Student differences in reflexively journaling a liberal arts education : An international learning experience
Dr. Stuart Schrader, Dr Enrica Ardemagni.
Few studies have explicitly assessed the effectiveness of implementing experiential learning in an international context. This project addresses how overseas cultural enrichment experiences foster student understanding about core principles of a liberal arts education. We examine how students make sense of experiential learning experiences in different cultures and how they integrate and apply this new knowledge with the conceptual course material presented to them. Toward that end, we assess three different undergraduate overseas educational experiences to identify experience that is reflexively influenced by gender, nationality, race, ethnicity, class, and other cultural identity issues. Specifically, we explore how United States college students studying abroad in Spain, Mexico and England during the summer of 2002 reported in reflexive journals about their educational outcomes and how they experienced their interaction with cultural dynamics.
Students kept journals based on their ethnographic field notes in order consider: (1) how their own cultural identities influence the way they expected their overseas experience to unfold. (2) specific cultural practices, scripts, rituals, ceremonies, and belief systems and (3) how their cultural identities in concert with others during their trip lead to new forms of learning that they may not have commonly experienced in a traditional classroom.
In our thematic analysis of themes and sub themes we find: (1) a connection to our principles of undergraduate learning, (2) differences and similarities in student’s meta-recognition and application of putting theory into practice, and (3) student awareness of how cultural assumptions operate within different learning contexts.
Dr. Stuart Schrader (United States)
Indiana University-Purdue University, Indianapolis
Dr Enrica Ardemagni (United States)
Person as Subject