Academic satisfaction of international students at Irish higher education institutions: the role of region of origin and cultural distance in the context of marketization
Journal of Studies in International Education
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Internationalization of higher education has increased the diversity of the student body at higher education institutions. There is evidence that the experiences of international students vary according to their region of origin, but trends on a larger scale remain underexamined. Drawing on Eurostudent VI data from the Republic of Ireland, this article investigates how academic satisfaction varies between students from different global regions of origin and from national settings with distinct cultural distance characteristics. Results suggest that international students have higher levels of academic satisfaction than Irish students, but that differences between students from diverse regions of origin persist. In addition, international students originating from a national context with high power distance, irrespective of levels of individualism, have higher levels of academic satisfaction compared with Irish students. Furthermore, self-perception of being a detached customer rather than an equal partner in education has the strongest association with academic satisfaction, suggesting that commercialization trends affect both international and domestic students.