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Abstract

Participation in short-term study abroad programs has dramatically increased in recent years. Little empirical research exists on learning outcomes associated with short-duration study tours, however. This study examines the impact of a study tour on the perceptions of American college students following a 2-week tour of Mexico. Based on measures of pre- and posttrip perceptions of the host country, students were found to have significantly changed following a brief overseas stay. Pretrip perceptions were also compared with the perceptions of a control group of students who did not participate in study abroad to determine the influence self selection bias might have on initial perceptions. Analyses revealed significant differences in the perceptions of the two groups, but no significant difference between the pretrip and control groups' perceptions of the host country.