Productivity and effectiveness of the study abroad programs

The ever increasing flow of foreign students into advance countries like US, UK, and Japan etc call for a thorough analysis of the productivity and effectiveness of the study abroad programs as well as identifying and solving the issues hindering the productivity and effectiveness of these programs. Goldoni (2015) identifies that foreign students are usually not ready for the new culture and language which is crucial to optimizing their learning opportunities. According to this research, the programs are not appropriately helping develop cultural awareness due to which students are unable to handle the challenging situations they face abroad. Therefore the programs need to incorporate such activities into the curriculum that not only help cultural immersion among students but also help them test their own identity (Gopal Sankaran, 2015; Goldoni, 2015).  Vatalaro, Szente, and Levin (2015) while testing transformative learning theories with preservice teachers studying abroad found that practicing these theories can help views of cultural differences, and a heightened self-awareness on completion of the program.

The literature on study abroad not only identifies problems hindering students learning and adjustments to the host cultures in relation to new cultural and linguistic settings of the host countries, but also shows the importance of how various strategies have proven to be helpful in tackling these issues. The research emphasizes on the incorporation of interventions enhancing cultural awareness as well as self-identity in order to optimize students’ learning experiences and taking the most out of the study abroad.