International Students' Views on Local Culture: Turkish Experience


  • Yakup Çetin Ishik University, Iraq
  • Mustafa Bahar International Burch University, Bosnia Herzegovina
  • Carol Griffiths MEF University, Turkey



Turkish culture, international students, perception, gender, religion, nationality


The number of international students in Turkey has steadily increased in recent years. As they come from different geographical locations, their successful adaptation to a medium-sized country in-between three continents is of great interest. This study was conducted to investigate international students’ perceptions of their Turkish experience. After an interview with 9 international students, a 46-item questionnaire was developed and given to 421 students; of these, 319 students from 61 countries returned complete forms. Responses were generally positive, although some difficulties according to gender, religion or age were reported. Another 12 students’ written comments were compared with quantitative data. Implications are suggested as well as directions for further research.

Author Biographies

Yakup Çetin, Ishik University, Iraq

YAKUP ÇETİN, PhD, is an EFL instructor at Ishik University. His research focuses on the relationship between second language learning, media, and psychology. He has authored EFL coursebooks and developed course materials intended for second language learners. His comments have been published in popular Turkish newspapers. He has received several awards for his research from Fatih University

Mustafa Bahar, International Burch University, Bosnia Herzegovina

MUSTAFA BAHAR, Ph.D. is an assistant professor of measurement and evaluation. He worked as teacher and test developer for twelve years, coauthoring several books. For the last seven years, he has been teaching measurement and evaluation, foreign language testing, research methods and statistics for social sciences. He is also the author of Assessment in Language Teaching (Turkish). His specific research interests focus on learner perceptions, high stakes testing and the relationship between test and achievement.

Carol Griffiths, MEF University, Turkey

CAROL GRIFFITHS, PhD has been a teacher, manager and teacher trainer of ELT for many years, and has taught in many places around the world, including New Zeland, Indonesia, Japan, China, North Korea and UK. She currently works as Associate Professor in the ELT Department at MEF University in Istanbul. She has presented at numerous conferences and published widely. Learner issues, teacher education, and using literature to teach language are her major areas of research interest. Website:




How to Cite

Çetin, Y., Bahar, M., & Griffiths, C. (2017). International Students’ Views on Local Culture: Turkish Experience. Journal of International Students, 7(3), 467–485.



Research Articles (English)