Student Outcomes Associated with Short-term and Semester Study Abroad Programs

Jeffrey Scott Coker, Evan Heiser, Laura Taylor
2018 Frontiers  
This five-year study of graduating seniors at Elon University (n=1,858) compared student outcomes measured by the National Survey of Student Engagement across five study abroad groups: no study abroad, semester, short-term (3-week), two short-terms, and semester plus short-term. Both short-term and semester programs were positively associated with how students rate their overall educational experience and whether they would attend the same institution again. However, students who participated
more » ... who participated in semester programs reported better outcomes in numerous categories: contributing to class discussion, including diverse perspectives in discussions and assignments, synthesis of ideas, less rote memorization of course material, empathy,acquiring a broad general education,critical thinking,and working effectively with others. There was less compelling evidence of better outcomes from a second short-term program or one taken in addition to a semester program. Overall, short-term programs clearly have value, but semester programs are associated with significantly better outcomes overall.
doi:10.36366/frontiers.v30i2.414 fatcat:7z65c6uuwrg7bkj4gsn7s26pri