Inderscience Publishers

Perceptions of globalisation by non-traditional adult students in the USA

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This study investigated the perceptions of globalisation by non-traditional students in the USA through an intercultural and interdisciplinary perspective. The study involved non-traditional American and international students at several US colleges and universities. A qualitative approach, including interviews and focus group techniques, was used to collect the data. The participants acknowledged some positive effects as well as their discontents about globalisation. However, the meanings of the discontents about globalisation differed based on the students’ intercultural backgrounds and discipline of study. Non-traditional adult American students saw the offshore outsourcing practices of US businesses as a threat for the US economy and hegemony in the world. Non-traditional international students in the US perceived globalisation as a transnational exploitation of working class in developing countries. Students in business related programmes had more favourable views of globalisation compared to those in human and social sciences. This underscores the implication that discontents about globalisation may not be properly understood exclusively in terms of industrialised versus developing countries, but also in the context of an intercultural and cross-disciplinary frame.

Keywords: global studies, international exchanges, globalisation, international students, non-traditional students, global competence

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