Title

Differing goals for study abroad at two-year and four-year institutions : the case of public colleges and universities in Minnesota

Publication Date

1-1-2001

Degree Name

MA in International and Intercultural Management

First Advisor

Sandra Basgall

Abstract

In 1997, Minnesota State Colleges and Universities (MnSCU) System was created by merging the public technical colleges, community colleges, and four-year universities within the state. Since then, MnSCU has suffered growing pains as three distinctively different types of institutions attempt to work as one system. Included in these growing pains was a divide between the two-year and four-year institutions' approaches to study abroad programs. This led to my primary research question: How are the Goals of MnSCU's Two-year Institutions' Study Abroad Programs Different than Those of Four-year Institutions'? By doing a content analysis of the institutional mission statements and the international education mission statements, as well as surveying the various MnSCU institutions, the research establishes the differences and similarities among the various study abroad programs in the two- and four-year institutions within the MnSCU system. The research found that the two-year institutions' programs tend to be slightly more focused on job preparation than those of the four-year institutions. The findings also indicate that the face of study abroad may be changing as the type of institution involved with study abroad continues to expand. Additional questions for further research that became apparent were the need to take a closer look at the types of programs offered by various institutions, including those of community colleges and technical colleges, and the specific difference that may exist in the programs offered by them.

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