Ambitious and Anxious:
How Chinese College Students Succeed and Struggle in American Higher Education
Keywords:Agency; Chinese International Undergraduate Students; Chinese Middle- and Upper-Middle Class; International Student Mobility; Politics of International Student Mobilities
Over the recent decade, the United States has witnessed a growing influx of self-funded Chinese international undergraduate students into its university campuses. Mainstream U.S. media accounts have tended to hold unexamined stereotypes about these international students. This essay review of Ambitious and Anxious: How Chinese College Students Succeed and Struggle in American Higher Educationhighlights the importance of exploring students’ agency in their pursuit of international education. The article points out that to better understand Chinese international undergraduate students’ ambition and anxiety, we must link their emotional and psychological burdens, their academic and social struggles, as well as their agency, to the changing national and international contexts where these students’ transnational mobility is situated. The essay also calls for the need for further research into the politics of international student mobilities.
Abelmann, N., & Kang, J. (2014). A fraught exchange? US media on Chinese international undergraduates and the American university. Journal of Studies in International Education, 18(4), 382-397.
Institute of International Education (2019). Leading places of origin fact sheets. https://www.iie.org/Research-and-Insights/Open-Doors/Fact-Sheets-and-Infographics/Leading-Places-of-Origin-Fact-Sheets
Liu, S. (2018). Neoliberal global assemblages: The emergence of “public” international high school curriculum programs in China. Curriculum Inquiry, 48(2), 203-219.
Liu, S. (2020). Neoliberalism, globalization, and “elite” education in China: Becoming international. New York: Routledge.
Ma, Y. (2020). Ambitious and Anxious: How Chinese College Students Succeed and Struggle in American Higher Education. Columbia University Press.
Marginson, S. (2014). Student self-formation in international education. Journal of Studies in International Education, 18(1), 6-22.
OECD (2019). Education at a Glance 2019: OECD Indicators. Paris: OECD Publishing. https://doi.org/10.1787/f8d7880d-en.
Waters, J. L. (2018). International education is political! Exploring the politics of international student mobilities. Journal of International Students, 8(3), 1459-1478.
How to Cite
Copyright (c) 2020 Journal of Interdisciplinary Studies in Education
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.