A great amount of literatures emphasize
that English language proficiency is vital on the academic success and may be
the single greatest barrier experienced by international students.3 International
students are expected to satisfy the same rigorous academic demands as their
domestic counterparts but in an unfamiliar linguistic environment, and thus
often express apprehension regarding their language skills.2,27,28 Language
difficulty is defined by its positive relationship to negative outcome of low
academic performance.29 An interview among first-year international
students reflects their difficulties in understanding lectures in terms of
vocabulary and speed.30 Stoynoff14 found a positive
relationship between international undergraduates’ TOEFL scores and their
academic achievement (measured by GPA). Another study31 showed that
TOEFL scores predict GPAs for students at a range of proficiency levels.
Messner and Liu32 established that international students with higher
TOEFL scores are more likely to have GPA in the “A” range while those with
lower scores are more likely to achieve “B” grades.