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‘I can’t … I won’t?’ International students at the threshold of social interaction

Wright, C. and Schartner, A. (2013) ‘I can’t … I won’t?’ International students at the threshold of social interaction. Journal of Research in International Education, 12 (2). pp. 113-128. ISSN 1741-2943

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To link to this item DOI: 10.1177/1475240913491055


This mixed-method study tracked social interaction and adaptation among 20 international postgraduates on a 1-year programme in the UK, examining assumptions that language proficiency and interactional engagement directly underpin sociocultural adaptation. Participants remained frustrated by a perceived ‘threshold’ barring successful interaction with English speakers, while reporting reluctance to take up available opportunities, independent of language proficiency and sociocultural adaptation. We challenge linear models of adaptation and call for assistance to international students in crossing the threshold to successful interaction.

Item Type:Article
Divisions:No Reading authors. Back catalogue items
Arts, Humanities and Social Science > School of Literature and Languages > English Language and Applied Linguistics
ID Code:33232


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