We are glad to be able to introduce the newest update to Study Abroad Research Online: A Searchable Collection of Bibliographies and Abstracts of the Study Abroad literature.
This project began with planning meetings in the mid 1990’s with Henry Weaver, the former Associate Director of the University of California Systemwide Education Abroad Programs Office (UC EAP) and former Regional Directors Rodney Sangster and Peter Wollitzer.
In 1989, Henry “Hank” Weaver published “Research on U.S. Students Abroad”, a collection of bibliographies and abstracts of the study abroad literature. He did this with the support of colleagues, Barbara B. Burn, Jerry S. Carlson, Jurgen C. Kempff, Judith N. Martin, and John Useem. This effort was supported by UC EAP and included a special collection of all the original documents at the UC EAP offices. Hank, Rod, Peter and I met in Santa Barbara over the course of a year or two and decided that to keep the content alive, we would make the content available on the web. Center for Global Education staff (then at USC Rossier School of Education) took the published document, converted printed text to a database and made it available to be accessed online. Following support from Professor Phillip G. Altbach at Boston College, we were able to also integrate content from his work with Jing Wang: “Foreign Students and International Study, 1984 – 1988: Bibliography and Analysis”.
We have had support to provide updates to the original documents since that time. Maureen Chao provided a 1989 – 2000 update to the bibliographies and abstracts. David Comp, Ph.D. provided an enhancement to the content through 2000, as well as a 2000 – 2003 update to the content as well.
Creating the newest update, which includes additions to the 2003 and before content as well as a new collection of bibliographies and abstracts from 2004 to 2011, collaboration took place. David Comp, Ph.D. provided us with a large collection of bibliographies and abstracts as well as notes and other information on resources that could be relevant. The Center for Global Education (CGE), which is now at the UCLA Graduate School of Education and Information Studies has a strategic alliance with the UCLA Center for International and Development Education (CIDE). Over the course of the 2010/11 academic year, with the leadership of UCLA Professor and CIDE Director Val Rust, Senior Editing support from Doctoral Student, Albert Biscarra, and graduate students, Emily Le, Jee Young Lee, Jing Xu, Katie Calvert, Michelle Gaston, Alexandra “Ola” Siedzik,, Shanyun He, and Stephanie Kim, associated with CIDE and CGE, the documents provided by David Comp, Ph.D. were reviewed, edited, and integrated into the database of bibliographies and abstracts already compiled by CGE, ensuring that duplicates were edited out. Programming Support was provided by James Vales, Web Programmer, CGE
Some of Albert Biscarra’s time supporting this effort was supported by two mini-grants from NAFSA: Association of International Educators Region XII (California, Nevada, and Hawaii). Programming, graphics, and other support was provided through sponsors of the Center for Global Education.
Most of the time provided by UCLA faculty, staff, and graduate students was as a voluntary service to support this effort to support research taking place in the study abroad field.
We have also included a special link focused on an area of research that is growing and particularly important to the future of the field: the impact of study abroad on student retention and success. One common concern from students, parents, faculty, and staff on campuses is that study abroad will slow the time to graduation. Recent research is showing that the opposite is true.
We have started a new resource to help collect research from colleges and universities that have identified this impact as well as those who are implementing special programs to use study abroad as an intentional tool to support retention and success on their campus.
While continuing to support the importance of study abroad for student international learning, recent studies which have highlighted study abroad as a high-impact/highly engaging activity and as one that can have a significant impact on retention and success may provide support for having study abroad take a more central role on campus for a central issue on all colleges and universities.
We have also included a list of universities that are offering programs in International and Comparative Education and International Relations/Communication which are programs that can serve as an educational bridge for those interested in entering the field and enhancing their learning and professional development.
We thank all those who have provided assistance in the collection of the original documents, updates over time, and the most recent updates of the bibliographies, as well as to the collection of research and practice in support of study abroad and retention and success.
Please use the Contact us link to provide additional bibliographies and abstracts as well as information about retention and success to add to our content.
We look forward to hearing from you and hope that this resource helps you in your research and work.
Gary Rhodes, Ph.D, Director
Center for Global Education
UCLA Graduate School of Education and Information Studies