International Students at a Midwestern University: Gender, Stress, and Perceived Social Support

By Eun-Jun Bang, Andrew Muriuki and John Q. Hodges.

Published by The Diversity Collection

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

The United States is home to thousands of international students and many more come over each year. These students experience a lot of stress from multiple directions, from the moment they land in the US. A different education system, new cultural norms, and community integration issues are the most common factors of stress among international students. This study investigated the gender differences in the stress levels experienced by international students at a large Midwestern university. Stress has been associated with a number of psychological and physical distresses that affect people differently. There has been very little written about the effect of stress on gender. This study reviewed in-depth online survey data on the stress levels of international students. Out of 1300 international students at the university, 309 responded (23% response rate). The sample respondents were about evenly divided on gender, with females representing about 50.5 percent. The mean age for the sample is 27.61 (SD 5.837) years. The results showed that female international students experience more stress than male international students.

Keywords: International Students, Gender Differences, Stress

International Journal of Diversity in Organizations, Communities and Nations, Volume 8, Issue 4, pp.109-116. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 911.881KB).

Eun-Jun Bang

Research Assistant, School of Social Work, Asian Affairs Center, University of Missouri, Columbia, MO, USA

Research Assistant: School of Social Work, University of Missouri-Columbia . Research interests: immigration issues, international students mental health , spirituality and social work practice and alcohol abuse.

Dr Andrew Muriuki

Researcher, Center for Addiction and Behavioral Health Research, University of Wisconsin-MilWaukee, Milwaukee, WI, USA

Andrew Muriuki, Ph.D. UWM/CABHR Post-Doctoral fellow • Studying the health risks for Milwaukee residents and how these relate to their social environment • Other research interests include adolescent health and the impact of HIV/AIDS on households in Africa • Completed his doctorate in social work at the University of Missouri-Columbia • Currently investigating how collective action effect risk behaviors of men who have sex with men. Dr. Muriuki completed his doctorate in social work this year at the University of Missouri–Columbia, and earned a master’s degree in public policy from Carnegie Mellon University.

Dr. John Q. Hodges

Department Head, Associate Professor, Department of Social Work, Western Carolina University, Cullowhee, NC, USA

John Q. Hodges received his Ph.D. from the School of Social Welfare at the University of California, Berkeley. He is currently Department Head for Social Work at Western Carolina University. His research concerns mental health consumer-run agencies, mental health consumer inclusion, mental health policy, and first-generation college students.


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