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Expectations vs. reality when studying abroad : guiding students through their intercultural journey

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Abstract
Although studying in a different country has been traditionally perceived as an ideal means for intercultural learning, there is a lack of guarantee that the experience alone will result in significant progress (Jackson, 2020; Moreno & Goethals, 2021). Recent research acknowledges the complexity of sojourners ‘individual trajectories’ (Coleman, 2013), making it a priority to examine personal meaningful learning experiences (Humphreys & Baker, 2021) to capture variability in the learning process abroad. This pedagogical paper, directed to an audience of practitioners involved in study abroad preparation, examines the influence of guided reflection efforts from a European Higher Educational institution on language learners' perceived intercultural development abroad. 48 Flemish students of Applied Linguistics followed a pedagogical intervention designed at their home institution to foster their intercultural and linguistic learning during their Erasmus stay in Spain. In-depth semi-structured interviews were carried out before and after their stay to gather information about learners’ social interactions abroad and to foster intercultural reflections in light of these exchanges. Students’ narratives allow us to make a distinctive contribution by reflecting on what can we as trainers learn from their reflections about the tasks where they had to establish intercultural encounters, as well as their perceived learning outcomes from the guidance abroad. Regarding curriculum development, results allow us to redirect our pedagogical efforts and revisit our assumptions regarding learners’ intercultural and linguistic development abroad.
Keywords
studying abroad, guidance abroad, individual trajectories, intercultural learning, narratives, intercultural encounters, curriculum development

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Please use this url to cite or link to this publication:

MLA
Moreno Bruna, Ana Maria. “Expectations vs. Reality When Studying Abroad : Guiding Students through Their Intercultural Journey.” IntRef Conference, Abstracts, 2021.
APA
Moreno Bruna, A. M. (2021). Expectations vs. reality when studying abroad : guiding students through their intercultural journey. In IntRef Conference, Abstracts. Online.
Chicago author-date
Moreno Bruna, Ana Maria. 2021. “Expectations vs. Reality When Studying Abroad : Guiding Students through Their Intercultural Journey.” In IntRef Conference, Abstracts.
Chicago author-date (all authors)
Moreno Bruna, Ana Maria. 2021. “Expectations vs. Reality When Studying Abroad : Guiding Students through Their Intercultural Journey.” In IntRef Conference, Abstracts.
Vancouver
1.
Moreno Bruna AM. Expectations vs. reality when studying abroad : guiding students through their intercultural journey. In: IntRef Conference, Abstracts. 2021.
IEEE
[1]
A. M. Moreno Bruna, “Expectations vs. reality when studying abroad : guiding students through their intercultural journey,” in IntRef Conference, Abstracts, Online, 2021.
@inproceedings{8715304,
  abstract     = {{Although studying in a different country has been traditionally perceived as an ideal means for intercultural learning, there is a lack of guarantee that the experience alone will result in significant progress (Jackson, 2020; Moreno & Goethals, 2021). Recent research acknowledges the complexity of sojourners ‘individual trajectories’ (Coleman, 2013), making it a priority to examine personal meaningful learning experiences (Humphreys & Baker, 2021) to capture variability in the learning process abroad.
This pedagogical paper, directed to an audience of practitioners involved in study abroad preparation, examines the influence of guided reflection efforts from a European Higher Educational institution on language learners' perceived intercultural development abroad. 48 Flemish students of Applied Linguistics followed a pedagogical intervention designed at their home institution to foster their intercultural and linguistic learning during their Erasmus stay in Spain. In-depth semi-structured interviews were carried out before and after their stay to gather information about learners’ social interactions abroad and to foster intercultural reflections in light of these exchanges. 
Students’ narratives allow us to make a distinctive contribution by reflecting on what can we as trainers learn from their reflections about the tasks where they had to establish intercultural encounters, as well as their perceived learning outcomes from the guidance abroad. Regarding curriculum development, results allow us to redirect our pedagogical efforts and revisit our assumptions regarding learners’ intercultural and linguistic development abroad.}},
  author       = {{Moreno Bruna, Ana Maria}},
  booktitle    = {{IntRef Conference, Abstracts}},
  keywords     = {{studying abroad,guidance abroad,individual trajectories,intercultural learning,narratives,intercultural encounters,curriculum development}},
  language     = {{eng}},
  location     = {{Online}},
  title        = {{Expectations vs. reality when studying abroad : guiding students through their intercultural journey}},
  url          = {{https://intref.webspace.durham.ac.uk/wp-content/uploads/sites/53/2021/06/IntRef-Conference-Programme_7July21_FINAL.pdf}},
  year         = {{2021}},
}