We investigated the effects of social interaction and out-of-class study time on foreign language proficiency and use among two hundred students from a Japanese university who studied abroad for one month. Participants’ use of English and English proficiency were measured before and after the programme. Interaction with people from other cultures and out-of-class study time while abroad were also reported. Based on social interaction and out-of-class study time, students were grouped into four clusters: an Unengaged cluster, with low levels of interaction and out-of-class study time; a Balanced cluster, with average levels of both interaction and study time; a Studious cluster, with high out-of-class study time but low interaction levels; and a Communicative cluster, with high interaction levels but low study time. Analyses of clusters’ main effects revealed that overall, the Studious group had higher English proficiency, and the Balanced and Communicative groups reported higher use of English than the Unengaged group. While English proficiency increased to the same degree in all four groups, the Balanced group gained more in English use compared to the Unengaged group after study abroad. The results suggest the importance of how students spend their time abroad in promoting foreign language use.
|Journal of Multilingual and Multicultural Development
|Accepted/In press - 2021
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- カルチュラル スタディーズ