Beyond Host Language Proficiency: Coping Resources Predicting International Students' Satisfaction

Anita MAK, Peter BODYCOTT, Prem Ramburuth

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

30 Citations (Scopus)


As international students navigate in a foreign educational environment, having higher levels of coping or stress-resistance resources—both internal and external—could be related to increased satisfaction with personal and university life. The internal coping resources examined in this study were host language proficiency, self-esteem, intercultural social self-efficacy, and academic self-efficacy. The external resources studied were perceived social support from (a) hosts and (b) non-hosts. Survey participants were 385 Asian-born international students in Australian universities. Regression analyses revealed that academic self-efficacy and social support from hosts were significant predictors of both personal and university life satisfaction, but the effects of English language proficiency and social support from non-hosts disappeared when other resources were considered. Additional predictors of personal satisfaction were intercultural social self-efficacy and self-esteem. We discuss the implications for future research on the international student experience and for learning support provision for international university students.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)460-475
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Studies in International Education
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2015


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