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Education Research International
Volume 2015, Article ID 202753, 9 pages
Research Article

International Student’s Challenge and Adjustment to College

1Texas A&M University-San Antonio, San Antonio, TX 78224, USA
2Texas A&M University-Kingsville, Kingsville, TX 78363, USA

Received 14 September 2014; Revised 30 December 2014; Accepted 15 January 2015

Academic Editor: David Neumann

Copyright © 2015 Hsiao-ping Wu et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


International students’ enrollment in higher education in the US has expanded considerably in the last decades. In this study, international students’ experiences were examined in academic and sociocultural settings. Through qualitative interviews, the findings revealed that international students deal with academic challenges, social isolation, and cultural adjustment. Specifically, academic challenges included communication with professors, classmates, and staff. Consequently, they have to deal with social isolation when engaging in different group activities. Culturally, they need to confront the different ways of thinking and doing in the US. In order to overcome these challenges, students have adopted resources that mainly are derived from the university to overcome these challenges. Thus, as demonstrated in this study, having a better understanding of these students’ academic challenges, university faculty and staff can recognize students’ needs and effectively offer supportive campus resources and services. The university needs to be prepared to meet students not only academically but also socially and culturally. This study also suggests that some preparations need to be made by the university that will embrace international students upon their arrival.