Understanding the impact of immersive study abroad experiences on college of agricultural and environmental sciences student soft skill development
Deloach, Sarah Gaines
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The purpose of this study was to determine the significance of immersive study abroad experiences in relation to building soft skills in College of Agriculture undergraduate students. This study specifically examined (1) motivation factors for completing an immersive study abroad experience, (2) the self-perceived competency of students at using soft skills prior to, during their experience abroad, and once they returned home, and (3) what about this experience makes it so unique. Qualitative research methods were used to conduct two focus groups, one focus group with students who participated in individual travel and the other with students who engaged in group travel. Significant Life Experience Research was used to examine the emotional and revealing side of human experiences while abroad and the development of soft skills through this experience. Results conduced that participants developed different soft skill depending on whether they traveled individually or with others.
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