Taking the ‘Glocal’ approach to career development

University of London advises on why a ‘global meets local’ approach to learning may be the best combination for aspiring executives
Students studying for distance learning qualification
Today’s technologies enable people across the world to collaborate and to learn from each other without being in the same place
Today, a learning environment that provides the opportunity to understand and feel comfortable in international situations can be achieved without the need to actually live in a foreign country

More and more organisations are taking a global perspective on their business. The World Trade Organisation forecasts global trade to grow by 4.7%, more than double the rate of the previous year, and to grow even faster in 2015. Globalisation brings opportunities but also complexity for those working in organisations that operate across borders.

The percentage of higher education students who have studied in a country that is not their own is only 2% and has remained the same for many years. So how can managers develop the skills and competencies to be comfortable operating across cultures?

Borderless Masters programmes

Postgraduate study offers a route for managers to build on their degree level studies, to learn skills at a deep level and to apply theories and practices to new situations, which are invaluable attributes in complex international businesses.

To be prepared for the global world, executives need a learning environment that provides the opportunity to understand and feel comfortable in international situations. Today, this can be achieved without the need to actually live in a foreign country. It is 25 years since the introduction of the worldwide web, and its impact on supporting the internationalisation of education has been enormous. The British Council (the UK government funded body that promotes UK education globally) estimates that 600,000 people are studying in their own country for a UK qualification, which is overtaking the numbers studying abroad in a different country for a UK qualification.

The delivery of Masters programmes by online learning provides opportunities for students to access the expertise of some of the top universities in the world for their subject of interest, without leaving their home country. For example, students worldwide can study on a Masters developed by the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, a College of the University of London which has just been named as the world’s leading research-focused graduate school. They could choose to study on a graduate laws programme developed by UCL and Queen Mary – Colleges of the University of London that are internationally recognized for their laws teaching.

Collaborating without boundaries

Today’s technologies enable people across the world to collaborate and to learn from each other without being in the same place. One of the particular features about studying for a University of London degree by distance and online learning is that students interact using dedicated online forums to discuss the concepts in the course and so can  come to understand the perspectives of other cultures.

Try a taster for free

There is also the opportunity to trial taster programmes free of charge from influential universities through a Massive Online Open Course (MOOC) platform. University of London has partnered with Coursera to enable people  to study a number of short courses that have been derived from the portfolio of programmes offered by the University of London International Programmes or developed by academics from amongst the University of London’s eighteen federal Colleges.

Find out more about the University of London MOOCs.

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