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ERIC Number: EJ1023218
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2013
Pages: 21
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0031-3831
Nordic Experiences: Participants' Expectations and Experiences of Short-Term Study Abroad Programs
Rahikainen, Katariina; Hakkarainen, Kai
Scandinavian Journal of Educational Research, v57 n5 p467-487 2013
The purpose of this study was to investigate Finnish high school students' and teachers' perceptions of the effects of short-term Nordic study abroad programs in which they had participated. The data presented were based on a "mixed-methods strategy." The data set consisted of responses from 158 students and 92 teachers to a specifically developed Study Abroad Assessment (SAA) instrument. These data were analyzed quantitatively and, in part, also qualitatively. Additional qualitative data in the form of interviews with six participants were also analyzed. Four factors emerged from the analysis which represented dimensions of what a short-term study abroad (SA) program may offer to its participants. These dimensions were named "Personal growth," "Social connectedness," "Development of Nordic awareness," and "Impact on career or study opportunities." Composite variables were created on the basis of these factors. The analysis revealed some statistically significant differences between the groups (Period Scholars; Scholars to Sweden; Teachers) concerning the composite variables. The qualitative part of the study provided information on the benefits and challenges of short-term study abroad that were compatible with previous studies. There is evidence that even short-term study abroad programs in a Nordic context provide participants with some core skills needed later in life, and the benefits of SA were perceived to be greater by those who spent more time in the new environment.
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Publication Type: Reports - Research; Journal Articles
Education Level: High Schools; Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Finland; Sweden
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A