Learning outcomes of study-abroad programs: A meta-analysis. Varela, O Academy of Management Learning & Education Academy of Management Learning & Education, 2016. OCLC: 6906107597
abstract   bibtex   
The increasing number of participants in study-abroad programs coupled with conflicting evidence about learning from these experiences motivated this study. I meta-analyzed 72 study-abroad investigations (N = 7,820) reporting on three learning areas: cognitive or language acquisition, affective or multicultural attitudes, and behavioral or intercultural adaptation. Meta-analytic results ranged from large (cognitive δ = 0.975) to mid (attitude, δ = 0.457; behavioral, δ = 0.649) effect sizes with none of their 95 % confidence intervals including zero values. To contrast learning abroad to efforts at home, I conducted a second meta-analysis (19 studies, N = 3,740) on similar affective and behavioral outcomes during at-home instruction. I also benchmarked against an existing meta-analysis on language acquisition (Plonsky, 2011). I found that outcomes from studying abroad surpass what Plonsky reports for cognitive learning at home (δ = 0.55) and what the meta-analysis for at-home instruction shows for affective (δ = 0.253) and behavioral (δ = 0.532) learning. I also found that two features of study-abroad programs - type of immersion and program content - moderate the effectiveness of studying abroad. In the discussion section, I interpret findings in light of the current stream of research and provide recommendations for future study-abroad experiences.
@article{varela_learning_2016,
	title = {Learning outcomes of study-abroad programs: {A} meta-analysis},
	issn = {1537-260X},
	shorttitle = {Learning outcomes of study-abroad programs},
	abstract = {The increasing number of participants in study-abroad programs coupled with conflicting evidence about learning from these experiences motivated this study. I meta-analyzed 72 study-abroad investigations (N = 7,820) reporting on three learning areas: cognitive or language acquisition, affective or multicultural attitudes, and behavioral or intercultural adaptation. Meta-analytic results ranged from large (cognitive δ = 0.975) to mid (attitude, δ = 0.457; behavioral, δ = 0.649) effect sizes with none of their 95 \% confidence intervals including zero values. To contrast learning abroad to efforts at home, I conducted a second meta-analysis (19 studies, N = 3,740) on similar affective and behavioral outcomes during at-home instruction. I also benchmarked against an existing meta-analysis on language acquisition (Plonsky, 2011). I found that outcomes from studying abroad surpass what Plonsky reports for cognitive learning at home (δ = 0.55) and what the meta-analysis for at-home instruction shows for affective (δ = 0.253) and behavioral (δ = 0.532) learning. I also found that two features of study-abroad programs - type of immersion and program content - moderate the effectiveness of studying abroad. In the discussion section, I interpret findings in light of the current stream of research and provide recommendations for future study-abroad experiences.},
	language = {English},
	journal = {Academy of Management Learning \& Education Academy of Management Learning \& Education},
	author = {Varela, O},
	year = {2016},
	note = {OCLC: 6906107597},
	keywords = {Study Abroad},
}

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