Journal of College & University Student Housing Vol 49, No. 1 - 61

International Students' Housing Experience
In accordance with CQR recommendations, the focus group questions were developed
based on the existing literature on international students, a mock interview to
test the interview questions, and feedback from the auditor. The interview questions
included the following:
(1) How was your experience of living with roommates from different cultural backgrounds?
(2) What are the benefits of living with roommates from different cultures?
(3) What are the challenges of living with roommates from different cultures?
(4) What helped your adjustment to living with roommates from different cultures?
The authors used a semi-structured interview format for in-person focus groups, and
each focus group lasted about 60 minutes. All the participants had to answer all the
questions, and, when relevant, they also shared their reactions to other participants'
statements. The interviewer also asked follow-up questions as needed to facilitate
more in-depth exploration. The focus group sessions were recorded and transcribed
by the research team.
DATA ANALYSIS
Research assistants transcribed the audio-taped focus group sessions verbatim, and
judges analyzed them using CQR (Hill, 2012). First, the judges independently read the
interview questions and the first focus group session transcript and developed a list
of tentative topic areas (e.g., benefits), which are called domains in CQR. The judges
discussed and came to consensus about the names for each of the domains and then
sent the domain list to the auditor and revised them based on the auditor's feedback
(Hill, 2012).
After all the judges and the auditor reached consensus on a domain list, the judges
read the transcripts together and used the consensus process (discussed until all
were in agreement) to decide on a thought unit (sentences or phrases containing the
same idea) and assign each thought unit to a domain (Hill, 2012). Simultaneously,
they used the consensus process to create a core idea, which is a concise yet comprehensive
summary of the participant's statement that stays as close as possible to the
participant's own words. Once domains and core ideas were complete for an entire
focus group transcript, they were sent to the auditor, who reviewed them and gave
suggested revisions. Domains and core ideas were then revised based on the auditor's
suggestions (Hill, 2012).
After the domains and core ideas for all transcripts had been audited and revised,
each judge independently read all core ideas across all five focus group sessions and
created a list of categories and subcategories for each of the domains. Then the judges
discussed these categories until they reached consensus on a final list of categories,
which was sent to the auditor and revised based on the auditor's feedback (Hill, 2012).
58 The Journal of College and University Student Housing

Journal of College & University Student Housing Vol 49, No. 1

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