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Christianity and the Secular Border Patrol

The Loss of Judeo-Christian Knowledge

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Edited By Barry Kanpol and Mary Poplin

Christianity and the Secular Border Patrol: The Loss of Judeo-Christian Knowledge centrally looks at how secular universities have dominated academic knowledge on the one hand and have also been a part of bias against Christian academics on the other. Authors generally ask for borders of understanding and collegial dialogue to bridge gaps of knowledge that exist because of this bias. Theoretical analysis and narratives from the field describe how overcoming extreme theoretical positions may allow for productive knowledge construction and a more harmonious relationship within the culture wars of our times, especially in higher education.

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7. Religious, Frustrated, and a Long Way from Home: Religiously-Active International Students and Academicians’ Responses to Religion (Robert Osburn)

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7.   Religious, Frustrated, and a Long Way from Home: Religiously-Active International Students and Academicians’ Responses to Religion

ROBERT OSBURN

Introduction

Although international students in American institutions represent only 5% of the college student population, these students have an inordinately large influence on the destiny of their nations (US Department of State, n.d.). This may be one reason that many professors in American universities assume both a benevolent and utilitarian perspective toward international students. In terms of benevolence, many assume these students need extra assistance with adjusting to American life and completing assignments (Glass, Kociolek, Wongtrirat, Lynch, & Cong, 2015), while, in terms of utility, many graduate advisors consider international graduate students hard-working and compliant researchers (Trice, 2003). International student advising offices augment professors by assisting international students and visiting scholars with visa, cultural adjustment, and counseling assistance.

How do universities and colleges in America address matters of identity as they relate to international students? In terms of student identities, academia has provided conceptual roadmaps for consideration of ethnic, racial, gender, and class diversity. However, little attention has been paid to religious diversity and the religious identities of international students, except to the degree that religious clubs are usually permitted on campus. My research on the religious experiences of religiously-active international students on American college campuses not only offers insight into international student religious ← 145 | 146 → identities and experiences, but also uncovers a significant degree of frustration...

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