CSM artice on study abroad programs

<p>Christian Science Monitor: "Brief forays offer lasting lessons to US students"</p>

<p>"Short, tightly focused programs abroad allow US college students exposure to worlds they might otherwise never see."</p>

<p><a href="http://www.csmonitor.com/2005/0111/p11s01-legn.html%5B/url%5D"&gt;http://www.csmonitor.com/2005/0111/p11s01-legn.html&lt;/a&gt;&lt;/p>

<p>Very good article. It made me think about the value of shorter trips. I have always felt a whole year, or at least a semester was better since I think that is necessary if you really want to learn a language for life. The cultural aspects of shorter trips was revealing.</p>

<p>I wonder if there is a website where these shorter trips are catalogued. Or do you just have to look college by college?</p>

<p>These trips of course, are pricey ,especially if you are paying 40K for starters, and are one of the reasons we decided to go local state school, with national merit money (UT Austin) rather than the tradtionally higher ranked or smaller private schools.</p>

<p>Texdad, We've found that many of these shorter programs are run by individual schools specifically for their students. Some schools offer grants for these programs, a few include them in the price of tuition (students do have to pay airfare) for selected courses. </p>

<p>A good place to track down schools that offer these types of programs is the "International 50" - a consortiuum of schools dedicated to providing study abroad options. In particular, see St. Olaf, Beloit, Earlham, Goucher college - but most of the colleges on the list have something along these lines.</p>

<p><a href="http://www.beloit.edu/%7Ei50/%5B/url%5D"&gt;http://www.beloit.edu/~i50/&lt;/a&gt;&lt;/p>

<p>My daughter is very determined to go to a school that offers school sponsored short study abroad courses - in talking with students at many of these schools, she's found that students tend to do a short program as well as a long program (semester or year) and thus increase their experience abroad.</p>

<p>It seems like the short trips serve the function of getting students to places in the world that many would not consider spending a whole semester. While that will probably open many hearts and minds, it cannot replace the semester or year long experience for students who take the challenge of living in a culture very different from their own and learning a language not their own. Although I don't have any hard data, it does appear that more and more students going abroad are choosing sites which are not intellectually or culturally challenging and looking at the experience as a semester vacation from the home campus. Despite the obvious value of the short trips abroad, there is no way that the true cultural experience of living in a foreign country can be gained.</p>