When working with students from other country the first difficult thing we
faced was the language barrier, which occurred time to time. Mainland China students that we work with have more difficulties to speak English
than us exchange students. It was sometimes hard to explain your opinions to the other person in the group and get yourself understood right. So
it took sometimes more time to get into conclusion inside the group.
Our studying habits differ from the ones that the Mainland Chinese stu-
dents have here in Macao. They prefer more to do the different tasks to-
gether and we like more dividing the parts of the project so everyone can
do them when they have time. Of course they are really hard working and
were eager to finish the project in time like we exchange students.
When working especially with Mainland China students you have to be
careful with the differences in cultural issues. Some nonverbal communica-
tion ways might seem offensive to Chinese people. For example you can-
not overreact when asking personal questions or write things in red ink. At
this point I was already aware of these things we did not face any difficul-
ties with this issue.
The Mainland China students are also more quite when comparing Finnish
people and our habits to work in group in school. They are shyer to im-
press their opinions in the group discussions. So I needed to be careful not
to overstep their opinions in the discussions and give their time to express
At the beginning of the project we all ate lunch together. The Mainland
China students cooked us their traditional food we told them about Finnish culture. It was a really good way to get to know each other better and
made working in group lot easier and less awkward.
I think we all needed to change our usual working habits when doing the
project. I needed to do more compromises from my own studying habits
and adapt the studying methods that locals prefer here. Although I some-
times thought that my opinion would give the best resolution I was willing
to compromise in that way that the conclusion satisficed all.
Nonverbal communication was also an important strategy in the resolution.
Since we had the language barrier from time to time I needed to express myself also well nonverbally that some idea was really good. Also I needed
to lower my voice since the Mainland Chinese were quieter than us and
they might have felt loud voice offensive.