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Case Study of Chinese Undergraduate Nursing Students on an Exchange Program at the University of Pittsburgh: Lessons about Program Participation and Satisfaction

Greene, William Brian (2017) Case Study of Chinese Undergraduate Nursing Students on an Exchange Program at the University of Pittsburgh: Lessons about Program Participation and Satisfaction. Doctoral Dissertation, University of Pittsburgh. (Unpublished)

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The literature reports that Chinese undergraduate students studying in U.S. higher education institutions (HEIs) exhibit deficits (owing to, for example, language competence, coping mechanisms, and differences between U.S. and Chinese academic culture), which create problems for faculty and administration (e.g., lack of classroom engagement and low grades). Nevertheless, the number of Chinese undergraduates studying in U.S. HEIs continues to increase—as do the numbers of U.S. HEIs initiating engagement activities (e.g., exchange programs and capacity-building activities) with Chinese universities. Against this backdrop, the University of Pittsburgh (Pitt), School of Nursing (SON) has begun to host a small cohort (i.e., three to six students annually) of Chinese undergraduate exchange students from a partner HEI in Beijing: Capital Medical University, School of Nursing (CMUSON). As U.S. nursing education and practice both pose unique challenges to English language learners, this dissertation in practice utilized a case study approach and qualitative methodology to evaluate how the Pitt SON-CMUSON exchange program is proceeding vis-à-vis (1) providing the CMUSON students with a satisfying U.S. clinical experience and (2) allowing the Pitt SON faculty members and domestic students to gain an international nursing perspective. Data sources comprised (1) monthly semi-structured interviews with the CMUSON students, (2) a survey of the clinical instructor(s) during the fall and spring semesters, (3) a survey of domestic students and PhD students who interacted with the CMUSON students, and (4) weekly field notes of incidental input from stakeholders. Thematic analysis of the interview data identified seven themes that—in conjunction with results from the surveys and data from the field notes—document how the CMUSON students, Pitt SON instructors, and other stakeholders responded to the challenges of teaching and learning implicit in the exchange program. For example, the passive behavior of Chinese students reported in the literature actually masked the active learning strategies used by the CMUSON students. These findings inform (1) recommendations (e.g., the use of communicative simulations with standardized patients) for subsequent iterations of the exchange program, which will be communicated to stakeholders via the development of a faculty-student program guide, and (2) implications for similar programs and related scholarship.


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Item Type: University of Pittsburgh ETD
Status: Unpublished
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Greene, William Brianwbg3@pitt.eduwbg3
ETD Committee:
TitleMemberEmail AddressPitt UsernameORCID
Committee MemberGunzenhauser, Michael G.mgunzen@pitt.edumgunzen
Committee MemberCook, James A.jacook@pitt.edujacook
Committee MemberWang, Weiwenweiwen@pitt.eduweiwen
Committee ChairJacob, W. Jameswjacob@pitt.eduwjacob
Date: 30 August 2017
Date Type: Publication
Defense Date: 25 April 2017
Approval Date: 30 August 2017
Submission Date: 23 June 2017
Access Restriction: No restriction; Release the ETD for access worldwide immediately.
Number of Pages: 124
Institution: University of Pittsburgh
Schools and Programs: School of Education > Administrative and Policy Studies
Degree: EdD - Doctor of Education
Thesis Type: Doctoral Dissertation
Refereed: Yes
Uncontrolled Keywords: capacity building, Chinese undergraduate students, cultural congruence, English language learners, international comparative education, program satisfaction, Sino-U.S. educational exchange, U.S. nursing education
Date Deposited: 30 Aug 2017 19:32
Last Modified: 30 Aug 2017 19:32


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