Culture Shock occurs where
individuals encounter a new and different culture and experience a major disruption of
their normal assumptions about social values and behavior.
Old values seem unable to provide
guidance in the new situation giving a culture shock. The new culture seems strange,
unacceptable and literally shocking. Culture Shock is experienced by individuals who
travel to a very different society and discover cultural ideas and practices that differ
very much from their own.
Culture Shock is common among
immigrant groups and can sometimes affect whole societies if they are swept up in rapid
social change. The concept of culture shock has been applied to the experiences of aboriginal people following colonial
Understanding the Shock in
"Culture Shock." - Schnell, Jim
"Culture shock" is the expression generally associated with the frustrations
that occur when persons have difficulty functioning in a different culture or when persons
are exposed to individuals from another culture. Culture shock typically occurs in a
4-stage process that can unfold over varying lengths of time: the honeymoon, crisis,
resolution, and stabilization.
For one instructor who experienced
culture shock while teaching in China, an incident with his students and plagiarized
materials taught him that plagiarizing research documents is not considered a serious
offense in China. The key to dealing successfully with culture shock rests with being able
to recognize the stages of culture shock as they are being experienced. Once the shock in
"culture shock" is understood, it can be changed from a frustrating experience
to a learning experience.
Culture shock and the
international student offshore
David Pyvis, Curtin University of Technology, Australia, Anne Chapman, University of
Western Australia, Australia
Within the context of higher education, it is the international student who travels to
another country to study who is typically identified as the subject at risk of culture
shock. This paper attempts to go further by suggesting that international students
studying in their home country with an overseas institution may also experience culture
shock as an effect of this engagement.
Culture Shock among Young British Volunteers Working Abroad: Predictors, Risk
Factors and Outcome - David Bardwell Mumford, University of Bristol,
This study investigates the factors and circumstances that predict culture shock in young
British volunteers working abroad, to identify those at risk to their mental health and of
early return home. A new questionnaire to measure culture shock was developed for the
study, derived from the literature on culture shock and first-hand reports by volunteers.
Cultural distance was the strongest predictor of culture shock, accounting for 36% of
variance in questionnaire scores, followed by problems at work (14%). Higher culture shock
scores at 3 weeks predicted a greater risk of early return home and lower satisfaction
with their time abroad.
Second-Language Acquisition, Culture Shock, and Language Stress of Adult Female
Latina Students in New York
Lucia Buttaro, Department of Communications and Performing Arts, City University of New
The purpose of this study was to identify and describe the educational, cultural, and
linguistic adjustments and experiences encountered by Hispanic adult females in learning
English as a second language (ESL) and the relation of these experiences to the variables
of language, culture, and education of adult Hispanic females.
Sharing culture shock through a collection of experiences
Azeez, B. Kerne, A. Southern, J. Summerfield, B. Aholu, I. Sharmin, E.
Dept. of Comput. Sci., Texas A&M Univ., College Station, TX, USA;
Abstract: Culture shock and cultural adaptation are phenomena that international students
experience, while crossing boundaries. On their arrival to the U.S., displaced students
from the Third World often feel isolated, afraid, inferior, and insecure. Digital
collections can serve as a medium for sharing sensations and experiences. They can help
overcome the sense of isolation and culture shock, by illustrating to an individual how
others have similar experiences.
The new culture shock: the manager in the evolving information society
Linstone, H.A., Dept. of Syst. Sci., Portland State Univ., OR;
Abstract: Summary form only given. It is contended that managers, fully immersed in their
immediate tasks and deadlines, may only belatedly recognize the profound changes triggered
by the world around them. The corporation will have a smaller core, more flexible
arrangements with associate contractors and venture activities around the globe, and
adaptability to rapid change. Mosaic structures are relapsing multilevel hierarchies.
Customization of products (demassification) will coexist with TV-induced global
conformity. Information overload and illusory simplification will constitute growing
dilemmas. Artificial intelligence and neural networks will be of help, but will also
foster an unreal world that can entrap the manager.
The Role of the Physical Environment in Culture Shock
Arza Churchman, Faculty of Architecture and Town Planning, Technion-Israel Institute of
Technology, International Association for People-Environment Studies
The concept of place attachment is examined within the context of a between-country
migration situation, that of immigrants from the former Soviet Union to Israel. The study
hypothesized that place attachment to Israel would be related to the immigrants motive for
migrating to Israel and to the perceived differences between their physical environment in
the Soviet Union and in Israel, examined on the city, neighborhood, building, and
apartment level. An individual, structured interview was conducted with 60 students from
the former Soviet Union studying in Israeli universities. Differences between the two
countries were perceived for most of the attributes.
Expatriate culture shock in China: a study in the Beijing hotel industry
Authors: Kaye, Marianna; Taylor, William G.K.
Abstract: Explores the occurrence of culture shock in the population of expatriate
managers working in the joint venture hotels in Beijing, China. The paper seeks to gauge
the importance of a variety of factors that might influence the level of culture shock.
Proposes a model which envisages culture shock as determined by situational factors and by
the level of inter-cultural sensitivity of an expatriate. In turn, the level of
inter-cultural sensitivity is seen as a function of biographical factors and cross
cultural training. The findings demonstrate a strong inverse relationship between
inter-cultural sensitivity and culture shock. Among situational factors, a managerial
emphasis on motivating employees is associated with lower culture shock. A surprising
finding is the tendency for Asian expatriates to experience greater culture shock for a
given level of inter-cultural sensitivity.
The collective culture shock in transition countries - theoretical and empirical
Authors: Feichtinger C.; Fink G.
Abstract: Individual culture shock is a well known and evidenced phenomenon. It describes
the psychological and also physical reactions of a person staying abroad. These reactions
are the result of confrontation with a foreign culture. According to the authors such
reactions also exist on the level of society as a whole. This collective culture
shock influences management and business relations and causes problems. A theory of
the collective culture shock is developed that analyses these problems and provides a
framework for solutions. This theory suggests that cultural processes and features in
transition countries that are usually attributed to the communist heritage are the result
of collective culture shock.