Journal of Intercultural Communication, issue 13, March 2007

Hong Xiao and Eleni Petraki

An Investigation of Chinese Studens´difficulties in Ingercultural Communication and Its Role in Elt.


This study discusses the intercultural communication competence of Chinese students who were studying at an Australian University. The study specifically explores the frequency of interactions between Chinese students and students from other countries; the difficulties they encountered and the reasons they attributed to these difficulties. Research results, derived from questionnaires and interviews, reveal that the Chinese students encountered many difficulties when interacting with students from other countries which they ascribed to lack of knowledge of intercultural communication, cultural shock and differences in nonverbal communication and politeness strategies. Findings suggest that intercultural communication skills should be an important component of English language teaching (ELT) in China particularly with the rapid globalization of English and its use in international business communication.

Keywords: intercultural communication; Asian ELT; Chinese students; University students

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