Creative Practice as a Catalyst for Developing Connectedness Capabilities

A Community Building Framework from the Teaching International Students Project




creative practice, ecologies, reflection, WIL and international students


Focusing on a section of the Teaching International Students (TIS) project this article captures student and mentor perspectives within a Project-Based Professional Experience (PBPE) in the context of a large research-intensive university in Sydney, Australia. Animations co-produced with students were part of a Work Integrated Learning (WIL) compulsory upper-level course, leading to a ‘Community Building Framework’. The research goal shifted the educational purpose from didactic physical placements to collaborative dynamics where students, including international students, staff, and industry perspectives were ‘valued’. Prioritizing intercultural learning ‘challenged’ contested attitudes and ‘built’ communities of practice in a workforce focused ecology. Findings emerged from reflective interchanges whilst working iteratively and collaboratively with students, to inform the PBPE online framework. 

Author Biographies

Kim Snepvangers, UNSW Sydney: Art & Design, Australia

KiIM SNEPVANGERS, PhD, is an Associate Professor at UNSW Faculty of Art & Design and a Scientia Education Academy (SEA) Fellow. Kim is also a Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (SFHEA), and an award-winning educational leader in arts-based educational leadership research, Work Integrated Learning (WIL) and professional practice in creative ecologies. In 2018 she won an Australian Award for University Teaching (AAUT) Citation for ‘Outstanding Contribution to Student Learning’ and the inaugural International Society for Education through Art (InSEA) Award for Excellence in Research in Education through Art (AEREtA). Email:

Arianne Rourke, UNSW Sydney: Art & Design, Australia

ARIANNE JENNIFER ROURKE, EdD, is an Associate Professor at The University of New South Wales, Sydney, Faculty of Art & Design, she is a Fellow of the UNSW Scientia Education Academy (SEA).  Arianne is also Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (SFHEA) and contributes her expertise on the editorial boards of six International education journals. Her research is in higher education visual pedagogies and professional practices. Recently she co-curated with Dr Vaughan Rees, an 8-book series titled: ‘Transformative Pedagogy in the Visual Domain’, published by Common Ground Research Networks that received the 2018 Publisher’s Award of Excellence. Email:


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How to Cite

Snepvangers, K., & Rourke, A. (2020). Creative Practice as a Catalyst for Developing Connectedness Capabilities: A Community Building Framework from the Teaching International Students Project. Journal of International Students, 10(S2), 17–35.