Campus Life for International Students: Exploring Students’ Perceptions of Quality Learning Environment at a Private University in Malaysia

  •  Ernest Lim Kok Seng    
  •  Catheryn Khoo-Lattimore    


The number of international students enrolling at higher learning institutions in Malaysia is increasing each year. However, the quality of learning environment is not always easy to measure, particularly for private universities which are not financially aided by the government, where the learning environment is characterized by their physical construct, quality of staff and academic atmosphere. There have been numerical quantitative researches on the perceptions of university quality learning environment but it is argued that a qualitative approach would add to existing knowledge by providing deeper insights, and from a different perspective. The purpose of the present study was to explore international students’ perceptions of a private university through individual in-depth interviews. 15 international students from ten different countries were selected for this study. Various themes emerged from the interviews, some of which have not yet been uncovered in past research investigating learning environment. The findings provide evidence that students expressed their common expectations, concerns, and hopes for a quality university learning environment. This study also provides support for the employment of qualitative approach in the study of perception and quality learning environment.

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