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Archaeology & Anthropology:Open Access

Intercultural Communication Problems of Nigerian Students in Mainland China

Dorathy Onyinye Achu*

Overseas Education College, China

*Corresponding author:Dorathy Onyinye Achu, Overseas Education College, China

Submission: March 27, 2019;Published: April 10, 2019

DOI: 10.31031/AAOA.2019.03.000576

ISSN: 2577-1949
Volume3 Issue2


The advancement of globalization and development of the Sino-African framework has increased migration of Nigerian students in search of foreign education to China. On arrival, these students are faced with very many challenges and difficulties. Cultural differences and personal adjustment problems has affected the Nigerian students language acquisition and adjustment patterns, creating an urgent need to proffer Solution to this inter cultural communication problems. This research focuses on the intercultural communication competence of Nigerian students studying at various Universities in China and explores through literature and practical research; the reason behind their lack of smooth integration within the Chinese society, the frequency of interactions with the Chinese nationals, difficulties encountered, reasons attributed to these difficulties, and the different coping method employed.

The investigative Results reveals that majority of the Nigerian students have no prior socio-cultural knowledge of the host country, and have problems in their Social, education cultural and personal adaptation patterns, which they attribute to lack of intercultural communication knowledge, culture shock, ethnocentrism, racial discrimination, differences in nonverbal communication between countries. Findings suggests the following; an Expansion & Restructuring of the Confucius Institute in Nigeria to fit the growing Chinese language population in Nigerian, need for an extensive theoretical and practical Chinese cultural studies through organization of inter and extra-curricular activities, introduction of a multi-cultural curriculum, embedment of the intercultural studies into the language curriculum, and most importantly is for orientation programs to be organized by the embassy prior to students departure.

Keywords:China; Cultural adaptation; Globalization; Intercultural communication; Nigerian students

Abbreviations: BRICS: Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa; GDP: Gross Domestic Product; PRC: People’s Republic of China; CSC: China Scholarship Council


Studying in a multicultural environment has turn out to be overwhelmingly popular globally. For decades, it has been a popular method of exposing students to international perspectives [1,2]. This is because; students attending university overseas have the opportunity to discover novel cultures and environments [3] and to reflect on their own culture’s shortcoming [4]. Based on the fact that communicating with others that come from different cultures is an invaluable skill for any international student [5]. In the decades since 1950, political, social, and technological barriers have been diminished by globalizing forces that are fueling the economies of high-growth nations such as Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa (commonly referred to as BRICS), leading to an international convergence in economies and narrowing the asymmetries between developed and developing nations [6]. Education and cultural communication are a formidable pivot in that convergence, which has been further accentuated by the worldwide flows of students and by the pervasive dissemination of core knowledge, which Badaracco [7] delineates as migratory and embedded. Such flows have major implications for the well-being and competency of participants on the worldwide landscape, especially those in the University [8,9]. This is because the cultural difference comes with diverse responsibility, and sometimes it feels like one is struggling alone. Imagine leaving a familiar terrain to go into an unfamiliar territory where everything ranging from language, culture, food and so on, seems different and you are struggling so hard to understand how things operate. It is like taking a giant leap into the unknown. Globally, cultures have their own values, individual traditions, beliefs and norms, which can surely make them unique from each other. As a result of diverse culture and community practices, the sojourners always face culture shock when they first get to the host nations.

Speaking of host nation, recently China has been a hub for a vast majority of International students. Having come a long way since it became the People’s Republic in 1949, and as an emerging nation, with a record two-digit growth rate of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) every year until 2014, its association in the group of emerging newly industrialized and developing economies (BRICS), has made it a world leader in the economic front. China is Africa’s biggest economic partner, followed by France and the US. Besides its commercial and economic involvements, education is also a great component of the Sino-African Framework. Twenty years ago, a political scientist named Gerard Segal wrongfully predicted that Africa would be “the least important region for China” [10]. As of 2009, China has surpassed the United States as African’s largest trade partner [11]. The linkage between Africa and China goes back to the 10th century, although the media and international civil society have only become aware of Sino-African relations this past decade. China has made significant improvement in the aspect of offering scholarship to African students. Currently China is coming up on the list of preferred places Nigerian students or African students in general prefer to study. Since 1960, France has been the major hub of the African student body, and this comes mainly from former French colonies. England, which has a majority of Nigerians and Kenyans, is a major destination for the English colonies, while Portugal is the main destination country for Mozambicans, Cape Verdeans and Angolans. Spain is the main destination country for Equatorial Guineans. Hence it could be calculated as the first destination for Sub-Saharan Africa, is Western Europe: France (21%), United Kingdom (12%), Germany (6%) and Portugal (5%). In 2000 China announced, among others, the creation of the Confucius institutes; cultural and linguistic centers in Africa, and a doubling of study grants for Africans, principally in the areas of medicine, agriculture, languages, education, economics and management. In 2009, 49 African countries adopted an action plan for 2010- 2012 with China, this intensified both University and Scientific cooperation, and increased Chinese government grants to 5,500 African students in 2012, and 100 joint research and development projects to promote Chinese language in Africa. The action plan that was signed in 2012, against 2013-2015, was meant to provide for 18,000 student grants and development of the Confucius institutes (University world News Report 2013). Currently China’s intent is to offer 50,000 government scholarships to African students, invite 200 African scholars to annual visit, offer 500 young Africans study trip to China, and provide 2,000 educational opportunities with degrees and diplomas [12]. These figures are quite impressive considering, the increase in scholarship for African countries from 2011 till now.

Some sources quoted the numbers of African students on Chinese scholarship were from 922 in 1996 to 7821 in 2014 [13,14]. Based on the paradigm switch in bilateral relations as well as the growing economic importance of Nigeria, as can be seen in mid- 2016, it overtook South Africa as the largest economy on the African continent and is recently viewed as having the potential to emerge as a major global economy. However, a substantial dependency on oil revenues has radically undercut this potential. Just as there has been a marked increase in the total influx of foreign students into China, so has there been an increase in the number of Nigerian students in China. Nigeria is one of the developing countries with higher priority on education and many Nigerian students can now access their preferred fully funded higher education programs and Chinese language programs in China. As such, every year numerous Nigerian students enroll in Chinese universities, and the number keeps soaring. As a result, in the twenty-first century Chinese educators are finding their classrooms filled with students from diverse cultures. This increase in Nigerian students studying in China is as a result of the establishment of the Forum on China- Africa Cooperation that was established in 2000.

The forum was encouraged in part by the burgeoning, diverse relationships between the People’s Republic of China (PRC) and Africa, which continues to send many its students to China. And the soaring figures of Nigerian students in China provide a beachhead for including Nigerian youth in the development of Nigeria and the building of a stronger relationship between Nigeria and China. Additionally, it is plausible that China’s interest in sharing its culture and language with the Nigerian youth, enrolled via the China Scholarship Council (CSC), is that China trained Nigerians may in the long run serve as volunteer ambassadors of Chinese culture. While this idea and studying in China may sound so exciting the cultural differences among students have a significant impact on the learning, communication process, and understanding between Chinese and Nigerian students. Speaking of cultural shock, in a psychological MA thesis based on an investigation of 181 feedbacks out of 210 forms, a rather high ratio for an investigation. The author aim of the study was to examine cultural shock and adaptation among African students in China. It found that cultural shock is common for African students in China, and the best remedy is to increase social contact with local people. It also found that although all African students experienced cultural shock, the extent is different according to the grade and gender, e.g., more serious for undergraduates than graduates, female than male [15-18]. Other studies are either on cultural adaptation, cultural differences and their impact, or different concepts of time and family. In order to solve this culture shock, Anderson [19] asserts that students need guidance when identifying diverse cultural traditions. A brief study of the Nigerian, Chinese Culture, people and their behavioral pattern, will give an insight to why these students face such Challenges in China, and how to quickly adapt to the new environment.


The descriptive survey design is chosen for this research, while a quantitative and qualitative research approach was employed. A sample size of two hundred and fifteen people (215) was used to represent all Nigerian students in China, and 10 people were randomly selected for interviews. Instruments for data collection include Observation, questionnaire and interview. For this study, two instruments for data collection were used; questionnaire and interview. The questions were all close ended questions and consist of two sections. It was designed this way to make analysis simple and less complicated. The first section is from question 1-25 and comprise of both the single and multiple, choice questions, while the second section consist of 25 questions ranging on a scale of 5 (Not difficult, slightly difficult, comparatively difficult, Difficult, very difficult). The Interview was carried out by direct contact and through telephone.

A Purposive sampling was chosen as the best fit for this research, as participant need to

a. Be a citizen of Nigeria.

b. Be studying in any University in China.

c. Be a registered Chinese Language Program/Bachelor degree/Master degree student.

d. Be willing to co-operate and partake in the research.

Anonymity and Confidentiality was key in the course of the research. Student’s anonymity was promised and ensured during the course of this research, this led to their turnout and appropriateness in filling the survey.


Respondent’s demographic profile

From the data obtained, male respondent were, one hundred and twenty-nine (129), females were eighty-six (86), which is sixty percent 60% and forty percent 40% respectively. This gives a total of 215 respondents. The gender of respondent is indicated in the A pie chart below (Figure 1). The age of students were also taking into consideration. It was observed that from age 18-24 had a majority of one hundred and five people (105) making up 48.84% of the population, while 25-29 age range was the second highest, with a total number of 70 people making up 32.56%, while 30-35 age range had 27 people making up 12.56%. Student less than 18 years of age and greater than 35 years of age had the least number with a total of 6 and 7people respectively, making up 2.79 and 3.26 respectively in the B pie chart. The C above shows the number of years spent in China. It was observed that majority of the student (90 people) have spent 1-2 years in China, making up 41.86% while 58 people have lived lesser than 1 year in China, making up 26.98%. There is a downward trend after having lived for 2 years, it is observed that the higher the years, the lesser the number of Nigerian students, as 57 people have stayed 3-5 years, making up 26.51%, and only 10 persons has stayed over 6 years- 4.65%.

Figure 1:Distribution (%) of gender, age, and duration of stay in China..

Respondent’s language proficiency

The first objective of this study is to find out the Cultural communicative Problems of the Nigerian student in China. In view of this, the following questions were asked to elicit information on their Chinese language ability (Figure 2). Chart D gives the duration of Chinese language study. 51 people (23.72%) have studied for less than a year, while 90 people (41.86%) have studied between 1-2 years, while 68 people (31.63%) have studied the language between 3-5years, and just 6 people (2.79%) have studied between 6-10 years.

It was important to note if the Nigerian students had prior knowledge of Chinese language before coming to China. The result from E states clearly that 120 people (55.81%) representing majority of the Nigerian students had no prior Knowledge of the Chinese language, while 95 people (44.19%) had a basic knowledge of Chinese language. When asked if Age has a correlation with their Chinese ability, since majority of the Nigerian students in China are teenagers in their youthful stage. It’s interesting to note that 57 students (26.51%) agreed that their age influences their language learning while 158 students (73.49%) said age has no correlation with their language ability. G shows 130 students (60.47%) do not believe that their language ability diminishes with age, while 85 students (39.53) believe and agreed that their language ability diminishes with age.

Nigerian students adjustment problems

In Chart H Students were asked if they had communication problems with the Chinese. 156 (72.56%) Students responded yes, while 59 students (27.44%) said they didn’t have a problem of communication with the Chinese (Figure 3). In-order to understand their communication problems, its important to understand the language area they find problematic, frequency at which they use the Chinese language, Ease at which they communicate with the Chinese nationals, and their interaction pattern. 113 students (52.56%) reportedly found writing characters to be the hardest and most difficult, followed by Grammar which 58students (26.98%) also found to be difficult as it affects both their orals and writing. 22 students (10.23%) indicated orals while 22 other students found listening to be their major problem.

Figure 2:Respondent’s duration of chinese study, prior knowledge of chinese lang., age correlation and ability of language study to diminish with age.

Figure 3:Distribution of students having Chinese communication problems and the various aspects of difficulties.

Language barriers affecting inter-cultural communication: The chart J shows the most frequently used language Nigerian students use in communication with co-nationals, Africans, Chinese students and other nationals in China. 154 students (71.63%) chose English, 41 students (19.07%) chose Chinese language, 18students (8.37%) chose Igbo, and 2students (0.93%) chose Yoruba. Chart K shows how many Chinese friends the Nigerian students have. It is clear that the majorities have Chinese friends, but the number of friends varies as 102 students (47.44%) have over 6 Chinese friends, 60 students (27.91%) have 3-5 friends, 47 students (21.86) have over 6 Chinese friends, 60 students (27.91%) have 3-5 friends, 47 students (21.86) have 1-2 friends while 6 students (2.79%) do not have a Chinese friend.

Chart L tells us how often they spend in the company of their Chinese friends. 23students (10.7%) hang out daily with their Chinese counterpart, 34 students (15.81%) hang out 2-3times in a week, 47 students (21.86%) hang out once in a week, 15 students (6.98%) hang out every fortnight, and 96students (44.65%) only hang out once in a month (Figure 4). Chart M tells us what kinds of conversation are usually exchanged between the Nigerian students and their Chinese friends. The graph below gives us a good detail of their conversational pattern. B Language Preference and Ease of Communication Students were asked upon arrival to China, which group of people did they looked forward to mingling and making friends with. 59 students (27.44%) indicated Africans, 56 students (26.05%) looked forward to the Chinese as friends, 51 students (23.72%) preferred Nigerians and 49 students (22.79%) looked forward to making friends with other nationals (Figure 5). Chart O further explains whom students found it easier communicating with. 87students (40.47%) found it easier communicating with their fellow Nigerians, 66 students (30.7%) found it easier communicating with Africans, 36 students (16.74%) found it easier communicating with other nationals, while 26 students (12.09%) found it easier communicating with the Chinese.

Figure 4:Showing most used language, number of chinese friends, frequency of hangouts and topics discussed.

Figure 5:Showing preferred friends and their ease of communication with respect to country..

Cultural & personal barriers affecting inter-cultural communication: P-highlights the aspect of culture that impacts the Nigerian students’ Chinese socio-cultural interaction. Students were allowed to pick more than one variable they think had an impact on their social cultural interaction. 57.21%, consisting of 123 Students indicated Social culture as the biggest factor, 48.37% comprising of 104 students indicated food culture, 44.65% comprising of 96 students indicated educational culture, 35.81% comprising of 77 students indicated National culture, another 35.81% indicated environmental culture, other factors can be seen as represented (Figure 6).Knowing fully well that students find different aspect of culture problematic, Chart Q- shows the aspect they would like to improve on. 43.72% would like to improve their knowledge on the Chinese educational system, 40.93% would like to improve their knowledge about the Chinese National culture, 36.74% would like to improve their knowledge about their environmental culture, 31.16% would like to improve their knowledge on the Chinese family and social culture, the rest is represented below starting with the highest % moving in a downward trend. R-shows some non-verbal communication problems student encounter during communication. 51.16% comprising of 110 students encountered difficulties associated with paralinguistic, 41.4% comprising of 89 students had some gestures related problems, 29.77% comprising of 64 students had challenges with the Chinese Head and Body movement, others include the use of hands, space, time, graphically represented above. These personal barriers in S- has a relationship with an individual’s personal attitude during communication. Students were asked personal reasons why they find it difficult to contribute or successfully hold a conversation with the host national. They had the option of selecting more than one reason. Their reasons are represented in the graph.

Figure 6:Showing cultural aspect affecting socio-cultural interaction, areas they’re willing to improve on, Nonverbal problems and individual barriers affecting cultural communication.

Educational barriers affecting student’s academics: In Figure 7, students were asked what type of barriers affected them education wise and were allowed to pick more than one option. These barriers could be either from the students or teachers and obstruct smooth teacher-student communication flow. The barriers listed as a lot to do with their language and Exams. The result shows that 50.23% comprising of 102 students owed it to the Language difference, 46.51% owed it to their incorrect Tone, 40.93% comprising of 88 students owed it to their Unfamiliar Accent, 28.37% comprising of 61 students said it was due to their low vocabulary buildup, 21.86% comprising of 42 students allege it was due to their low language proficiency, 20.93% comprising of 45 students indicated it was due to their poor communication skills, others reasons are graphically represented (Figure 7).

Figure 7:Students educational barriers.

Social barriers affecting inter cultural communication: This has to do with the social environment factors in china. Nigerian students were asked what kind of social barriers hindered their successfully interaction and communication with the Chinese nationals and were allowed to choose multiple options. 53.02% comprising of 114 students indicated Racial discrimination to be a major social barrier, 44.65% comprising of 96 students indicated a difference in perception & Viewpoint, 26.51% comprising of 57 students chose stereotype, 26.05% comprising of 56 students indicated misinterpretation of non-verbal actions, 23.26% comprising of 50 students indicated culture shock, 22.79% comprising of 49 students owed it to politeness, 8.84% comprising of 19 students indicated gender was a barrier. This reason associated with social factors is graphically represented (Figure 8).

Figure 8:Showing socio-cultural barriers.

Socio-cultural adaptation

This covers the second part of the questionnaire. Here students were asked to choose between a 5point scales ranging from not difficult - A little difficult - Comparatively difficult- Difficult- Very difficult. It’s clear from the 25 questions, students find “Dealing with Discrimination (3)” the most difficult, as this had the highest average score. “Weather in China (2.79)”, was the second most difficult, while “Seeing things from china point of view (2.73)” came third. “Dealing with unsatisfactory service (2.71)” was fourth, and “Dealing with someone who is unpleasant (2.62)” came fifth. Other adaptation problems are listed in the graph (Figure 9).

Figure 9:Graphical representation of students socio-cultural adaptation.

Emotions & feeling

Students were asked how they felt when they encounter barriers or challenges. It’s glad to see that 52.56% remained positive and are creatively looking for strategies to deal with the situation. 33.95% feels the need to give up, 30.95% feel frustrated and disappointed. Some students feel quite comfortable, while others feel embarrassed, and depressed. These are well represented in the Table 1.

Table 1:Nigerian students emotions & feelings.

Coping Pattern

Since we know the challenges and barriers these students face, it’s also important to know how they overcame it. Students were asked how they cope with misunderstanding and difficulties. 44.19% comprising of 95students said they withdrew in the face of difficulties, 41.86% comprising of 90 students indicated Avoidance, 22.79% comprising of 49 students had to compromise, 15.81% comprising of 34 students integrated, 13.02% out of 28 students had to isolate themselves, 11.16% comprising of 24 students confronted their difficulties, other coping methods are represented in the Table 2.

Table 2:Coping methods of Nigerian student.

Analysis of Findings

Based on respondent profile

Chart A in Figure 1 shows a higher % of males (60%) to females (40%). This goes to prove the gender inequality in the educational aspect that is eminent in Nigeria, while chart B shows that majority of the Nigerian students in China are youths in their early stage.

Based on language ability & competence

From Chart E in Figure 2 it is observed that majority (73%) of the Nigerian students do not have Prior Chinese Knowledge before coming to China. They either learnt or acquired the language upon entry into China. This could be due to lack of expansion of the Confucius institute, as there are only 2 recognized Confucius institute, one in University of Lagos in the West and the other in Nnamdi Azikiwe University Anambra state in the East with two branches. This is not enough to serve a growing population of Over 180 million people located in 6 geographical zones. From Chart D, we can tell the Nigeria students only have a basic knowledge of the Chinese language as majority have only studied for 1-2 years. Although the Nigerian students are known to be fast learners when it comes to learning Chinese, but this does not guarantee cultural competence.

Age has been argued by many researchers to have a relationship with language study. Fig 6 confirms that Age currently has no role in the Nigerian students (Youths) language ability. This could be because most of them are youths (18-35years) in their early stage when the brain is active and ready to work. It could also be as a result of their belief; that the youthful stage is a time to achieve all one sets his/her mind on. However, 60.47% agreed that ability to study does diminish with age. This is well understood as a Child learns and acquires a language easier and faster than an adult. Chinese language is not only interesting and Unique, but a major barrier to inter-cultural communication. It’s writing style that has a long history seems to be an uphill task for 53% majority of the Nigerian students as indicated in Chart I, while grammar is the major headache for 26.98%. Their inability to type characters already limits their social interactions as they cannot send messages, or chat on the Chinese social networks. Their grammatical incompetence affects both oral and written ability.

Based on educational, social and cultural and personal adjustment

It is evident from the above investigations that the Nigerian Students would love to increase their Chinese educational Knowledge. Difference in language poses a challenge to the Nigerian student. They often do not answer questions or actively participate in class due to problem of accents and language difference, but take their course works seriously. They try to avoid mispronunciations, and dramas while in class. While Silence is considered a virtue in the Chinese Classroom, a highly interactive class, open to discussion, where students are free to ask questions is prized in the Nigerian classroom. The Use of Language also causes lack of comprehensive note taking, and ineffective interaction in class. Some researchers like Pruitt [20] stated that African students have a problem with the host country examination format, while Arubayi [21], Okwudishu [22] states that Nigerian students have a problem with open-ended questions. This is in contrast with the Nigerian student in China. A large percentage of the Nigerian students in China seem used to the Chinese Examination format and grading system, as these ranked low in Figure 7. Students acknowledge fairness during grading, and majority didn’t see this as a problem.

Although the Chinese teachers are often times very simple, casually dressed, and ride on bicycles, yet the Nigerian students still do not understand the concept behind the informal dressing, as they do not have an informal relationship with their teacher. This could be as a result of no personal interest from the teacher, as a lot of Chinese teachers lack basic information about Nigeria and Africa as a whole. This perception to an extent affects their educational adjustment. To facilitate educational adjustment, it is suggested that teachers know their students, take personal interest in them and guide them on how to successfully tackle and complete the course [23]. Socially, the Nigerian students are very friendly, yet view Racism as their biggest Socio communication difficulty, and find it extremely difficult dealing with discrimination. Although they have many Chinese friends, yet the rarely hang out with them. Their inability to socialize is a clear indication of their outward expression to unpleasant situation [24-26].

Culturally, both countries are both Communalist, yet their style of communalism varies to a great extent. The Nigerian students cultural problems arise as a result of lack of theoretical/classroom cultural knowledge. There have both physical and culture bound problems, this range from difference in perception and viewpoint, misinterpretation of non-verbal cues to adapting to the weather in China, food, etc [27,28]. The Nigerian students try so much to overcome these challenges, their outward expression speaks volume, and their reaction is clearly seen in their different coping patterns. They remain positive, in the face of challenges looking for a creative way to deal with their problems [29-32].


The main purpose of this study is to investigate and analyze the cross-cultural communication problems affecting Nigerian students in China. The researchers intend to identify the nature of the communication that exists between Nigerian students and their intended nationals and the various coping methods used to overcome the difficulties of communication. The electronic questionnaires were sent to different Nigerian student groups through Chinese social media. The researchers used descriptive research methods and surveys to collect data from students [33]. A well-designed closed questionnaire was distributed to student groups, and a total of 215 respondents took the time to respond appropriately. Another goal is to study their behavioral patterns and coping methods. Nigerian students show positive and negative coping styles. Their negative coping methods include withdrawal and avoidance, while positive coping styles include confrontation and compromise. They also feel creative need to devise strategies to deal with new and unpleasant situations. Cross-cultural communication and challenges coexist, although it can be seen from this study that Nigerian students face social, educational, personal and cultural difficulties. 72.56% of Nigerian students said they had problems communicating with Chinese citizens. This reflects two core issues, cultural adaptability and language proficiency. Most Nigerian students have problems in adapting to certain sociocultural aspects, such as dealing with discrimination, seeing things from a Chinese perspective, and dealing with unpleasant people. More than half of Nigerian students say Chinese citizens have a negative perception of them and are subject to racial discrimination. Such perceptions may stem from their assumptions about cultural similarity or the misinterpretation of nonverbal behavior.

The Chinese style of ethnocentrism, stereotypes, lack of understanding of blacks/Africans could be the reason why the Nigerian students feel discriminated. Second is the language problem. Most Nigerian students are Basic Chinese learners, and 71.63% of the Nigerian students in the host country communicate in English. It is clear from the study that language fluency is an obstacle because most Nigerian students are Basic and intermediate learners [34]. This affects their social interaction and the topics to be discussed. It also affects their active participation in the classroom, as they seem to perform well in group discussions and assignments. Their daily use of English language impacts their friendship model, social and cultural behavior with the Chinese citizens. Although most Nigerian students blame it on Chinese discrimination, language barriers cannot be overlooked. When the problem of language barrier is solved, the problem of misunderstanding, thinking, ethnocentrism, prejudice, etc. will be reduced. In the Socio-adaptation aspect, apart from China’s weather and food, Nigerian students have no difficulty adapting to China’s environmental conditions; during social interactions, its noted that they have over six Chinese friends, but they hardly ever hangout with them.

They have had difficulties in maintaining friendship with Chinese citizens; their frequency of hangout is at most once in a month. Also Nigerian students seem to have some unrealistic expectations for their teachers and administrators in their communication with schools. Lack of listening seems to be an obstacle, and they want teachers and administrators to be able to listen to them. Accents also seem to affect their communication skills. The changes in education policy are not communicated in advance, and most of the information is communicated halfway through the semester, which is a big problem for most scholarship students. The age, gender or degree of Nigerian students has no direct impact on their experience and challenges, as they all meet the same challenges. However, the longer they stay, the better their adaptation will be. When they encounter difficulties, some students think it is necessary to develop strategies to deal with this situation, and show positive behavior, such as Confronting and compromising. At the same time, some others feel frustrated and disappointed, opting for withdrawal and avoidance, and they withdraw into their ethnic enclaves. Positive changes in the face of difficulties will eventually result in better adaptation and other benefits. These experiences will help to broaden the horizons of Nigerian students so that they can accommodate others and provide them with the skills they need to succeed in the global marketplace.


This work was carried out in the overseas college of Xiamen University Xiamen China. The author gratefully acknowledges the support of Prof Pan Chao qing and fellow Nigerian students in China.


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© 2019 Dorathy Onyinye Achu. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License , which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and build upon your work non-commercially.

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