Carrots and sticks: The impact of compliance on international student experience

Dr Paula Durance1

1Director, International Education Knowledgebase

The new National Code 2018 has been in force for almost a year and its implementation has followed familiar processes. However, the relationship of compliance to international student is yet to be examined. With Compliance and Student Support systems operating from different viewpoints, have we settled into a ‘benign conflict’ between these areas, especially in large institutions? What is required to link Compliance obligations with a positive student experience? How do we empower students in their help-seeking across the complex aspects of diversity, study, work and life? How do we encourage Compliance and Student Support teams to create supportive professional networks? This session explores the little-discussed consequences of the institution’s National Code obligations on international students. It selects specific standards and real student cases to frame the rules as opportunities for improving aspects of international student support.


Paula Durance is currently a Director of International Education Knowledgebase, an online repository of resources and advisory services for international education professionals, education providers and professional groups. As an advocate for professional development and training in the sector, Paula has worked in research, resource development and international student support programs for over two decades. Between 2004-2013, Paula led the development and delivery of the Education Agent Training Course (EATC), the Diploma of International Education Services, the online International Student Leadership Program (ISLP) and directed the Australian Government funded I’m not Australian but I have an Australian Story for the Council of International Students Australia. She has taught in universities, the VET sector and in schools, and has managed international education programs.

Her doctoral research focused on the experiences of international students in Melbourne. She is a life member of ISANA: International Education Association and a former national President.