Study Abroad Research in European Perspective (SAREP)
In the context of increasing international education and study abroad at both European and international level, the COST Action CA15130 ‘Study Abroad Research in European Perspective’ (SAREP) aims to explore the nature, experiences, benefits and limitations of study and residence abroad in the case of second language learners who participate in growing numbers in such international exchange programmes. SAREP adopts a multi-thematic prism, drawing on research relating to the learner's linguistic, intercultural, social, personal, academic and professional development, reflecting the widespread belief in the potential benefits that can accrue to the learner in a study abroad context. With a view to exploring the specificity of those benefits from a trans-disciplinary perspective, the project includes researchers who bring cross- and inter-disciplinary insights, such as from the fields of linguistics, psychology, language education, language testing, interculturality, sociology, and statistics. The project includes researchers working on different European languages among study abroad learners in different target language cultures, thereby offering insights at pan-European level into the potential of study abroad to enhance multilingual development and intercultural awareness among citizens of contemporary Europe. SAREP offers different insights into the complexity of study abroad as a context of second language learning through both quantitative and qualitative analysis, drawing on wide-ranging methodological approaches and tools of investigation. At a time when increased importance is attached to foreign language learning at European level, the project illuminates wide-ranging factors which may impact on study abroad as a context which can facilitate such an aim to varying degrees. With the support of the Swiss State Secretariat for Education, Research and Innovation (SERI), USI has joined the SAREP Management Committee. Contributions will be especially provided to the Working Group 3: ‘Integration and social networks in residence abroad’ and ‘Working Group 5: Interculturality and diversities in stays abroad’.