Culture Shock Essay

what is culture shock essay

Essay on Culture Shock

but as days and dialogues went by, I began to ache for the comfort Kenya had to offer me. I often found myself regretting the move I made, but I knew with every opportunity, there must be hardships harboring around the corner. I always knew culture shock was inevitable, but I was not prepared for the rude awakening. Because I was raised with the Kenyan customs, when I arrived in

The Unknown : Culture Shock

The Unknown…. Culture Shock Moving from a place that we are so familiar with into the unknown is a terrifying feeling we could experience. It is a terrifying feeling because we get attached to the place that we come to know and love. We are familiar with the streets that we drive on, and the houses around the neighborhood. We are familiar with the people around our surroundings. We know how to get from one place to another. It is a daily routine that we come are comfortable with however, we should

Shock Culture Shock Essay

Comparison of Culture Shock and Reverse Culture Shock Name: Cai Miaosen Instructor: Li Binbin 1. Introduction In recent years, the people who pursue their overseas studying have doubled in number. The overseas returnees also increase at a fast rate. Many people who have already got the foreign passport or the right of residence of other country gradually return to motherland to work and settle down. But unfortunately many of these people are suffering the varying degrees of culture shock or reverse

Culture Shock

What is Culture Shock? I would best describe Culture Shock as a roller coaster ride- fun and exciting, yet a little scary and daunting. It happens from Country to Country, from state to state, city to city and within neighborhoods. Not everybody experiences it in the exact same way. Culture Shock occurs when one enters an unfamiliar place where cultural traits, social norms, beliefs and customs may not be in line with what they are familiar with. Wikipedia best describes Culture Shock in four

Culture Shock Essay The United States of America is a country in which many people from all over the world come to live together. Unlike Canada, which is a multicultural country, it is a melting pot since each person brings his/her own peculiarity to enrich the culture of this country. But this melting pot process is not always without problems. When people from other countries come to America, they may experience some form of culture shock. Culture

Descriptive Essay Culture Shock: An Integration in a New Country LIBS - 7001 February 21, 2011 The word ‘CULTURE’ has been derived from the Latin word ‘CULTURA’ which means to cultivate, to grow (Harper 2010). Anthropologist Edward B. Taylor, defines culture as “That complex whole which includes knowledge, belief, art, law, morals, custom, and any other capabilities and habits.” (O’Neil 2006). This is the basic premise that beliefs, morals, and customs are all based on one’s culture. In the essay

A True Culture Shock Essays

of different cultures, each one unique in its own respect. Culture; differentiate one societal group from another by identification beliefs, behaviors, language, traditions, Art, fashion styles, food, religion, politics, and economic systems. Through lifelong and ever changing processes of learning, creativity, and sharing, culture shapes our patterns of behavior and thinking. A culture’s significance is so profound that it touches almost every aspect of who and what we are. Culture becomes the telescope

Oberg Theory Of Culture Shock

Culture shock is a phenomenon that is defined as “anxiety that results from losing all our familiar signs and symbols of social intercourse” since behavior, customs, norms and standards are not universal across all cultures (Oberg, p. 177). Globalization, social media and technological progress are influences that have shaped the concept of culture shock as we understand it today, and connect countries and its citizens with each other in ways that would have been unimaginable a half century

opinions on culture shock, what culture shock is, the importance of culture shock, and how educational assistance can provide support for ESL learners. Culture Shock is what several people identify as a tremendous change to a person who has moved from their country to another, their native language is not spoken, and the surroundings are unfamiliar, resulting in mixed emotions (Haynes, 2005). Therefore, educational assistants (EA's) must acknowledge and understand the impact of culture shock on students

When I think of culture I think of how I was raised, what I believe in. I think about how different I was raised compared to how the people that are close to me are raised. You then must think about how other people are raised that are across the world, or even in the next town or state over. Everyone believes in different things, we all act differently. Culture is not the same for everyone, but culture is what brings us together to get a better understanding of each other. Culture is an important

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Home — Essay Samples — Arts & Culture — Culture Shock — My Experience with Culture Shock in The United States


My Experience with Culture Shock in The United States

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Published: Nov 5, 2020

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Works Cited

  • Adler, P. S. (1975). The transitional experience: An alternative view of culture shock. Journal of Humanistic Psychology, 15(4), 13-23.
  • Bhawuk, D. P., & Brislin, R. (1992). The measurement of intercultural sensitivity using the concepts of individualism and collectivism. International Journal of Intercultural Relations, 16(4), 413-436.
  • Hofstede, G. (2001). Culture's consequences: Comparing values, behaviors, institutions, and organizations across nations (2nd ed.). Sage Publications.
  • Martin, J. N., & Nakayama, T. K. (2019). Intercultural communication in contexts (7th ed.). McGraw-Hill Education.
  • Oberg, K. (1960). Culture shock: Adjustment to new cultural environments. Practical Anthropology, 7, 177-182.
  • Pedersen, P. (1995). Culture-centered counseling and interviewing skills: A practical guide. Greenwood Publishing Group.
  • Redfield, R., Linton, R., & Herskovits, M. J. (1936). Memorandum for the study of acculturation. American Anthropologist, 38(1), 149-152.
  • Searle, W., & Ward, C. (1990). The prediction of psychological and sociocultural adjustment during cross-cultural transitions. International Journal of Intercultural Relations, 14(4), 449-464.
  • Ting-Toomey, S. (2012). Communicating across cultures. Guilford Press.
  • Triandis, H. C. (1994). Culture and social behavior. McGraw-Hill.

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Culture Shock — What Is It

Once in a while people are forced by circumstances to move from may be their countries and maybe go into other countries. This could be for short visits and for others it may be for long durations; may be due to school or work. The experience of moving and going to settle in a new environment is never always interesting. The effect is however different for different people. Culture Shock is the disorientation and change that is experienced after an international relocation. The change is always due to difference in weather, culture, language, customs, values, landscape, mode of dressing and food. You will feel as if you are in the wrong place; everything will appear abnormal and you will often find things hard to comprehend. Culture shock is not exclusive for international relocation. Change of environment in for students and employees can also cause culture shock in most cases the productivity of the person is greatly reduced and they spend a lot of energy and time trying to get back on track or to get used to the new order of doing things.

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Symptoms of Culture Shock

In most cases Culture Shock will appear like homesick to most people. Although many people will have different signs of culture shock, it is never hard to tell that someone is suffering from culture shocks. The most common is that someone may look sickly. They will feel sad and lonely. The following are common signs of Culture Shock; Sleeping problems, either sleeping too much or insomnia, getting angered really fast, feeling of being vulnerable or being a target, homesickness, getting obsessed with unusual stuff like cleanliness and urge to cook, feeling insecure and shy, missing your home culture and the fear of learning a new culture and trying to adapt.

All people have different symptoms and most are those that have a combination of them. In many cases people are emotional over very trivial issues and you need to be careful with them otherwise you may end up devastating them. Check this " write my college essay " to save your time and money.

How to deal with Culture Shock

The best way to avoid or reduce Culture Shock is to be enthusiastic. Try to keep your fears at bay. Yearn for a positive interaction with the host and the culture of the people there. It is also important to try and do as much research on the culture of the host. At this time one will get to know of the possible causes of culture shock and find a way to handle it.

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Essay on the problem of Culture Shock

Vinh nga 2 / -   Nov 14, 2007   #1 Culture shock is a problem we face up to every day, especially when we travel abroad. Culture shock is precipitated by the anxiety results from losing all the familiar signs and symbols of the social intercourse. To deal with this, we should find out the reason for ir and understand how it is influence our lives. Misunderstanding native languages including body languages or being unfamiliar with new food are responsible for the culture shock. When you visit a foreign country, you will find it difficult to understand the language, even when you know the language, that makes you buzzled. Some people use slangs so you can't look them up in the dictionary to get the real meaning, For instance, when you are in Vietnam, you will hear a man say something like" ong noi may day" when they want to threat or play a joke. "ong noi may day" does not mean "grandfather" but just means "I". Besides, food is also an important element attributed to the culture shock. My friend, who is studying in German told me that the first time she came there, she couldn't eat cheese or pizza, that made her lose 5 kilos in 1 month. And what is effects of these problems? Misunderstanding the languages makes you confused so much. For example, when Westerners visit Vietnam, they may feel disturbed when hear "what are you doing?" or "Where are you going?". Indeed, these sentences are just "Hi" or "good morning"...And the strange food sometimes makes you suffer from intestinal disturbance, especially when you taste tropical food. These may lead you to stress if you don't know how to deal. Nevertheless, it's not so difficult to solne these problems. Please try to understand and get acquainted with host customs and food. Instead of complaint, you should adjust yourself to the new environment. Become friendly with native people, get used to with new food will make you feel more comfortable and cosy. In conclusion, culture shock should always be studied carefully so that people can feel easier to adjust to new enviroment and haven't to meet culture shock.

Culture Shock’s Experiences

I first heard about culture shock when I was thirteen years old. My parents were missionaries in the Philippines, and we were citizens of the United States of America. To me, the word sounded extremely awful. According to the explanation given by the adults, the immigrants to the Philippines were unable to move on with their lives, which was associated with grave culture shock. I remember that whenever we were going somewhere, people stared at us and followed us. It was hard for me to call everyone aunt, uncle, or big brother. On arrival in the country, I nearly choked from the first hamburger I took. It had a weird combination of ingredients and was extremely sweet. All the time the Filipinos considered us to be very unique, and this was linked to our skin color. It was difficult for me to adapt to the cold showers and filter water whenever I needed to use it. This experience was easier for my seven-year-old sibling. I realized that children can easily adapt to difficult conditions, which is the opposite of adults.

Elaborating the experience

Every individual who is residing in a novel country experiences culture shock to some extent. Culture shock is more intense during the first weeks in a novel country. The term refers to the feelings of frustration and helplessness when in a new nation, where the person is unfamiliar with the nation’s culture and language. The immigrant has to adapt to an entirely novel form of life. In addition, the immigrant is unable to practice the level of independence he had in the home country. My parents confided in me that they were unable to communicate with their relatives and friends about their new life. Considering that they did not know anyone in the new country, it was extremely difficult to adapt (Ward, Stephen and Adrian 45).

Understanding some of the typical features of the USA citizens is imperative in comprehending why the mentioned case is a culture shock. In America, citizens consider their individuality as very unique. Every person is equal to the others. This was not the case in the Philippines. The Filipinos considered us as super people because our skin color was different. Moreover, Americans are straightforward in their conversations. When in agreement with an issue, they say “yes” and vice versa. When encountering a visitor, the Americans welcome the person and are friendly to all new people (Hofstede, Gert and Michael 28). As opposed to this, the Filipinos reacted by staring at us and following us. In addition, the Filipinos were not courteous enough to introduce themselves. This aggravated our situation and further depressed us.

Personal opinion

Personally, I consider the concept of a culture shock to be exceptionally vital. Sometimes, culture shock is extremely overwhelming. However, there is a need to try to cope with this so as to feel excitement and happiness, as opposed to depression. People living in a new country always undergo cross-cultural inconveniences. The first weeks are usually very emotional. Moreover, the person experiences a lot of transformations. In my opinion, a person should research the people, language, and culture of the new country before going there. This is helpful because the person familiarizes himself with basic words and how to respond to different situations. Immigrants should form new friends who can show them around and teach them about their new life. This prevents the formation of negative opinions.

Works Cited

Hofstede, Geert, Gert J.Hofstede, and Michael Minkov. Cultures and organizations . London: McGraw-Hill, 1991. Print.

Ward, Colleen, Stephen Bochner, and Adrian Furnham. “The psychology of culture shock.” Psychology Press  2001. Print.

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StudyCorgi. (2021, March 17). Culture Shock’s Experiences. Retrieved from

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Coping With Cultural Shock and Adaptation to a New Culture Term Paper

Culture shock results when a person finds it challenging to adapt to a new culture. If not managed, culture shock can lead to low productivity among staff and even health complications and stress. Globalization has enhanced international trade and increased the frequency of employee movements around the world and having to adjust to the local culture. This calls for such workers to recognize ways by which they can cope with culture shock.

Strategies of coping with culture shock include admitting that feelings arising from culture shock are normal, making friends with the locals, learning some elements of the local culture, maintaining close contact with family members and friends back home, participating in recreational and physical exercises, and looking all the positives of living in a new culture. All of these strategies all focus on embracing and understanding the local culture.


Culture shock is a form of homesickness felt when a person moves into a foreign country or society that has a markedly different culture from his own. These differences are normally in the form of language, climate, social norms, sanitation, food, climate, and so on.

Culture shock causes a difficulty in adjusting into the new culture characterized by nostalgia, loneliness, depression, mental fatigue, confusion as to how to proceed with work, boredom, and a lack of enthusiasm. In extreme instances, culture shock may lead to physical discomfort, withdrawal from social activities, eating disorders, stereotyping of and hostility towards locals, and irritability.

Behavioral scientists have shown that culture shock occurs in various stages, each stage characterized by a set of symptoms mentioned above. The first stage is known as ‘honeymoon’ phase, followed by negotiation phase, then adjustment phase and finally the mastery phase.

Today, the number of corporations with operations in various regions of the world continues to rise, thanks to globalization that has immensely promoted international business (Ferraro, 2010).

As a result, employees are forced to move from country to country, meeting different cultures that are different from their own cultures by a large margin. For this reason, cross-cultural solutions to international business that aim at alleviating culture shock have been devised to help employees that have difficulties adjusting to other cultures, thereby increasing their productivity.

Coping with Culture Shock

Due to the adverse effects of culture shock on an employee working in a culture that is significantly different from his culture, it is vital that such employees are introduced to ways by which they can alleviate the effects of culture shock. The increasing number of employees working in foreign countries (expatriates) stresses the importance of training employees on how to cope with culture shock.

Admit that Culture Shock is Normal

The first and easiest way by which an employee can cope with culture shock is to admit frankly that culture shock is a normal feeling. There will always continue to be confusion when a person moves into a new culture. Indeed, culture shock is not an admission of weakness that an employee feels uncomfortable, tense, or confused in a new land.

Having admitted this feeling, it is important that such an employee talks about the feelings with other people. This strategy can help employees narrate their own experience of culture shock, and how they coped with the feelings. This can help an employee that feelings of culture shock are normal and can be felt by anybody. Besides, such stories can help an employee to learn from friends about how they overcame culture shock (Harris, 1998).

Make Friends

A second way of coping with culture shock is to make friends with other people. Although it will be easier to make friends with people from your country, it is important that a person makes friends with the locals and with people from other countries. Making friends from diverse cultures can help an employee learn about other cultures, and will always have something to talk about when around friends.

A second reason why it is important to make friends from the local population is that they can help a person in learning various aspects of the local culture. These strategies will help a person to adjust to the new culture, and reduce feelings of hostility towards locals. Making friends with the locals will help in overcoming cultural barriers and increase an understanding of the culture and country. It will also teach an expatriate how to be sensitive to cultural practices and beliefs.

Learn some Element of the Local Culture

A very effective way of adjusting to the new culture is to learn some aspect of the local culture. For instance, a person can learn about the national cuisine, and especially the main food of the inhabitants of the region in which the person is staying.

By developing interest in the local cuisine, the person can learn more about the local culture and even appreciate cultural diversity. With time, a person will (hopefully) begin to enjoy these local dishes and delicacies and this will make the person feel like a part of the culture, rather than a stranger (Gudykunst, 2005).

It also pays to travel around the country during the weekends or any free time and learn of historic and amazing sights within the country. If travel is restricted by work commitments or other reasons, then perhaps watching a television show or movies about the host country can be helpful.

Apart from cuisine, a person can get to know the national and local political landscape. He can begin by learning of the national politics and how the locals perceive of national and local leaders. Other issues include topics that are presently generating heated debates in the public domain and in the press (Gudykunst, 2005).

A basic comprehension of these issues will lighten feelings of estrangement, and even provide a topic of conversation with other local members. It will also make participation in a conversations touching on these topics easier, rather than remaining quiet in such discussions of related topics, which can only increase feeling of culture shock.

Perhaps an even important way to adapt easily to the local culture is to learn the local language. The benefits of this tact are very obvious; it will improve interpersonal communication with the locals (Wong& Wong, 2006). Nothing heightens feelings of culture shock and homesickness as the incapacity to communicate.

It always helps a great deal to have a basic understanding of what people are saying, and attempt to speak their language. In fact, they will often appreciate your efforts to speak in their language, even it is just a few phrases, and it will improve an expatriate’s experience with the new culture.

To facilitate learning of the new language, it is advisable to always carry a small notebook that contains commonly used phrases, and to write new words that are learnt each day (Gudykunst, 2005). Besides, an expatriate could also purchase a printed phrase book to learn more of the language and to cope with real-life situations. An expatriate should never associate his/her intelligence with the ability (or inability) to speak the local language. Learning a new language is a challenging process and can be very tiring.

Maintain Contact with Friends and Family Back Home

As in most cases, workers in foreign countries leave their families behind. In order to reduce homesickness, it is important to keep close contacts with family and friends back at home (Mavrides, 2009). The expatriate can write home about his experiences, challenges, and how he is coping with them.

However, this should not amount to spending endless hours talking, sending emails, and chatting with friends and family (Wong& Wong, 2006). This will only worsen the effects of culture shock, and may lead to withdrawal. Additionally, an expatriate can read home newspapers from websites and find hotels and restaurants that sell home delicacies.

Engage in Recreational and Physical Exercises

Exercise is a proven stress reliever and can help a person forget about feelings of nostalgia which often lead to stress. During free time, one can go for a light race, take a long walk, swim, or play a favorite sport, among other activities. These activities will help in keeping fit, meeting new friends, and forget about the challenges of adapting to a new culture.

It does no harm in learning a new local sport, as it will increase an understanding of the local culture, and also have more friends. Recreational activities such as shopping, mountain climbing, cycling, going out with friends, or going to a movie theater can be of great help (Wong& Wong, 2006).

Again, it does not harm to participate in new recreational activities as it will only improve a persons acceptance by the locals, and appreciation of the local culture. Finding humor in every confusing situation or challenge is even better, as they say, ‘laughter is the best medicine’. It is advisable to take good care of the body by having enough exercise, eat well, limit alcohol intake, and have enough rest and sleep.

Intercultural Advantages

Instead of wimping at the prospect of having to live in another culture, one can look at the positives, and there are numerous, for instance, he/she can look at all the advantages of having lived in two or more different cultures. Meeting people from different cultures enriches a person’s life (Harris, 1998). Consequently, the expatriate should make as many friends as possible from cultures different from his/her own and spend a lot of time with them. This can also be the opportunity to teach the locals and other people about his own culture.

Coping with cultural shock is not a simple process as it may seem on paper. However, having a positive attitude towards the whole situation helps. Acknowledging one’s progress in adjusting to the new culture is the first step to achieving success. An expatriate can think of all the progress that he has made since he arrived into the new environment.

However, he must recognize that like all people who have lived in different cultures, he can successfully adjust to the new culture, and that one day, he will join his family and friends and family back at home. In short, an expatriate can cope with culture shock by embracing and understanding it, and above all, enjoying all the privileges of living in a new culture.

Ferraro, G. P. (2010). The Cultural Dimension of International Business , 6th Ed. NJ: Prentice Hall

Gudykunst, W. B. (2005). Theorizing about intercultural communication . Thousand Oaks, California: SAGE Publications.

Harris, P. R. (1998). New work culture: HRD transformational management strategies . Amherst, MA: HRD Press.

Mavrides, G. (2009). Culture Shock and Clinical Depression: Foreign Teachers Guide to Living and Working in China . Middle Kingdom Life, 2009.

Wong, P. T. P., and Wong, L. C. J. (2006). Handbook of multicultural perspectives on stress and coping . NY: Springer Science, Inc.

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IvyPanda. (2019, May 7). Coping With Cultural Shock and Adaptation to a New Culture.

"Coping With Cultural Shock and Adaptation to a New Culture." IvyPanda , 7 May 2019,

IvyPanda . (2019) 'Coping With Cultural Shock and Adaptation to a New Culture'. 7 May.

IvyPanda . 2019. "Coping With Cultural Shock and Adaptation to a New Culture." May 7, 2019.

1. IvyPanda . "Coping With Cultural Shock and Adaptation to a New Culture." May 7, 2019.


IvyPanda . "Coping With Cultural Shock and Adaptation to a New Culture." May 7, 2019.

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  1. What Is an Example of Culture Shock?

    An example of culture shock is when someone struggles to adapt to the dining customs of another culture, such as spending hours everyday eating a meal with family members. If someone is used to a fast-paced lifestyle, it may seem foreign to...

  2. What Are Some Sample Titles for Mass Media Essays?

    Example Essays lists “Culture as Portrayed by the Media,” “Mass Media-Communications,” “Mass Media,” “Media Influence” and “American Culture and the Influence of Technology” as existing mass media essay titles.

  3. How Much Do Shock Absorbers Cost?

    Prices for shock absorbers begin at $25 per piece and go up to $350 or more for each piece for the best shock absorbers and for ones that go on more expensive vehicles. This is the price range before labor charges are added to the price of ...

  4. Essay About Culture Shock Its and Stages and Experience 700 Words

    Culture shock is experienced by people when moving to a new country or city that has completely different cultural and social surroundings as

  5. Essay about Culture Shock Free Essay Example

    We can describe culture shock as the physical and emotional discomfort one suffers when coming to live in another country or a place different

  6. What Is The Culture Shock?

    In the conclusion we can say that culture shock is inevitable if you change your living place. The best way against that is to search more about new culture

  7. Culture Shock Essay

    Free Essays from Bartleby | but as days and dialogues went by, I began to ache for the comfort Kenya had to offer me. I often found myself regretting the...

  8. Write Your Culture Shock Essay

    In your essay culture shock, you should mention that those traveling abroad leave behind their family and friends' support and need to understand and live by a

  9. My Experience with Culture Shock in The United States

    Culture shock is a phenomenon that many individuals experience when encountering a new and unfamiliar culture. It can manifest as feelings of

  10. Understanding Culture Shock of a Foreign Land Free Essay Example

    A primary catalyst for culture shock lies in the profound differences in values between one's home country and the foreign destination. Values

  11. A Well-Written Sample Essay On Culture Shock

    The effect is however different for different people. Culture Shock is the disorientation and change that is experienced after an international relocation. The

  12. Essay on the problem of Culture Shock

    Culture shock is a problem we face up to every day, especially when we travel abroad. Culture shock is precipitated by

  13. Culture Shock's Experiences

    Culture shock is more intense during the first weeks in a novel country. The term refers to the feelings of frustration and helplessness when in

  14. Coping with Cultural Shock

    This calls for such workers to recognize ways by which they can cope with culture shock. We will write a custom essay on your topic a custom Term Paper on