Study Abroad and L2 Learner Attitudes

Authored by: Kimberly L. Geeslin , Lauren B. Schmidt

The Routledge Handbook of Study Abroad Research and Practice

Print publication date:  June  2018
Online publication date:  June  2018

Print ISBN: 9781138192393
eBook ISBN: 9781315639970
Adobe ISBN:


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Across recent studies, one of the most puzzling findings related to Second Language Acquisition in the study abroad context is that in the very same learning context, some learners improve and others do not (Kinginger, 2008; Lafford, 2006; Llanes & Muñoz, 2009, 2013; Nagle, Morales-Front, Moorman & Sanz, 2016; Serrano, Llanes & Tragant, 2011). These differences may be linked to a host of individual differences, such as aptitude, motivation, and proficiency level at the start of the abroad experience (e.g., Dörnyei, 2005; Grey, Cox, Serafini & Sanz, 2015; Hernández, 2010; Lord, 2009; MacIntyre, Baker, Clement & Conrod, 2001), and to patterns of behavior, such as the degree to which learners choose to use the second language while abroad and the types and depth of their social interactions (Bardovi-Harlig & Bastos, 2011; Díaz-Campos, 2004; George, 2014; Isabelli-García, 2006). These findings are attested for abilities related to overall language proficiency and fluency (e.g., Carroll, 1967; Freed, 1995; Segalowitz & Freed, 2004); to knowledge of a particular structure in the second language grammar (e.g., Isabelli-García, 2004); and for variable features of the language that are optional but indicate membership in social groups defined by geography, age, gender, socioeconomic status, and the like (e.g., Isabelli-García, 2004).

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