Culture Shock and Adaptation

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Abstract: This report is written on culture shock and adaptation of an international student in China during the period from September 01, 2018 to December 15, 2018. This is the self-case study research and my own experience in china. The findings and recommendations have positive implications to the international students those who are normally nervous and hesitated to enter into a new foreign culture to pursue higher studies for a long period of time.

Keywords: Culture shock, China, international student


Intercultural Shock Experienced by the International Students For the sake of answering the question, this study explains the unhappiness issues as the forms of intercultural shock by conducting survey from some of my friends and focus group discussion. This study concise the answers in this regard are specified below: Food culture shock: Chinese use chop stick to take food and cooking food mostly boiled and less spicy items. The big problem was finding halal food. Language shock: Newness with fresh symbolic environment and confusion while communicating with other classmates those who are multilingual and multicultural people with dissimilar accents of English. Educational shock: Difficult to purchase text books.

Official documentation arrangement difficulties: More time to documentation and different office administration demanded different requirements. Accommodation arrangement difficulties: Expensive accommodation and dormitory with sharing room. Shopping hassles: Firstly at the very beginning of his new life in China I did not able find the required shopping malls. Difficulty of performing religious activities: I did not perform important religious activities, like, Jummah prayer (Friday prayer) etc. Culture shock in exchanging greetings: All people including the foreign students in China use both hands while greeting and exchanging things but the sojourner uses only right hand (using right hand means more honour to others). Difficulties with newness of places and unfamiliarity of transportation systems: Newness of places and unfamiliarity of transportation systems. Difficulties in thesis writing and other research works: Difficulties in thesis writing and other research works.

Possible Intercultural Adaptation Strategies

For the sake of answering the research/case question, this study identifies the possible intercultural adaptation strategies taken by the international students/research participants of this study through conducting questionnaire sample survey and focus group discussion. This study summarized the findings in this regard are stated below: Separation strategy for adapting food culture: Cooking own preferable and cultural food, bringing special cultural food items from own country and bringing lunch box while needed during office time. Integration strategy for adapting language shock: Using nonverbal components like gestures with hands, head, facial expression, and mobile apps like Baidu Translate, Pleco. Harmonious relationship strategy for adapting academic and research works, official documentation and accommodation: Global standard interactive class by showing more academic videos, analysing more world-wide cases, completing group assignments and group discussion in a class and honourable professors extended their friendly and cooperative behaviours of encouragement, inspiration, supervision and guidance to write research papers while pursuing higher degrees.

The university authority specifically the school of International Education and school of Software Engineering arranged a number of company visits, study tours, orientation programs for the international students. Chinese guide and friends helped more about official documentation and about searching accommodation at a cheaper price. Collaborative strategy for adapting shopping: Group of foreign students including me went to marketplaces and enjoyed a convenience shopping. Synergy strategy for adapting religious activities: Making friends with people from same country and same religion and bring religious cloths to perform prayer. Integration strategy for adapting greetings: Using own custom and learning new custom and believing in global culture. Assimilation strategy for adapting transportation services: University authority arranged company visits and study tours and using digital location map, Guangzhou metro map, MetroMan software and using smart card to pay fare.

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Culture Shock and Adaptation. (2019, Aug 07). Retrieved July 13, 2024 , from

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