umu.sePublications
Change search
CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link
Cite
Citation style
  • apa
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf
Studying abroad: exploring mobility, expectations and experiences among mobile students
Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Geography.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-7352-9971
2019 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

This thesis deals with the experiences and outcomes of temporarily studying abroad, via follow-up studies, aiming to explore international student mobility with a focus on the individual’s perspective. The specific research questions, dealing with the individual students’ expectations and experiences, are addressed in three papers. The fourth paper is a framing of these studies, using results from a global study.

The first research question connects to the attractiveness of international study experiences: Q1. What are the individual’s expectations for studying abroad, among inbound and outbound students, and what are the students’ reported experiences compared with these expectations? The second research question connects to the mobility culture of youth: Q2. Does students’ reported life satisfaction change in any way after studying abroad?

A main finding for outbound students was an appreciation of courses offered at the destination higher education institution that were not available at Umeå University. The students also had a desire to change their environment and have new experiences. Conversely, the desire to work abroad in the future was lower after returning home. A major finding for inbound students was that they assigned higher value to personal development than academic development. The experience made the students positive in regard to working abroad. Inbound students reported significantly higher satisfaction at follow-up six months later for the domains somatic health and activities of daily living. For both in- and outbound students, experiencing a new culture was more important than pure academic experiences.When the experience was compared with the expectation, in most cases the outcomes were positively related for both in- and outbound students. The motives for international study were primarily related to personal achievements, indicating a fulfilment of one’s potential and curiosity about a sojourn abroad.

Finally, the results from the Umeå studies were compared with a global survey. The Umeå studies shows that the respondents viewed studying abroad as an important experience and as a merit later in life. The global survey results indicate that the transition from education to the world of work is of increasing importance to students, and that it matters more for non-European students. The global study showed that employability, teaching ability, expert lectures, and course organization are important to international students.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Umeå: Geografiska institutionen, Umeå universitet , 2019. , p. 70
Series
GERUM, ISSN 1402-5205 ; 2019:2
Keywords [en]
student mobility, inbound, outbound, exchange students, Sweden
National Category
Human Geography
Research subject
Social and Economic Geography
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-159036ISBN: 978-91-7855-040-1 (print)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:umu-159036DiVA, id: diva2:1316295
Public defence
2019-06-14, S213H, Samhällsvetarhuset, Umeå, 10:15 (Swedish)
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2019-05-24 Created: 2019-05-17 Last updated: 2019-05-27Bibliographically approved
List of papers
1. Great expectations of studying abroad: exchange students from Umeå University, Sweden
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Great expectations of studying abroad: exchange students from Umeå University, Sweden
2019 (English)In: Exploring the opportunities and challenges of international students / [ed] Michael Allison, New York: Nova Science Publishers, Inc., 2019, p. 99-124Chapter in book (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

The aim of this study is to investigate students' expectations and experiences when studying abroad. A group of outbound exchange students at Umeå University, Sweden, were surveyed before and after the experience of studying in a foreign country. The study is based on a panel of 57 students, who answered one questionnaire prior to leaving for studies abroad and another after six months when most had returned to Sweden. Overall, the students were satisfied with their stay abroad. While the findings are partly in line with previous studies – the students expected to develop their language skills, learn more about another culture, develop as a person, and use the experience as a merit in their future career – this study also showed that in some aspects their perception of studying abroad changed. Perceptions that changed between the questionnaires concerned courses not being offered at Umeå University, more courses being available abroad than at home, and change of environment; the students appreciated this change more than they had expected. Moreover, the willingness to work abroad after finishing the studies was assessed lower upon the return home after the time abroad. Swedish outbound exchange students can be characterized as participants in horizontal mobility, as they expect a foreign higher education institution (HEI) to be of similar quality as their home university, thus emphasizing personal development more than academic achievement.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
New York: Nova Science Publishers, Inc., 2019
Series
Education in a Competitive and Globalizing World
Keywords
outbound students, student mobility, experiences and expectations, follow-up, Sweden
National Category
Human Geography
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-158999 (URN)9781536162424 (ISBN)9781536162417 (ISBN)
Note

Originally included in thesis in manuscript form.

Available from: 2019-05-16 Created: 2019-05-16 Last updated: 2019-11-27Bibliographically approved
2. Expectations and experiences of inbound students: perspectives from Sweden
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Expectations and experiences of inbound students: perspectives from Sweden
2015 (English)In: Journal of International Students, ISSN 2162-3104, Vol. 5, no 2, p. 161-174Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

This paper explores expectations and outcomes for inbound students at Umea University, Sweden, comparing their expectations with what they actually experienced. Based on an initial sample of 296 students, 116 answered surveys before and after experiencing of studying abroad. The same individuals have been followed. Most of the respondents' expectations were fulfilled. Hence, the comprehension of what to expect when it comes to 'personal' experiences was shown to be in line with the respondents' expectations. However, the 'academic' experiences seemed to be more difficult to grasp in advance. Some respondents also changed their opinions regarding some of their expectations. The study has followed the same individuals over time and adds new knowledge to the field of student mobility.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Monroe: Arkansas State University, 2015
Keywords
Inbound Students, Student Mobility, Experiences and Expectations, Sweden
National Category
Educational Sciences
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-102730 (URN)000436734000005 ()2-s2.0-84964046899 (Scopus ID)
Available from: 2015-05-04 Created: 2015-05-04 Last updated: 2019-05-17Bibliographically approved
3. Life satisfaction among inbound university students in northern Sweden
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Life satisfaction among inbound university students in northern Sweden
2019 (English)In: Fennia, E-ISSN 1798-5617, Vol. 197, no 1, p. 94-107Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Will life satisfaction among international students change after having an experience of studying abroad? Some previous studies indicate inequalities and issues of social mobility embedded in international student mobility. International student mobility implies physical movement and new experiences gained while studying abroad. The ubiquity of international students and their generally successful adaptation makes it necessary to understand how they manage to turn a seemingly difficult situation into satisfying adaptation. One area of such concern that this study sought to explore was the students’ level of satisfaction with life. This study investigated the self-reported life satisfaction of inbound university students upon arrival to a university in northern Sweden and at follow-up six months later. After the study period abroad, the students’ levels of perceived satisfaction with their somatic health and activities of daily living had significantly increased. Higher levels, while non-significant, were found for the domains life as a whole, study situation and economy. These findings may indicate that studying abroad could have an impact on students’ reported life satisfaction, which highlights the value of a period of studying abroad. However, when exploring life satisfaction outcomes among internationally mobile students, it seems pertinent to study student mobility within a context. This study mostly targets international student mobility in a Western/European contex

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Geographical Society of Finland, 2019
Keywords
Student mobility, life satisfaction, inbound students, Studentmobilitet, livstillfredsställelse, inresande studenter
National Category
Human Geography
Research subject
Social and Economic Geography
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-158277 (URN)10.11143/fennia.70337 (DOI)000466176600007 ()
Available from: 2019-04-18 Created: 2019-04-18 Last updated: 2019-06-10Bibliographically approved
4. International student expectations: career opportunities and employability
Open this publication in new window or tab >>International student expectations: career opportunities and employability
2016 (English)In: Journal of International Students, ISSN 2162-3104, Vol. 6, no 2, p. 614-631Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Are mobile students expecting an international experience to have an impact on their career? This was one of the questions in a global survey, with over 150,000 respondents. The survey results showed that the transition from education to the world of work is of increasing importance for students. How to find a job upon graduation is apparently a big concern for current-day students, which dictates their international educational choices to a large extent. Moreover, are there differences between Europe and the rest of the world when it comes to student’s expectations of employability? This study found that opportunities for work upon graduation and earning money when studying matter more for non-European students.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Journal of International Students, 2016
Keywords
International Student Barometer, StudentPulse, Employability, Studying Abroad, Career Opportunities, Cultural Competence, International Students, Student Expectations
National Category
Human Geography Pedagogy International Migration and Ethnic Relations
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-118763 (URN)000405899600014 ()881251 (Local ID)881251 (Archive number)881251 (OAI)
Available from: 2016-04-04 Created: 2016-04-04 Last updated: 2019-05-17Bibliographically approved

Open Access in DiVA

fulltext(1943 kB)161 downloads
File information
File name FULLTEXT03.pdfFile size 1943 kBChecksum SHA-512
28056d77bf743c292e4bddcf517092a339366b510d2f7b47f9ad1d4230f58150a5012942bd56bed19507d053090b73e84780268c0691fa4b0a575762389944fb
Type fulltextMimetype application/pdf
spikblad(138 kB)16 downloads
File information
File name FULLTEXT02.pdfFile size 138 kBChecksum SHA-512
f3e82636376e0ea38b2256676b6bc94343d44f5b713c74fac8a63165268d21888844a6fb6da6f40bcb15e681943f54f2fb8f773827e47e7a8e910efd891e501e
Type spikbladMimetype application/pdf

Authority records BETA

Nilsson, Per A.

Search in DiVA

By author/editor
Nilsson, Per A.
By organisation
Department of Geography
Human Geography

Search outside of DiVA

GoogleGoogle Scholar
Total: 177 downloads
The number of downloads is the sum of all downloads of full texts. It may include eg previous versions that are now no longer available

isbn
urn-nbn

Altmetric score

isbn
urn-nbn
Total: 919 hits
CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link
Cite
Citation style
  • apa
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf