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ERIC Number: EJ1188235
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2018
Pages: 15
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0729-4360
Exploring the Complex and Non-Linear Evolution of Chinese International Students' Experiences in US Colleges
Heng, Tang T.
Higher Education Research and Development, v37 n6 p1141-1155 2018
This article contests the narrative of Chinese international students (internationals for short) as passive and problematic to reveal the complexity and fluidity of their experiences. Simultaneously, it troubles the overly linear approach of stage theory in understanding internationals' adjustment. Following nine first- and nine second-year students in US colleges over a year and involving them in semi-structured interviews and journal prompts, this research examined how they evolved. Findings show that while participants grew on academic and personal fronts, their experiences remained multi-dimensional, with second years being less sanguine and reporting challenges different from first years. This article argues that seeing Chinese internationals' evolution as an uneven ascent affords a more nuanced understanding compared to a U-shape stage theory as it recognizes that while internationals are evolving, new situations provide challenges which they learn to overcome. Consequently, Chinese internationals' growth troubles the deficit discourse around them and departs from pre-existing research around postgraduates. Findings spell implications for how the college community should enhance transcultural understanding and how future research around internationals could develop.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: China; United States
Identifiers - Assessments and Surveys: Test of English as a Foreign Language
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A