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Qualitative Interview Study of International Students’ Ethnic Identity Development Based on Phinney’s (1990, 1993) Model of Ethnic Identity Development Theory

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DOI: 10.23977/ETIS2020009


Xiaoyuan Wang

Corresponding Author

Xiaoyuan Wang


International students is a high-risk group facing psychological problem due to the stress they experience during the adjustment in a foreign country, and ethnic identity has been shown as a key point associated with international students’ psychological well-being and psychosocial adjustment. This study shares results of a qualitative interview study with four international undergraduate students studying in US. by using Phinney’s (1990, 1993) Model of Ethnic Identity Development to identify themes about how international student’s experience in host country influence their transition of ethnic identity development. In order to enhance international student ethnic identity development and help them address psychological problem, this study explores the factors that influence international students’ ethnic identity development. This study draws on study findings to generate discussion and recommendations for counselors and student affairs practitioners who provide support to international students with acculturative stress, and intend to create healthy, diverse campus environments to enhance student identity development.


International student; ethnic identity development; acculturation; psychological problem; story; influence; qualitative interview; social interaction

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