Lanxi Huang

PhD Candidate - Centre for Positive Psychology, Melbourne Graduate School of Education, University of Melbourne

Lanxi Huang

PhD Candidate - Centre for Positive Psychology, Melbourne Graduate School of Education, University of Melbourne

Biography

Ms Lanxi Huang is a PhD candidate at the University of Melbourne. She has working experience in psychological counselling and teaching. Her current research focuses on wellbeing, wellbeing literacy and language, international education, and tertiary education. Lanxi is an engaging speaker with experience of conference, symposium and workshop presenting.

Co-Author: Lindsay G. Oades & Margaret L. Kern

Reading to seek, reading to solve: Chinese international students’ wellbeing

International students’ wellbeing literacy — the language used about and for wellbeing – potentially plays an important role in how students experience and understand wellbeing. The study focuses on Chinese international students to explore associations amongst English reading abilities, the sources where students encounter wellbeing-related information, motivation for reading wellbeing information, their understanding of wellbeing, and their experiences of wellbeing.

International students face numerous challenges during overseas studies, which increase the risk of mental health issues. Language barriers and cultural-based stigma are key factors that prevent many students from seeking mental health support, with language related to mental health particularly relevant. Language plays a crucial role in exchanging information, expressing identity, releasing emotions, and passing on knowledge to the next generation with fundamental social-cultural function, but also helps to shape people’s experiences and understanding of those experiences. International students not only face language barriers related to their studies, but also to understanding and managing their mental health. International students’ wellbeing literacy — the language used about and for wellbeing – potentially plays an important role in how students experience and understand wellbeing. But little research exists on how Chinese international students’ wellbeing literacy, especially their reading capability, influence their understanding of wellbeing concept and their general wellbeing experience in the foreign cultural context.
The current study addresses this gap, focusing on Chinese international students’ reading about wellbeing, and their understanding and experiences of wellbeing. Drawing on qualitative interviews and quantitative information, the study explores associations amongst English reading abilities, the sources where students encounter wellbeing-related information, motivation for reading wellbeing information, their understanding of wellbeing, and their experiences of wellbeing. Results suggest that English reading capability and motivation significantly influence their selection of reading resources and the understanding of wellbeing. However, student’s reading capability also has a broader impact on their general wellbeing experience, which may undermine the wellbeing experience. Findings deepen the understanding of how reading influence people’s wellbeing understanding and experience and inform approaches to best support students’ wellbeing.