from the university sector

Speaker: Professor Catherine Montgomery

The landscape of international higher education is changing fast in response to, and alongside, the geopolitical and geosocial global transformations we are witnessing. Against the context of UK-Brexit disarray and increasing isolationism in the USA, China is attracting international students from across East Asia, sources of students traditionally bound for ‘the West.’

Drawing on both theoretical perspectives and the practical experience of the presenter, this session will illustrate some of the complexities of contemporary international higher education and will highlight the fact that, despite being driven by the market and global rankings, international higher education is also influenced by its history and its communities, and universities are building relationships on local traditions that support the development of their collaborations.

The centrality of knowledge in 21st century education

Speaker: Dr Conrad Hughes

In this session we will first explore some of the popular contemporary discourses on 21st century education centred on skills, before turning to the type of knowledge we should consider in today's world of volatility, uncertainty, complexity and ambiguity.

The aim of this session is to reflect on the role of knowledge in cognition, the relationship between knowledge and skills, and what might be considered life-worthy knowledge in a 21st century curriculum.

Teaching as curation

Speaker: Robert Harrison

Teaching is essential, complex and political…and so attracts to itself all manner of explanatory metaphors. Are we sages, guides, coaches, facilitators, scientists, artists, actors, designers, architects, conductors, or project managers? Or might we better understand ourselves as curators, not of information and resources, but of then/now/not-yet relational possibilities, or in other words, of the world to come?

This keynote will address these issues in how they relate to IB educators and researchers.

Research on the IB programme: What we know and what we need to know

Speaker: Bradley Shrimpton

Set against the backdrop of the IB 50th anniversary, this keynote will map out the past decade of IB research to document the topics that have been explored most and those that appear to have been explored least in academic, graduate and commissioned research on IB programmes.

Consideration will be also given to what types of methodologies and sampling approaches have been used in this body of research, to determine if certain trends and gaps can be seen. The aim of this mapping, sorting and sifting will be to pinpoint where research on IB programmes is strongest, and to highlight under explored areas where further contributions can be made.

Speaker profiles

Professor Catherine Montgomery

Catherine Montgomery is Professor of International Higher Education in the Department of Education at the University of Bath. Her research focuses on internationalisation of higher education with a particular interest in transnational higher education in China and East Asia. Her most recent work focuses on transnational partnership in elite strategic alliances in Chinese and East Asian Higher Education and considers what this can tell us about the changing landscapes of global higher education.

Catherine has recently been appointed to the role of Academic Director of International Partnerships at the University of Bath. In this new role, she is leading the strategic development, coordination and delivery of worldwide partnerships for the university.

She has a visiting professorship at the Centre for Higher Education Internationalisation at the Catholic University of Milan, Italy a UK National Teaching Fellowship (2010) and strong and active collaborative research links with high ranking universities in China, Hong Kong, Vietnam and Mexico.

Dr Conrad Hughes

Dr Conrad Hughes is Campus and Secondary Principal at the International School of Geneva, La Grande Boissière, the oldest international school in the world. He has been school principal, Director of Education, IB DP Coordinator and philosophy teacher in schools in Switzerland, France, India and the Netherlands.

Conrad holds a PhD in English literature and is currently completing an EdD at Durham University on the relationship between prejudice and education. His research interests also include 21st century education, critical thinking, international education and assessment.

He is the author of numerous articles in peer-reviewed journals, and led the publication of Guiding Principles for Learning in the 21st Century with UNESCO. His latest book, Understanding Prejudice and Education: The Challenge for Future Generations, was published in 2017 by Routledge. His next book, Seven Challenges for Education in the 21st Century, will be published by Brill in September 2018.

Robert Harrison

Robert Harrison is Head of Middle Years Programme (MYP) Development with the International Baccalaureate. Before joining the IB as manager for global engagement, he worked as a special educator and teacher leader in U.S. public schools.

He led the 2012 review of the IB learner profile and implementation of the revised MYP curriculum framework. As part of the IB’s MYP: Next chapter programme board and MYP Assessment Steering Group, he led the academic development of MYP eAssessment. Robert was appointed adjunct faculty at George Mason University’s Center for International Education in 2007.

He is a contributor to popular and scholarly studies and a frequent presenter on international mindedness and middle level education. Robert also served as co-editor-in-chief of the IB Journal of Teaching Research and holds a PhD in ancient Near Eastern languages and literature from Duke University.

Bradley Shrimpton

Bradley Shrimpton is Head of Research at the International Baccalaureate, leading a department of research managers and specialist staff who explore the impact and value of IB education and ensure that IB programmes are informed by leading education theory and practice. The department is also responsible for the quality assurance of IB’s training and authorisation/evaluation services.

Previously Bradley was an evaluator, instructor and degree coordinator (chair) with the Melbourne Graduate School of Education, University of Melbourne, where he taught postgraduate subjects in program evaluation and mixed methods research.

His research work consists of more than 70 studies including international education research, health policy research and the evaluation of community level and state-wide health and education programmes. Bradley is the author or co-author of more than 50 refereed articles, book chapters and research reports, and he has received two Australasian Evaluation Society awards for excellence in Program Evaluation.