Communication Studies


Master of Arts (MA)


Randall P. Pruitt


Asian International Student, Cultural Adaptation, Cultural Intelligence Theory, Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs, Motivation, Student Employment


Communication | Gender, Race, Sexuality, and Ethnicity in Communication | International and Intercultural Communication


The author researched the topic of this thesis from six different aspects: Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs, international students, student employment, motivation, Cultural Intelligence Theory, and cross-cultural adaptation. There are twenty participants that participated in this research. Among them, ten are Asian international students and ten are American students. All students have been a student at a private Christian university and working for at least one semester. The researcher developed twelve questions related to Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs for all participants and nine questions related to Cultural Intelligence Theory to only Asian international students. The research methodology of this thesis is qualitative research with face-to-face interviews using convenience sampling method. Based on the results of the research, Asian international and American students vary in their motivations of getting a job on campus. American students focus more on the financial aspect while Asian international students also consider other factors that help them to adapt to American culture. Results show that getting a job on campus does help Asian international students adapt to American culture by helping them to know the difference between Asian and American culture, getting to know American culture, interacting with host people, and finally adapting to American culture. The most important skills Asian international students acquired at work is the communication skill which is the tool for them to interact, express, and get to know American people. The research is conducted professionally with some limitations such as limited number of participants and researcher. However, the research is beneficial to both Asian international and American students. Future research related to the topic will likewise bring benefits to many people.