The Relationship between Cultural Intelligence and Psychological Well-Being with the Moderating Effects of Mindfulness and Social Support: A study of Taiwanese students studying abroad

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(1)The Relationship between Cultural Intelligence and Psychological WellBeing with the Moderating Effects of Mindfulness and Social Support: A study of Taiwanese students studying abroad. by Yang, Tzu-Ping. A Thesis Submitted to the Graduate Faculty in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree of MASTER OF BUSINESS ADMINISTRATION Major: International Human Resource Development. Advisor: Chang, Wei-Wen, Ph. D.. National Taiwan Normal University Taipei, Taiwan February 2018.

(2) ACKNOWLEDGEMENT Finally, thesis is accomplished! Through this opportunity, I would like to express my genuine gratitude toward all the people accompanying me on the way of this overwhelming process. Thank you, most clever advisor, Dr. Vera Chang! I feel that studying as a graduate student was lonely because most of the time I dealt with my thesis alone. However, you played an important role by helping me a lot during this thesis completion journey. Every time I encounter difficulties (not only in academic field but also in student life related issue), you always answer me instantly and patiently. Most important, these answers always have positive influence on me. There is no doubt to say that in addition to the academic knowledge, I learn a lot about how to be a better person from you. Thank you, my committee members, Dr. Jin-Chuan Lee, Dr. Allan Lu, and IHRD director, Dr. Rosa Yeh, for spending precious time reviewing thesis content and providing me revision suggestions which give me clear direction to follow. No one is wise in his own affairs. Your comments and suggestions really lead me to complete the thesis smoothly. Also, definitely, thank you, my dearest family and friends, for always standing by me! Home is always the best place for me to find the great comfort whenever I need rest. I am grateful for my family always being there despite I returning home as an exhausted guy every time. In addition, as for my friends, Jia-Lin Xie, Yu-Ting Hong, Fan Fan, Owen Ku, Sonia Huang, Delsie Ku and all those who are not listed but still cherished from the bottom of my heart, I appreciate all the support and encouragement you give me and all the ups and downs we share with each other at any moment. And what’s more, together with your company, I pass through the hardest time of my graduate school life in Taipei..

(3) ABSTRACT Globalization and the development of technology fostered the international interaction in education field. The number of Taiwanese students applying to study abroad gradually increased. Most of students put plenty of time, cost and efforts to learn what they desired from the international experience. However, whether the learning outcomes were positive or negative was associated with their current psychological condition and therefore it was crucial for the international students. When it came to international students, getting adaptive to a new cultural environment was what they had to mainly deal with. Therefore, this study examined the relationship between the cultural intelligence and psychological well-being first. Besides, whether mindfulness and social support could serve as an individuals’ help internally and externally to strengthen the relationship was also discussed in this study. Quantitative approach and on-line questionnaire were applied in this study. Data analyzed was from 200 Taiwanese students who were currently studying abroad for at least six months. Then, IBM SPSS Statistics 23, was used to do the descriptive, correlation and hierarchical regression analysis. Results showed that cultural intelligence was positively and significantly with psychological wellbeing. And social support strengthened the relationship between cultural intelligence and one sub-dimension of psychological well-being, autonomy. Based on the results, school and organizations could prepare culture-related training before students or employees departed for learning. It was also important for them to maintain and develop a good social support network with family, friends and significant other in order to have a positive learning experience.. Keywords: cultural intelligence, psychological well-being, mindfulness, social support, international students. I.

(4) TABLE OF CONTENTS ABSTRACT ............................................................................................................................ I TABLE OF CONTENTS .................................................................................................... II LIST OF TABLES .............................................................................................................. IV LIST OF FIGURES .............................................................................................................. V CHAPTER I INTRODUCTION ..................................................................................... 1 Background of the Study .................................................................................................... 1 Purpose of the Study ........................................................................................................... 3 Research Questions ............................................................................................................. 4 Problem Statement .............................................................................................................. 4 Definition of Terms ............................................................................................................. 5. CHAPTER II LITERATURE REVIEW ....................................................................... 7 Psychological Well-Being ................................................................................................... 7 Cultural Intelligence............................................................................................................ 9 International Students and Cross Cultural Adaptation ...................................................... 12 Mindfulness....................................................................................................................... 14 Social Support ................................................................................................................... 14 Cultural Intelligence and Psychological Well-Being ........................................................ 15 The Role of Mindfulness as a Moderator ......................................................................... 15 The Role of Social Support as a Moderator ...................................................................... 17 Summary ........................................................................................................................... 18. CHAPTER III METHODOLOGY .............................................................................. 19 Research Framework ........................................................................................................ 19 Research Hypotheses ........................................................................................................ 20 Research Sample ............................................................................................................... 21 Measurement ..................................................................................................................... 22 II.

(5) Pilot Test ........................................................................................................................... 24 Data Collection ................................................................................................................. 25 Data Analysis .................................................................................................................... 26 Research Procedure ........................................................................................................... 27. CHAPTER IV RESEARCH RESULTS ..................................................................... 31 Participants ........................................................................................................................ 31 Reliability.......................................................................................................................... 32 Descriptive Statistics ......................................................................................................... 34 Correlation Analysis.......................................................................................................... 38 Hierarchical Regression Analysis ..................................................................................... 41 Discussion ......................................................................................................................... 49. CHAPTER V CONCLUSIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS ........................ 51 Conclusions ....................................................................................................................... 51 Practical Implications of the Study ................................................................................... 53 Research Limitations ........................................................................................................ 53 Suggestions for Future Study ............................................................................................ 54. REFERENCES ..................................................................................................................... 57 APPENDIX: QUESTIONNAIRE ................................................................................... 65. III.

(6) LIST OF TABLES Table 3.1.. Cronbach Alpha Value of each Variable and their Sub-Dimensions of this Study.....................................................................................................................25. Table 4.1.. Reliability Scale: CQ, PWB, Mindfulness and Social Support (n=200) ...….….32. Table 4.2.. Reliability Scale: Cognitive CQ, Metacognitive CQ, Motivational CQ and Behavioral CQ (n=200) ………….………………………….………………....32. Table 4.3.. Reliability Scale: Positive Relations, Autonomy, Environmental Mastery, Personal Growth, Purpose of Life and Self-Acceptance (n=200) …………......33. Table 4.4.. Reliability Scale: Friend Support, Family Support and Significant Other Support (n=200) ...……………………………………………………………………....33. Table 4.5.. Participants Demographic Statistics (n=200) …………...……………..........….35. Table 4.6.. Means, Standard Deviations, Correlations and Reliability of Variables (n=200) ................................................................................................................39. Table 4.7.. Results of Regression Analyses of Psychological Well-being, Mindfulness as Moderator (n=200) ...…...…................................................................................42. Table 4.8.. Results of Regression Analyses of Psychological Well-being, Social Support as Moderator (n=200) …..…................................................................................…43. Table 4.9.. Results of Regression Analyses of Psychological Well-being, Friend Support as Moderator (n=200) ..………................................................................................44. Table 4.10.. Results of Regression Analyses of Psychological Well-being, Family Support as Moderator (n=200) ….................................................................................……45. Table 4.11.. Results of Regression Analyses of Psychological Well-being, Significant Other Support as Moderator (n=200) ……...............................................................…46. Table 4.12.. Results of Regression Analyses of Autonomy (n=200) ….…………………...47. Table 5.1.. Summary of Hypotheses Results.………………………......…………………..51. IV.

(7) LIST OF FIGURES Figure 2.1.. The four dimensional model of cultural intelligence …………………….........10. Figure 2.2.. The U-curve of cross cultural adjustment …………………………………......13. Figure 3.1.. Research framework of this study ……………………………………………..19. Figure 3.2.. Research procedure of this study ………………………………………….......29. Figure 4.1.. Figure of the moderating effect of social support in the relationship between cultural intelligence and autonomy…………………………………………...48. V.

(8) CHAPTER I INTRODUCTION This chapter was to introduce the background and the purpose of the study. Research questions and problem of statement were also provided. In the end, the definitions of each term were explained.. Background of the Study Through the trend of globalization and the development of technology, the distance among different people across the world shrinks. Moving across nations without being obstructed by geographical distance becomes easier and more frequent. The prosperity of the international interaction benefits not only commerce but also education. In Taiwan, it enhances students’ willingness to study abroad. According to the “statistics on the number of Taiwanese students applying for studying abroad visa in mainstream countries” from Ministry of Education in Taiwan, the numbers of Taiwanese students studying abroad gradually increased. In 1998, there were 27,101 students studying abroad, and in 2015 the number of students who applied to study abroad programs increased to 38,166 (Ministry of Education, 2016). There are various research related to international students as well. Some researchers looked at the effects that study abroad program had on the students. For example, Williams (2005) found that the intercultural communication skills of students studying abroad generally increased. Several positive influences on students are also reported by researchers, including the reduction of their ethnocentrism, better cultural appreciation, open-mindedness, new perspective and the thought of viewing themselves as world citizens (McCabe, 1994; Fry, Paige, Jon, Dillow, & Nam, 2009). Segmented by the length of time, research on short-term and longterm study abroad experience also concluded that intercultural awareness and interests, personal growth, functional knowledge, and communication and language skills were acquired by the students (Chieffo & Griffith, 2004; Ingraham & Peterson, 2004; Sutton & Rubin, 2004). Most of these research focus on the effects of the study abroad program. 1.

(9) However, considering international students themselves, ways to foster a more positive process of adaptation and life abroad experiences gradually also become a growing interest and concern (Olivas & Li, 2006; Shigaki & Smith, 1997; Tseng & Newton, 2002). For example, Hyun, Quinn, Madon, and Lustig (2007) studied 551 international graduate students, particularly from East Asian countries and discovered that 44% of them reported that their academic performance was influenced significantly by emotional or stress-related problem in their life abroad. That is to say, feeling and functioning well are crucial for international students in order to get what they want during the school year abroad. Therefore, based on the caring for the international students, factors that can influence individuals’ psychological wellbeing are discussed in this study. Psychological well-being was defined as not only a positive state but also a feeling of functioning good in personal or interpersonal fields an individual has (Deci & Ryan, 2008; Ryff & Singer, 2008). Adapted from UNESCO Institute for Statistics, the definition of International students is “students who have crossed a national or territorial border for the purpose of education and are now enrolled outside their country of origin” (UNESCO Institute for Statistics, 2016). The ability they need is called cultural intelligence which was defined as “ability to adapt across cultures, and it reflects a person’s capability to gather, interpret, and act upon radically different cues to function effectively across cultural setting or in multicultural situations” (Earley & Ang, 2003, p.59). When living abroad, an individual tends to pay more attention to what is happening at every moment because of the unfamiliarity toward the exotic things. This behavior, keeping one’s consciousness alive to the present reality, is called mindfulness (Hanh, 1976). Mindfulness has been reported as an influence of individuals’ well-being (LeBel & Dubé, 2001). Therefore, this study uses mindfulness served as a factor that may moderate the relationship between cultural intelligence and psychological well-being. What’s more, 2.

(10) researchers have also considered social support as a predictor that impacts students’ psychological stress and life satisfaction (Misra, Crist, & Burant, 2003). It is also used in this study as a moderating role. In short, the moderating effects of mindfulness, a concept that is acquired from inside the individual, and social support, a concept that an individual gets from the outside, used to its moderating effects on the relationship between cultural intelligence and psychological well-being will be examined. The results of this study, can provide future international students an awareness of what they can do to improve their lives of studying abroad.. Purpose of the Study According to the “statistics on the number of Taiwanese students applying for studying abroad visa in mainstream countries” from Ministry of Education in Taiwan, the number of Taiwanese students studying abroad has a gradual annual increase. (Ministry of Education, 2016) Research on international students indicated that they have always spent time and efforts learning languages, gaining cultural refinement, experiencing adventures, learning about themselves, and developing intercultural competence (Bowman, 1987; Hoffa, 2007). However, academic performance was affected negatively on account of poor psychological condition for international students (Hyun et al., 2007). Therefore, this study examines the relationship among cultural intelligence, mindfulness, social support and psychological well-being to determine whether these factors benefit international students and identify what international students can do to foster their positive life experience abroad.. 3.

(11) Research Questions Adaptability to deal with different content was reported to be the antecedent of psychological well-being (Stoltz, Wolff, Monroe, Mazahreh, & Farris, 2013; Wang, Zhan, Mccune, & Truxillo, 2011). Meanwhile, previous research also identified that mindfulness and social support were factors that influence psychological well-being (LeBel & Dubé, 2001; Misra, Crist, & Burant, 2003). Therefore, research questions in this study were developed as below: 1. Is students’ cultural intelligence positively related to their psychological well-being when studying abroad? 2. Does students’ mindfulness strengthen the relationship between cultural intelligence and psychological well-being? 3. Does the social support that students receive strengthen the relationship between cultural intelligence and psychological well-being?. Problem Statement In view of the growing numbers of Taiwanese students studying abroad, finding out ways that are helpful for them to have a better quality life abroad also becomes important. Most of the researches focus on the beneficial results that international students can get through studying abroad. For example, Williams (2005) found that the international experiences help students to enhance the intercultural communication skills. The reduction of ethnocentrism, better cultural appreciation, open-mindedness, new perspective and the thought of viewing ourselves as world citizens are also reported as the positive outcomes that studying abroad experiences bring (Fry et al., 2009; McCabe, 1994). However, poor psychological condition like mental and emotional problem hinders these positive outcomes (Hyun et al., 2007). It is also a waste of the investment, like time, cost and efforts, for the international students. 4.

(12) Therefore, this study is to examine whether mindfulness and social support could serve as an individuals’ help internally and externally to enhance the relationship between cultural intelligence and psychological well-being.. Definition of Terms Psychological Well-Being This study used conceptualizations of psychological well-being that described well-being as a positive state, namely functioning well in personal and interpersonal domain, for example, fully functioning, living well, and self-actualization of one’s potential (Deci & Ryan, 2008; Ryff & Singer, 2008). Besides, six sub-dimensions that were defined by Ryff and Singer (2008) – positive relations, autonomy, environmental mastery, personal growth, purpose of life and self-acceptance were used.. Cultural Intelligence Cultural intelligence refers to the ability to adapt across cultures, and it reflects a person’s capability to gather interpret, and act upon radically different cues to function effectively across cultural setting or in multicultural situations (Earley & Ang, 2003, p.59).. Mindfulness Hanh (1976) defined the term mindfulness as keeping one’s consciousness alive to the present reality. Moreover, Brown and Ryan (2003) defined that consciousness included both awareness and attention. Awareness is the background radar of consciousness, continually monitoring the inner and outer environment. Attention refers to a process of focusing conscious awareness, providing heightened sensitivity to a limited range of experience (Westen, 1999). 5.

(13) Mindfulness can be considered as an enhanced attention to and awareness of current experience or present reality.. Social Support The definition of social support, concern, love, respect, or value that were served as hidden message from others (Kim, Sherman, & Taylor, 2008), is used in this study. It is divided into three constructs – friends, family, and significant other.. 6.

(14) CHAPTER II LITERATURE REVIEW This chapter was to review the literatures of each term, including cultural intelligence, psychological well-being, mindfulness and social support. Meanwhile, the relationships among them were discussed.. Psychological Well-Being Research related to well-being is abundant. The definitions are also very diversified. Suranyi-Unger (1981, p.132) described the diversity of well-being as: At one extreme, individual well-being can be expressed in physical and biological terms; at the other extreme, it can be viewed as a state of happiness... Between the two extreme notions of individual well-being lies a multitude of other criteria, such as income and wealth, social position, the Maslowian hierarchy of accomplishments, personal power, spiritual or ideological achievement, and many others.. The earliest research began in the 1950s. Well-being is a concept that is used in many different situations and for different purposes. There are many ways to define well-being. Researchers defined it directly or indirectly, subjectively or objectively, and generally or domain-specifically (Paim, 1995) and the selection of the definition depends on the purpose of each study. On the purpose of improving social policy through observing society, some researchers set up the indicators for quality of life. For example, gender, educational level, age, and social status are used to indicate subjective well-being (Andrew & Withey, 1976). However, only using demographical indicators seems not enough for researching overall well-being. Researchers started to keep an eye on individuals’ psychological and cognitive conditions, like personality and life satisfaction (Taylor & Brown, 1994). Through the development of the research on well-being, Diener (1984) addressed that 7.

(15) well-being is an individual subjective feeling, so-called “Subjective Well-Being.” It encompasses individuals’ longer-term levels of pleasant effect, lack of unpleasant effect and life satisfaction. And it is an individual’s evaluation of his or her quality of life overall. Besides, Lin, Lu, Wu and Wu (2012) proposed that to assess an individual’s well-being it is necessary to measure his or her overall life. While the construct of subjective well-being was described as a feeling dimension (feeling good, contentment), functioning dimension (fully functioning, living well, and selfactualization of one’s potential) was used to describe construct of another definition of wellbeing, psychological well-being (Deci & Ryan, 2008; Ryff & Singer, 2008). According to Ryff and Singer (2008), what constitutes the core dimension of psychological well-being is positive relation, autonomy, environmental mastery, personal growth, purpose of life and selfacceptance. Positive relations mean that individuals perceive they have trusting interpersonal and warm relations with other people. They also have strong feelings of empathy and affection toward people. Autonomy refers to independence, regulation of oneself and self-determination. An autonomous person is independent and he or she does not seek approval from others. They are able to evaluate themselves on their own standards. Environmental mastery is the ability to choose or create an environment that fits an individual’s psychological condition. They are able to manipulate the environment and control where they are in to fit their mental condition. Personal growth can be explained as individuals’ perception of keep developing themselves. As for becoming a fully functioning person, being open to new experiences, growing and expanding ourselves are crucial for individuals to get this goal. Purpose of life means that an individual is able to know what they are doing for their life, 8.

(16) that is, the meaning of their own life. It focuses on whether individuals own a sense of directedness and intentionality. Self-acceptance is that individuals have feeling of satisfaction with their self. Also, they are capable of holding positive attitudes toward their self regardless of deficiency. The definition of psychological well-being and its six dimensions were used in this study to measure and to examine students’ psychological well-being when they are going through the process of cross cultural adaptation.. Cultural Intelligence Earley and Ang (2003) introduced the term cultural intelligence (CQ). Cultural intelligence refers to the “ability to adapt across cultures, and it reflects a person’s capability to gather interpret, and act upon radically different cues to function effectively across cultural setting or in multicultural situations” (p.59). Earley and Ang (2003) explained that cultural intelligence encompassed internal and external perspective of intelligence. This theory was built on different subfields of intelligence, like psychometric, behavioral, and contextual, through taking numerous theories (Gardner’s theory of multiple intelligence, Ceci’s bioecological theory of intelligence and Sternberg’s theory of triarchic intelligences) as reference. Cultural Intelligence focuses on the interaction between individual and the environment. The context is crucial for an individual when it comes to getting adaptive to the environment. Therefore, cultural intelligence covers internal and external perspectives of intelligences. It includes individual’s intelligences that are related to functions of cognition, metacognition, motivation and behavior (Earley & Ang, 2003). Socializing individuals are able to react well in their original cultural background context. However, when they step into another unfamiliar culture, it is the time when cultural intelligence plays an important role. Lacking the familiar cues in a new culture, there is no 9.

(17) frame to rely on for individuals. Thus, individuals have to cultivate a new frame of the new environment so that they are able to get the new environmental cues helping them to react appropriately. Individuals having higher CQ are capable of acquiring new behaviors based on the new environment needs (Earley & Ang, 2003). Cultural intelligence was conceptualized as multidimensional construct with CQ knowledge, CQ strategy, CQ drive, and CQ action, usually referenced in the research as mental (cognitive and metacognitive), motivational, and behavioral CQ. Figure 2.1 is the CQ composition (Livermore, 2010):. Figure 2.1. The four dimensional model of cultural intelligence. Source: “Leading with cultural intelligence: The new secret to success,” by D. Livermore, 2010, p.25. Copyright 2010 by D. Livermore.. CQ knowledge (cognitive CQ) is about the knowledge of the culture and the understanding of how things are done in this cultural context. It has two sub-dimensions: cultural systems and cultural norms and values. Cultural system is the way the society operates to meet members’ basic needs. Besides, cultural norms and values refer to the different ways each culture deals with issues like authority, and relationships among members. CQ Strategy (metacognitive CQ) is namely how individuals use their understanding of the culture to plan 10.

(18) the strategy. It has three dimensions: awareness, planning and checking. Awareness means having good understanding of what is going on in oneself and others. Planning and checking refer to taking time to prepare for and monitor the cross cultural encounter. CQ drive (motivational CQ) is individuals’ interest and confidence in adjusting themselves into cross cultural environment. Intrinsic motivation (enjoyment from culturally diverse situations an individual feels internally), extrinsic motivation (tangible benefits from culturally diverse situations an individual gets), and self-efficacy (the confidence an individual has to deal with culturally diverse situations effectively). CQ Action (behavioral CQ) means the ability to act appropriately in cross cultural situations. The actions include verbal, nonverbal and speech acts (the exact words and phrases we use when we communicate specific types of messages). Four dimensions are essential altogether when it comes to the benefits of cultural intelligence (Livermore, 2010). Livermore (2010) also suggested that CQ can be developed by following the acquirement of CQ four dimensions: CQ drive, CQ knowledge, CQ strategy and then, CQ action. Kelley and Meyers (1995) define cross cultural adaptability as the ability to get adaptive to and function well in other cultures. The concept of cross cultural adaptability is similar to cultural intelligence which refers to the capability to function effectively across countries, namely across different cultures (Earley & Ang, 2003). Also, the relationship between cross cultural adaptability and the well-being has also been discussed. A positive correlation exists between adaptability and well-being (Maggiori, Johnston, Krings, Massoudi, & Rossier, 2013). Two studies whose participants were all international students were used to discuss Cross Cultural Adaptability Inventory (Ward, Berno, & Main, 2000). The four constructs, Emotional Resilience (ER), Flexibility/Openness (FO), Perceptual Acuity (PAC), and Personal Autonomy (PA), assessed by CCAI were reported as being related to the psychological and sociocultural context. One study indicated that ER and FO were related to psychological and sociocultural 11.

(19) adaption problems, while PAC and PA were associated with fewer sociocultural difficulties. And in the second study, ER was identified to be the strongest predictor of psychological wellbeing and PAC was a critical factor in sociocultural adaptation. As above, this study treats the cross cultural adaptability as a similar concept with cultural intelligence. The definition of cultural intelligence, student’s ability that is important for getting adaptive to new cultures, was used in this study.. International Students and Cross Cultural Adaptation Due to the gradual and significant increase of international students, many scholars have researched many relevant aspects. One factor that encouraged students to depart to other countries to study is motivation. The motivation comes from the outcomes of studying abroad, namely what students can get from cross cultural studying experiences. Potential outcomes include intercultural competence, global perspectives, personal identity development, language proficiency enhancement and intellectual development (Twombly, Salisbury, Tumanut, & Klute, 2012). However, confronting a life transition and different educational system can be overwhelming for international students (Olivas & Li, 2006; Zhai, 2002). A study discovered that students learning results were significantly influenced by emotional or stress-related problem in their life abroad. That is to say, feeling and functioning well are crucial for international students in order to get what they want during the school year abroad (Hyun et al., 2007). Meanwhile, understanding about cross cultural adaptation or adjustment is also important for them. U-Curve Theory states that an individual’s cross cultural adjustment process runs through four stages. First, honeymoon stage is the initial stage. Individuals are curious and excited about the new environment they get into. Second, in the culture shock stage, they start to get trouble when dealing with foreign people’s different norms, perspectives, value, etc. Third, they find 12.

(20) out a way to get adaptive to the foreign country and begin to feel involved in the adjustment stage. And fourth, they acquire the ability to function effectively in the new culture environment. This is called mastery stage (Black & Mendenhall, 1991). Figure 2.2 shows the relationship between the degree of adjustment and the time in months during these stages. It is shown that the adjustment stage begins after 6 months. Therefore, international students’ condition can be expected to get stable after half of a year abroad.. Figure 2.2. The U-curve of cross cultural adjustment. Source: “The u-curve adjustment hypothesis revisited: A review and theoretical framework,” by J. Black and M. Mendenhall. 1991, Journal of International Business Studies, 22(2), p. 227. Copyright 1991 by Palgrave Macmillan Journals.. 13.

(21) Mindfulness Hanh (1976) defined the term mindfulness is keeping one’s consciousness alive to the present reality. Moreover, Brown and Ryan (2003) defined consciousness includes both awareness and attention. Consciousness is a mode of mental processing that helps individuals to operate effectively. It was addressed by Westen (1999) that it is composed by awareness and attention. Awareness serves as a background radar of consciousness, paying attention to the inside and outside part. Furthermore, attention is the focus of conscious awareness. Bodhi (2000) thought of mindfulness as “bare attention”, which means that we pay attention without conditioned emotional reaction, evaluation and judgments. Kabat-Zinn (2003) and Shapiro, Carlson, Astin and Freedman (2006) also pointed out that mindfulness is when individuals pay his or her attention to the present in an accepting and nonjudgmental way. Moreover, researchers explained mindfulness with three concepts: intention, attention and attitude. Intention is related to the reason you pay attention; attention is that knowing what really is happening; and attitude is how you act toward the attention (Shapiro et al., 2006). Therefore, mindfulness is the awareness emerging during the process of being intent, attentive, and reaction (attitude) together to engage what is happening in the present. This definition was used in this study.. Social Support Dean and Lin (1977) pointed out that there is no consensus of what social support is in literatures. For instance, three components of social support have been described. They are: (1) information that an individual is cared for and loved, (2) information that an individual is esteemed and valued, and (3) information that an individual belongs to a network of communication and mutual obligation (Cobb, 1976). Social support is concern, love, respect, or values that were served as hidden message from others (Kim et al., 2008). It can also be 14.

(22) defined as a subjective feeling that one would get from others when he or she is having a hard time (DeLongis & Holtzman, 2015). Regardless of the differences in definitions, social support was approved to have therapeutic value in mental and physical health, which are related to psychological well-being (Pearson, 1986). Hirsch (1980) also pointed out the high correlation between social support system, that is, friends and family, and mental health. Social support also helps to increase individuals’ self-esteem and the feeling of control, and this help finally results in the enhancement of psychological conditions (Pearlin, Lieberman, Menaghan, & Mullan, 1981).. Cultural Intelligence and Psychological Well-Being There are several studies discussing adaptability as an antecedent of well-being, and all had similar result. That is, adaptability is related to psychological well-being (Stoltz et al., 2013; Wang et al., 2011). Besides, cross cultural adaptability which is similar with cultural intelligence was related to psychological well-being (Kelley & Meyers, 1995). Therefore, by the similarity shared between the cross cultural adaptability and cultural intelligence, this study builds the following hypothesis: Hypothesis 1: Students’ cultural intelligence is positively related to their psychological well-being when studying abroad.. The Role of Mindfulness as a Moderator Researchers pointed out the benefits that mindfulness attention and awareness bring are the direct proves for the relationship mindfulness-cultivating process and positive psychological and physical results (Kabat-Zinn, 1990; Shapiro, Schwartz, & Bonner, 1998). Researchers reported that the enhancement of well-being caused by mindfulness is related to the higher quality or optimal experiences in the present. LeBel and Dubé (2001) made an 15.

(23) experiment and found out that when individuals are eating chocolate, those who pay attention to the sensory experiences of eating are reported more joyful than those who simultaneously have other tasks to work with. What’s more, Csikszentmihalyi (1990) defined flow activities as a mental state of operation where participants fully engage with and pay attention to what is occurring, and these activities yield considerable enjoyment. In addition, a number of theories about self-regulation discuss the place of attention and awareness in the enhancement of psychological and behavioural functioning as well. For example, Self Determination Theory (SDT; Deci & Ryan, 1985; Ryan & Deci, 2000) asserts that an open awareness is considered valuable when an individual chooses behaviors that are aligned with one’s needs, values, and interests; on the contrary, individuals processing automatically or under control often preclude considerations of options that would be more aligned with needs and values (Deci & Ryan, 1980; Ryan, Kuhl, & Deci, 1997). That is, through self-regulated activities and fulfillment of the basic psychological needs for autonomy, competence, and relatedness, mindfulness may facilitate well-being (Hodgins & Knee, 2002). As above, when individuals fulfill their competence or execute some self-regulated activities, mindfulness may play a moderating role which results in the enhancement of well-being. Therefore, this study builds the following hypothesis. Hypothesis 2: Mindfulness positively strengthens the relationship between cultural intelligence and psychological well-being. Hypothesis 2-1: Mindfulness positively strengthens the relationship between cultural intelligence and six sub-dimensions of psychological well-being.. 16.

(24) The Role of Social Support as a Moderator Social support has direct influence on individuals’ emotional health and well-being in a beneficial way. For example, social support has more effect of enhancing health when an individual faces time of high stress (Dean, Kolody, & Wood, 1990; Reinhardt, 1996; Wills 1985). This was also confirmed by previous studies which concluded that social support has a direct influence on psychological health by reducing the risk of mental disease, and simultaneously increasing the psychological well-being (Cohen & Wills, 1985; Hogan, Linden, & Najarian, 2002; Seeman, 2000). There are a number of literatures discussing the relationship between social support and mental health, especially testing and verifying the beneficial and moderating effects of social support (Berkman, Glass, Brissette, & Seeman, 2000; EscribàAgüir, Ruiz-Pérez, & Montero-Piñar, 2010). Besides, certain studies have noted that the effect of social support has on psychological well-being is mainly from how individuals perceive rather than what individuals actually get (Wethington & Kessler, 1986). Social support, for adolescent and the elder, has been pointed out as an essential factor influencing quality of life and well-being in Western societies and China as well. For adults, social contact can help them acquire more chances and keep a positive emotional state (Ross, Mirowsky, & Goldsteen, 1990; Lin, 1999). What’s more, Mechanic (1976) described that social support can be viewed as an intervening factor when an individual is running through his or her process of getting adaptive to the new environment. Therefore, this study builds the following hypothesis. Hypothesis 3: Social support positively strengthens the relationship between cultural intelligence and psychological well-being.. 17.

(25) Hypothesis 3-1: Social support positively strengthens the relationship between cultural intelligence and six sub-dimensions of psychological well-being.. Summary By reviewing several previous literatures, four variables - cultural intelligence, psychological well-being with its six sub-dimensions, mindfulness and social support - were reviewed. Meanwhile, hypotheses of the relationship between cultural intelligence and psychological well-being and the potential moderating effects of mindfulness and social support in this relationship were developed. Next chapter would go further into the research framework, questions, samples, and instruments elaboration. Research process, data collection and analysis introduction were included as well.. 18.

(26) CHAPTER III METHODOLOGY This chapter explained more on research framework, research hypotheses, research sample and research instruments. Data collection and data analysis were also included. Lastly, the overall research process was described.. Research Framework The model of the research framework was developed by the purpose of this study and also according to the literature review. It briefly covered and illustrated the whole study. First, there was one independent variable discussed, cultural intelligence (X) which was assessed by cultural intelligence scale. The study looked at the relationship between this independent variable and the dependent variable, psychological well-being (Y). In addition, the moderating effects of two moderators, mindfulness (MO1) and social support (MO2) on the relationship between cultural intelligence and psychological well-being with its six sub-dimensions were also examined in this study. Figure 3.1 was shown below:. Figure 3.1. Research framework of this study. 19.

(27) Research Hypotheses Based on the research questions and the relevant literature review that were addressed in previous chapters, the following research hypothesis were developed. These examined the relationship between cultural intelligence and psychological well-being, and also the moderating effect of mindfulness and the level of social support on the relationship between cultural intelligence and psychological well-being, including its six dimensions, in Taiwanese students participating in the studying abroad program.. Research Question 1: Is students’ cultural intelligence positively related to their psychological well-being when studying abroad? Hypothesis 1: Students’ cultural intelligence is positively related to their psychological well-being when they are studying abroad.. Research Question 2: Does students’ mindfulness positively strengthen the relationship between cultural intelligence and psychological well-being? Hypothesis 2: Mindfulness positively strengthens the relationship between cultural intelligence and psychological well-being. Hypothesis 2-1: Mindfulness positively strengthens the relationship between cultural intelligence and six sub-dimensions of psychological well-being.. 20.

(28) Research Question 3: Does social support that students receive positively strengthen the relationship between cultural intelligence and psychological well-being? Hypothesis 3: Social support positively strengthens the relationship between cultural intelligence and psychological well-being. Hypothesis 3-1: Social support positively strengthens the relationship between cultural intelligence and six sub-dimensions of psychological well-being.. Research Sample The sample population of this study were Taiwanese students who are currently studying abroad, for example, exchange students, degree program students, and students who are attending language schools. Convenience sampling and snowball sampling were used to reach the sample population. Selected students have to be studying abroad. In addition, their length of stay in the foreign country should be for at least six months. This time length was set as a criterion based on the U-Curve Theory (UCT) of cross cultural adjustment. In this case, Taiwanese students studying abroad were expected to have already passed the first and the second stage of the UCT, honeymoon and culture shock stage. Therefore, participants’ responses whose time length staying abroad do not exceed six months were not used to be analyzed. A total of 268 participants filled the self-rated questionnaires online and there were 200 responses meeting the criterions.. 21.

(29) Measurement Psychological Well-being A 18-item Chinese version for Ryff’s psychological well-being scale developed by Li 2014 is used in this study. According to Li (2014), this shorter version scale is based on Ryff’s original 84-item psychological well-being scale for measuring psychological well-being. A 6point Likert type scale where participants respond from 1 (strongly disagree) to 6 (strongly agree) was used. Psychological well-being consists of six sub-dimensions – positive relations, autonomy, environmental mastery, personal growth, purpose of life and self-acceptance (Ryff & Singer, 2008). The 18 Chinese items are divided into 3 for each sub-dimensions. This scale was tested by 820 samples aged from 31 to 95 and the results turned out that factor loading were 0.60 at least and the Cronbach alpha value was 0.92 and 0.71, 0.60, 0.75, 0.74, 0.73 and 0.73 for the six sub-dimensions respectively (Li, 2014).. Cultural Intelligence This study uses Cultural Intelligence Scale (CQS) developed by Van, Ang and Koh (2008) to measure cultural intelligence. It is a 20-item scale that measures the four capabilities discussed before: CQ Knowledge (cognition CQ), CQ Strategy (metacognition CQ), CQ Drive (motivational CQ), and CQ Action (behavioral CQ) with 6 items, 4 items, 5 items, and 5 items for each capability. A 7-point Likert type scale where participants respond whether or not the item statements describe how they really are, from 1 (strongly disagree) to 7 (strongly agree) will be used. In the process of developing CQS, the generalizability across nations and research methods are cautiously examined and validated with several studies. The internal consistency of each dimension is also examined with 576 business school undergraduates’ participants, namely cognitive CQ, metacognitive CQ, motivational CQ and behavioral CQ with Cronbach’s alpha value of 0.85, 0.71, 0.75 and 0.83 (Van, Ang, & Koh, 2008). 22.

(30) Mindfulness This study uses Mindful Attention Awareness Scale (MAAS) to assess individuals’ mindfulness. It is a psychological self-survey which was developed by Brown and Ryan (2003) and it was created to capture attention and awareness in daily life specifically (Brown & Ryan, 2003). 15 descriptive questions with general Cronbach’s alpha value of 0.80 to 0.90 are included in this questionnaire and the participants answer from 1 (almost never) to 6 (almost always) according to the level they feel corresponding to their recent condition. The reliability and validity have also been examined in several researches. For example, Ruiz, Suárez-Falcón and Riaño-Hernández (2016) analyze the factor structure and psychometric properties of the MAAS in Spanish with sample size of 762 Colombian undergraduates. They found out that data was very similar to those obtained in other MAAS validation studies. Jermann, Billieux, Larøi, Argembeau, Bondolfi, Zermatten and Van der Linden (2009) also proved the reliability and validity of the MAAS by using the French MAAS in French-speaking places. Validity evidence is also shown when the MAAS was used among Brazilian samples (Barros, Kozasa, Souza, & Ronzani, 2015).. Social Support Multidimensional scale of perceived social support, a 12-item social support questionnaire adopted from Zimet, Dahlem, Zimet and Farley (1988), is used in this questionnaire. There are 12 questions in total which can be separated in to 3 questions measure social support from friends, 3 from family, and the other 3 from significant other. The Cronbach’s alpha value of each dimension are 0.85 for friends, 0.87 for family and 0.91 for significant other. And for the whole scale, the overall Cronbach alpha value is 0.85. Overall, this scale has good internal reliability. Given that the participants are Taiwanese students; Chinese version questionnaire will be 23.

(31) used in this study. However, questionnaires for cultural intelligence, mindfulness and social support are developed in English originally, therefore; back translation method will be applied for the purpose of ensuring the consistency.. Pilot Test The complete questionnaire was mainly composed by cultural intelligence scale, 18-item Chinese version Ryff’s psychological well-being scale, mindful attention awareness scale and multidimensional scale of perceived social support with other demographic questions. Once the questionnaire was made, the researcher conducted a pilot test in order to firstly ensured the internal reliability. There were 36 participants filling the questionnaire and their age ranging from 21 to 28. They were all students with studying abroad experiences – exchange students, master degree students or language school students and they also studied in a foreign country for at least six months. Among them, there were 28 female students and 8 male students, 13 with bachelor degree and 23 with master degree and studying in USA, UK, Holland, Spain, Austria and Korea. After data was collected from these 36 participants, a reliability test was done by using SPSS. The Cronbach alpha value of each variable were 0.87 for psychological well-being, 0.94 for cultural intelligence, 0.87 for mindfulness and 0.92 for social support. The Cronbach alpha value of their sub-dimensions were also presented in Table 3.1. For psychological well-being, the Cronbach alpha value ranged from 0.66 to 0.82. As for cultural intelligence, it ranged from 0.78 to 0.91, and for social support, the Cronbach alpha vale were 0.85, 0.89 and 0.88 respectively. According to George and Mallery (2003), for Cronbach alpha vale that explained the internal consistency of items, ranging from 0.6 to 0.7 is considered to be acceptable, from 0.7 to 0.8 is good; moreover, 0.9 and over 0.9 is considered excellent. Therefore, overall the 24.

(32) questionnaire used in this study had a good reliability based on the results that pilot test showed. Table 3.1. Cronbach Alpha Value of Each Variable and Their Sub-Dimensions of This Study Variable. Total Item Number. Cronbach Alpha. Psychological well-being Positive relations Autonomy Environmental mastery Personal growth. 18 3 3 3 3. 0.87 0.66 0.75 0.73 0.76. Purpose of life Self-acceptance Cultural intelligence (CQ) Cognitive CQ. 3 3 20 6. 0.82 0.82 0.94 0.91. Metacognitive CQ Motivational CQ Behavioral CQ Mindfulness Social support Social support from friend. 4 5 5 15 12 4. 0.85 0.89 0.78 0.87 0.92 0.85. 4 4. 0.89 0.88. Social support from family Social support from significant other. Data Collection In this study, data was collected through online questionnaire. The online questionnaire consisted of instruments for four variables with demographic information questions added. A clear description of the research purpose and criterion for the target participants was attached in the beginning of the questionnaire. The target population of this study was students who are studying abroad and they also have stayed in the foreign country for at least six months. And the way of sampling for this study was convenience sampling and snowball sampling. Convenience sampling is a way of sampling that owns features like easy accessibility or geographical proximity of target population (Dörnyei, 2007). Therefore, researcher is going to 25.

(33) post the questionnaire on the social media platform, like Facebook group of students studying abroad to reach the potential participants. Participants meeting the criteria and willing to fill the questionnaire would directly fill it. In order to make sure the participants meet the criterion of this study, the requirements of the participants would be described clearly in the very beginning of the questionnaire. For example, I am currently studying abroad and I have been studying abroad for six months. Also, the qualification of the participants like study abroad condition and time duration would be examined again by the researcher when processing the responses. This study also used snowball sampling, as some questionnaires were sent by the researcher to participants who meet the criterion of the sample; then, they were asked to distribute the questionnaire to others who also meet the sample criterion. Therefore, the questionnaire was posted in social media platform that is grouped by potential participants like group of exchange students. In addition, through personal network, researcher sent the questionnaire to some participants who meet the sample criterion; then, they were asked to distribute the questionnaire to others within network who also meet the sample criterion to fill the questionnaire. After all the data was collected, the completed responses were analyzed through the way discussed in the next session.. Data Analysis This study used “IBM SPSS Statistics 23” which was currently the latest statistical processing tool to analyze the collecting data. The analyzing process went through the following elements, 1. Descriptive statistics analysis To describe the frequencies of the demographic data, including participants’ age, 26.

(34) gender, educational level, studying abroad program, studying abroad time length, country and its main official language, and previous international experiences. 2. Correlation analysis To see the relationship between the independent variable, cultural intelligence and the dependent variable, psychological well-being, meanwhile the relationship between its sub-dimensions were examined as well. 3. Hierarchical regression analysis To see the relationship between the independent variable, cultural intelligence and the dependent variable, psychological well-being. Whether the moderating effects of the moderators, mindfulness and social support, were also examined through hierarchical regression analysis.. Research Procedure This part provided a description of the process that this study would go through. Figure 3.2 concluded the research process at the end of this part.. Research Topic Development After several discussions about the interest of the research with thesis advisor and also reviewing literatures, a research topic whose focus was on the condition of students’ psychological well-being when they are studying abroad was developed.. Research Background, Purpose, and Questions Development Researchers have discussed about psychological well-being for some time. Also, the trend of studying abroad is gradually pervasive. After reviewing the relevant literatures and information, research background, purpose and questions were determined.. Literature Review Researcher kept reviewing the literatures that were related to the variables, psychological 27.

(35) well-being, cultural intelligence, mindfulness and social support in order to have more understanding.. Measurement Selection The instruments for measuring the variables were crucial for the study. Researcher also attentively reviewed the literature related to the measurement. The generalizability and validation of the measurements were also ensured. Finally, the measurements for each variable were chosen; any needed revision for the study was made accordingly. Data Collection The participants were selected by convenience sampling and snowball sampling. Questionnaire with a clear research purpose introduction and participant instruction was send through the Internet (e-mail, social media group, etc.). After about one month and half, the data collection process was done.. Data Analysis After data was collected, researcher used statistical software, SPSS, to analyze the data. Descriptive data analysis, correlation analysis and hierarchical regression analysis were used in this study.. Conclusion Data analyzed and the literature review were used to discuss the findings and finally concluded this study.. 28.

(36) Figure 3.2. Research procedure of this study.. 29.

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(38) CHAPTER IV RESEARCH RESULTS This session demonstrates the results after analyzing the data collected in order to examine the proposed relationship between cultural intelligence (CQ), psychological well-being (PWB), mindfulness, and social support. Focusing on psychological well-being, different dimensions were also examined respectively. Psychological well-being consists of six dimensions – positive relations, autonomy, environmental mastery, personal growth, purpose of life and selfacceptance. And social support can be divided as social support from friends, social support from family and social support from significant others. Hypotheses examined in this study were (1) Students’ cultural intelligence is positively related to their psychological well-being when they are studying abroad. (2) Mindfulness positively strengthens the relationship between cultural intelligence and psychological wellbeing. (3) Mindfulness positively strengthens the relationship between cultural intelligence and six sub-dimensions of psychological well-being. (4) Social support positively strengthens the relationship between cultural intelligence and psychological well-being. (5) Social support positively strengthens the relationship between cultural intelligence and six sub-dimensions of psychological well-being. Correlation analysis was used to examine the relationship among variables and hierarchical regression analysis was used to examine the relationship further.. Participants Data was collected through questionnaire distributed online. The participants were all Taiwanese students who are currently studying abroad. Besides they have been studying abroad for at least six months. The screening questions were used in the very beginning of the questionnaire for the purpose of ensuring that the participants fit this study. In total, there were 200 out of 268 filled questionnaire being analyzed, and the remaining 68 responses were not used because they did not meet the criterions of this study. 31.

(39) Reliability Reliability test was done at first to ensure the quality of the questionnaire used. There were 18 items measuring the dependent variable, PWB. The Cronbach alpha value was 0.90. For independent variable, CQ, 20 items were used to measure it and the Cronbach alpha value was 0.89. Further, the Cronbach alpha value of mindfulness’ 15 items was 0.88. And at last, for the 12 items of social support, the Cronbach alpha value was .93. Table 4.1 presented the Cronbach alpha value of each variable.. Table 4.1. Reliability Scale: CQ, PWB, Mindfulness and Social Support (n=200) Scale. Item Number. Cronbach Alpha Value. PWB CQ Mindfulness Social support. 18 20 15 12. .90 .89 .88 .93. Furthermore, reliability of the different dimensions of the variables CQ, psychological well-being and socials support was also checked. CQ was comprised of cognitive CQ, metacognitive CQ, motivational CQ and behavioral CQ and the Cronbach alpha value was 0.86, 0.81, 0.86 and 0.86 respectively. Table 4.2 was shown below. Table 4.2. Reliability Scale: Cognitive CQ, Metacognitive CQ, Motivational CQ and Behavioral CQ (n=200) Scale. Items. Cronbach Alpha Value. Cognitive CQ Metacognitive CQ Motivational CQ Behavioral CQ. 7, 8, 9, 10 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 11, 12, 13, 14, 15 16, 17, 18, 19, 20. .86 .81 .86 .86. 32.

(40) Psychological well-being consists of positive relations, autonomy, environmental mastery, personal growth, purpose of life and self-acceptance. There are three items used for measuring each dimension. Referring to Table 4.3, the Cronbach alpha value for each sub-dimension was 0.66, 0.78, 0.85, 0.77, 0.86, 0.85. Table 4.3. Reliability Scale: Positive Relations, Autonomy, Environmental Mastery, Personal Growth, Purpose of Life and Self-Acceptance (n=200) Scale. Items. Cronbach Alpha Value. Positive relations Autonomy Environmental Mastery. 1, 2, 3 4, 5, 6 7, 8, 9. .66 .78 .85. Personal growth Purpose of life Self-acceptance. 10, 11, 12 13, 14, 15 16, 17, 18. .77 .86 .85. For social support, the sub-dimensions are friend support, family support and significant other support. Each dimension was measured by 4 items among the total number of 12 for this variable. And the Cronbach alpha value was 0.88 for friend support, 0.91 for family support and 0.93 for significant other support as Table 4.4 showed.. Table 4.4. Reliability Scale: Friend Support, Family Support and Significant Other Support (n=200) Scale. Items. Cronbach Alpha Value. Friend Support. 6, 7, 9, 12. .88. Family Support Significant Other Support. 3, 4, 8, 11 1, 2, 5, 10. .92 .93. In summary, Cronbach alpha value of the overall scale and the different dimensions of respective variables were all close to or higher than 0.7 which showed that there was good reliability in this questionnaire (George & Mallery, 2003). 33.

(41) Descriptive Statistics Detailed demographic information about 200 participants is provided in this part. Factors that were included are: . Age. . Gender. . Current educational level. . Current studying abroad program. . Current studying abroad time length. . Country student is studying in. . Cultural difference student perceives between country he or she is studying in and Taiwan. . Major official language of the country student is studying in,. . Efficient communication level student perceives they are able to achieve by using official language,. . Previous international experience times. These 200 participants are all Taiwanese students who are studying outside Taiwan currently. Among them, there are 133 (66.5%) female students and 67 (33.5%) male students. The age ranges from 16 to 36 and the mean is 24.34. As for their educational level, there are 6 (3%) participants owning high school degree, 72 (36%) owning bachelor degree, 107 (53.5%) owning master degree, 12 (6%) owning doctor degree and the remaining 3 (1.5%) are associate bachelor degree. Besides, among these students, there are 16 (8%) students enrolling in exchange program, 33 (16.5%) pursuing bachelor degree, 117 (58.5%) pursuing master degree, 18 (9%) pursuing doctor degree, 11 (5.5%) enrolling in language school program, 2 (1%) as high school students and the other 3 (1.5%) as Japanese college program of specialized subject. These students’ time length of pursuing these degree distribution is 71 (35.5%) for 6 to 12 34.

(42) months, 24 (18%) for 12 to 18 months, 48 (24%) for 18 to 24 months and 57(28.5) for over 24 months. For country student studies in, there are America, United Kingdom, Australia, Japan, Canada, France, Germany, Korea, Spain, Holland, China, Italy, Belgium, Czech Republic, Poland, South Africa and Switzerland with the cultural difference students perceive is 7.55 in average from 1 (No difference) to 10 (Totally different). In addition, the major official language of respective country includes English, Spanish, French, German, Japanese, Korean, Mandarin, Korean, Dutch, Italian, Czech and Polish and the communication level students perceive is 7.07 in average from 1 (Unable to communicate) to 10 (Communicate differently). At last, for previous international experience students have, there are 16 (8%) having no international experience before, 133 (68.5%) having at least 1 to 10 times and the other 47 (23.5%) having more than 11 times. Table 4.5 shows the detailed information of the data as follow.. Table 4.5. Participants Demographic Statistics (n=200) Variable. Frequency. Percentage(%). 133 67. 66.5 33.5. Educational Level High School Bachelor Degree Master Degree Doctor Degree Other. 6 72 107 12 3. 3 36 53.5 6 1.5. Studying Abroad Exchange Student Program Degree Student (Bachelor) Degree Student (Master) Degree Student (Doctor) Language School Student High School Student Other. 16 33 117 18 11 2 3. 8 16.5 58.5 9 5.5 1 1.5. Gender. Category Female Male. (continued) 35.

(43) Table 4.5. (continued) Variable. Category. Frequency. Percentage(%). Time Length. 6 to 12 Months 13 to 18 Months 19 to 24 Months Over 24 Months. 71 24 48 57. 35.5 12 24 28.5. Country. America United Kingdom Australia Japan. 81 33 7 28. 40.5 16.5 3.5 14. Canada France Germany Korea Spain Holland China Italy Belgium Czech Republic. 2 4 17 2 4 5 7 1 2 2. 1 2 .5 1 2 2.5 3.5 .5 1 1. Poland South Africa Switzerland. 2 1 2. 1 .5 1. 1 (No difference) 2 3 4 5 6 7. 1 3 7 7 10 11 36. .5 1.5 3.5 3.5 5 5.5 18. 8 9 10 (Totally different). 63 39 23. 31.5 19.5 11.5. English Spanish French German. 126 4 5 18. 63 2 2.5 9. Cultural Difference. Official Language. (continued) 36.

(44) Table 4.5. (continued) Variable. Category. Frequency. Percentage(%). Japanese Korean Mandarin Dutch Italian Czech Polish. 28 2 6 6 1 2 2. 14 1 3 3 .5 1 1. Communication. 1 (Unable to communicate). 7. 3.5. Level. 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 (Communicate fluently). 5 5 4 11 20 47 63 23 15. 2.5 2.5 2 5.5 10 23.5 31.5 11.5 7.5. Previous. 0 time. 16. 8. International Experiences. 1 to 2 times. 25. 12.5. 3 to 4 times. 42. 21. 5 to 6 times 7 to 8 times 9 to 10 times 11 times or more than 11 times. 28 31 11 47. 14 15.5 5.5 23.5. Overall, among all the participants, most of them are female. Approximately half of them have master degree and over half of them are taking a master degree program abroad now. There are 40.5% among them are now studying in America. And most of them have had international experiences before.. 37.

(45) Correlation Analysis This part examines whether correlation exists among dependent variable, PWB and its 6 dimensions, independent variable, overall CQ, mindfulness and social support in order to further examines the relationship between these variables. Table 4.6 presents the mean, standard deviation, correlations, and reliability as well.. 38.

(46) Table 4.6. Means, Standard Deviations, Correlations and Reliability of Variables (n=200) Mean. S. D.. 1. 2. 1 Gender 2 T. L. 3 P. I. E.. .34 2.46 4.27. .47 1.24 1.97. -.02 -.10. -.07. 4 PWB 5 PR 6 AU 7 EM 8 PG 9 PL 10 SA. 4.80 4.77 4.45 4.79 5.46 4.82 4.50. .63 .86 .91 .93 .66 .95 1.00. -.01 -.01 .02 -.06 -.04 -.06 .07. -.12 -.04 -.08 -.04 -.09 -.09 -.15*. 11 CQ 12 MD 13 SS. 5.26 3.82 5.94. .71 .82 1.05. -.08 -.03 -.08. -.02 -.06 -.08. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. .11 .08 .13 .09 -.05 .12 .06. (.90) .58** .69** .75** .63** .80** .80**. (.66) .18* .26** .38** .30** .40**. (.78) .44** .33** .48** .48**. (.85) .33** .53** .58**. (.77) .51** .34**. (.86) .54**. .02 .09 .08. **. **. **. **. **. **. .48 .37** .49**. .32 .09 .61**. .31 .28** .22**. .38 .39** .32**. .38 .10 .24**. 10. .32 .28** .31**. 11. 12. 13. (.86) .11 .34**. (.88) .14*. (.93). (.85) .38** .39** .40**. *p< .05, **p< .01 Note. Gender: 0= Female, 1= Male: T. L= Time Length: P. I. E.= Previous International Experiences: PWB= Psychological Well-being: PR= Positive Relation: AU= Autonomy: EM= Environmental Master: PG= Personal Growth: PL= Purpose of Life: SA= Self-Acceptance: CQ= Cultural Intelligence: MD= Mindfulness: SS= Social Support; Numbers in parenthesis is Cronbach alpha value.. 39.

(47) When it comes to the dependent variable of this study, psychological well-being, it is shown that students’ psychological well-being is significantly and positively related to the independent variable, CQ (r= .48, p< .01). Psychological well-being is significantly and positively related to mindfulness (r= .37, p< .01). And it is significantly and positively related to social support (r= .49, p< .01). Independent variable CQ is significantly and positively related to six dimensions of psychological well-being, positive relation (r= .32, p< .01), autonomy (r= .31, p< .01), environmental master (r= .38, p< .01), personal growth (r= .38, p< .01), purpose of life (r= .32, p< .01) and self-acceptance (r= .38, p< .01). Also, CQ is significantly and positively related to social support (r= .34, p< .01). Mindfulness is significantly and positively related to four of six sub-dimensions of psychological well-being, autonomy (r= .28, p< .01), environmental master (r= .39, p< .01), purpose of life (r= .28, p< .01) and self-acceptance (r= .39, p< .01). And mindfulness is also significantly and positively related to social support (r= .14, p< .05). Last but not least, social support is significantly and positively related to every dimension of psychological well-being, positive relation (r= .61, p< .01), autonomy (r= .22, p< .01), environmental master (r= .32, p< .01), personal growth (r= .24, p< .01), purpose of life (r= .31, p< .01) and self-acceptance (r= .40, p< .01). In summary, the independent variable, CQ is significantly and positively related to dependent variable, psychological well-being (r= .48, p< .01) and its all dimensions. In other words, the higher students’ CQ is, the higher their psychological well-being is. Through this correlation analysis, the hypothesis this study proposed, students’ CQ is positively related to their psychological well-being when studying abroad, is supported.. 40.

(48) Hierarchical Regression Analysis The previous part indicated that the correlation between each variable. The results turned out that the independent variable, cultural intelligence is correlated with the dependent variable, psychological well-being. Therefore, this part is going to present the hierarchical regression analysis results in order to further examine the relationship among cultural intelligence, mindfulness, social support and psychological well-being. Referring to Table 4.7, the results of the linear regression analysis with psychological well-being as the dependent variable show that 33% of the total variance of psychological wellbeing were explained by the independent variables, cultural intelligence and mindfulness (F= 20.81; p< .001). Cultural intelligence was found significant (β= .46, p< .001). Therefore, H1 is supported. H1: Students’ CQ is positively related to their psychological well-being when studying abroad However, according to Table 4.7, the moderating effect of mindfulness on the relationship between cultural intelligence and psychological well-being is not significant. In addition, there is also no significance existing when mindfulness as moderator in the relationship between cultural intelligence and each sub-dimension of psychological well-being. So, H2 describing that mindfulness moderates the relationship between cultural intelligence and psychological well-being and H2-1 describing that mindfulness strengthens the relationship between cultural intelligence and six sub-dimensions of psychological well-being are both not supported.. 41.

(49) Table 4.7. Results of Regression Analysis of Psychological Well-being, Mindfulness as Moderator (n=200) Psychological well-being Variables. Model 1. Model 2. Model 3. Age. 0.07. 0.07. 0.06. Gender. -0.02. 0.03. 0.03. Previous International Experience. 0.11. 0.08. 0.08. CQ. 0.46***. 0.46***. Mindfulness. 0.31***. 0.31***. Step 1. Step 2. Step 3 CQ x Mindfulness. -0.05. R2. 0.02. 0.35. 0.35. Adjusted R2. 0.001. 0.33. 0.33. ΔR2. 0.02. 0.33. 0.002. F. 1.04. 20.81***. 17.44**. ΔF. 1.04. 49.68***. 0.73. Note. **p< .01; ***p< .001. As for Table 4.8, the results turned out that there is no significance with overall social support as a moderator in the relationship between cultural intelligence and psychological wellbeing.. 42.

(50) Table 4.8. Results of Regression Analysis of Psychological Well-being, Social Support as Moderator (n=200) Psychological well-being Variables. Model 1. Model 2. Model 3. Age. 0.07. 0.11. 0.12. Gender. -0.02. 0.03. 0.03. Previous International Experience. 0.11. 0.07. 0.08. CQ. 0.37***. 0.37***. Social Support. 0.37***. 0.39***. Step 1. Step 2. Step 3 CQ x Social Support. 0.05. R2. 0.02. 0.38. 0.38. Adjusted R2. 0.001. 0.36. 0.36. ΔR2. 0.02. 0.36. 0.002. F. 1.04. 23.25***. 19.45***. ΔF. 1.04. 55.70***. 0.65. Note. ***p< .001. Because there is no significance of overall social support moderating effect, the three dimensions of social support, friend support, family support and significant other support were further examined whether they affect the relationship between cultural intelligence and psychological well-being respectively. The results indicated that there was no significance for friend support, family support, and significant other support either as Table 4.9, Table 4.10, and 43.

(51) Table 4.11 showed.. Table 4.9. Results of Regression Analysis of Psychological Well-being, Friend Support as Moderator (n=200) Psychological well-being Variables. Model 1. Model 2. Model 3. Age. 0.07. 0.12. 0.12. Gender. -0.02. 0.05. 0.05. Previous International Experience. 0.11. 0.09. 0.09. CQ. 0.39***. 0.39***. Friend Support. 0.34***. 0.35***. Step 1. Step 2. Step 3 CQ x Friend Support. 0.03. R2. 0.02. 0.36. 0.36. Adjusted R2. 0.001. 0.35. 0.001. ΔR2. 0.02. 0.24. 0.01. F. 1.04. 21.87***. 18.20***. ΔF. 1.04. 52.30***. 0.24. Note. ***p< .001. 44.

(52) Table 4.10. Results of Regression Analysis of Psychological Well-being, Family Support as Moderator (n=200) Psychological well-being Variables. Model 1. Model 2. Model 3. Age. 0.07. 0.10. 0.10. Gender. -0.02. -0.001. -0.001. Previous International Experience. 0.11. 0.08. 0.08. CQ. 0.41***. 0.41***. Family Support. 0.27***. 0.27***. Step 1. Step 2. Step 3 CQ x Family Support. 0.01. R2. 0.02. 0.32. 0.32. Adjusted R2. 0.001. 0.31. 0.30. ΔR2. 0.02. 0.31. 0.00. F. 1.04. 18.43***. 15.28***. ΔF. 1.04. 43.83***. 0.01. Note. ***p< .001. 45.

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