A case study on the effects of campus climate to the cross-cultural norms of Taiwanese students

Author/s:

Chen, Yu-Li
Lunghwa University of Science and Technology, Taiwan, ROC (ylchen@mail.lhu.edu.tw)

Ching, Gregory S.*
Lunghwa University of Science and Technology, Taiwan, ROC (gregory_ching@yahoo.com)

Abstract:

The dawn of the age of globalization has brought forth the trend in cross-border mobility of population, more specifically for educational purposes, commerce, employment opportunities, and relocation. These phenomena fostered the development of a more diverse culture and multi-language global society. In Taiwan, an increase in international students is observed. In addition, the recent heightened volume of new migrant spouses has triggered the rise in emphasis on cross-cultural related researches. However, most studies are geared towards the cross-cultural adaptability of the visiting individual. In light of these issues, this case study details an empirical analysis of the cross-cultural norms of a host country’s individuals. Participants are 100 randomly selected English as Foreign Language (EFL) students of a Science and Technology University in Taiwan. The mixed-method research paradigm was adapted, with focus-group interviews accomplished to gather insights from Taiwanese students regarding the factors that influenced their cross-cultural flexibility. A survey questionnaire was then generated from the focus-group results and later administered to the participants. Descriptive data analyses were accomplished using the Statistical Package for the Social Sciences (SPSS) software, while the multivariate analysis method Structured Equation Modeling (SEM) was achieved using the Analysis of Moment Structures (AMOS) software to analyze the causal relationships between the students’ campus environment and cross-cultural norms. Results show that the students’ exposure to a cross-cultural accepting environment has greatly enhanced their cross-cultural sensitivity and flexibility. In addition, results of SEM show a significant path from the students’ campus environment, individual perspective, and cross-cultural flexibility. Implications suggest that EFL students in Taiwan should be exposed to more cross-cultural opportunities, in order to enhance their cross-cultural competencies.

Keywords: cross-cultural norm; cross-cultural adaptability; Structured Equation Modeling; EFL; Taiwan; mixed-method study

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.5861/ijrsp.2012.v1i1.4

*Corresponding Author