Challenges for Global Learners: A Qualitative Study of the Concerns and Difficulties of International Students

  • Chetanath Gautam Stephen F. Austin State University, United States
  • Charles L. Lowery Ohio University, United States
  • Chance Mays Mt. Enterprise High School, United States
  • Dayan Durant Stephen F. Austin State University, United States
Keywords: global learners, higher education, identity, international studies, language

Abstract

The authors in this study seek to inform academia about international students’ experiences and challenges while attending universities in Small Town USA. Despite their eagerness to study in the United States (U.S.), international students are faced with setbacks that many universities fail to recognize or realize. The researchers conducted in-depth interviews with a purposive sample of students using questions based on information from the literature and an initial survey. The themes that emerged from the data analysis were language, jobs/finances, transportation, assimilation, religious interactions, and identity. Findings emphasize the imperative to understand the challenges these students face as they continue their educational journeys in the United States.

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Author Biographies

Chetanath Gautam, Stephen F. Austin State University, United States

CHETANATH GAUTAM, Ed.D., serves as a post-doctoral research associate at Stephen F. Austin State University. He also holds the Masters of Philosophy in Educational Leadership from Kathmandu University and the Ed.D. from Stephen F. Austin State University. He was named a UCEA Barbara Jackson Scholar in 2013. His research interests include global educational studies, educational leadership for social justice and democracy, and educational experiences of international students as well as diverse groups of learners.

Charles L. Lowery, Ohio University, United States

CHARLES L. LOWERY, Ed.D., is an assistant professor in Educational Studies at Ohio University. He holds the M.Ed. in Educational Administration from Stephen F. Austin State University and an M.S. in Instructional Design and Technology from Walden University. He earned his Ed.D. in Educational Leadership from Stephen F. Austin State University. His research interests include educational leadership for social justice as well as perceptions and challenges of marginalized individuals in educational settings. 

Chance Mays, Mt. Enterprise High School, United States

CHANCE D. MAYS, Ed.D., currently serves as the High School Principal at Mount Enterprise High School in East Texas. He holds the Ed.D. from Stephen F. Austin State University. His main research interests include educational philosophy, including the role of democracy in education and society, with an emphasis on the role experiences play in education, as well as moral philosophy, virtue ethics, and their relevance to practicing educational leaders in modern society. 

Dayan Durant, Stephen F. Austin State University, United States

DAYAN G. DURRANT, has been a student in the Educational Leadership doctoral program at Stephen F. Austin State University for the past three years. He currently serves a Career and Technology Education educator and researcher. His research interests include not only his professional field but also school district consolidation as well as politics and policy and it impact on social justice. 

Published
2016-04-01
How to Cite
Gautam, C., Lowery, C. L., Mays, C., & Durant, D. (2016). Challenges for Global Learners: A Qualitative Study of the Concerns and Difficulties of International Students. Journal of International Students, 6(2), 501-526. Retrieved from https://www.ojed.org/index.php/jis/article/view/368
Section
Research Articles