A Study of International Farm Youth Exchange Delegates Who Visited Latin America

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Blum, Lee Ann Leet
Wiggin, Gladys A.
A. Statement of Problem The problem of this thesis is to study the nature and prediction of adjustment to foreign culture of 24 American International Farm Youth Exchange delegates. Specifically, this thesis is designed to answer the following questions: 1. What was the nature of adjustment or the 24 subjects as determined through: a. An analysis of a questionnaire administered on return from the foreign visit. b. An analysis of correspondence during the foreign visit. 2. Could the nature or the adjustment have been predicted prior to the foreign visit by materials available in: a. Application form for foreign visits. b. Supplementary biographical data. A secondary purpose of this thesis is to review the literature relating to technical and/or student exchange programs of: 1. Foreign nationals in the United States. 2. Americans in other countries. B. Procedures 1. Selection of the Group from which Population Was Drawn A group of 1010 IFYE delegates who have visited a total of 59 different countries and Puerto Rico was the population from which the sample was drawn. Due to the variety of country cultures represented and the world coverage, it was decided to simplify and centralize the population. The 133 delegates who visited the 18 Latin American countries were selected to represent the group. Latin American countries were selected because of their similar cultural and religious background. Since information on file was to be used in the study, it was essential to select only those del egates with comparable data. Comparable data were available for delegate participants during the years 1955-57. As so limited, the group numbered 64. 2. Criterion for Selecting Population The next step was to determine whe ther the 64 subjects could be categorized at the outset into most and least adjusted to the foreign culture visited, on the basis of material available after return. The answer to question number 19 on the Individual Report Form was selected as the item to be used for categorizing. For categorizing question 19, eight individuals were asked to serve as raters. Four raters had only a slight knowledge of the IFYE program and four raters were past participants in the IFYE program. Each rater was given the group of 64 Individual Report Forms and asked to categorize question 19 in one of three categories. These categories were: (1) Least Adjusted, (2) Medially Adjusted, and (3) Most Adjusted. No criteria were given the rater to influence his placement. The categorizing was used as an attempt to see if a significant pattern could be recognized. For the purpose of this study, it was decided that the following method be used in classifying subjects: a. Each subject must appear in the least adjusted or in the most adjusted category a minimum of four times (which means that at least half of the raters thought that the subject was either least adjusted or most adjusted). b. The subject was not to appear in the least adjusted category if classified in the most adjusted category, and vice versa. c. The subject might appear in the medially adjusted category and still be used for the most or the least adjusted category if qualifications for step (a) listed here were fulfilled. After all raters had completed their categorizing, tabulations were made and it was found that 11 subjects in the least adjusted category and 13 subjects in the most adjusted category could be used in this study. Complete categorizing of the 64 subjects can be found in Appendix A. 3. Procedures for Analysis of Data a. Nature of Adjustment Question number 19 of the Individual Report Form was used to categorize the subjects into groups of most adjusted and least adjusted. The question reads as follows: "Of all things that were new and different to you, which were difficult or disagreeable to adjust to?" The Individual Report Form appears in Appendix B. The 24 subjects' responses to the question appear in Appendix G. Answers were available to all other questions on the report and an analysis will be made in this study of all questions relating to the nature of adjustment. Correspondence received from the delegates while visiting in the foreign country was available in individual files. An analysis of the correspondence indicated that delegates report a variety of news. The nature of news reported is available for study in relationship to the delegates' adjustment in the foreign culture. b. Prediction of Adjustment Adjustment while in the host country is of special interest to the officials of the IFYE program. To be able to predict adjustment of a delegate to his host country before actually participating in the program would be of great value to IFYE. This study is designed to investigate available pre-participation background information on each subject. The available information on file relates to: (1) Delegate Application Form (to be found in Appendix c) and (2) Delegate Biographical Form (to be found in Appendix D). The purposes of this study are to investigate the background information listed above and to test for significant relationship of nature of adjustment in the foreign country.