Understanding How Program Factors Influence Intercultural Learning in Study Abroad: The Benefits of Mixed-Method Analysis
Keywords:Intercultural learning, Study abroad, Mixed-method Analysis, IDI, Short-term study abroad
With the proliferation of short term study abroad programs at institutions of higher education, there is a need for more rigorous assessment of how these pr ograms contribute to intercultural learning. This article presents a multi institutional comparative study of students’ intercultural learning in six short term study abroad programs in Canada and the U nited S tates , employing both quantitative and qualitat ive methods. The study combines pre and post IDI survey scores with a qualitative analysis of student writing to present evidence about the impact of specific program features on students’ intercultural learning, as well as an analysis of how the students themselves make sense of their experiences abroad. We argue that the extent of pre departure intercultural training has a positive relationship with intercultural learning outcomes. Additionally, we present evidence that service learning opportunities and intra group dynamics contribute to students’ intercultural competence. We conclude that mixed methods analysis provides the most effective way of identifying how different program factors contribute to intercultural growth, when that growth occurs in a pr ogram cycle, and how program leaders can provide effective intercultural interventions to best facilitate student learning abroad.
Anderson, P., Lawton, L., Rexeisen, R., & Hubbard, A. C. (2006). Short-term study abroad and intercultural sensitivity. International Journal of Intercultural Relations, 30, 457-469.
Benham Rennick, J. (2015). Learning that makes a difference: Pedagogy and practice for learning abroad. Teaching & Learning Inquiry, 3(2), 71-88.
Bennett, J. (2008). On becoming a global soul. In V. Savicki (Ed.), Developing intercultural competence and transformation: Theory, research, and application in international education (pp. 13-31). Sterling, VA: Stylus.
Bennett, M. (2013). Basic concepts of intercultural communication: Paradigms, principles, & practices. Boston, MA: Nicholas Brealey Publishing Company.
Brenner, A. (2016). Transformative learning through education abroad: A case study of a community college program. In R. Latner Raby & E. J. Valeau (Eds.), International education at community colleges: Themes, practices, and case studies (pp. 293-309). New York, NY: Palgrave MacMillan.
Chieffo, L., & Griffiths, L. (2004). Large-scale assessment of student attitudes after a short-term study abroad program. Frontiers: The Interdisciplinary Journal of Study Abroad, 10, 165-177.
Cohen, A. D., Paige, R. M., Shively, R. L., Emert, H. A., & Hoff, J. G. (2005). Maximizing study abroad through language and culture strategies: Research on students, study abroad program professionals, and language instructors. Minneapolis, MN: Center for Advanced Research on Language Acquisition, Office of International Programs, University of Minnesota. Retrieved from http://www.carla.umn.edu/maxsa/index.html
Cushner, K., & Chang, S.-C. (2015). Developing intercultural competence through overseas student teaching: Checking our assumptions. Intercultural Education, 26(3), 165-178.
Deardorff, D. K. (2006). Identification and assessment of intercultural competence as a student outcome of internationalization. Journal of Studies in International Education, 10, 241-66.
Deardorff, D. K. (2008). Intercultural competence: A definition, model, and implication for education abroad. In Victor Savicki (Ed.), Developing intercultural competence and transformation: Theory, research, and application in international education (pp. 32-52). Sterling, VA: Stylus.
Deardorff, D. K. (Ed.). (2009). The SAGE handbook of intercultural competence. Los Angeles, CA: SAGE Publications.
Deardorff, D. K. (2014). Some thoughts on assessing intercultural competence [Blog post]. Retrieved from https://illinois.edu/blog/view/915/113048
Deardorff, D. K. (2015). International education outcomes assessment: A changing paradigm. IIE Networker, 18-19. Retrieved from http://www.nxtbook.com/naylor/IIEB/IIEB0215
Deardorff, D. K., & Edwards, K. (2015). Framing and assessing students’ intercultural competence in service learning. In P. H. Clayton, R. G. Bringle, & J. A. Hatcher (Eds.), Research on service learning: Conceptual frameworks and assessment: Volume 2A: Students and faculty (pp. 157-186). Sterling, VA: Stylus.
DeLoach, S. B., Saliba, L., Smith, V., & Tiemann, T. (2003). Developing a global mindset through short-term study abroad: A group discussion approach. Journal of Teaching in International Business, 15, 37-59.
Dwyer, M. M. (2004). More is better: The impact of study abroad program duration. Frontiers: The Interdisciplinary Journal of Study Abroad, 10, 151-163.
Elmes, M. (2019). Working with(in) the shadow of experiential learning. Journal of Management Education, 43, 99-107.
Engle L., & Engle J. (2003). Study abroad levels: Toward a classification of program types. Frontiers: The Interdisciplinary Journal of Study Abroad, 9, 1-20.
Fischer, K. (2009, January 20). Short study-abroad trips can have lasting effect, research suggests. The Chronicle of Higher Education. Retrieved from http://chronicle.com/daily/2009/02/12191n.htm
Gascoigne, C. (2012). Toward an understanding of the relationship between climate and performance in postsecondary French: An application of the Classroom Climate Inventory. French Language Annals, 45, 193-201.
Gullekson, N. L., Tucker, M. L., Coombs, G., & Wright, S. B. (2011). Examining intercultural growth for business students in short-term study abroad programs: Too good to be true? Journal of Teaching in International Business, 22, 91-106.
Hammer, R. M. (2011). The intercultural development inventory (IDI): An approach for assessing and building intercultural competence. In M.A. Moodian (Ed.), Contemporary leadership and intercultural competence: Understanding and utilizing cultural diversity to build successful organizations. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.
Hoff, J. G. (2008). Growth and transformation outcomes in international education. In V. Savicki (Ed.), Developing intercultural competence and transformation: Theory, research, and application in international education (pp. 53-73). Sterling, VA: Stylus.
Hoffa, W. W., & Depaul, S. C. (Eds.). (2010). A history of U.S. study abroad 1965-the present [Special publication]. Frontiers: The Interdisciplinary Journal of Study Abroad.
Jackson, J. (2015). Becoming interculturally competent: Theory to practice in international education. International Journal of Intercultural Relations, 48, 91-107.
Kiely, R. (2005). A transformative learning model for service-learning: A longitudinal case study. Michigan Journal of Community Service Learning, 12, 5-22.
King, P. M., Perez, R. J., & Shim, W-J. (2013). How college students experience intercultural learning: Key features and approaches. Journal of Diversity in Higher Education, 6(2), 69-83.
Kolb, D. A. (1984). Experiential learning: Experience as the source of learning and development. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall.
Kurt, M. R., Olitsky, N. H., & Geis, P. (2013). Assessing global awareness over short-term study abroad sequence: A factor analysis. Frontiers: The Interdisciplinary Journal of Study Abroad, 23, 22-41.
Lee, A., Williams, R. D., Shaw, M. A., & Jie, Y. (2014). First-year students’ perspectives on intercultural learning. Teaching in Higher Education, 19(5), 543-554.
Lou, K. H., & Bosely, G. W. (2008). Dynamics of cultural contexts: Meta-level intervention in the study abroad experience. In Victor Savicki (Ed.), Developing intercultural competence and transformation: Theory, research, and application in international education (pp. 276-96). Sterling, VA: Stylus.
McTighe Musil, C. (2006). Assessing global learning: Matching good intentions with good practice. Washington, DC: Association of American Colleges and Universities.
Mitchell, L., & Paras, A. (2018). When difference creates dissonance: Understanding the ‘engine’ of intercultural learning in study abroad. Intercultural education, 29, 1-19.
Paige, R. M., & Vande Berg, M. (2012). Why students are and are not learning abroad: A review of recent research. In M. Vande Berg, R. M. Paige, & K. H. Lou (Eds.), Student learning abroad: What our students are learning, what they’re not, and what you can do about it (pp. 29-58). Sterling VA: Stylus.
Paras, A., & Mitchell, L. (2017). Assessing intercultural competence in experiential learning abroad: Lessons for educators. Experiential Learning in Teaching and Higher Education, 1(1), 45-64.
Perry, L., Stoner, L., & Tarrant, M. (2012). More than a vacation: Short-term study abroad as a critically reflective, transformative learning experience. Creative Education, 3(5), 679-683.
Pettit, J., Rathburn, M., Calvert, V., Lexier, R., Underwood, M., Gleeson, J., & Dean, Y. (2017). Building bridges from the decoding interview to teaching practice. New Directions for Teaching and Learning, 150, 75-85.
Pugh, G. L. (2014). The experiential learning cycle in undergraduate diversity and social justice education. Journal of Teaching in Social Work, 34, 302-315.
Rathburn, M., Malmgren, J., Brenner, A., Carignan, M., Hardy, J., & Paras, A. (forthcoming). In N. Namaste & A. Sturgill (Eds.), Mind the gap: Framing global learning in the university experience. Sterling, VA: Stylus.
Robinson, J. M. (2012). Learning abroad and the scholarship of teaching and learning. In M. Vande Berg, R. M. Paige, & K. H. Lou (Eds.), Student learning abroad: What our students are learning, what they’re not, and what you can do about it (pp. 239-257). Sterling, VA: Stylus.
Savicki, V. (Ed). (2015). Assessing study abroad: Theory, tools, and practice. Sterling, VA: Stylus.
Savicki, V. (Ed). (2008). Developing intercultural competence and transformation: Theory, research, and application in international education. Sterling, VA: Stylus.
Simpson, K. (2004). “Doing development”: The gap year, volunteer-tourists, and a popular practice of development. Journal of International Development, 16, 681-692.
Sturgill, A., & Motely, P. (2014). Methods of reflection about service learning: Guided vs. free, dialogic vs. expressive, and public vs. private. Teaching & Learning Inquiry: The ISSOTL Journal, 2(1), 81-93.
Tiessen, R. (2014). Career aspirations and experiential learning abroad: Perspectives from Canadian youth on short-term placements. In R. Tiessen & R. Huish (Eds.), Globetrotting or global citizenship: Perils and potential of international experiential learning (pp. 71-89). Toronto, Canada: University of Toronto Press.
Tiessen, R., Lough, B., & Cheung, S. (2018). Introduction: A theoretical and methodological case for examining agency and power relations in north-south volunteering research collaborations [Special issue]. Voluntaris: Journal of Volunteer Services, 7-22.
Twombly, S. B., Salisbury, M. H., Tumanut, S. D., & Klute, P. (2012). Study abroad in a new global century: Renewing the promise, refining the purpose. ASHE Higher Education Report, 38(4), Hoboken, NJ: Wiley.
Vande Berg, M., Paige, R. M., & Lou, K. H. (2012). Student learning abroad: Paradigms and assumptions. In M. Vande Berg, R. M. Paige, & K. H. Lou (Eds.), Student learning abroad: What our students are learning, what they’re not, and what you can do about it (pp. 3-28). Sterling, VA: Stylus.
Wang, J., Peyvandi, A., & Moghaddam, J. M. (2009). Impact of short study abroad programs on students’ diversity attitude. International Review of Business Research Papers, 5, 349-357.
Woods, A. L., Sipple, S. M., Otten, M. R. M., & Roos, M. E. (2017). Navigating uncharted waters: Study abroad predeparture activities and the 2-year-college student. Community College Journal of Research and Practice, 41, 867-880.