The term Cross Culture Kids or CCK for short, was conceived by prominent TCK-lecturer and co-author of The New York Times Bestseller, Third Culture Kids: Growing Up Among Worlds, Ruth Van Reken, with the specific purpose of including all forms of cross cultural living. Whereas the term Third Culture Kids refers specifically to persons who have grown up in a country different to that of their birth parents, the term Cross Culture Kids refers to a much broader spectrum.
Ruth Van Reken defines the term in the following way.
A cross-culture kid (CCK) is a person who is living/has lived in – or meaningfully interacted with – two or more cultural environments for a significant period of time during the first eighteen years of life. (2017, p 43)
The term alludes to a much longer list of possible candidates. Not only do traditional Third Culture Kids fit into the criteria of Cross Culture Kids, but so do mixed-race and multicultural kids, children attending schools with a different cultural base than their home, international adoptees, children of minorities, refugees, immigrants and so on.
Whereas Third Culture Kids are defined by the fact that they have grown up in a different country to that of their birth, location is not a defining factor in what constitutes a Cross Culture Kid. Cross Culture Kids are determined by the presence of multiple cultures in their daily life. A meaningful participation in these cultures is also a defining criteria of the Cross Culture Kid.
Pollock, D., 2009. Third Culture Kids, Revised Edition: The Experience of Growing Up Among Worlds. Brealey, Nicholas Publishing.