The role of personality and destination in the optimal adaptation of international students to host universities

Anna Muro, Ramon Cladellas*, Iolao Mir, Montserrat Gomà-i-Freixanet

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review


Recent studies suggest that the optimal adaptation of exchange students to the host-university is associated to students' personality, and suggest that lowering anxiety, higher sociability and higher sensation seeking is observed in students with successful adaptations. However, this pattern has only been studied in American or German universities. Accordingly, this study aimed to replicate previous results using a sample of European-international undergraduates of the Erasmus Exchange Programme studying in Barcelona. Analyses of variance showed that exchange-students scored higher than locals in Sociability, Activity and in Boredom Susceptibility, but no differences were seen in Anxiety levels. Regression analyses reported that the personality variable that best predicted studying abroad in Barcelona was, on a broad level, Sociability; on a narrower level, Parties and Friends and Boredom Susceptibility accounted for 38% of the study abroad variance. Results confirm that exchange students show a differential personality profile, but it differs in some traits when compared to American samples. It is discussed how the destination or university allocation and cultural characteristics might mediate the observed differences among samples. It is also discussed the relevance of including both student's personality and destination characteristics in the study-abroad assessment programmes to facilitate students' adaptation and avoid stress-related or adaptation problems.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)131-137
Number of pages7
JournalAnsiedad y Estres
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 27 Apr 2022


Dive into the research topics of 'The role of personality and destination in the optimal adaptation of international students to host universities'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this