|題名: ||THE ACCULTURATION PROCESS OF TAIWANESE EXCHANGE STUDENTS IN THE UNITED STATES|
|上傳時間: ||2009-09-14 09:52:01 (UTC+8)|
The Acculturation Process and Influence of Taiwanese Exchange Students in the United States. Major Professor: Dr. Lienti Bei & Dr. Sharon A. DeVaney.
With the increasing globalization of university education, the exchange programs among universities have become a hot topic that many students would be interested in. Every year thousands of exchange students from Taiwan select schools in the foreign countries, especial universities in the United States, as their exchange destination in order to learn foreign languages and to experience different cultures. Although the number of exchange students from Taiwan has been increasing annually, little research has investigated the acculturation process and reflections of exchange students in the host countries.
The objectives of this research was to take a first step in exploring the impacts on Taiwan exchange students’ learning attitudes and socialization to the new culture that encountered during their study in the US. In addition, to understand the transition of students’ learning attitude and cross-culture adjustment that took place from their arrival in the United States to returning to their home countries. Therefore, three central questions was first generated to form the core of this study :1) What are the differences in class between the participants’ home universities and host universities? 2) What are the culture differences between the participants’ home country and host country? 3) How did the participants adjust themselves to fit into the different situations and how do they feel about the adjustment?
The acculturation process and transition of exchange students’ learning attitude was examined here with a phenomengical and experimental research design. In order to understand thoroughly the exchange students’ learning and acculturation experiences in the US, this study arranged in-depth interviews with eight exchange student who had their exchange experiences in the US. Based on Hofestede’s four dimensions of culture and the differences between Socratic learning and Confucian learning, the study structured the research questions for the in-depth interviews. In addition, a questionnaire amended according to Hofestede’s four dimensions of culture was distributed to 26 former or prospective exchange students who selected for study at the universities in the US as a support data.
Through the in-depth interviews and the analysis of questionnaire, the study found that interactions between professors and students in American classes are much higher than those in Taiwanese classes. This came from not only the differences of culture but also instructional arrangements of classes in American universities. The lower distance of American culture and the encouragement to the in class interaction did promote the exchange students’ participation in the US. In addition, given that the exchange students’ higher inclination and preferences to American or western culture and learning methods, they are more likely to have integrative or bicultural strategies to proceed their studies in the US.
In sum, the study showed that exchange students rarely encounter problems of cultural adjustments, learning barriers or lack interpersonal communication that took place among students who pursue degrees in the US. Many of the exchange students maintained their original cultural identities and characteristics for expression in appropriate contests, such as collectivist relationship with classmates; however, they could also add a new behavioral repertoire to participate in American culture. Therefore, the study anticipates that exchange students integrated both the Confucian and the Socratic learning approaches and performed even better by American academic standards.
LIST OF FIGURES iv
LIST OF TABLES v
Statement of Purpose 3
REVIEW OF LITERATURE 5
Conceptual Development 5
Culture Differences 7
Power Distance 8
Uncertainty Avoidance 9
Individualism and Collectivism 10
Masculinity and Femininity 11
Learning Differences 11
METHODS AND PROCEDURES 13
Characteristics of Qualitative Research 13
Socially Constructed Knowledge Claims 14
The Researcher’s Role 15
The Research Setting 16
Selection of Site 16
Participants Recruiting Process 16
Interview Process 17
Ethical Considerations 18
Data Collection Procedures 18
Primary Data 18
Secondary Data 19
Qualitative Analysis 20
Phenomenological Approach Design 20
Constant Comparative Analysis 21
FINDINGS AND DISCUSSIONS 22
An Overview of Participant’s Background 22
Purpose of Exchange Study 25
In Class and Living Experiences 30
Power Distance 30
In Class Interaction 30
Uncertainty Avoidance 36
In Class Interaction 36
Trust in American Society 38
Individualism and Collectivism 42
In Class Interaction 42
Friendship in the United States 45
In Class Exercise & Developing the Team Project 47
Masculinity and Femininity 51
In Class Competition 53
Sports is Important to Americans’ Life 56
Adjustment to Fit in the Learning/ Culture Difference57
SUMMARY, CONCLUSIONS AND IMPLICATIONS 62
Summary of Finding and Conclusions 62
Instructional Implications 68
Academic Implications 69
Limitations and Future Research 70
LIST OF REFERENCES 74
Appendix A: Consent Form for Exchange Students 79
Appendix B: Structured Interview Questions 82
Appendix C: In-Depth Interview Participant’s Data 84
Appendix D: Exchange Report on the website 88
Appendix E: Questionnaire Analysis 91
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