The experience of student sojourners and identity development while studying abroad

Ahmed Ghodbane

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaper


This qualitative study aims at exploring the student sojourners' perceptions on the impact of studying abroad on their identities. It seeks to provide a deeper understanding into the Algerian students' experiences in the UK (Scotland). This research sheds light on the Algerian community, which appears to be very complex in terms of history, languages, and cultural diversity. Algerian students were chosen because they are among the under-researched students' cohorts in the UK. In addition, previous research on international students make a limited use of resources like diaries and narratives. In the literature, recent studies on identity shifted the focus from the macro level (society) to the micro level that focuses more on individuals to reveal their interpretations about their constructed realities. This research is built on the basis of an interpretivist, social constructionist viewpoint. Bronfenbrenner's bio-ecological theory is used for explaining the different processes that the individuals' cognitive development go through by focusing on the interactions between the individuals and people, objects, and symbols. Data is collected through methods-triangulation by using a questionnaire and photo elicitation interviews. The questionnaire is used for providing preliminary data about the different aspects of identity and the experience abroad, while the photo elicitation interviews delve deeper into the participants' experiences abroad exploring their beliefs about their identity development.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 22 Nov 2017
EventScottish Educational Research Association Annual Conference : Educational Futures in a Changing Landscape: Bridging Boundaries or "Mind the Gap"? - University of the West of Scotland, Ayr, United Kingdom
Duration: 22 Nov 201724 Nov 2017


ConferenceScottish Educational Research Association Annual Conference
Abbreviated titleSERA Conference 2017
Country/TerritoryUnited Kingdom
Internet address


  • internationalisation
  • identity
  • study abroad
  • photo elicitation


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