Embargo Period


Degree Name

MA in International Education

First Advisor

Karla Giuliano Sarr

Second Advisor

Sora Friedman


International Student Advisors are expected to have an understanding of the cultural norms of the students they advise. Intercultural competency is a key expectation in the roles and responsibilities of advisors. They can use tools and theories, such as Edward T. Hall’s Cultural Factors and Geert Hofstede’s Cultural Dimensions, to help them better understand and be better prepared for the advising needs of their students.

This research aims to have a better understanding of the extent and importance of intercultural communication and competency in international student advising. The data collected was from an advisor perspective and related to their experience with intercultural communication. The study suggests that advisors would like to be more intentional, mindful, and aware of students’ needs in their interactions with their advisees. However, factors such as limited resources, staff, and time inhibit this. Despite this, when it comes to incorporating intercultural communication theories and techniques into advising, the best way to truly learn and understand a student and their culture is to learn from them, through questions and conversation. The true intercultural learning comes not from trainings, workshops, and professional development, but instead comes simply from personal connections.


International and Comparative Education