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ERIC Number: EJ893171
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2010-Aug
Pages: 16
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 31
ISSN: ISSN-0307-5079
A Model of Research Group Microclimate: Environmental and Cultural Factors Affecting the Experiences of Overseas Research Students in the UK
Walsh, Elaine
Studies in Higher Education, v35 n5 p545-560 Aug 2010
Researchers from outside the European Union represent an increasing proportion of the UK doctoral student body. However, relatively little research exists on their experience from their own perspective. This research, based on interviews with students from a range of countries and scientific and engineering disciplines, seeks to address that deficit. It looks in particular at the difficulties the researchers identified whilst undertaking doctoral study, which included isolation, a lack of integration with home students, cultural adjustment problems and ongoing language difficulties. Two important findings emerged: firstly, that research groups appear to exhibit a "microclimate" which is determined by factors including the style of the supervisor and the norms of social and work-related interaction. Groups with a more cohesive microclimate presented a more supportive environment. Secondly, evidence emerged of a widespread deficit in understanding of cultural issues. This, when combined with language difficulties, aggravated the problems experienced by the overseas students. (Contains 2 tables.)
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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: United Kingdom