Publication Date

Spring 2012

Degree Name

MA in International Education

First Advisor

Richard Rodman

Abstract

The proposed international education program design offers an innovative way for American high school students to participate in a community life and community service in the Chinese province of Guizhou. The proposed design entitled, Visions Service Adventures: China will not only provide a new location and expansion for this third party provider company, but will also give participants the experience of staying with a local family for a portion of the program. The homestay experience will allow Visions participants the chance to interact and experience Chinese culture and language. Susan M. Knight (2008) found in her study the effects a homestay have on students abroad positively enhanced the overall participant experience.

This comprehensive program design will contain a number of essential components needed to provide a well-rounded experience for the Visions participants. Arrival preparation in country (including the screening of potential homestay families) and in-program orientation (health and safety, Chinese language and culture, community service project) will be a continuous effort of the hired guides and program director. Homestay orientation (student/family homestay preparation), as well as post-program assessment and closing activities will be a continued process through out the duration of the program. Many studies of successes of abroad programs directly relate to the ability of a student integrating into local culture. The homestay is a foundational distinction that will give Visions participants a unique advantage, not only for their age, but also as Americans living and learning in China. This homestay design will provide a new platform for short-term experiential education programs to use towards transforming and improving the already existing designs present in the field.

Disciplines

International and Comparative Education

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