Problematizing Studying in America for International Students

Problematizing Studying in America for International Students


For many learners, studying abroad is one of their biggest dreamssince they get a chance to experience a different culture. They alsointeract with other students and travel to different places.America’s education system is a preference of many internationalstudents for its engaging tutors and a friendly system that allowsfor continuity and comprehensive development. It is common to havethrongs of international students reporting in various colleges anduniversities with an unconcealed enthusiasm. However, is being aninternational student problematic in America?

Maybe, since English is not a first language to a significant numberof international students studying in the United States, they have aproblem in getting along with the other students due to languagebarrier. Lessons in the United States schools are in English, apartfrom a few exceptions for international languages (Özturgut andMurphy 377). Some schools may offer basic language skills t thestudents but the acute transition in the students’ education lifemay not give them time to acquire Standard English before commencingtheir learning.It is conventional knowledge that many schoolsoffer basic skills to the students. However, the problem arises inthe time allocated to students to learn the language. But, are theydoing enough to teach the international students more than the BasicEnglish skills?The schools do not render enough time to study thelanguage bearing in mind that learning a new language might take aconsiderable amount of time.

It is also possible that the students have a difficult time when theymove into the United States due to the change of culture. They losetouch with their original practices, and they have to adapt to thehighly charged American culture (Özturgut and Murphy 376). They maylean on the education system to facilitate a smooth transition.However, does the education system that they associate with does notgive them a chance to blend in the process of their learning? Theculture shock experienced by the international students may havefar-reaching effects on their social and academic life. Two majorpossible reasons manifest themselves. First, the educationenvironment may not grant them a chance to learn more about theAmerican way of doing things it assumes that they have acquaintancewith it. Secondly, the institutions assume that they acquaintthemselves with it immediately after moving into the country. Theproblem may further worsened by the inability of the educationalsystem to create a conducive environment for learning the newculture.

The students’ level of social interaction may determine theirexcellence in academic performance. Education in America extendsbeyond the classroom activities, and students interact a lot in bothclasses and extra-curricular activities (Özturgut and Murphy 375).Students form study groups, and they assist each other in solvingvarious problems. Would this pose a challenge to internationalstudents? Since they are a new culture, do the native students do notaccept them freely as study partners? The method of learning islikely to have adverse effects on the general performance of thesestudents and level of satisfaction. The students may get along withothers in due time after learning the English language and theAmerican way of doing things. They can also benefit from thefacilitation given by their respective schools.

In conclusion, studying in America is a problem for manyinternational students. It would be constructive to determine theeffects of non-acquaintance with the English language on performanceand social interactions. A skeptical observer would also question therole of the education system in helping the learners fit into the newsystem of education with ease. Finding answers to the inquiries wouldhelp in understanding the everyday life of an international studentin America.

Work Cited

Özturgut, Osmanand Murphy, Carole. “Literature vs. Practice: Challenges forInternational Students in the U.S.” International Journal ofTeaching and Learning in Higher Education ( 22), 3, 374-385,2009. Print.