Date of Award


Degree Type



Moore School of Business

Director of Thesis

Dr. Nina Moreno

First Reader

Dr. Lara Ducate

Second Reader

Dr. Lara Ducate


This study seeks to analyze the effects of motivation, awareness, and the immersion process through study abroad on foreign language production. Three participants were analyzed, two of which studied abroad and one who did not (my control case). Two of the three participants lacked the variable of awareness, measured as perception and reflection on language learning development, while only one participant (Participant M) who studied abroad in both Costa Rica and Spain, was made aware of her own learning process via a language learner’s journal and monthly recorded conversations. By studying abroad in two Spanish-speaking countries, Participant M selfreported the effects of cross-cultural language learning. The results of the study also showed a greater increase in Spanish fluency as measured by improvements in grammar and speed of response by the two participants who studied abroad compared to the participant who did not go abroad. Although all three participants scored high in a motivation scale, and therefore, it would be predicted that all three would score high in the willingness to communicate (WTC) index, only the two participants who studied abroad exhibited more confidence in their Spanish-speaking abilities and were more likely to engage in conversation than the participant in the classroom setting. The results seem to indicate students who study abroad are more likely to maintain and improve their Spanish than students who are taught solely in a classroom setting.

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© 2017, Rachel Lunsford