International uni sport curriculum

The global sport industry is estimated to be worth over $400 billion AUD, however, most students studying sports management remain nationally focused and can often lack wider international awareness and career aspirations.

sportTo address the knowledge gap, a joint study undertaken by La Trobe University and the University of Worchester, UK, has found that internationalising sport management curriculum is an important element of education for students to enter the global sport industry.

Dr Emma Sherry, Senior Lecturer at La Trobe’s Centre for Sport and Social Impact (CSSI) and colleagues conducted a case study with students from Australia and the UK collaborating on a project focused on the Olympics, specifically the 2000 Sydney and 2012 London games.

‘Internationalisation of the sport industry has resulted in a demand for integration of international perspectives into the sport management higher education curriculum, to produce graduates capable of working within this rapidly developing global industry,’ says Dr Sherry.

‘The study highlighted the need for education programmes to recognise sport’s movement into a global market and hence consider providing students with the competency to compete for positions within the industry on a global scale.’

Both Olympics provided a clear focus to the project as students were told to consider different national policies and practices dealing with sport development and government. The project concluded with a 15-minute presentation by student groups across both universities.

Video podcasts and web-based teaching spaces were used in order for students and staff to communicate—a highly effective mode of delivery demonstrated through positive student feedback.

‘The results of this study highlight that there are benefits to internationalising curriculum at the classroom level with an encouraging amount of positive student feedback.

‘If we are to address the call for internationally aware sport managers and develop graduates capable of working in the global arena that is the sports industry, we as sport management academics need to address how we internationalise our curriculum,’ says Dr Sherry.

‘As a result of our experience, we are working on staff-development initiatives within our respective institutions to support future internationalisation projects.’

The study—Internationalisation of the Sport Management Curriculum: Academic and Student Reflections—was originally published in the Journal of Studies in International Education and is available on request.

For more information or to arrange an interview please contact:

Meghan Lodwick

La Trobe University Communications Officer

T:  03 9479 5353 M:  0418 495 941 E: