Students’ Study Abroad Plans: the Influence of Motivational and Personality Factors
Study abroad is becoming an increasingly important part of a college education. The present study investigated the psychological factors predicting college students’ study abroad intentions, including students’ achievement motivation, neophilia, migrant personality and desire to help, by comparing students with high to those with low study abroad intentions. These personality factors related to themes found in mission statements of programs taking students to other countries for brief trips or longer studies. The relative importance of these factors was investigated with a sample of 431 largely first-year undergraduates enrolled in a large introductory psychology class. Results showed that students with high intentions to study abroad had higher scores on all the factors being studied, as hypothesized. These findings might be applied in promoting study abroad in institutions and in developing programs to better fit student interests.
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