Title

Engaging more undergraduates from underrepresented fields in study abroad : U.K. universities may be an answer

Publication Date

1-1-2006

Degree Name

MA in International and Intercultural Management

First Advisor

Linda Gobbo

Abstract

The objective is to identify ways to increase participation in education abroad for U.S. undergraduate students majoring in underrepresented fields. The results of this study confirm that characteristics exist in U.K. universities to accommodate many of the course requirements of preprofessional majors. At the same time, course matching is a largely manual process on a case by case basis and requires that each college build experience in what works for them. The initial research entailed surveys of students and advisers on primary factors in the decision to study abroad and on which program. Those findings became the basis for determining relevant host institution characteristics. These characteristics were then examined for a sample of U.K. universities using their websites and through interviews with their international office staff. The findings show that students and sending institutions share concerns about course equivalency in terms of choice, quality, and creditworthiness. They further show that because both sending and host universities share an understanding of the importance of access to comparable course content, the potential is good that agreements can be reached on programs of study in the underrepresented fields that will attract more study abroad students.

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