An occurrence this year - The big three news stories


For question 1, SPA members nominated three major news events of the last 12 months and asked people to choose the event that impacted them the most. The three events were:
the Tohoku Earthquake and Tsunami, the global financial crisis, and the Arab Spring popular uprisings.
※ Please move the click the graph to read comments for each item.



アンケートA アンケートB アンケートC

The Eastern Japan Earthquake & Tsunami

  • People I know were affected by this disaster so it was a major news event for me.(Japan)
  • This news affected me personally. Speaking to people who saw the disaster first-hand helped me to feel just how bewildering the whole experience must have been.(China
  • It felt just like I was watching a scene from a movie.(Korea
  • The earthquake occurred when I was back in Indonesia and it came as a great shock. I was in front of the computer all day trying to get information.(Indnesia
  • The news coming in was just tragic. But it was great to see how so many people gave their support and worked to keep the damage to a minimum.(Taiwan

The recent global financial crisis which began in Greece

  • The impact of the financial crisis has made me pay more attention to the exchange rates.(Korea
  • Although this crisis began in Greece, it's also had an enormous impact on the American economy.(U.S.A

The "Arab Spring" popular uprisings across the Middle East

  • This was taking place when I was back home in Saudi Arabia so I remember it well. People were debating the pros and cons of the revolution and everyone had their own opinion. Some people thought that overthrowing the dictatorship was a good thing while some even thought that it was caused by the American government in order to keep us under their umbrella of influence.(SaudiArabia


The figures show that for many students the Tohoku Earthquake disaster was the major event of the year. Although item A, the Tohoku earthquake, occurred while many students were overseas, the fact that so many still said that it was their biggest event of the year indicates just how widely the disaster was picked up by the foreign media. One of the students who chose item B, the global financial crisis, spoke of how this event has caused them to take a greater interest in the rising value of the yen. In this way, we can see how the crisis is having a direct impact on the lives of international students. Although only two students chose item C, we can still see how people have been personally caught up in this event and the many different opinions that people have. When we look at the big picture, we can see that the enormous catastrophe that was the Tohoku earthquake disaster caught the attention of the entire world.