QUESTIONS FOR DISCUSSION
1. 2. 3. WHAT IS HIGHER EDUCATION? TELL OF THE MEGATRENDS IN HIGHER EDUCATION? WHAT ARE THE MAJOR CHARACTERISTICS OF FOREIGN STUDENTS IN ITALY AND VIETNAMESE AMERIACAN COLLEGE STUDENTS? WHAT ARE THE MOST STRKING MISMATCHES OF VIETNAMESE HIGHER EDUCATION ? IN YOUR OPINION WHAT ARE THE DIFFERENCES BETWEEN PUBLIC AND PRIVATE UNIVERSITIES IN VIETNAM? WHAT ARE THE NOTEWORTHY POINTS FOR VIETNAMESE STUDENTS WHEN LEARNING IN FOREIGN UNIVERSITIES?
4. 5. 6.
Higher, post-secondary, tertiary, or third level education refers to the stage of learning that occurs at universities, academies, colleges,seminaries, and institutes of technology. Higher education also includes certain collegiate-level institutions, such as vocational schools, trade schools, and career colleges, that award academic degrees or professional certifications. The right of access to higher education is enshrined in a number of international human rights instruments. The UN International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights of 1966 declares, in Article 13, that "higher education shall be made equally accessible to all, on the basis of capacity, by every appropriate means, and in particular by the progressive introduction of free education". In Europe, Article 2 of theFirst Protocol to the European Convention on Human Rights, adopted in 1950, obligates all signatory parties to guarantee the right to education.
Higher education is an educational level that follows the completion of a school providing a secondary education, such as a high school,secondary school, or gymnasium. Tertiary education is normally taken to include undergraduate and postgraduate education, as well asvocational education and training. Colleges, universities, and institutes of technology are the main institutions that provide tertiary education (sometimes known collectively as tertiary institutions). Examples of institutions that provide post-secondary education are vocational schools,community colleges, independent colleges (e.g. institutes of technology), and universities in the United States, the institutes of technical and further education in Australia, CEGEPs in Quebec, and the IEKs in Greece. They are sometimes known collectively as tertiary institutions. Completion of tertiary education generally results in the awarding of certificates, diplomas, or academic degrees.
Rupert I founded theUniversity of Heidelberg in1386
Higher education includes teaching, research, exacting applied work (e.g. in medical schools and dental schools), and social services activities of universities. Within the realm of teaching, it includes both the undergraduate level, and beyond that, graduate-level (or postgraduate level). The latter level of education is often referred to as graduate school, especially in North America. In the United Kingdom and certain other countries (e.g. Ireland), post-secondary school education below the level of higher education is referred to as "further education". "Higher Education" in the UK generally involves work towards a college-degree-level or foundation degree education. NVQ at level 4 (graduate level) and NVQ at level 5 (post graduate) are deemed "Higher Education".  In many developed countries, a high proportion of the population (up to 50%), now enter higher education at some time in their lives. Higher education is therefore very important to national economies, both as a significant industry in its own right and as a source of trained and educated personnel for the rest of the economy. There are two types of higher education in the U.K.: higher academic education, and higher vocational education. Higher education in the United States and Canadaspecifically refers to post-secondary institutions that offer Associate's degrees, Bachelor's degrees, Master's degrees, Education Specialist (Ed.S.) degrees or Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) degrees, or their equivalents, and also higher professional degrees in areas such as law, medicine, optometry, dentistry,etc. Such institutions may also offer non-degree certificates, which indicate completion of a set of courses comprising some body of knowledge, but the granting of such certificates is not the primary purpose of the institutions. Tertiary education is not a term used in reference to post-secondary institutions in the United States or Canada.
foreign students, international students IN AMERICAN UNIVERSITIES
Formerly referred to as foreign students, international students are students from abroad who are enrolled for courses at American schools, colleges, or universities and admitted under a temporary visa. These students' primary intent is to obtain an American undergraduate, graduate, or professional degree and return to their home countries. The number of international students studying at American colleges and universities is rising. More international students pass through America's doors than those of any other country, making the United States the world's most sought-after and diverse educational region in the world. More than half a million (514,723 in the year 2000) international students, or 3.8 percent of all U.S. higher education students, were enrolled between 1999 and 2000. This3.8 percent included 2.7 percent of all four-year undergraduates and 12 percent of graduate enrollments. These individuals were admitted expressly for the purpose of study. They did not include recent immigrants, resident aliens, or refugees. Characteristics of International Students
In 2000 Asian students (from China, Japan, and India) constituted more than half of international enrollments, and Europeans were the second largest regional group, with 15 percent of U.S. enrollments. More than two-thirds (67%) of all international students in the United States receive their primary source of support from non-U.S. sources. These sources include personal and family funds. U.S. colleges and universities provide approximately 19 percent of funds and home governments/universities provide 4 percent. More than 20 percent of all international students are enrolled in universities and colleges located in just ten U.S. counties in or around New York City, Los Angeles, Boston, and Washington, D.C. International students currently study in areas where there are centers of finance, information, technology, media services, education, and industry, which are crucial to the emerging global economy. Business and management are the most popular fields of study among international students, followed by engineering, mathematics, and computer science. These students come to America to study fields that are not well developed in their countries. International undergraduates have in the past outnumbered graduates; however, the pattern changed in the late 1980s, when the graduate and undergraduate proportions were roughly equal. Male foreign students have consistently outnumbered female students; however, the proportion of females is rising steadily. More than 2,500 U.S. institutions host international students and the international presence varies widely from institution to institution. International students, scholars, and faculty enrich American colleges and universities and, eventually, U.S.-based firms. It is the collective responsibility of lawmakers, university administrators, and state government to ensure that the best of them continue to choose the United States for their education. In addition to providing diversity on American campuses, these students and their dependents make an economic contribution of $12.3 billion dollars per year (1999 - 2000). Admissions Process for International Students Admissions offices at universities, which admit large numbers of international students, are well versed in the recruitment and admission of international students. Colleges, which admit smaller numbers of international students, must develop recruitment and admission procedures and often rely on knowledgeable colleagues at nearby universities to answer admission and immigration questions. Testing. Each U.S. college and university has its own admission standards for admitting international students. Most universities require the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL), proof of graduation from high school, and either the SAT or ACT Assessment. The question often arises if the SAT and ACT Assessment are appropriate tests to be used for admission of international students into American colleges and universities, as it has been argued they are culturally bound tests (made for American students). Although there is truth to this argument, the SAT and ACT Assessment are the two tests that are most familiar to American universities for admissions decisions. Traditionally, test scores alone are not the sole determinants for university admission. Usually university admissions offices use a composite of international students' high-school course work (its rigor and depth), Englishlanguage ability, participation in school and community activities, scores on standardized tests, and commitment to academic purpose in making admissions decisions. International students are often asked to provide a writing sample and are given mathematics and English-language placement tests, once they are admitted, to determine their correct academic placement in classes. Foreign transcript evaluation. International students seeking to transfer to American universities from foreign universities abroad must have their transcripts evaluated by a transcript-evaluation service in order to determine if their course work taken abroad will transfer (for degree credit) to the American semester or quarter system. Large universities often evaluate foreign credentials inhouse, while smaller universities require that international students have their credentials evaluated by a professional evaluation service (specializing in the translation and evaluation of foreign academic credentials) either prior to or during the admissions process. Entering the United States. International students currently apply to American universities via university websites, through overseas advising centers, by written form, and in person while visiting the United States. The most common visa category for international students is F - 1 (student visa) followed by the J - 1 (exchange visitor). Visas are obtained abroad in the student's home country once he or she has been fully admitted to an American college or university, and a document - either I - 20 (for F - 1 students) or IAP - 66 (for J - 1 students) - has been sent to the student. Foreign student advisers must determine that each international student has sufficient academic preparation to enter the college or university, appropriate English-language ability (or the student will enroll for English as a second language [ESL] classes prior to pursuing academic credit), and sufficient funding to cover the total cost of tuition, room, board, fees, books, insurance, and so forth, while studying in the United States. Foreign student advisers are the front line for American embassies abroad and their roles are vital in that they are responsible for determining which students possess the academic, linguistic, and financial ability to be admitted to study in the United States. Academic institutions in the United States, which have been designated by the Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS) to offer courses of study, are allowed to admit international students for a specific educational or professional objective. Just because a student has the appropriate academic background, sufficient financial resources, and is issued a Form I - 20 or a Form IAP - 66 does not always mean that he or she will receive a visa to study in the United States. U.S. consulates abroad determine which students receive visas. If a visa officer determines that a student does not (in his or her estimation) have the appropriate academic background, sufficient English-language fluency, and the financial means of support, or if the officer determines that the student has intent to immigrate (or has otherwise misinterpreted his or her intent) the visa may be denied. The Immigration and Nationality Act of 1952 (INA) allows a nonimmigrant student to enter the United States, who is a bona fide student qualified to pursue a full course of study and who seeks to enter the United States temporarily and solely for the purpose of pursuing a course of study at an established college, university, seminary, conservatory, academic high school, elementary school, or other academic institution, or in a language-training program. The school, through the official responsible for admission, accepts the prospective student for enrollment in a "full course of study" that leads to the attainment of a "specific educational or professional objective"(Fosnocht, p. 3). In order to be admitted to an American college or university, the international student's application, transcripts, and all other supporting documents normally necessary to determine scholastic and linguistic eligibility for admission, as well as the student's financial documentation, must be received, reviewed, and evaluated at the school's location in the United States. Newly admitted international applicants should be advised that they are likely to be required to present documentary evidence of financial support at the time they apply for a visa and again to the INS when they arrive in the United States. Close communication during the application and admission process between a prospective international student and the foreign student adviser can prevent most (but not all) unexpected problems and visa denials. Adjustments for International Students International students who choose to study in the United States usually are among the brightest and most highly motivated of the student-age population in their home countries. Only students with a high degree of motivation can cope simultaneously with the necessary language learning, travel, and dislocation anxiety necessary to enter American universities. Pierre Casse defines crosscultural adaptation as the process by which an individual is forced to function effectively, but without alienation, in a setting that does not recognize all or parts of the assumptions and behavioral patterns that the person takes for granted. Culture shock is brought on by the anxiety that results from losing all the familiar signs and symbols of social intercourse. The challenges. International students often arrive in the United States unaware of the immense hurdles in adjustment they must overcome to be successful in the American educational system. These hurdles include English-language acquisition, adaptation to differences in education systems, differences in philosophy/purpose of education, learning styles, and the challenges of other social, religious, and economic values. International students arrive with their own strategies for coping, studying, and socializing; however, these strategies often do not fit the dominant culture and must be reworked.
A myriad of adaptive behaviors, including cognitive self-awareness, behavior modification, and experimental learning take place. Studies by Jin Abe, Donn M. Talbot, and Robyn J. Geelhoed indicate that social adjustment and institutional attachment are significantly lower for international students than for their U.S. counterparts. In addition noncognitive variables, such as selfconfidence, availability of a strong support person, realistic self-appraisal, leadership opportunities, and preference for long-range academic goals all impact international students' academic success and persistence. The pressure for international students created by inadequate language skills, inappropriate study skills and habits, and ineffective coping strategies for being a student reveal themselves in many areas of students' lives. Ongoing organized interactions between international and American students are crucial for successful integration into the campus environment. International students experience a constant adaptational process as they attempt to integrate into the American university system. Cultural adaptation. According to Carmel Camilleri, there is much tension and many psychological problems that international students face related to difficulties of cultural adaptation. Five areas that give foreign students the most difficulty are: abandonment of important cultural values, compromises to merge modern privileges while preserving traditional values, viewing one's community in a position of inequality with respect to society, inability to make sense of nonverbal communication, and dual roles related to parental issues. The acquisition of culture for international students occurs inside and outside the classroom. There are the lessons that are taught formally and the lessons that are learned informally. These lessons enable international students to make meaning of their environment. Certain agreed-on values reside within and become part of the international student's cultural repertoire and are used to cope with the student's academic environment. The process of international students entering and graduating from American colleges and universities is a dynamic one fraught with many chances to fail. It is the collective responsibility of administrators, professors, staff, and community volunteers to attempt to connect international students to their American higher education experience. Philip G. Altbach states that the presence of a half million international students and scholars from virtually every country in the world is the most important single element of globalization on American campuses. Services Designed to Assist International Students International education is growing in importance and as enrollments of international students in the United States increase, the abilities of teachers and administrators on American campuses must increase to meet these students' unique needs. The international dimension is critical to a well-conceived educational program. The internationalization of the university is one of the most significant challenges facing higher education in the twenty-first century. The foreign student adviser. Typical services for international students at American colleges and universities include visa and immigration services, English as a second language (ESL) classes, orientation programs, and host family programs. Staff in international student services, admissions, and student affairs, and academic advisers and professors all help these international students. The foreign student adviser (in the international office or student services office) has the specialized function of dealing with international students. Skilled counselors, often housed in international offices on large campuses, provide services that include referral, coordination, and a special field of knowledge that deals with international students and their specific problems and needs. Traditionally, foreign student advisers and the staff of international offices help students with academic, immigration/visa, acculturation, language, financial, racial, cultural, religious, and ethnic issues. The major function of the foreign student adviser is to help international students optimize their American educational experience. From orientation programs at the beginning of an international student's degree program to assistance with résumés as the student prepares to graduate, these advisers are interested in the international student's success. Foreign student advisers are responsible for international students and also to their universities. An odd situation exists in that foreign student advisers do not work for the federal government, yet they represent the federal government as Designated School Official (DSO) and Responsible Officer (RO) for the U.S. Department of Justice and the State Department in issuing visa paperwork. They are not paid or trained by the U.S. government, relying instead on professional training from organizations, such as NAFSA: Association of International Educators, a nonprofit professional organization, which provides thorough and authoritative sources of information for international educators in the United States.
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Presence and characteristics of foreign students in Italy in the international context 1945-1998. Andrea Cammelli, University of Bologne) 22 February 1999 TItaly was for many years the sixth most important destination for a large number of students coming from abroad and yet, their presence has barely been studied. In fact, the celebrations for the nine-hundredth anniversary of the founding of the University of Bologna provided a catalyst for the undertaking of systematic research on this foreign element. It is difficult to determine the number of foreign students in Italy during the first years after Italian unity (1861). The new State had to create a comprehensive system of education and in this context, the foreign student might well be imagined as an “Italic foreigner”—someone who, coming from
Piedmont or the Duchy of Parma, crossed the borders of his or her own State and chose Bologna, a pontifical city, or Milan, an Austro-Hungarian city, for university studies. The year 1923-1924 marked the first phase of a significant increase in the foreign presence within the Italian university system. This growth and the subsequent acceleration which mainly characterised the first half of the 1930s must be attributed to the foreign policy implemented at that time by the Fascist regime and the access to Italian universities of young Jews coming from the countries of Central and Eastern Europe where they were faced with the existence—de jure or de facto—of admissions quotas. However, the alignment of the Fascist regime with Hitler’s Germany, the racial laws and then the entry into the war led to a sudden exodus of the Jewish students then in Italy. The period between 1945 and 1980 constituted the ‘Golden Age’ of foreign students in Italy. Apart from the presence of students belonging to the Allied liberation armies in the post-war years, there was a determined effort on the part of the first governments of the new Republic to facilitate the resumption of studies by young adolescents, even foreigners, whose education had been interrupted by the events of the war. The arrival of foreign university students reached its peak in the 1960-1980 period. In 1960-61, 3,589 enrolments are recorded; five years later, there are 6,130, and at the beginning of the new decade (1970-71), 14,357. Eleven years later (1981-82), the number of foreign students in Italy reached 30,493, or 2.8 percent of the total student population (just over 1 million), a record which has remained unbroken. The presence of certain nationalities may be explained by various motivations. Following the coup d’état of the Greek colonels in 1967, for example, the 16,593 Greek students in Italy accounted for 58 percent of all foreign students. The case of students coming from the United States is also interesting: for the most part, these were second- or third-generation Italian-Americans, almost all of whom were enrolled in the Faculty of Medicine and Surgery, because of the difficulty of getting admitted to medical schools in their own country but also because of the local market’s absorption capacities. The rapid expansion of the university population, coinciding as it did the most violent phase of the student protest movement, led government administrations to examine the question of foreign students under the heading of the ‘foreign student problem’. The political response to this problem thus involved the approval of a series of restrictive measures, with the result that during the 1980s, Italian universities lost more than one-third of their foreign students—a counter-trend relative to the choices made by the other major countries of Europe and the rest of the world. During the last decade, many changes have modified the panorama of foreign students in Italy as well as the features of international student mobility in
general. A growing number of students from ex-Yugoslavia and Albania, for example, have poured into Italy. The students who are now in Italy have profoundly altered their preferences, moreover—if they mainly choose science faculties, they are also found in all the other university courses, including those more specifically associated with the humanities.
A Changing Portrait of International Students in Canadian Universities
Kathryn McMullen and Angelo Elias Tourism and the Centre for Education Statistics Division Statistics Canada Overall trends in the shares of international students, Canada and provinces Changes in the composition of international students, by level of university education The changing age and gender characteristics of international students Region of origin of international students Canadian region of destination of international students Changes in field of study Conclusion International students have been part of Canadian university campuses for many years. And their numbers have been increasing. Along with that growth has come change in the characteristics of those students, changes that are evident in their university program levels and fields of study, age and gender composition, source countries and destinations within Canada. This article uses data from the Postsecondary Student Information System (PSIS) to draw a portrait of the changing make-up of international students enrolled in Canadian universities on either a part-time or full-time basis over the 1992 to 2008 period. This changing portrait shows how different international students are today compared to their counterparts in the early 1990s.
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Overall trends in the shares of international students, Canada and provinces
In 1992, international students accounted for about 4% of all students enrolled in Canadian universities (Chart 1). That share fell very slightly in the mid-1990s before showing steady growth through to the mid-2000s. By 2008, the share of international students had doubled compared to 1992, reaching 8% of all university students in Canada. These changes are the result of an increase in the overall number of international students at Canadian universities from 36,822 in 1992 to 87,798 in 2008. Chart 1 International students as a proportion of all university enrolments, Canada, 1992 to 2008 Description for Chart 1 Source: Statistics Canada, Postsecondary Student Information System (PSIS). The gains in the shares of international students have not been even across provinces. Notably large increases are evident in New Brunswick, which saw the percentage of international students rise from among the lowest in 1992, at 3%, to one of the highest in 2008, at 11.4% (Chart 2). International students also accounted for a relatively large share of university students in 2008 in British Columbia, Nova Scotia and Manitoba, at 10.6% and 9.3% and 9.2%, respectively. Strong gains in the shares of percentages of international students are also evident over this period in Prince Edward Island and Nova Scotia. Chart 2 International students as a proportion of all university enrolments, by province, 1992 and 2008
Description for Chart 2
Source: Statistics Canada, Postsecondary Student Information System (PSIS). It should be noted that, in some provinces, even though the share of international students showed relatively large increases, their overall numbers remained comparatively small. For example, in New Brunswick, the number of international students rose from 747 in 1992 to 2,616 in 2008. Also, large increases in the number of international students can be masked by large increases in the total number of students. In British Columbia, for instance, the number of international students rose from 3,858 in 1992 to 16,662 in 2008, while over the same period, the total number of students rose from 66,171 to 156,741.
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Changes in the composition of international students, by level of university education
Accompanying the rise in the share of international students at Canadian universities has been a shift in the level of studies in which they are enrolled. Most notable is a decrease in the share of international students enrolled in programs at the doctorate level and an increase in the share enrolled at the bachelor's level. Overall, 12% of international students were enrolled in doctoral programs in 2008, compared to 19% in 1992; similarly, the shares enrolled in master's programs decreased from 23% in 1992 to 18% in 2008 (Chart 3). In contrast, the shares enrolled in bachelor's level programs rose from 55% in 1992 to 67% in 2008. Chart 3 International students as a proportion of all university enrolments,1 by level of education, Canada, 1992 to 2008
Description for Chart 3
Excludes enrolments in qualifying and residency programs as well as programs normally associated with colleges but offered in universities. Source: Statistics Canada, Postsecondary Student Information System (PSIS).
This shift toward a greater proportion of international students enrolling in a first degree program is masked by the overall numbers of students at the undergraduate level. For example, in 1992, international students accounted for 3.1% of students enrolled at the bachelor's level, Canada-wide; by 2008, this percentage had risen to 6.6%. International students continue to account for a much larger – though declining – share of students at the doctorate level, at 24.9% of students in 1992 and 20.6% in 2008. Relatively little change is evident at the master's level, with the share of international students being 10.5% in 1992 and 12.8% in 2008.
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The changing age and gender characteristics of international students
The shift to a growing number of international students enrolling at the bachelor's level is reflected in changes in their age and gender composition. Most notably, they have become younger. As shown in Chart 4, 18 to 24 year-olds accounted for a smaller share of international students in 1992, at 48%, than was the case for Canadian students, at 57%. Instead, international students were more likely than Canadian students to be 25 to 29 years old and 30 to 34 years old in 1992. These age profiles changed over time. Most notably, there has been a convergence between international and Canadian students among the younger age group, with 18 to 24 year-olds accounting for about two thirds of both groups in 2008. In both cases as well, this convergence also reflects the fact that 18 to 24 year-olds accounted for a larger share of students in 2008 compared to 1992. Convergence is evident as well in the share of students accounted for by 30 to 34 year-olds, with this share decreasing for both groups. At the other end of the scale, consistently larger shares of Canadian students have been aged 35 years or more compared to their international counterparts, though in both cases, that share has decreased slightly over time. Chart 4 Age profile of international students compared to Canadian students, Canada, 1992, 2000 and 2008
Description for Chart 4
Source: Statistics Canada, Postsecondary Student Information System (PSIS). The change is less dramatic on the gender front, but change is evident, nonetheless. Overall in Canada, females have accounted for well over half of university students since the beginning of the PSIS time series in 1992. There has been an increase in the female share of international students as well, though males continue to account for more than half. In 1992, about 39% of international students were female. That share rose steadily through the 1990s, reaching 45% in 1999, with the share holding more or less steady through to 2008. In terms of level of university studies, the female share of enrolment at the undergraduate level remained steady over the period, with females accounting for 45% of international students at the bachelor's level in 1992 and for 48% in 2008. More notable shifts are evident at the graduate level, with those shifts largely taking place in the 1990s. The female share of international students enrolled in master's degree programs rose from 35% in 1992 to 41% in both 2000 and 2008. An even larger increase is observed at the doctorate level, with the female share rising from about one-quarter in 1992 to over one-third in 2000 and 2008.
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Region of origin of international students
While there have been some shifts over time in the region of origin of international students, the picture in 2008 was very similar to that in 1992. Asian students have consistently accounted for the largest share of international students, though that share dipped in the late 1990s. In 1992, students from Asia accounted for 49.8% of international students. That share fell to 36.5% in 1999, then rose steadily to reach 52.7% in 2008. The next largest group consists of students from Europe, with their share being 16.3% in 1992, rising to 24.9% in 1998, then falling to 17.9% in 2008. In contrast, students originating from countries in Africa have accounted for a declining share of international students, falling from 17.1% in 1992 to 11.8% in 2008.
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Canadian region of destination of international students
With respect to the Canadian region of destination of international students, the largest shifts are observed in the provinces of Quebec and Ontario. Quebec's share of international students rose from 27.7% in 1992 to 37% in the 1997 to 1999 period, falling thereafter to 26.1% in 2008. The pattern was reversed in Ontario, with Ontario universities accounting for 37% of international students in 1992 with that share falling to 27.5% in 1998, then rising again in the early 2000s. In 2008, this share was 33.8%. Change is clearly evident in British Columbia as well, which saw its share of international students almost double, rising from 10.5% in 1992 to 19.0% in 2008. Chart 5 Region of destination, international students, Canada, 1992 to 2008 Description for Chart 5
Source: Statistics Canada, Postsecondary Student Information System (PSIS).
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Changes in field of study
Not only has the demographic profile of international students changed over time, so too have the fields of study they are pursuing while attending Canadian universities. Furthermore, those changes in fields of study have been larger than in the case of Canadian students. Chart 6 shows the distribution of both international and Canadian university students in 1992 and 2008, by field of study. That chart shows, for example, that the share of international students who were enrolled in "education" changed little in 2008 compared to 1992, with about 2% of international students being enrolled in that field of study in both years. In comparison, the share of Canadian students who were enrolled in "education" decreased slightly, from 10.1% in 1992 to 7.2% in 2008. Looking first at international students, the largest shifts were away from "mathematics, computer and information sciences" (10.4% in 1992 and 6.9% in 2008) and the "physical and life sciences, and technologies" (11.5% in 1992 and 8.3% in 2008). The largest gain was in "business, management and public administration," which accounted for 14.5% of international students in 1992 and for 23.2% in 2008. Such a shift toward larger percentages of students enroling in "business, management and public administration" is not evident for Canadian students, with that share being 15.5% and 16.5% in 1992 and 2008, respectively.
While there has been no real change over time, it is worth noting that "architecture, engineering and related technologies" accounted for much larger shares of international students in both 1992 and 2008 compared to their Canadian counterparts. In 1992, for example, 16.1% of international students were enrolled in this field of study and that share was relatively similar in 2008, at 14.4%. In contrast, "architecture, engineering and related technologies" accounted for 6.9% of Canadian students in 1992 and for 7.7% in 2008. Chart 6 Distribution of international and Canadian students, by field of study, Canada, 1992 and 2008 Description for Chart 6
Source: Statistics Canada, Postsecondary Student Information System (PSIS).
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Overall, the share of enrolment at Canadian universities accounted for by international students doubled between 1992 and 2008, rising from 4% to 8%. That being said, some provinces have seen larger increases in their international student populations than others. This is especially the case for New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island and Nova Scotia. Strong gains are evident as well in Ontario, which accounted for well over one-third of international students in 2008, and in British Columbia, which saw its share of international students almost double, rising from 10.5% in 1992 to 19.0% in 2008. While there have been some shifts over time in the region of origin of international students, the picture in 2008 was very similar to that in 1992. Asian students have consistently accounted for the largest share of international students – 49.8% in 1992 and 52.7% in 2008. The largest change has been a significant decrease in the share of international students originating from countries in Africa. More notable are changes in the characteristics of international students over time. Compared to their counterparts in 1992, those in 2008 were younger and more likely to be enrolled in programs at the bachelor's level than in doctorate programs. Less change is evident in the case of their gender make-up, with the share of females rising from 39% in 1992 to 45% in 1999 and holding steady at that share since. Last, significant change is evident in the fields of study in which international students are enrolled. Notably, smaller shares of them were enrolled in "mathematics, computer and information sciences" and the "physical and life sciences, and technologies" in 2008
compared to 1992, with strong gains being evident in the share of enrolment found in "business, management and public administration."
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Higher Education in Vietnam
Higher Education Department In the Education Development Strategy from 2001 to 2010, the goals of higher education in Vietnam have been clearly set out as "to provide high quality human resources in line with the socio-economic structure of the industrialization and moderniza- tion of the nation; enhance the competitiveness in fair co-operation for Vietnam in its international economic integration; to facilitate the expansion of post secondary education through diversification of educational programs on the basis of a path-way system that is suitable for the structure of development, careers and employment, local and regional human resource needs and the training capacities of education institutions; to increase the appropriateness of the training to the employment needs of the society, the ability to create jobs for oneself and for others". In the academic years of 2002-2003, there are 111 universities and 119 colleges in the higher education system; of which 15 universities are private, 2 semi-public, and 2 private colleges. The total number of students reaches 1,020,670 and 64% of whom are full-time students, 36% parttime. The student rate is 124.7 per 10 thousand. The total number of lecturers are 32,205, of whom 5,476 lecturers have PhD degrees (17%), 9,543 have Master degrees (29.6%), and 17,186 have bachelor''''s degrees (53.4%). Only 324 of these lecturers have been awarded with the title of professors (1%) and 1,124 associate professors (3.49%). I. HIGHER EDUCATION STRUCTURE AND GOALS (Source: Education Law, National Political Publisher, Hanoi, 1998) As regulated in the Law on Education, higher education covers undergraduate and postgraduate studies. Undergraduate studies can lead to diploma or bachelor degrees while postgraduate studies can lead to master degrees and doctorate degrees. The goals of higher education are set as follows: To train the human resources with political and moral qualifications ready to serve the people; knowledge; with practical knowledge, good health and abilities to contribute to the development and the defense of the country. Duration and objectives for different levels in higher education: 3-years college programs are for those with upper secondary school or secondary vocational school certificates. College education can provide students with fundamental knowledge as well as practical and problem-solving skills for specific careers. Subject to areas of studies, undergraduate programs take four to six years for those with senior secondary school or secondary vocational school certificates, and one to two years for those having completed college programs of the same area. Undergraduate studies provide the student with consolidated professional knowledge and practical skills for a specific career, and with skills necessary for identifying and solving problems arisen in the field of studies.
Postgraduate Studies: Postgraduate studies include programs leading to master and doctorate degrees. Master programs require two years to be completed for those with bachelor's degrees. Master programs can provide students with strong theoretical background and high levels of practical skills, combined with skills necessary for identifying and solving problems arisen out of their areas of studies. Doctorate degrees take four years for those with bachelor's degrees and from two to three years for those with master degrees. Doctorate research can provide doctorate candidates with high levels of theoretical and empirical studies with independent research capacity which can then lead to further researches or solving more sophisticated problems. II. HIGHER EDUCATION INSTITUTIONS Higher education institutions are structured as follows: - Colleges can offer college programs and other lower level programs. - Universities can offer college, undergraduate, master and doctorate programs as assigned by the Prime Minister. - Research Institutes can offer doctorate programs and in cooperating with universities can offer master programs subject to permission from the Prime Minister. Higher education institutions that are authorized to provide full-time regular programs can also offer part-time programs on the condition that they the part-time programs are similar to the full-time ones. Part-time students can only be admitted to degree programs in the national education system and there are three modes of delivery: in-service training, distant learning or instructed selflearning. III. HIGHER EDUCATION DEGREES Graduates from colleges are awarded with College Diplomas. Graduates from undergraduate programs are awarded with Bachelor Degrees. Graduates from master programs are awarded with Master degrees such as Master of Arts and Master of Business Administration. Graduate from doctorate programs are awarded with Doctorate Degrees. The Minister of Education and Training is responsible for awarding Doctorate Degrees to students, and Rectors or Presidents of the universities are responsible for awarding master, bachelor degrees and college diplomas to the students. The Government governs the Graduate Degrees of some specialties.
IV. EDUCATION DEVELOPMENT POLICIES FOR VIETNAMESE HIGHER EDUCATION 1. Development Direction for Vietnamese Higher Education Vietnam's policies for the development of its higher education in the period 2001-2010 are based on the following fundamental guidelines: a) The general directions and strategies for socio-economic development, education and technology, human resource development for the first decade of the 21 century as identified in official documents of the Communist Party and the Government: such as Instrument of the CPV at the 9th General Conference (April 2001), Law on Education passed by the 9th National Assembly at its 4th session (December, 1998), the Planning of Higher Education Institution System for 20012010 approved by the Prime Minister in April 2001, the Education Development Strategy for 20012010 approved by the Prime Minister in December 2001, the Resolutions of the 9th CPV Congress at its 6th Session about education & training and science & technology, Policies to encourage socialization activities in Education, Healthcare, Cultural Affairs, and Sports approved by the Prime Minister in September 1999. All of these documents have some articles for education in general and higher education in particular. b) Major trends and achievements and development experiences in higher education in the world at the end of the 20th century and the beginning of the 21st century represent the second grounds for Vietnam's education policies. It is always considered an important task to review successful educational development policies in other countries so that they can be applied creatively to the concrete situations in Vietnam. Thanks to this approach, perceptions and ways of thinking have been gained. Literatures provided by UNESCO in Paris and other UNESCO in Asia Pacific regions are important guidelines such as materials from International Conference on 21st Century Higher Education in Paris from 5-9 October, 1998 organized by UNESCO. 2. Higher Education Objectives and Policies a) Higher education objectives for 2001-2010 The objectives stated in the 2001-2010 Education Development Strategy are as follows: "to provide high quality human resources in line with the socio-economic structure of the industrialization and modernization of the nation; enhance the competitiveness in fair co-operation for Vietnam in its international economic integration; to facilitate the expansion of post secondary education through diversification of educational programs on the basis of a path-way system that is suitable for the structure of development, careers and employment, local and regional human resource needs and the training capacities of education institutions; to increase the appropriateness of the training to the employment needs of the society, the ability to create jobs for oneself and for others". To realize such objectives, the higher education policies must target the following new points: - Training highly qualified competitive human resources responsive to the needs of the society and ability to create jobs for themselves; - Opening up higher education system to include post-secondary education perception with diversification and standardization of levels, training curricula, flexible pathways among levels and job markets, and the strengthening of training capacities for higher educational institutions. Attention and priority should be given to some new directions in these objectives: "everybody is
entitled to education and life-long learning, the whole country becomes a learning society". b) Policies targeted at education development for 2001-2010 In accordance with the objectives, the policies for educational development can be grouped into four categories: - Structural policies which serve as the focal point for other policies. The structural policies deal with educational levels, specialties, types of educational institutions in relation with social human resource structure in different localities. Further structural improvements are needed to establish a new network of higher educational institutions that consist of both public and non-public institutions with more diversity in objectives and modes of delivery, more pathways to make the system more flexible. This will not only help meet the demand for high level human resource but also provide the people with more educational opportunities and choices, making it easier for the re-structuring of both the human resources and the re-structuring of the economy. This will also help with social, gender, ethnic equity and fairness. According to the 2001-2010 Education Development Strategy, the educational level and quality will be based on international standards so that education can contribute to the industrialization and modernization of the country and the gradual realization of a knowledge based economy and a life long learning society. - Quality policies form the foundation for all policies towards quality assurance. Higher quality in education is the key factor in ensuring better educational outcomes and the enhancement of competitiveness of the whole economy. Quality policies are based on a new perception that quality must be relevant with the uniformity and diversification of training objectives. Quality assurance process must be carried out at three important points: the input (through selection of students on entrance examinations), training process and the output (at graduation). Quality assurance must be standardized and modernized on all aspects ranging from curricula, faculties, facilities and investments from the Government and society. One new development in the quality policies is the master frame curriculum for all training programs. These shall be the guidelines for different educational institutions to develop detailed and specific curriculum and syllabuses for each institution. A system of quality assurance based on assessment criteria and quality accrediting process will also be introduced. This will be a combination of institutionadministered assessments and external auditing and evaluation. Quality policies also emphasize the innovations of training methodologies so that students can develop their self-learning and independent research capacities, problem-solving skills; IT skills, language skills, communication skills and they will be able to form their own business and create jobs for others. To supplement these quality policies, there must be policies targeted at quality assurance, such as criteria for selection of inputs, social equity, training of teachers with standard quality, evaluation of the teaching staffs, incentives for teachers and recruiting young and talented people to work in the higher education system. Higher education quality implies not only training quality but also research and application quality: "training must be linked with research, application, implementation and technology transfer" and "partnership between training and research institutions and the business sector shall also be formed to solve problems arisen out the labor market and technology market through training contracts, joint research contracts, development of university enterprises etc". Policies that relate to the improvement of efficiency and effectiveness of the higher education
system mainly focus on the appropriate utilization of graduates, the reduction of unemployment rate, further training in responses to human resource needs and the linkages between training and production and business. - Management policies focus on the improvement of management efficiency with emphasis on the implementation of recent innovation measures such as the standardization and accreditation of higher education institutions, aiming at strengthening educational institutions' autonomy. Other measures include the standardization of the management staffs, the reforms of financial systems within the higher education system to encourage efficient use of resources; the promotion of socializa-tion of education with the development of non-public higher education institutions, the incentives provided to economic and technological associations to invest in higher education. The strengthening of the state governance capacity for MOET covers three major tasks: the development of strategy and plans for higher education, the development of policies and governance of training content and quality, the evaluation and inspection. The management policies also pay attention to the collection and processing of educational information to improve governance efficiency. Innovations in the governance of education are considered the key issue which lead to many other solutions. - International co-operation policies: In the world of globalization and economic integration, the Government supports the expansion of international relations to exchange views, ideas, experiences, advanced progresses in researches, studies, technologies and to enhance mutual understanding among peoples for peace, friendship and co-operation. International co-operation provides opportunities to mobilize external resources for the development of higher education. The Government also encourages foreign investments in the higher education system in the form of joint training and research programs, foreign owned universities, overseas research fellowships. More importantly, the Government has reserved funds from the state budget to send Vietnamese students overseas to study and do researches in needed areas. Self-funding overseas studies are also encouraged. The Government also implements policies for good use of foreign aids through bilateral and multilateral co-operation schemes with international donors, non-governmental organizations, and loans from foreign banking institutions. A large percentage of these aids and loans is targeted at the capacity building of higher education institutions and contributes to the implementation of strategic objectives for human resource and technology development.
Vietnamese American College students
Little is known about substance use among Vietnamese American College students. Previous studies showed that substance use is more prevalent among White, AfricanAmericans and Hispanics, than in Asian Americans in the US. As a result, many believe that all Asian Americans can be classified as a low health risk group. This study examined the prevalence of substance use (cigarette, alcohol, and marijuana) and factors associated with substance use among Vietnamese American college students. Data were collected through a mail survey and a telephone survey. A total of 412 usable surveys were completed. The results of this study indicated that gender and degree of acculturation are significantly related to substance use. Vietnamese male students are more likely to use substance than are Vietnamese female students. Overall, acculturated Vietnamese American students were more likely to use substance (alcohol and Marijuana) than those
less acculturated Vietnamese American students. However, cigarette smoking was not significantly related to acculturation among female students. Future studies should examine the gender differences in the acceptance and perception toward substance use. Introduction Many researchers have reported significant differences in the prevalence of substance use among various ethnic groups in the United States. A frequent finding reported in these studies is that substance use is more prevalent among White, African-Americans and Hispanics, than in Asian Americans in the US (Gillmore et al., 1990; Collins, 1993; O'Hare, 1995; Ellickson et al, 1996). As a result, many believe that substance use is not an important health issue for the Asian Americans population, and continue to uphold the stereotypical view that all Asian American can be classified as a low health risk group. Although this comparatively low rate of substance use exhibited by Asian Americans, may indeed be accurate for some subgroups of Asian Americans in the US, it may not be an accurate representation for all Asian ethnic groups (Ja and Aoki, 1993). The AsianAmerican population is a rather heterogeneous one, consisting of many different ethnic groups, each with its unique set of cultural standards, beliefs, values and traditions, hence with varied health risk behaviors. As such, it may not be appropriate to examine their lifestyle behaviors collectively, but rather to focus on the health behaviors of individual subgroups, to examine their patterns of alcohol and drug use, and to determine the extent to which this may represent an important health concern for that particular Asian ethnic subgroup. All Asian subgroups are usually lumped together under one single category, "Asians," thus making difficult the generalization of findings to all groups because there are some subgroup differences. Furthermore, previous studies (Cho and Faulkner, 1993; Higuchi et al., 1994; Izuno et al., 1992; Zane and Sasao, 1992) on substance use among Asian- Americans raise a number of methodological problems that make it difficult to assess the prevalence and the factors associated with use among different Asian ethnic groups. These studies typically represent more acculturated groups like Chinese and Japanese. Absent from most of these studies are those who are at high risk such as immigrants, refugees, and economically marginalized. There is a need to know more about the people who do not fall into these groups. It is highly likely that they are significantly different in their rates of use and use patterns than those who do fall into these study groups and whose results get reported. Overall, adequate data and information about substance abuse by Asian Americans is scarce. This scarcity exists in part because a relatively small proportion of substance abuse resources have been allocated to research resigned for the understanding of Asian Americans and their problems associated with substance abuse. Also, information from national data sets is not automatically broken down by different racial and ethnic groups so that comparisons of substance use can be made different Asian and Americans. Although the Vietnamese population in the United States has grown tremendously within the last 20 years, with US census figures showing that they are the fastest growing Asian/ Pacific Islander ethnic group (US Census, 1992), very few studies (Jenkins et al, 1990; Wiecha, 1996) have focused on the prevalence of substance use among this subgroup of
Asian Americans. The purpose of this study was to examine the prevalence of substance use among Vietnamese American College students. This study also examined the relationship between acculturation to substance use among Vietnamese American college students. Several studies have found that acculturation of recently arrived immigrant groups into American society (i.e., westernization) is associated with increases in substance use in these groups. For example, acculturation have been found to be positively correlated with alcohol use among Hispanic-Americans in general (Caetano, 1987; Gilbert and Cervante, 1986) and Asian Americans living on the US mainland (Zane and Sasao, 1992). This study hypothesizes that acculturated Vietnamese American students are more likely to use substances than less acculturated Vietnamese American students. Presumably, greater levels of acculturation by Vietnamese American students into the majority American culture, with the associated changes in diet and other lifestyle changes, result in greater health risk (e.g., substance use). This study will provide empirical data specific to Vietnamese American college students and will help to narrow the information gap, which currently impedes efforts to develop culturally sensitive substance abuse education programs. Methods Vietnamese students at the University of Houston were the participants of this study. They were chosen because they represent the largest group (13.5%) of Asian Americans at the University. The sampling frame was formed by use of Vietnamese names listed in the student directory. The investigator identified 30 Vietnamese family names that account for the majority of all ethnic Vietnamese. The final sampling frame consisted of 847 Vietnamese students. A total of 412 survey was completed from a 779 eligible sample list. The final response rate among eligible students was 53%. The refusal rate was 9% of the total contacts. The subject sample for this analysis includes only students who identified themselves as Vietnamese. Those who didn't identify themselves as Vietnamese were excluded from this study. Data were collected through two methods. Using the mail survey method, students were sent a letter requesting them to complete a questionnaire and return it in an enclosed self-addressed stamped envelope. An attempt was made to telephone interview those who did not return a survey. Lack of correct (known) telephone numbers was the most common reason for nonresponse. Demographic information, including, gender, age, marital status, location raised and birthplace was collected. Respondents were asked a series of questions aimed at assessing degrees of acculturation to US. society. This study used a modified version of the SuinnLew Asian Self-Identity Acculturation Scale. (Suinn et al., 1987) The areas covered by this scale were the following: language use and preference (range 7-21), ethnic identification (range 2-6), and sociocultural preferences (range 3-9). Higher scores indicate higher acculturation. As anticipated, there were positive correlations between language use and ethnic identity (r=0.47, p=[is less than] 0.001) and between the length of residence in the US and language use (r=0.48, p= [is less than] 0.001). Language use also showed a positive correlation with ethnic identity (r=0.53, p= [is less than] 0.001). Respondents who have lived in the US for a longer period were more likely to use English than those who have lived in the US for a shorter period. These correlations are in the expected direction and
In addition to demographic and acculturation questions students were asked about their use of substances: alcohol, cigarettes, and marijuana, amphetamines, cocaine, and heroin. Use of alcohol and cigarette were scored as dichotomies: current uses or nonuse. Use of illicit substance was scored as dichotomies: never used or ever used. Use of amphetamines, cocaine, and heroin are not reported here because of very small numbers. Data were analyzed using SPSS statistical analysis system. Tests of significance included chi-square for cross tabulations and t-tests for continuous variables. Bivariate associations between the dependent variable and the independent variables were examined to identify subgroups within Vietnamese students who are most likely to use substance. Finally, logistic regression analyses were performed to determine factors associated with each substance. Results Ads by Google Largest GMAT Site Online 100,000 GMAT Members, Join Now GMAT Tips, Secrets & Advice www.GMATClub.com MSc Psychiatry eLearning Cardif University, p/t, distance Stay at home, get your degree www.mscpsychiatry.co.uk Marketing Part Time Course Study In The UK. Durham Business School, A Triple Accredited School! www.Dur.ac.uk/Marketing Demographic characteristics The respondents were students (205 men and 207 women) ranging in age from 17 to 48 and with a mean age of 23 years. Of those students responding to the age questions, 24.5% were aged 17-20 and 75% were aged 21 or older. The majority of students were young and single. More than sixty percent (65.8%) of the respondents were employed. Of those employed, approximately 60% worked 11-30 hours per week. Majority (81%) is living at home with parents. Buddhist students made up 42.7% of the sample and Catholics 33.3%. Approximately 13% of the Vietnamese responded that they had no religious affiliation. The average length of residence in the US was 14.7 years with a standard deviation of 5.8 years, ranging from 2 months to 26 years. Nearly ninety percent (89.6%) of the students surveyed were born outside the US mainland. Although a majority of respondents were born in Vietnam, more than 60% of the respondents were raised mostly in the United States. Cigarette Smoking
Table 1 summarizes the relationship between substance use and sociodemographic characteristics. Only 11% of the Vietnamese students are current smokers. Male students (16.1%) were significantly more likely than female students (6.3%) to report current
cigarette use. Bivariate analysis revealed that location raised was significantly related to cigarette smoking. For example, those who were raised mostly in the US (14.2%) were significantly more likely than those students raised in Vietnam (4.9%) or those raised equally in Vietnam and US (8.2%) to report current cigarette use. There were no significant relationships between age, religion, and living arrangement and cigarette smoking. The only acculturation variable, which showed a significant relationship, was length of stay in the US. For example, the mean length of residence in the US of current smokers and nonsmokers were significantly (p [is less than] .05) different. When examined by gender, there were significant relationship between length of residence in the US and cigarette smoking among male students but not among female students. The findings suggest that acculturated Vietnamese male students were more likely to smoke cigarettes than less acculturated Vietnamese male students. In the final logistic regression model, sex and placed raised were important predictors of current cigarette smoking. The dependent variable is the current use or nonuse of cigarette. The adjusted odds ratios for this model indicate that male students were more likely to be current smoker than female students (Odd Ratio (OR)= 3.26; 95% Confidence Interval (CI)=6.47, 1.65). Those students who were raised mostly in the US were more likely to smoke cigarette than those who were raised mostly in Vietnam or equally in Vietnam and US (OR=3.06; 95% CI=6.63, 1.42). Length of residence in the US did not reach significance in the regression once birthplace is controlled in the model. Alcohol Use
More than one-third (34.7%) reported current alcohol use. Male students (42.0%) were significantly more likely than female students (27.5%) to report current alcohol use. Religion seems to be influencing the drinking patterns of Vietnamese students. Those students, who are affiliated to Buddhist or Catholic faith, are less at risk for alcohol problems. As expected, Vietnamese students not living with parents were more likely to drink than those living with parents. More than one-third (34%) of the underage male students and 26% of the underage female students drank. There were no significant differences between underage students and legal-age students on alcohol use. Native born Vietnamese students (32.8%) were significantly (p [is less than] .05) more likely to be current drinkers than foreign born Vietnamese students (51.2%). Students who were raised mostly in the US reported significantly higher rates of alcohol use (44.1%) than those raised mostly in Vietnamese (18.6%) or equally in Vietnam and the US (18.4%). As expected, acculturated students were more likely to drink than less acculturated students. (Table 2) For both male and female students, results show that more acculturated students have lower rate of abstention than those in the low acculturation category. In contrast to cigarette use, the relationship between acculturation and drinking is significant among female students, with acculturation positively associated with drinking. In the final logistic regression model, sex, location raised, and class level were important predictors of current alcohol use. The adjusted odds ratios for this model indicate that male students were more likely to drink than female students (OR=2.41; 95% CI=3.76, 1.58). Those students who were raised mostly in the US were more likely to drink than those who were raised mostly in Vietnam or equally in both US and Vietnam (OR=4.18; 95% CI=6.91, 2.53). Undergraduate students were less likely to be a current drinker than those who were in
Indicators of acculturation didn't have any predictive value for alcohol use once place raised is controlled in the model. For example, length of residence in the US and language use did not reach significance in the regression when it was introduced to the model. Marijuana Use
The only drug other than alcohol and tobacco commonly used by Vietnamese students was marijuana. Less than 10% of Vietnamese student in this study had tried marijuana during their lifetime (i.e., lifetime marijuana use). Male students (11.7%) were significantly more likely than female students (5.3%) to report lifetime marijuana use. As expected, the more students were acculturated into the American culture, the more they tried marijuana in the past. Vietnamese who were born in US (25.6%) were significantly (p [is less than] .001) more likely to have tried marijuana than Vietnamese who were born in Vietnam (6.5%). Students who were raised mostly in the US reported significantly higher rates of lifetime marijuana use (12.3%) than those raised mostly in Vietnamese (2.0%) or equally in Vietnam and the US (2.1%). The findings showed that younger and acculturated students were more likely to have tried marijuana in the past than older and less acculturated students. In the final logistic regression model, sex, location raised, and births place were important predictors of past use of marijuana. The adjusted odds ratios for this model indicate that male students were more likely to have experimented with marijuana than female students (OR=2.73; 95% CI=5.92, 1.26). Those students who were raised mostly in the US were more likely to experimented with marijuana than those who were raised mostly in Vietnam or equally in Vietnam and US (OR=6.36; 95% CI=22.56,1.80). Those US born students were more likely to experimented with marijuana than those who were foreign-born students (OR=3.3; 95% CI=8.36, 1.35). All acculturation variables were significantly related to marijuana use in the past. (Table 2) However, indicators of acculturation didn't have any predictive value for marijuana use once birth place is controlled in the model. Discussion This study shows that substance use is less prevalent in Vietnamese American students compared to nationwide data (CDC MMWR, 1997). Approximately 88% of college students (including those under age 21) have used alcohol, compared to 34.7% of Vietnamese students in this study. Less than 10% of Vietnamese students had used marijuana during their lifetime, compared to 4.8.7% of college students nationwide. Nationwide, 16.5% of college students are current cigarette users. In this study, only 11.2% reported current cigarette use. The results of this study indicate that gender and degree of acculturation are significantly related to substance use. Results showed a significant relationship between gender and use of cigarettes, marijuana, and alcohol, with a higher percentage of males admitting to use than females. Overall, Vietnamese female students showed considerably lower rates of
substance use than do Vietnamese male students. The more acculturated Vietnamese female students tend to use more alcohol and Marijuana than their less acculturated counterparts. However, cigarette smoking was not significantly related to acculturation. It is possible that for drinking by Vietnamese female is more acceptable behavior than cigarette smoking. These findings are similar to those of past studies that examined the role of gender in alcohol abuse. This may be attributed to the stereotyped role of women in society, or to Vietnamese cultural values. In many cultures it is acceptable for men to spend leisure time drinking with friends but similar behavior in women may be socially unacceptable. Gender differences in the acceptance and perceptions toward substance use needed to be examined in the future study. As expected, Vietnamese students who are more acculturated to Western culture were more likely to be current drinkers and more likely to experimented marijuana. These results suggest the effects of acculturation on alcohol and marijuana use among Vietnamese students, with higher acculturation scores related to higher rates of alcohol and substance use. It should be noted that we found no significant relationship between cigarette smoking and acculturation among Vietnamese students. The length of residence in the US among male students was the only acculturation variable significantly related to current cigarette use. It is evident that exposure to the American culture greatly influences patterns of alcohol consumption and marijuana use in the past among Vietnamese students. However, this seems to be not true for cigarette smoking. This may reflect the results of tobacco use prevention programs in the US. Future study should examine possible differences in US and Vietnamese societal norms and attitudes towards substance use Although one-fourth of the sample were age 17-20, no statistically significant relationship between age and substance use was found. Nearly one-third (29.7%) of this age group admitted to past use of alcohol despite a legal drinking age of 21 in Texas. We found the alcohol consumption of underage students was similar to their legal-age counterparts. Similar to previous study (Gfroerer et al, 1997), Vietnamese students living away from their parents were significantly more likely than students living with their parents to drink. This clearly suggests that the campus environment influence student drinking behaviors. Furthermore, parental influence may play an important role in students, decisions to use alcohol. This may also be related to parents' attitudes toward alcohol use by students, as well as their own patterns of alcohol use. It should be noted that cigarette and marijuana use rates showed no difference between students living with parents and away from parents. Buddhism and Catholicism were the most frequently professed religions among the respondents. Where-as 29.0% of those whose religious preference was Buddhism and 31.4% of respondents who were Catholic reported alcohol use, 50% of those who professed "other" religious beliefs and 49% of those who had no religious preferences reported alcohol use. Religious beliefs may significantly affect attitudes and as a result behaviors will be affected. Those who professed to be Catholics and Buddhists had the lowest rates of alcohol use possibly because they have been influenced by the teachings of their religion. Additionally, those with religious preferences are more likely to participate in religious activities that may not involve alcohol than those without religion. It should also point out that religious preferences were significantly related to acculturation. Those who reported as a Buddhist were the least acculturated students.
This study is limited in several ways. One limitation of this study is that substance use was based on self-reports. Given the exploratory nature of this study, reported use should be taken as an index rather than an estimate of actual use. The surveys are limited because of the respondents' reluctance to answer questions regarding use of any substance, particularly illegal drugs, given the stigma our society attaches to drug use, especially by women. Thus it is possible that respondents were less likely to have reported their behavior accurately. For instance, respondents may deliberately provide inaccurate data to hide risky health behavior. In addition, there are no data available on the non-respondents and those who have dropped out of school are clearly high-risk populations. The sampling frame was limited and based on student listings. For these reasons, we need to be cautious in generalizing from the data presented here to the population of Vietnamese or other Asians students as a whole. Furthermore, it is important to note that the concept of Asian refers to a diverse group of people with origins from a large geographic region and must proceed with a sense of caution when speaking of the Asian Americans. Asian Americans are comprised of people from much different ethnic background who vary within and across groups in language, education and social status. Despite these limitations, study findings underscore the importance of offering culturally relevant health education in schools that serve large Vietnamese and other Asian American populations. The programs targeting Asian students must be relevant to their culture and messages must be sensitive to the particular culture of the audience.
Table 1 Relationship between past use of substance abuse and selected sociodemographic characteristics Characteristics Total n Gender Male Female Age 17-20 21-25 26+ Birth Place Foreign-born US born Location Raised Mostly in Vietnam Equally in Vietnam & US Mostly in US Class Undergraduate Graduate/Professional Religion Buddhist 205 207 101 234 77 369 43 102 49 261 349 63 176 Cigarettes % 11.2 p Marijuana % 8.5 p Alcohol % 34.7 p
Catholic Other None Living Arrangement Live with parents Not live with parents p value by Chi-square test
137 46 53 334 78
12.4 15.2 15.1 10.8 12.8
12.4 50.0 9.4 7.8 11.5
31.4 49.0 .284 32.3 44.9 .036
Table 2 Mean scores by substance use and acculturation variables by sex Acculturation variables Language use/ preference(a) (n) Cigarettes Male No (172) Yes (33) Female No(194) Yes(13) All No(366) Yes(46) Marijuana Male No(181) Yes(24) Female No(181) Yes(24) All No(377) Yes(35) Alcohol Male No(119) Yes(86) Female No(150) Yes(57) All No(269) Yes(143) p p p .28 18.3 18.8 .82 17.9 17.8 .34 18.1 18.5 .19 18.2 19.0 .12 17.9 19.0 .03 18.0 19.0 .06 18.1 18.7 .00 17.3 19.5 .00 17.6 19.0 .28 3.6 3.8 .61 3.7 3.5 .35 3.6 3.8 .03 3.5 4.0 .00 3.7 4.4 .00 3.6 4.1 .00 3.4 3.9 .00 3.6 4.1 .00 3.5 4.0 .16 4.9 5.4 .55 4.9 5.1 .07 4.9 5.2 .03 4.9 5.7 .09 4.9 5.6 .00 4.9 5.6 .01 4.8 5.3 .15 4.8 5.0 .00 4.8 5.2 .01 14.1 17.1 .59 14.7 15.4 .02 14.5 16.6 .00 14.2 17.7 .01 14.6 18.0 .00 13.3 17.8 .00 13.4 16.1 .00 13.5 18.2 .00 13.5 16.9 Ethnic Identity(b) Sociocultural preference(c) Length of residence in the US (yrs)
p p p
p p p
(a.) Ratings could range from 7-21 (Higher scores indicating higher acculturation.) (b.) Ratings could range from 2-6 (Higher scores indicating higher acculturation.) (c.) Ratings could range from 3-9 (Higher scores indicating higher acculturation.)