Home > Global Education, Higher Education, Teaching & Learning > Steps to Support International Student Success

Steps to Support International Student Success

By Daniel Fusch

The Chronicle of Higher Education’s recent article “The China Conundrum” draws attention to the challenges both institutions of higher education and students from China are facing — including not only language barriers and obstacles to the recruiting and enrollment process but also differing cultural expectations around student/faculty roles, intellectual property and knowledge-sharing, and the nature of academic research. The secondary education system in China is not designed to prepare students for an American university, and most students receive little pre-arrival preparation for integration into the American college experience.

While these differing expectations are increasingly well-documented, there has been little treatment of the broader issue of acculturation. International students pursuing an undergraduate degree in the US not only are participating in a new and challengingly different classroom experience; they are also living and adapting to a new country and a challengingly different surrounding culture — with limited support in learning how to navigate American culture, establish social and professional friendships, or draw upon local and campus resources effectively. A preliminary survey conducted earlier this year by three researchers — Peter Mather, an Ohio University assistant professor of higher education and student affairs; Bethany Schweitzer, a recent Ohio University doctoral graduate; and Gunter Morson, head of higher education and careers at England’s CATS College — confirmed that while most international students feel welcomed and at home on their college campuses, many have a low sense of belonging in the US generally and face challenges in making the transition to American culture. These same students voice concern over the lack of support from the institution in making that transition.

Continued at: http://www.academicimpressions.com/news.php?i=246&q=10076m401869aS

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