An Intersectional Analysis of Chinese International Students’ Experiences in Postsecondary Institutions in British Columbia

While there is currently a lack of exploratory studies on international students’ (IS) experiences of challenges in their host institutions, little research has examined their experiences from sociocultural context-based standpoints. This study fills this gap by examining the daily lived experiences of Chinese postsecondary IS in BC through the lens of intersectionality. First, the notions of cultural distance, nationality, and language proficiency were conceptualized as intersectional categories. Next, narrative data were collected from six Chinese IS and then analyzed through an iterative coding framework that connected narrative themes to the theoretical framework of intersectionality. The results show how the interlocking categories created instances of minoritization among the participants due to power imbalances brought upon by compatriots, peers, and federal/institutional policies.

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