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Acclimatizing Saudi Students

Susan Matson offers context and suggestions for helping Saudi Arabian students adjust to the Western educational setting

Although 145,000 Saudi students have enrolled in U.S. intensive English programs and universities since the advent of the King Abdullah scholarship program in 2005, some institutions are still experiencing “the Saudi wave” for the first time as these students learn of smaller and more out-of-the-way educational opportunities over time. At 2013 TESOL conference in Dallas, for example, some U.S. school administrators shared surprise and dismay at the related challenges. Some talked about the adjustments needed by first-time teachers of Saudi nationals, and others commented on the challenges experienced by the Saudi newcomers themselves.

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