Evaluating the Study Abroad Experience using the framework of Rotter’s Social Learning Theory

  • Mark McLeod Emory University
  • Vince Carter Emory University
  • Steve Nowicki Emory University
  • Dana Tottenham Emory University
  • Philip Wainwright Emory University
  • Dana Wyner Emory University
Keywords: Study abroad, Social learning theory, Controlled studies, Education abroad


The authors proposed a framework based on Rotter’s Social Learning Theory (SLT) that is appropriate for the evaluation of students’ experiences in college study abroad programs (McLeod & Wainwright, 2009).   In the present paper two concepts originating in SLT, locus of control and self- esteem, were used to gauge the impact of study abroad courses on undergraduates. It was predicted and found that when compared to a peer comparison group, study abroad participants became more internally controlled; however there was no change in self-esteem.  It was important to note that the study abroad students maintained the positive change in locus of control six months after the end of the program.  Rotter’s SLT appears to be a viable perspective for examining significant aspects of the study abroad experience.


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How to Cite
McLeod, M., Carter, V., Nowicki, S., Tottenham, D., Wainwright, P., & Wyner, D. (2015). Evaluating the Study Abroad Experience using the framework of Rotter’s Social Learning Theory. Frontiers: The Interdisciplinary Journal of Study Abroad, 26(1), 30-38. https://doi.org/10.36366/frontiers.v26i1.353
Research Articles