Satisfiers and Dissatisfiers for International Vocational Education Students

A Case Study Using Narrative Frames




dissatisfiers, international student satisfaction, narrative frames, satisfiers


While the satisfaction of international students is frequently surveyed, much of this research is based on a very limited range of closed-item data collection methods, producing findings that partially reflect the researchers’ assumptions in designing the survey items. Recognizing the potential value in using methods that are more open-ended and qualitative analyses, the present study employed narrative frames and follow-up interviews to explore the satisfiers and dissatisfiers for international vocational education students at one institution in New Zealand. Reporting on perceptions of the class, institution, and community, the findings identify the participants’ top-of-mind (dis)satisfiers and complement the existing literature by identifying seldom-reported themes. Discussion of issues in analyzing narrative frames is also provided.

Author Biographies

Jonathon Ryan, Wintec, New Zealand

JONATHON RYAN, PhD, is a Principal Academic Staff Member in the Centre for Languages at Wintec. His major research interests lie in the areas of reference, pragmatics, miscommunication, and practitioner research. 

Michael Rabbidge, Hankuk University of Foreign Studies, South Korea

Michael Rabbige, PhD, is an assistant professor in the Department of English Education at Hankuk University of Foreign Studies, South Korea. His major research interests lie in the area of identity research, EFL/ESL higher education research, and translanguaging. 

Yi Wang, Wintec, New Zealand

YI WANG, PhD, is an Academic Staff Member in the Centre for Languages at Waikato Institute of Technology. Her major research interests lie in the area of learner autonomy, teacher cognition, reflective practice, and bicultural teacher identity.

Jenny Field, Wintec, New Zealand

JENNY FIELD, MPhil, is a teacher/researcher in the Centre for Languages at the Waikato Institute of Technology. Her major research interests are in second language learning with beginner and limited L1 literacy learners and learner autonomy


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How to Cite

Ryan, J., Rabbidge, M., Wang, Y., & Field, J. (2019). Satisfiers and Dissatisfiers for International Vocational Education Students: A Case Study Using Narrative Frames. Journal of International Students, 9(3), 795–814.



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