The purpose of this paper is to develop relevant questions for research by gaining an initial understanding of how the field of study abroad education is organizing itself within institutions of higher education. The context is the growing numbers of students, demands, and expectations made on study abroad programs.
The survey was carried out by analyzing publicly available data and information, as it would be available to students, of all the accredited institutions of higher education within the six states of New England.
The findings confirm that albeit for Community Colleges, the vast majority of institutions offer study abroad programs. However, this survey also reveals the important role providers are playing in offering generic programs to students from multiple institutions.
The findings call for further investigation into institutional strategies concerning the choice of programs, particularly those involving providers who potentially imply losing tuition and control over educational outcomes. Limitations are discussed suggesting the need to widen the geographical area studied as well as analyzing in more detail the Community College offerings that are not easily accessible with the methodology that has been used in this paper. The findings also raise some questions and future avenues of research particularly in the area of examining the integration of generic study abroad programs within particular institutional and programmatic objectives. It is also suggested that further research is needed to better evaluate if/how study abroad programs are designed to capitalize on the employability advantage they offer to participating students when they enter the job market.
The number of US students participating in study abroad programs is expected to continue to grow and it seems these programs will become part of mainstream offerings in most institutions. Similar trends are observed in Europe between member states. Besides giving a broad overview of the current offerings, this pilot study principally reveals several important avenues for future research that should help institutions in their choices of programs and the orientation they give to study abroad.
Niser, J.C. (2010), "Study abroad education in New England higher education: a pilot survey", International Journal of Educational Management, Vol. 24 No. 1, pp. 48-55. https://doi.org/10.1108/09513541011013042Download as .RIS
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