The acculturation process for kaigaishijo: A qualitative study of four Japanese students in an American school
Doctor of Education (Ed.D.)
Dorothy E. Finnegan
The purpose of this study was to sort out and specify the dimensions of acculturation for kaigaishijo, Japanese sojourning students who presented an anomaly in a monocultural setting, based on factors that surfaced through data collected in the interviews and observations as a result of my conceptual framework that focused on the family, educational environment, and maturity. By sorting the data and comparing and contrasting one child's experiences to those of others as individuals and as an aggregate, nine factors appeared to repeatedly impact the process of acculturation. These essential factors that provide insights into acculturation are (1) the mother's role, (2) language acquisition, (3) clothing, (4) artistic endeavors, (5) educational experiences, (6) a receptive attitude, (7) personality, (8) length of residency, and (9) family value of education.;Elements of two of the three original concepts that organized my thinking, interviewing, and observations, that is family and school, played significant to moderate roles in the acculturation process of all four students of the study. The children, according to information gleaned from their parents, teachers, and school records, had met appropriate maturational milestones; therefore, the concept of maturation did not impact in these cases. Specific elements from the familial and educational environments did, however, impact the process. Two factors directly pertaining to the individual children's social and psychological make-up rendered significant consequences in the process.;Numerous variables impacted the acculturative process and each child's story was varied and complex. The nine common factors isolated in the study do not appear to influence the process of acculturation with equal weight. Some constitute a more salient role than others. It was concluded that three factors appear to play a minor role in acculturation, four appear moderately important, and two factors, personality and a receptive attitude, display the greatest importance.;The study was conducted in a Middle Atlantic state where the author was a school administrator. The dimensions of the process of acculturation should raise consciousness levels regarding the need to dispel stereotypes and to acknowledge differences as means to understanding and accepting diversity. Further study is needed to ascertain the generalizability of the findings to other cross-cultural populations.
© The Author
Harkins, Linda F., "The acculturation process for kaigaishijo: A qualitative study of four Japanese students in an American school" (1998). Dissertations, Theses, and Masters Projects. William & Mary. Paper 1539618735.
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