Colleges and universities in the United States and in other countries are admitting and educating an increasing number of international students. This trend creates both challenges and opportunities for modern higher education. While much of the early scholarship focused on understanding the various academic and social challenges faced by international students, both researchers and practitioners have recently shifted their focus to program development and assessment. This paper, then, examines a specialized first-year seminar course, which includes an out-of-class engagement component that allows international students to interact directly with host country peers. The course and the engagement component were designed to address the transitional academic and social needs of international students. More specifically, this is a report on a three-year study of cohorts of first-semester international students (N = 58) which examined the effectiveness of the specialized first-year seminar within a framework of intercultural communication. The results show that the program was not only a way to support students’ transition to the university, but also facilitated their development of intercultural communication competence.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Cultural Studies