Satisfiers and dissatisfiers for international students: Improving the student experience

Ryan, Jonathon and Rabbidge, Michael (2018) Satisfiers and dissatisfiers for international students: Improving the student experience. CLESOL 2018, Christchurch, NZ, October 5th, 2018.

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Student satisfaction surveys are prevalent in international education, with insights informing the shape, direction, and marketing of education at institutional, national and international levels. Overwhelmingly, data collection involves Likert-scale questionnaires, whose main advantage is the opportunity to identify statistically robust trends across large populations. However, questionnaires are prone to producing seriously distorted findings due to the way that researchers’ assumptions are built into the design and selection of questions (Hammersley, 2008, p. 23), and given their frequency and tendency to recycle certain question foci, they may largely reinforce what has been already generally established, rather than break new ground and broaden future research agendas. The present study therefore aimed to explore satisfaction through more open data collection approaches, allowing for much greater participant nomination of the key issues, and much greater reporting of individuals’ voices. 110 students at one tertiary institution completed narrative frames specifying satisfying and dissatisfying aspects of their sojourning experience, and 20 of these participated in extended, open interviews. This presentation identifies critical factors among experiences in the classroom, the wider institution, and in the community, and from these identifies a number of recurring themes impacting on student satisfaction. From there, we present a number of recommendations relevant to improving student experience. Included among these are approaches to teacher professionalism and classroom climate, targeted provision of student support, managing risks, and mitigating difficulties arising from discrimination.

Item Type:Paper presented at a conference, workshop, or other event which was not published in the proceedings
Keywords that describe the item:International students; satisfaction
Subjects:L Education > L Education (General)
Divisions:Schools > Centre for Languages
ID Code:6486
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Deposited On:29 Dec 2018 22:36
Last Modified:29 Dec 2018 22:36

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