Nomadic Children that Grow Up Globally

The effects of globalization and modernity have lead to increasing number families travelling across a number of boarders for work that is resulting in their nomadic children to grow up globally. This research examines “What is unique about Third Culture Kids (TCKs) and what are the greatest benefits and challenges they face in their global lifestyle?” This report will detail who TCKs are, why are they becoming more common, the five-stage model of transition, the benefits and challenge and finally it will conclude with strategies that schools can implement for an effective transition process. The parameters of this report are only looking at the effects of TCKs travelling to a different country and not exploring the outcomes when they return to their country of origin.
Origin of Third Culture Kids (TCKs)
It has become common for more families to live a life of high mobility, resulting in many children no longer facing the realities of monocultural upbringings . They have not been raised in their parents’ culture but in a cross-culture individualistic to each persons’ . Over 40 years ago, the sociologist/anthropologist John and Ruth Hill Useem originally developed the concept of Third Culture Kids (TCK) when studying American expatriates in India . To them it was evident that those expatriates formed a lifestyle neither similar to their home cultures or their host culture but that it was a combination of both. Based on Pollock & Van Reken’s definition a TCK is a “is a person who has spent a significant part of his or her development years outside the parents’ culture.” Therefore, the native culture where the person is originally from is the ‘first culture’, the host culture they have transitioned into is known as the ‘second c...

... middle of paper ...


Engelbrecht, L. 2013. Third culture kids: the relationship between TCK identity and TCK educational needs. Available at: [Accessed: 14th Feb 2014

Freeman, L. (2014). Interview on Third Culture Kids.

Gillies, W. D. 1998. Children Third on the Move Culture Kids. Childhood Education, 75 (1), pp. 36--38.

Higher Education's 'Hidden Immigrants'. 2005. National On-Campus Report, 33 (7), pp. 5-6.

Limberg, D. and Lambie, G., 2011. Third Culture Kids: Implications for Professional School Counseling. Professional School Counseling, 15(1), pp.45--54.

Nadeau, B. 2003. Always home. Newsweek International.

Pollock, D. C. and Van Reken, R. E. 2009. Third culture kids. Boston: Nicholas Brealey Pub.
Sichel, N. (2014). Interview on Third Culture Kids.
Van Reken, R. (2014). Interview on Third Culture Kids.
Get Access