International Students

International Students

Apr 03 2020


Many students love to travel and explore the world. Becoming an international exchange student is a great way to do this. You can live in another country, take classes in a second language, and visit incredible tourist attractions. This is a great way to learn about cross-cultural values. It is also a wonderful way to learn a new language. And most international exchange students can get help from a language tutor.

If you can’t travel, you can always think about hosting an international exchange student. When you host an exchange student, you share your home and your life with this person. Most exchange students live with a host family for six months or one year. In the beginning, there is usually a language barrier, but later, you will be able to speak together more easily.

Jessica’s friends are hosting an exchange student. Listen as she talks about this exciting experience with Andy.


Jessica: My good friends are actually hosting an international exchange student.
Andy_H: Hey, that’s great!
Jessica: I know. It’s really cool! There is a little bit of a language barrier, but that’s to be expected.
Andy_H: You know, there always is with international students. I actually worked as a writing tutor with English as a Second Language students.
Jessica: That’s cool.
Andy_H: And there’s always going to be a language barrier that is further than just understanding words and more about understanding concepts. For the most part, I haven’t met any international students that were anything short of very nice and very humble.
Jessica: Their student is incredibly kind. And they’re actually allowing me to join them. It’s almost as if I’m on vacation. We are going to different tourist attractions around town.
Andy_H: And that’s one of the things I love about international students is the cross-cultural values that they teach you. And when you yourself are an international student, that’s when you really get to realize that we’re all here for each other.
Jessica: Absolutely!


Jessica tells Andy about her friends who are hosting an international exchange student. They invited Jessica to join them, and together, they are visiting many tourist attractions. Jessica says that it is sometimes difficult to understand this student’s English, but she is very kind.

Andy thinks that it is wonderful to spend time with exchange students. He worked as an ESL writing tutor in the past, and he knows what it’s like to have a language barrier. However, he also loves that people can help each other to understand more. He thinks that international students and host families can teach each other about cross-cultural values.

Did you ever host an exchange student? Do you want to be an exchange student?

Grammar Point

Reflexive Pronouns

Andy is talking about international exchange students. He says, “And when you yourself are an international student, that’s when you really get to realize that we’re all here for each other.” He uses a reflexive pronoun.

Reflexive pronouns are used in English when the subject of the sentence is also the object of the verb. Simply add the appropriate pronoun with the ending –self or ­–selves after the verb. For example, “Let me introduce myself. My name is Sonia,” or, “The children enjoyed themselves at the beach.”

Some verbs change their meaning slightly when they have a reflexive pronoun as the direct object. For instance, “She found herself at the grocery store,” or, “We will help ourselves to some coffee.” To find oneself means to discover oneself in a surprising place or situation, and to help oneself means to take.

Unlike in other languages, we do not use a reflexive pronoun after verbs which describe things people usually do for themselves. Verbs like wash, dress, and shave do not usually include a reflexive pronoun.

However, reflexive pronouns are used in this way to stress that someone can do something without help. For example, “My daughter can dress herself now that she’s five,” or, “I can feed myself. I don’t need your help!”

Sometimes, reflexive pronouns can move. Andy’s sentence is the same as saying, “And when you are yourself an international student,….” He could also say, “And when you are an international student yourself,….” However, not every reflexive sentence can change like this example.

Which is correct, “We enjoyed yourself very much,” or, “We enjoyed ourselves very much”?


  1. Which sentence is true?

  2. Jessica is __ with her friends and their exchange student.

  3. When two people don’t speak the same language, there is __.

  4. Which sentence does NOT have a reflexive pronoun?

See the full English lesson at English, baby!