Mingya Zong

Document Type

Thesis - University Access Only

Award Date


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Department / School

Communication Studies and Theatre


Culture differs across countries. When a number of Chinese students come to American Universities, they would definitely encounter learning and living difficulties during their initial adaptation. Some students may have a short time to overcome the barriers, but some may have a longer time. This study is designed to identify their learning barriers and improve their host communication competencies. It poses the following hypothesis: Chinese students who have difficulties in adapting tend to overemphasize the importance of language skills, and at the same time, under appreciate the role of cultural differences in acquiring communicative competency. An in-depth interview combined with a narrative approach elicits the answers to two research questions: 1) how much does the awareness of cultural factors contribute to successful adaptation as compared to language competency? 2) how much influence have the cultural differences between China and America played on Chinese students as they acquire communication competency.

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Intercultural communication
Chinese students -- United States



Number of Pages



South Dakota State University