Virtual On line
June 22, 2020
June 22, 2020
June 26, 2021
Role of Social Interaction in the Barriers facing First-Year International Students in the United States
Keywords: Social interaction, First-year, International students.
The International student population is on the rise in recent years. The United States (U.S.) has been historically considered the most popular destination; however, in the last years numbers of international students have declined. International students face several barriers when attending college in the U.S., and despite the existence of support systems they find the adaptation challenging. To address these concerns, it is important to first understand prevailing barriers facing international students in their first-year of study which signals the year of transition to a new social, cultural, and educational environment. This is essential to inform institutions and policy makers on ways to enrich educational experiences of international students for further attraction to institutions in the United States. The purpose of this study was to identify the barriers that international students face in their first years from a Sociocultural theory perspective. This theory offers a framework for dealing with barriers affecting first-year international students. The Theory provides a means for enhancing learning in a different context. It emphasizes that social interaction with consideration to role of social factors (eg. peer interaction, language, and culture) are fundamental in the development of adaptation. It also underpins that cognitive development differs between cultures. To better understand barriers facing first-year international students in the United States, we conducted semi-structured interviews with six first-year international students at a major research university. Participants were engineering students in their first-year in college from different countries. Data were analyzed based on thematic analysis using Dedoose data analysis software. Results provide a better understanding of the major barriers facing first-year international students including difficulties with: academics, social and emotional adaptability, cultural clashes, and relationship with domestic students. These are articulated in our paper including the implications for administrators, practitioners, and policy makers.
Woods , J. C., & Murzi, H., & Greene-Havas, M., & Diaz-Strandberg, A., & Vicente, S. (2020, June), Role of Social Interaction in the Barriers Facing First-year International Students in the United States Paper presented at 2020 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference Content Access, Virtual On line . 10.18260/1-2--35169
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