Chinese students isolated

March 7, 1997

MOST Chinese students experience language and financial difficulties after arriving in Britain, a study has revealed.

Junying Zeng, a doctoral student at Leeds Metropolitan University, surveyed 135 students at 18 British universities and found 89 per cent had trouble understanding lectures, 8 per cent could hardly follow lectures, 28 per cent could understand but not take notes, and 37 per cent could understand between 20 and 60 per cent.

The study found 21 per cent reported extreme difficulty in expressing themselves in writing and more than a quarter had problems writing long essays.

Maeve Sherlock, executive director of UKCOSA: the Council for International Education, said Chinese students had more problems than other groups because of their very different language and pedagogical style. Just over a fifth found it hard to mix with other cultures and "felt like foreigners", while nearly a third mixed only with other Chinese nationals.

Writing in the Journal of International Education, Ms Zeng said some Chinese students blamed the British and other nationalities for not interacting with them.

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