Agency and hysteresis encounters: understanding the international education experiences of Japanese students in Australian universities

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review


There has been increasing attention given to the notion that international education consists of non-linear and multi-directional transmissive exchanges between existing institutional academic conditions and international students. Despite the role of international students’ agency being paramount, there is a dearth of research on the relationships between these students’ agency and their experiences of international education, which are intertwined with habitus and hysteresis. This paper aims to investigate how six Japanese international students at Australian universities experience hysteresis and then respond through agentic practices. The findings reveal that many of the students in this study embark on various stages of despair and fear, namely hysteresis, before they explore opportunities to reconstruct their habitus in light of institutional norms and conventions. The authors advocate that when students’ habitus is challenged, it induces a hysteresis effect, which is a process of learning, filled with potentialities.

Original languageEnglish
Number of pages20
JournalCambridge Journal of Education
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 2021


  • affordances
  • agency
  • habitus
  • hysteresis
  • hysteresis effects
  • International education

Cite this