At last, my BCM212 research on language barriers and Vietnamese international undergraduates at UOW has officially been finished. The progress has engraved in my mind the values of good research and good researchers – particularly critical judgement, social responsibility, and flexibility – as well as brushing up on my communications strategy planning skills. Continue reading “[BCM212] Reflection – The Rigorous Research”
Am I Mia? Or am I not?
Note: slightly edited on 29 August 2018.
If you were to meet me right now, here, in Australia, and ask me what my name was, I’d be most likely giving out this answer:
But that is, in some sense, a lie. Because my original name is not Mia. It’s Đỗ Dương Minh Anh (yep, the Vietnamese version with all the correct ‘accent marks’). ‘Accent marks’ aside, written in the first name – middle name – last name format, it should be Minh-Anh Duong Do or Minh-Anh Do-Duong. Unfortunately, I’m stuck with Duong Minh Anh Do in all of my translated ID papers, including my uni transcript and my name in the roll call for all of my subjects. Meaning, whoever looking at that would think my name is Duong. It hadn’t really bothered me much, since I requested to add an alternate first name – Mia – to my personal details, and my life became a teeny little easier.
Until today. Continue reading “No, Mia is not my only name.”
The domestic students’ perspective on the issue of language barriers for internation students and for themselves.
This research has definitely been anything but a smooth ride.
As you could see from my plan and proposal, I initially intended to run a focus group with 6-8 Vietnamese undergrads at UOW, to clarify and explore insights found in the survey. But oh boy did things go out of control…
I sent out around five emails and private messaged another ten people, hoping to recruit at least half of them to the focus group. Yet I had to cancel it, since only one-third of them could participate, and even so, we could not settle for a meeting to run the session.
I thought that part of the plan was left out for good, and as much as I hated it, I was determined to move on over the cancellation and catch up with the rest of my schedule. However, out of some impulse earlier, I had written a back-up plan in case plan A went awry. It was a list of questions exploring the issue from the perspective of domestic students, and fortunately, in one of my BCM212 tutorials, there was just enough time to run a quick 20-minute focus group with the participation of about 10 tute-mates, the majority of which are domestic students. Continue reading “[BCM212] Focus Group – Hearing from the Other Side of the Conversation”
Some surprising data from my survey
In the past two weeks, my survey (created using SurveyMonkey) has been circulated via online platforms (Facebook, Twitter and BCM212 Moodle Forum) to recruit participants. Although 32 is a small/tiny number of respondents, most of the answers were highly informative AND surprising. Continue reading “[BCM212] Survey – Some Very First Surprises”
“Do you know how smart I am in Vietnamese?”
“Yes” – was all I said in my first tutorial at UOW.
Eight months ago, I arrived in Australia, so confident that I would have no trouble with my studies, having had twelve years studying English as a second language. Yet in that tutorial, I was horrified to find myself suddenly unable to utter anything other than a single “yes” for the roll call, seeing how fast and fluent domestic students were. Continue reading “BCM212 Research Proposal: How Language Barriers Influence the Academic and Social Life of Vietnamese International Students at UOW”