Journal Article Japanese EFL University Students and the Study Abroad Experience: Examining L2 Development and Program Satisfaction after Three Weeks in North America

Cutrone, Pino  ,  Datzman, Brien Robert

10 ( 2 )  , pp.24 - 47 , 2015-12-16 , English Language Education Publishing
This study is designed to shed light on the study abroad experiences of Japanese EFL university students with two goals in minds: to measure the effects of short-term study abroad on L2 proficiency in this context, and to provide EFL/ESL professionals with information that can help them develop practices to improve their study abroad programs. 98 university student participants were divided into five groups consisting of four experimental groups who studied abroad and one control group who stayed at home. Each group was given L2 proficiency tests at two points in time: prior to four of the groups embarking on three-week study abroad programs, and after the four groups returned from their time abroad. In addition, post-study abroad questionnaires and interviews were administered to assess students’ attitudes and activities during the treatment period. The findings demonstrate that short-term study abroad did not have a great impact on students’ TOEFL PBT scores and also provide detailed information to help study abroad professionals around the world better understand the wants and needs of Japanese EFL university students. The authors discuss the implications of these findings and offer some suggestions for study abroad professionals and researchers to consider moving forward.

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