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ERIC Number: EJ1093899
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2015
Pages: 16
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0161-827X
Understanding Communication Dynamics among International and Domestic Students: A Case Study of a Global Living-Learning Community
San Antonio, Lani M.; Ofori-Dwumfuo, Cynthia
Journal of College and University Student Housing, v42 n1 p128-143 2015
The transitional needs of international students, often known as sojourners due to their temporary residential status, are often overlooked by housing professionals, as most residential life initiatives and programs focus heavily on first-year, second-year, and transfer student populations. In student services, the acculturation of international students is often left to offices dedicated to international student services and new student orientation. This study describes findings from a case study research project completed on a living-learning community that was specifically designed to help international study abroad students acculturate and transition to a midsize public research institution in the Southeast. Specifically, the study focused on understanding the communication dynamics that took place within a living-learning community and how these communication exchanges affect acculturation and intercultural maturity development. Participants included residents in an on-campus apartment complex that paired domestic and international students as roommates. Findings show that while participants utilized social media heavily to communicate, 87% of the respondents preferred face-to-face communication. Participants also noted that the two biggest communication challenges were language difficulties and the lack of cultural understanding/awareness. Understanding these challenges and how they impact successful acculturation and intercultural maturity development is explored. Finally, the study identifies various strategies that housing professionals can utilize to enhance the intercultural exchanges among international students, domestic students, and residential life staff in residential communities.
Association of College and University Housing Officers - International. 941 Chatham Lane Suite 318, Columbus, OH 43221. Tel: 614-292-0099; Fax: 614-292-3205; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A