Social and academic integration of diverse student groups: Do they want it? Do they need it?

Antje Cockrill

University of Wales Trinity Saint David, Swansea Business Campus, High Street, Swansea, Wales, SA1 1NE; Antje.Cockrill@uwtsd.ac.uk

24th March 2016

Abstract

This paper combines three small studies which have been conducted in the last four years. All studies explore issues relating to the integration of domestic and international students. Study 1 was a quantitative study which focused on the actual integration of domestic and international students across a range of courses at a UK university. This study found that the level of both social and academic integration of domestic and international students was very low. Study 2 and 3 were based on Study 1 and were aimed at finding out how academic and social integration of diverse students could be achieved. Both of these studies used action research methods. Study 1 reports an attempt to integrate a very diverse student group in a large module and concludes that academic integration may not always be the best (academic) option for students in very diverse study environments. Study 3 focuses on the methods which were used to integrate a smaller, very diverse group of students  successfully. The paper concludes with an analysis of the factors which foster or impede the integration of domestic and international students.