Date of Award


Document Type

Campus Access Thesis


Educational Studies



First Advisor

Christian Anderson


This study explores the nature of the transformative experience that can occur for students as a result of participating in a short-term study abroad program. Eighteen University of South Carolina students who participated in a wide variety of topical, short-term study abroad programs during the summer of 2010 were interviewed following their return to campus.

Students who participated in this study were affected by the culture of the country that they traveled to on a wide variety of levels, but many factors contributed to level in which the student was affected. Language did not have as much of an impact on students as culture, but some participants had an increased interest in learning the language of the country that they traveled to.

Three main themes that emerged from the data regarding students future international activity participation: students discussed their desires for international careers, their interest in future study abroad program participation, and their scope of interests in the cultures that they want to learn about widened. This study provided insight into 18 students' short-term study abroad experience and describes the perceived level of impact that the host culture.


© 2011, Samantha Holly Hartlen