This research project aims to improve interpersonal communication between international students and their host families. Existing research and data shows that students can have a difficult time adjusting to their life abroad, whether it be within their host home or within the institution they are studying at. This can greatly affect their overall studying abroad experience and can affect the way they communicate with the members of their host family. Factors like the student’s academic performance in school and behavior in school may be affected as well. Identifying the issues that contribute to a negative experience in a host family’s home will provide study abroad programs, institutions connected with study abroad programs, host families and the international students themselves with the tools they need that are necessary to improve the overall communication within a host family and international student home. I will collect data from students in the California State University system studying abroad in three different locations: Spain, Japan and Costa Rica. I will also present a proposed questionnaire that would need to get approved by the Institutional Review Board (IRB) if I actually went through with this plan, I will include the link to the website to get that done below. My initial research showed that these are the most popular study abroad destinations among college students in California. I will dig in deep to track and identify the positive and negative elements of the study abroad experience that affect the behavior and communication between the international students and their host family. I will look into the students that returned from the program as well. This method will provide a deeper, more personable understanding of what aspects of the program, from the student’s perspective, and can be improved to increase the communication between these two parties. This collection of data, with recommendations, will be given to the California State University system, the international programs, and the participating host families in hopes of improving the quality of the travel abroad experience for international CSU students, and more specifically the communication they have with their host family.
Sojourner, Imagined Community, Organizational Competence, Pragmatic Competence, Schema Theory