Issues related to adjustment directly affect the success of international students on your campus. How do their needs differ from domestic students? Are international students able to make friends easily? Do international students from different countries require different services to help ease the adjustment process? These research studies address these types of questions.
As you read the studies, you might want to ask yourself about how the articles' analyses might be relevant to your own campus. Might your notion of "friendship" change because of this research? What internal studies of your campus population might support or challenge these results? What kind of study might you propose to do if your campus does not have this information?
These selections provide a sample of current research on this complex topic. Articles are listed with the most recent year first, then alphabetically.
- Abdullah, Doria, Mohd Ismail Abd Aziz, and Abdul Latiff Mohd Ibrahim. 2013. "A 'research' into international student-related research: (Re)Visualising our stand?" Higher Education, 67, 3, 235–253. doi:10.1007/s10734-013-9647-3 Abstract
- Abdullah et al. examine 497 articles in the field of international student research to identify common questions, themes, and theoretical frameworks that appear throughout the literature. The researchers identify the kinds of analysis used (quantitative, qualitative, mixed method, surveys etc.) and draw some observations about the nature of the research in general. For example, the study finds that more women now publish in the field of international education, more higher education publications publish articles in this area, various research methods are employed in the literature, and a relatively few number of the articles place their research in a particular theoretical framework.
- Glass, Chris R., Stephanie Buus, and Larry A. Braskamp. 2013. Uneven experiences: What's missing and what matters for today's international students. Chicago, IL: Global Perspective Institute, Inc. Full Text (207kb )
- This multiple-institution study reports on the results of the Global Perspective Inventory taken by 35,064 domestic students and 1,909 international students from 135 colleges and universities in the United States. It offers information on students' sense of community, faculty-student interactions, and global perspective by comparing international students from different countries to each other as well as comparing international with domestic students in general.
- Hotta, Jean, and Stella Ting-Toomey. 2013. "Intercultural Adjustment and Friendship Dialectics in International Students: A Qualitative Study." International Journal of Intercultural Relations 37 (5): 550–566. doi:10.1016/j.ijintrel.2013.06.00 Abstract
- The researchers of this case study of 20 students attending a 4-year university in southern California use both a questionnaire and interviews to explore how international students negotiate their identity and describe their friendships with students from different backgrounds. They frame their research using the identity negotiation theory which identifies different components of "identity dialectics." (p. 552).
- Gareis, Elisabeth (2012). Intercultural Friendship: Effects of Home and Host Region. Journal of International and Intercultural Communication, 5(4): 309–328. doi:10.1080/17513057.2012.691525 Abstract
- This multiple-institution study examines 454 undergraduate and graduate international students from different countries who study at one of 10 public universities in one of three regions in the United States: the non-metropolitan Southeast, the non-metropolitan Northeast, or the metropolitan Northeast. Gareis uses an online survey to reach students to find out from where they come, where they are studying, the number of friends they have, how satisfied they are with those friends, and from where those friends come. She concludes that both host country and home country impact the number of American friends international students have and also influence how satisfied those students are with those friendships.