ERIC Number: ED410599
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1997-Apr
Too Far To Go Home for the Weekend--A German Student in the United States of America: An Undergraduate Woman Student's Experience.
Bunz, Ulla K.
International students from western European countries attending American universities often face severe culture shock in the areas of education and personal development. The four stages of culture shock are the honeymoon stage, crisis stage, recovery stage, and the adjustment stage. Culture shock can be overcome by finding out about the new culture, learning the basics of the language, observing carefully, tolerating differences, and developing flexibility. Educational shock comes from encountering differing educational systems, different power structures, and the need to use English 24 hours a day. Gaining new experiences and memories is an important step in overcoming culture shock and personal development shock. The majority of international students arrive in the United States without their family and have left their friends and natural support system behind. American ethnocentrism is one reason why undergraduate international and American students often do not make friends with each other. International communication majors are much more likely to overcome culture shock more easily and adjust to American ways less painfully. Members of the communication faculty are more likely to be concerned about international students because of their own research interests. There is no guarantee that culture shock will be overcome. Neither is there a guarantee that both Americans and international students will ever get used to each other's ways. (Contains 33 notes. Appendixes contain a story that contains hidden incidents that will seem normal to most Americans, but are strange for international students.) (RS)
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Southern States Communication Association (Savannah, GA, April 2-6, 1997).