Characteristics of faculty leaders in a study abroad experience

Material Information

Characteristics of faculty leaders in a study abroad experience
Strang, Heidi Cordova
Publication Date:
Physical Description:
xiii, 112 leaves : ; 28 cm

Thesis/Dissertation Information

Doctorate ( Doctor of Philosophy)
Degree Grantor:
University of Colorado Denver
Degree Divisions:
School of Education and Human Development, CU Denver
Degree Disciplines:
Educational Leadership and Innovation
Committee Chair:
Stevens, Ellen
Committee Co-Chair:
Marlow, Michael
Committee Members:
Stott, Annette
Robyn, Elisa


Subjects / Keywords:
Foreign study ( lcsh )
Universities and colleges -- Faculty ( lcsh )
College teachers ( lcsh )
Educational leadership ( lcsh )
College teachers ( fast )
Educational leadership ( fast )
Foreign study ( fast )
Universities and colleges -- Faculty ( fast )
bibliography ( marcgt )
theses ( marcgt )
non-fiction ( marcgt )


Includes bibliographical references (leaves 103-112).
General Note:
School of Education and Human Development
Statement of Responsibility:
by Heidi Cordova Strang.

Record Information

Source Institution:
|University of Colorado Denver
Holding Location:
|Auraria Library
Rights Management:
All applicable rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier:
71815462 ( OCLC )
LD1193.E3 2006d S72 ( lcc )

Full Text
Heidi Cordova Strang
B.A., University of Northern Colorado, 1988
M.A., University of Denver, 1996
A thesis submitted to the
University of Colorado at Denver
in partial fulfillment
of the degree of
Doctor of Philosophy
Educational Leadership and Innovation

This thesis for the Doctor of Philosophy
degree by
Heidi Cordova Strang
has been approved
Ellen Stevens
Michael Marlow
Annette Stott
Elisa Robyn
1 Date

Strang, Heidi Cordova (Ph.D. Educational Leadership and
Characteristics of Faculty Leaders in a Study Abroad
Thesis directed by Associate Professor Ellen Stevens
Many factors contribute to a successful study
abroad experience, not only for the students, but for
the faculty leaders as well. The literature surrounding
the faculty in a study abroad situation is, however,
limited. This research examined motivations of the
faculty leader and reported commonalities that group
leaders share. This was a two-phase study. Phase One
focused on a face-to-face interview with five group
leaders and Phase Two was conducted via an online survey
with 43 study abroad faculty leaders within the United
States of America.
The common motivators that faculty group leaders
shared were they were concerned about personal and
student growth, had a love of travel, and they enjoyed

the reduced cost of this type of travel. Faculty who
travel with students were influenced by prior
experiences as both children and adults. The leaders in
this study had very good self-perceptions prior to
travel and those self-perceptions only became stronger
with subsequent travel. The leaders of this study
exhibited leadership skills but not always the
vocabulary to articulate their actions.
This abstract accurately represents the content of
the candidate's thesis. I recommend its publication.
Ellen Stevens

I could not have embarked on this educational
journey without the indescribable generosity and
kindness of Mr. and Mrs. Walter Koelbel. I cannot thank
you enough and I promise to keep a strong hold on those

I appreciate those who assisted, supported, and
encouraged me in the College of Education at the
University of Colorado at Denver, including the Post-
Secondary Teaching and Learning Lab.
Thank you to Ellen Stevens who took a risk in
supporting the acceptance of an art historian into the
EDLI program and becoming not only my advisor but also
my mentor and comrade. I appreciate her wicked humor
and persistence through this process.
My doctoral committee gave me support and guidance,
helped me focus my scattered ideas, and gave me
confidence in my own thinking. Thank you to Mike Marlow
for also loving to travel with students and never being
too busy for a quick chat, and Elisa Robyn, who was
always speedy with advice. Annette Stott, a world
traveler, has been patiently seeing me through my
education for the last fourteen years with poise and
elegance and I promise not to make her sit on any more
thesis committees.

I am grateful to the respondents of this study who
took time out of their lives to be interviewed or take
the online survey. Their opinions, knowledge, and
thoughts are invaluable.
I must acknowledge my father-in-law, Larry, for
being a true kindred spirit in the love of learning and
good times, and my mother-in-law, Sandy, for keeping us
all together. I have a deep love for Gene McKone for
daily phone calls, meetings on the stoop, spur-of-the-
moment outings, and his family having made my life more
interesting by making me a "token McKone". Sharon
Rosevear, I could not be here without you loving me,
always. Additionally, the Giles womenGloria, Sharon
and Deirdreand their families for their love over the
last 26 years and making that couch available back in
July of 1983.
I must also recognize Mark Johnson, Lon Seymour,
and the queen of editing, Kristy Brenner, for helping me
sound coherent. I could not have done it without you.

Mostly, I thank my husband, Mike, who has seen me
through more school than any one sane man should. For
his unconditional love, unfailing support, constant
encouragement, and his determination to go through his
life with me, I promise we will go breathe "different
air" often over the course of our lives together.
Thank you.

1.1 Origins and characteristics required
to provide effective leadership,
adapted from Kotter, 1988......................13

1. INTRODUCTION..................................1
Research Questions............................4
Problem Statement.......................... 5
Conceptual Framework..........................7
Motivation of the Leader
for Travel................................. 8
Prior Experience (as a Student,
Traveler, Teacher..........................11
Perception of Self as Leader...............14
Leadership Philosophy......................15
Training Prior to Travel...................16
Organizational Skills......................17
Signif icance/Implications...................18
Structure of the Dissertation................19
2. LITERATURE REVIEW............................21
Situational Leadership.......................26

Expectancy Theory........................... 31
Achievement Task Value.......................32
Goal Setting Theory..........................32
Prior Experience.............................33
3. METHODOLOGY..................................35
Design..................................... 36
Demographic Information......................39
Data JDollection Procedures..................40
Analysis Procedure...........................41
Interrater Reliability.......................42
4. RESULTS......*...............................43
Introduction............................... 43
Study Results................................43
Question #1................................44

Student and personal growth,
Phase One respondents...................45
Student and personal growth,
Phase Two respondents...................48
Love of travel,
Phase One respondents...................49
Love of travel,
Phase Two respondents...................50
Financial benefits,
Phase One respondents...................51
Financial benefits,
Phase Two respondents...................52
Summary of Question #1..................52
Question #2................................53
Prior experience and
self-perception first few
trips, Phase One respondents.....'......53
Prior experience and
self-perception first few
trips, Phase Two respondents............56
Summary of Question #2................ 58
Question #3................................59
Role of itinerary planner,
Phase One respondents...................60
Role of itinerary planner,
Phase Two respondents...................61

Role of teacher,
Phase One respondents....................62
Role of teacher,
Phase Two respondents....................63
Role of leader as learner,
Phase One respondents....................64
Role of leader as learner,
Phase Two respondents....................67
Role of disciplinarian,
Phase One respondents....................68
Role of disciplinarian,
Phase Two respondents....................70
Summary of Question #3...................71
Question #4.................................72
Summary of Question #4................. 77
5. DISCUSSIONS AND CONCLUSIONS...................78
Question #1.................................. 78
Student Growth..............................79
Personal Growth.............................81
Relationships.............................. 83
Financial Rewards.......................... 83
Question #2...................................84
Question #3...................................85

Question #4................................. 88
Theoretical Foundations, Implications
for Practice and Further Research..........89
FOR FACULTY LEADERS......................... 94
B. ONLINE SURVEY................................97
TO ONLINE Survey........................... 101
TO ONLINE SURVEY............................102

The goal of most study abroad programs is to expose
learners, typically undergraduates, to cultures and
environments other than their own for the purpose of
expanding their scholarship. The scope of such
programs, however, is frequently narrow and devoted
almost exclusively to the students' experiences.
Conversely, for every student who travels in a study
abroad program there is also a group leader. There are
educational and personal impacts on both the student
traveler and the group leader. This research will
center on the group leader and the leadership she or he
provides in both short-term study abroad programs,
generally four weeks or less, but no more than a
semester long.
The act of leaving one's home and traveling to
another country to study is not a new activity. Plato
traveled to learn. During the Middle Ages, pilgrims
traveled across Europe for both religious and secular

learning. Travel and study continues to play an
important role in many colleges' and universities'
curricula, affecting both students and faculty. More
recently, the nonprofit Institute for International
Education (HE) sought to promote peace and exchange
through international education.
The IIE noted,
study abroad in 2000/01 increased 7.4% from
the previous year, reaching a record total of
154,168 and reported that only one year after
September 11, 2001, enrollment in overseas
educational programs increased 45% (Open
Doors, 2003).
It is clear that the benefits for students are
great; according to Michael Vande Berge, the students
develop inner resources, hidden aptitudes, new
attitudes, coping skills, and cultural
sensitivities that give them a global world
view, and change them personally (Beal, 1998,
p. 16) .
The role of group leader can be thrust upon a
faculty member who is willing to travel with students
for a specific amount of time. Many faculty members
obtain such a position because they have an academic

interest in the host country's culture, languages, or
arts. Seldom are faculty leadership capabilities
brought into the selection process and, on occasion, the
perceived leadership skills of the individual are more
optimistic than factually based (Tait, 1996).
Even so, leadership in a study abroad situation
provides the group leader with the firsthand experience
of leading student trips abroad. A study tour program
is more than two weeks and a study abroad program can be
up to, if not over, an academic year. The Loyola
Marymount University Center for Global Education (2004)
cited the following reasons for students to study
abroad: career advancement, developing leadership
skills, enhanced academic learning, creating a global
awareness, and experiencing personal growth. These
outcomes apply similarly to the leaders. While there is
a wealth of empirical data and literature surrounding
the topic of students and the overseas study experience
(Bower, 1973; Brecht & Davidson, 1993; Carlson, 1990;
Carsello & Greiser, 1975; Shougee, 1999; Waldbaum,

1996), there is very little on the effective
characteristics, skills, and training of the group
leader (Hornig, 1995; Krueger, 1995; Rasch, 2001).
Research Questions
There is a host of responsibilities inherent in
overseas travel in addition to the leadership demands.
The goal of this research is to describe the various
factors that contribute to effective.leadership in a
study abroad situation.
The questions for the study are as follows:
1. Are there common motivators shared by study
abroad leaders?
2. How does the study abroad leader believe his or
her prior experience affects his or her self-perception
as a leader?
3. What is the study abroad leader's perception of
his or her role as a group/educational leader?

4. What are the deeper philosophical beliefs of
successful leadership abroad from the perspective of the
study abroad leaders?
Problem Statement
The responsibility for a group of travelers,
regardless of the travelers' ages, is immense. The
group leader plays an important role because she or he
is the individual who bears the responsibility for the
health and safety of individual students and the group.
In addition to safety concerns, the leader is
responsible for the academic outcomes of the study
abroad experience. There are also concrete, practical,
and organizational aspects of leading a trip, such as
arranging housing, transportation and meals as well as
the theoretical and often, intangible, leadership
components that must be addressed.
Humankind has contemplated leadership theory and
philosophy since the days of Plato and Socrates. There
is no consensus of who is a leader or a collectively

agreed upon definition of what traits constitute
leadership. The definition of leadership varies from
person to person and between organizations. Burns
(1978) stated that "leadership is one of the most
observed and least understood phenomenon on earth" (p.
2) .
In the same way that there is no one absolute
definition of leadership, similarly there is no one
authoritative characterization of a good leader in a
travel situation. However, the "paucity of literature
concerning the faculty perspective underscores the gap
in the research of this field" (Rasch, p. 9).
Travel is stressful, delightful, enlightening,
frightening, empowering, and unpredictable. While group
leaders cannot completely control all unforeseen
factors, either for themselves or for their travelers,
they can create a holding pattern (Heifetz, 1994). In
this holding pattern, a leader can adjust the level of
stress and use that tension to "mobilize people"
(Heifetz, 1994, p. 106). There is, however, scant

definitive training or preparation for such leadership
and understanding.
The benefits of developing leadership skills for
the leaders who travel abroad with students have not
been overlooked; Brewster (2002) believed that global
leaders can develop team building skills, deal with
uncertainty, enhance improvisation, and foster visions.
Conceptual Framework
This study was framed by basic leadership theories,
prior experience, training, self-perception as a leader,
leadership philosophy, organizational skills, and the
personal motivation of the leader for travel. This
framework encompasses only educational learning
situations focusing on credit-granting institutions and
organizations. For this study, the focus is on leaders
and their understanding of their leadership in a study
abroad situation.
This researcher believes that leadership in study
abroad situations is unique from other arenas of

leadership. Complications can arise because many
faculty reside with his or her constituents very far
from home and subsequently, there is often little
downtime for faculty. In the study abroad situation the
leader must also instill trust since they are often the
only constant and familiar adult in a young traveler's
life abroad. A leader's personal time is almost
nonexistent since she or he must be available for any
situation 24-hours a day and there is no "quitting-
time." The study abroad leader must have the personal
where-with-all to lead under such demands, which are
unique from a business or traditional classroom
Motivation of the Leader for Travel
The motivations for the leader to travel are
diverse. Many factors play a role in their decision to
go abroad; expectancy-value theory, internal and
external stimuli, Instrumental Motivation, Intrinsic
Process Motivation, Goal Internalization, Internal Self

Concept-based Motivation, and External Concept-based
Motivation. These motivational theories can shape the
leader and impact the outcomes of a journey abroad.
Experience plays a part in motivation. Motivation
is what initiates a behavior or action and provides the
volition to sustain it. That specific behavior stems
from one's individual values, desires, and beliefs and
the physical world (Scheibe, 1970). Motivation is a
blend of both internal and external stimuli and
circumstances (Maslow, 1954; Pintrich & Schunk, 1996).
When a faculty member volunteers or is asked to lead a
study abroad program, she or he may have either a
conscious or unconscious belief that she or he will
succeed as a leader in that situation.
Fishbein and Ajzen, in their expectancy-value
theory stated that motivation increases when the
individual expects to succeed (Fishbein & Ajzen, 1972,
1974, 1975, 1980). The value of the task subsequently
increases to enhance the chance of success. The theory
states that individuals are goal driven. In the study

abroad situation the leader's goals impact the student
traveler and have to be acknowledged.
The motivation of the leader who takes students
abroad can vary. According to Rasch (2001) the reasons
that faculty agreed to go abroad was
to broaden student perspectives and horizons.
Second the teaching experience and developing
a new course to teach abroad were listed as
"very satisfying" and third, the experience
itself was "intellectually stimulating." (p.
While the comments above are from the study abroad
leader's perspective, the self-perceived role as leader
was not dominant. All faculty directors generally viewed
their role abroad as an academic or cultural
"facilitator" (Rasch, 2001, p. 75).
In addition to aforementioned motivational
theories, Leonard, Beauvais and Scholl (1995) state
there are five main motivations: Instrumental
Motivation; Intrinsic Process Motivation; Goal
Internalization; Internal Self Concept-based Motivation;
and External Concept-based Motivation. These

motivations apply to the workplace but can be easily
adapted to the study abroad situation.
Prior Experience (as a Student, Traveler,
Leadership ability in the study abroad situation
may also be affected by the prior experiences of the
study abroad leader. All past experiences influence the
leader (Gardner, 1990), which includes childhood, higher
education, and out-of-class learning. Prior experience
impacts the study abroad leader because the wide range
of experience influences decision-making processes,
communication skills, and interpersonal and
intrapersonal skills. Kotter (1988) pointed to an
individual's track record as an indicator of future
success as well as her or his reputation, interpersonal
skills, and integrity.
Kotter (1988) designed a model to illustrate the
ways in which an effective leader's past experiences
influence her or his actions. Kotter's design can be

easily adapted to group leaders in a study abroad
situation; see Figure 1.1.

1. Inborn "\
Motivation and
2. Early
(building on
3. Formal
(building on
from 1 and 2)
4. Leadership
(building on
from 1, 2 and
5. Travel
(building on
from 1, 2, 3
and 4)
Figure 1.1. Origins and characteristics required to provide
effective leadership, adapted from Kotter, 1988.

Perception of Self as Leader
Self-knowledge may also influence leaders. Rasch
(2001) cited the various self-perceptions that study
abroad leaders hold about themselves regarding their
Asfaculty began to reflect on their 'role'
abroad, the following additional words
emerged: "trusted guide," "counselor,"
"problem solver," "resource person,"
"policeman," "safety net," "touchstone,"
"caretaker," "organizer," "administrator,"
"coach," "trouble shooter," "confidant,"
"father," "mother," and "group leader." (p.
How and when a leader in a study abroad situation
perceives himself or herself as a leader is connected to
his or her self-efficacy. One's perception of self is
molded by self-efficacy. Pintrich.and Schunk (1996)
stated, "self-efficacy is related to choice behavior in
terms of task choice, but it is also related to career
choices (p. 92)." Bandura (1986) stated that self-
efficacy influences the behavior of an individual to
take or shun risks. How leaders perceive themselves in
the study abroad situation/ both positively and

negatively, may predict the effectiveness or anticipated
outcomes of themselves as leaders (Bandura, 1986).
Leadership Philosophy
Study abroad leaders may not have an awareness of
their leadership philosophy. None-the-less, this
awareness is important as it may impact their decision-
making. In teacher education and training, students are
often asked to articulate a teaching philosophy.
Expressing individual beliefs about teaching helps
teachers understand their instructional decisions
(Petress, 2003). Understanding one's leadership
philosophy might similarly be important in the study
abroad situation, because it may assist the leader in
understanding their viewpoints and opinions more
concretely. Any type of leadership situation could
benefit from a leader's awareness of her or his personal
philosophy (Leboeuf, 1999).

Training Prior to Travel
Institutions that conduct study abroad programs
often overlook leadership training. The University of
Richmond "covers the important issues of health and
safety abroad, as well as what to do in case of an
emergency" (Kitchen, 2004, p. 4), but fails to address
leadership theory. However, the Outdoor Action Program
at Princeton University provides its leaders with very
clear and detailed responsibilities while they lead
students on an outdoor adventure (e.g. training leaders
in health and safety). While this organization works in
the United States, it demonstrates the lack of attention
to international training. In addition to the practical
aspects of being a leader, Princeton
( also teaches
Leadership & Group Dynamics, and provides semester-long
Leader Training Trips.

Organizational Skills
Wlodkowski (1985) broke down the learning process
into beginning, during, and ending phases with the Time
Continuing Model of Motivation. In the planning of a
study abroad trip the understanding of the events that
occur in the beginning, middle, and end of a trip are
important for the overall planning of a trip and its
ultimate outcome. Those who have never led a group of
students abroad may not have the organizational
understanding of the daily operations and group
or have enough familiarity with the host country to
properly guide and escort students on a safe journey.
Some organizational skills also fall into the
category of common sense. Gerber (2001) stated common
sense is a "gut feeling, innate ability, knowing how,
learning, using others, demonstrable cognitive
abilities, and personal attributes" (p. 74).

There appears to be a gap in the research focusing
on the role and duties of an effective study abroad
group leader. Firsthand accounts of successful group
leaders will provide new information about effective
leadership for these unique educational settings.
Practical and organizational guidelines for the academic
leader in a study abroad situation should provide a
potential leader with both the concrete awareness of
good preparation (proper clothing, transportation,
rooming issues, meals, etc.) and an understanding of the
philosophical aspects of effective leadership.
This study examined study abroad and leadership
from the viewpoint of the leader and educational guide.
This examination was twofold. First, a select group of
experienced study abroad group leaders were interviewed.
From those interviews, a questionnaire was developed to

survey a larger sample of group leaders within the
United States of America.
While travel and learning can be an important
element in a diverse undergraduate education, clearly
the leadership that the group leader provides while
abroad influences the success of the whole endeavor.
Prior experience, training, perception of self as
leader, leadership philosophy, organizational skills,
and the personal motivation of the leader for travel all
factor into the leadership successes, and therefore,
group successes. High-quality leadership can make a
journey abroad a life-altering experience; conversely,
ineffective or insufficient leadership can also
negatively impact the study abroad experience.
Structure of the Dissertation
Chapter 1 of this study includes a definition of
the problems, presents a conceptual framework, provides

a brief background to the problem, and establishes four
research questions. Chapter 2 presents current
literature that enhances the conceptual framework.
Methodology, design-, instrumentation, procedures, and
analysis for this study are in Chapter 3. Chapter 4
puts forward the findings of the study. Chapter 5 draws
conclusions and suggests implications, strengths and
weaknesses, and areas for further research.

In spite of the fact that humankind has
contemplated leadership since Plato and Socrates, no
consensus has emerged of who is a leader or how to
define the attributes of leadership. Life is full of
leadership situations and opportunities: everything from-
raising children to running multimillion-dollar
corporations or giant nation states involves leadership.
In the field of education, one rarely leadership
opportunity is study abroad. People who lead these
trips often do so because they teach college classes in
a related area or have an interest in a particular field
(language, history, visual arts, performing arts, etc.).
These faculty members may have little travel or
leadership experience outside of their classrooms or
jobs. The responsibility for a group of people,
regardless of their ages, is immense and stressful.
Identifying and learning leadership traits, however, can

assist a novice leader in succeeding when far away from
familiar institutions and environments.
What makes an effective leader in the study abroad
setting in which even one mistake can have deep impact
on a group of fellow travelers (Bulach & Booth, 1998)?
This review examines literature that focuses on
effective traits for leaders and applies those to study
abroad situations. Since there is not a great deal of
literature specifically targeted to assist or guide the
faculty or group leader to effective leadership in an
abroad situation, much of what is known emerges from
diverse sources.
Leadership, in any situation, involves a degree of
hierarchy, delegation, and persuasion. This persuasion,
from the leader to the constituent, influences the
outcome of any situation (Finely, 2002; Miller, 2002).
To be an effective leader, one must have confidence and
have a belief that his or her goals will be met.
However, one must temper this confidence and belief in
goals and examine these ideas from the constituent's

viewpoint. What may be in the best interest of the
leader may be disruptive to the very people the
decisions are made to support (Sullivan & Howell, 1996).
A good leader must have the skills to understand those
they lead and observe both negative and positive
Compassion, support, and empathy are leadership
traits that enable the leader to connect with the
constituents (Belenky, Clinchy, Goldberger, & Tarule,
1986). Trust is important in any learning situation;
however, trust reaches almost mythical proportions when
one is far from home and the home institution (Bass,
1997; Gardner, 1990; Heifetz, 1994). To grow as leaders
faculty members must trust their constituents to a high
degree as well as nurture their potential (Cashman,
1999). When leaders lack human relations skills, appear
to be uncaring, lack team building skills and do not
have the trust of their constituents, mistakes can
happen that are problematic for the leaders and may
ultimately undermine their authority (Bulach & Booth,

1998; Gardner, 1989; Lauer, 2002). Mistakes such as
showing favoritism to one or more travelers or
backtracking on announced decisions can prove difficult
to both the leaders and their constituents.
Shared visions and common goals (Belenky et al.,
1986; Heifetz, 1994; Senge, 1999; Kleiner, Roberts, Roth
& Smith, 1999; Sullivan & Howell, 1996) are two
objectives that can take the leader and their charges
into deeper levels of communication and collaboration.
This is especially true in a foreign study situation
where there is almost 24-hour contact between student
and teacher. Learning, traveling, and the sharing of
meals and common experiences expand a typical day.
Visibility, mentoring, and alliances bring about a
shared vision between the leader and travelers (Gunter,
The leaders and their constituents can all be
transformed by a shared experience (Burns, 1978).
Connected knowing is relating with others and passing
over is understanding through another's experiences or

engagements (Belenky et al., 1986; Gardner, 1989;
Thomas, 1992). Situational leadership involves both the
learner and the leader (Hersey & Blanchard, 1969). The
situations that leaders find themselves in can often
dictate their responses to certain experiences (Heifetz,
1994). For example, if a traveler falls ill, the leader
must understand the impact that event will have on all
constituents: those at home, those participating in the
traveling, and the ill party themselves.
Handbooks for those who lead students abroad at
both the community and 4-year college levels focus
mainly on the students, how to recruit them, and how to
propose a trip. Faculty handbooks contain sections on
how faculty can organize a trip, but there is scant, if
any, mention of how to be an effective and successful
leader. These documents are on administration and
organizational components. According to Rasch, "The
omission of examining the faculty's role is notable"
(2001, p. 29).

Situational Leadership
Situational Leadership, theory states that a leader
acts in accordance with the particular situation she or
he is in at any given moment. In a study abroad
experience, a leader is often faced with unexpected
situations and experiences. Hersey and Blanchard (1969)
developed a situational leadership model they believed
could be useful in a variety of situations.
There is an endless list of unexpected situations
that can arise in a foreign study experience: illness,
personality disputes, alcohol infractions, sexual
encounters between students, protests and riots, crime,
natural disasters, and drug use. These unexpected
events can. take a heavy toll on the group as well as on
the leader who is not properly prepared.
Situational leadership requires the leader to have
some maxims by which judgments are made and strategies
are developed. For example, what is the greater good
for the greatest number? What is fair and appropriate?
A leader must weigh these maxims, and predict the

unintended consequences. The leader must also weigh how
his or her own needs influence their personal perception
of a situation.
According to Hornig (1995),
The level of responsibility associated with
directing an overseas program for ten to
twenty people is immense and may not be fully
appreciated by all parts of the university (p.
Or as Krueger (1995) put it, "It's not a sabbatical" (p.
34) .
The leaders of an educationally based trip abroad
are educators. While the literature surrounding study
abroad group leader's motivation is. limited, literature
surrounding what motivates teachers is abundant (Bess,
1982; Blackburn, 1982; Csikszentmihalyi, 1972; Deci and
Ryan, 1982; Sloan, 1997). Ellis (1984) stated that
intrinsic motivation such as "self-respect,
responsibility and a sense of accomplishment" is the
principal drive for teachers (p. 1). Feldman and

Paulsen (1999) also examined intrinsic motivation
stating that faculty members have self-determination and
wish to achieve and learn.
The motivations to undertake the tasks of leaders
are complex. According to Leonard, Beauvais, and
Scholl, (1995) there are five main motivations:
Instrumental Motivation is tied to monetary rewards and
a relationship between a person and organizations (ties
to expectancy theory); Intrinsic Process Motivation is
related to the enjoyment that a person feels toward
their work; Goal Internalization is tied to a person's
value system and their own moral compass; Internal Self
Concept-based Motivation states that a person is driven
by the knowledge that they can be helpful in the outcome
of a given task; and External Concept-based Motivation
addresses the need for a person to be accepted by a
group while striving for the greater good of the group.
These workplace motivations can apply to a study abroad
leader as well.

Instrumental Motivation is an external motivator
since the primary motivation comes from outside of the
teacher or leader (Alderman, 1999). The enthusiasm that
one has toward their work can affect their Intrinsic
Process Motivation because those who are enthusiastic
about their work can have a positive effect on their
constituents and increase their own enjoyment of a
subject (Pintrich & Schunk, 1996). Goal Internalization
is connected to the expectancy-value tradition. Rokeach
(1979) stated that "core conceptions of the desirable
within every individual and society" (pg. 2). Being
successful to the outcome of a task and playing a
pivotal role in that success is Internal Self Concept-
based Motivation. External Concept-based Motivation is
linked to conformity. Individuals have a desire to both
stand out and blend in with a group and that conformity
can affect an individuals' motivation (Pintrich &
Schunk, 1996).
Motivation is also tied with self-efficacy. Self-
efficacy means "belief in one's capabilities to organize

organize and execute the courses of action required to
manage prospective situations" (Bandura, 1986, p. 2) .
Bonner and Sprinkle (2002) stated that self-efficacy
impacts the motivational sources of ah individual.
According to Chemers (2000), the leader who
presents himself or herself with a strong, "leader-like"
image are most effectual. However, the empirical
literature on leadership has given relatively little
attention to the constructs related to self-perception
(Hoyt, Murphy, Halverson, Watson, 2003, p. 259).
A faculty member who leads a study abroad trip will
possibly have multiple motives for undertaking such an
endeavor. It is assumed that when faculty members
undertake the task of leading students abroad, they
believe they will be successful in that specific task,
and their behavior is shaped by that belief. According
to Fishbein and Ajzen (1980) the optimum forecaster of a
person's behavior is his or her intentions. Barge
(1994) believed that people will reach for goals that
they feel are possible to reach successfully. The

outcome expectation theory holds that the value for a
particular task will influence how a person will act to
achieve it (Bandura, 1986; Locke & Latham, 1990).
Expectancy Theory
Expectancy theory of motivation (Vroom, 1964) has
three main components: expectancy, instrumentality, and
valence. Expectancy is how an individual expects to do
at a particular task; whether they believe or do not
believe they can accomplish a given task.
Instrumentality speaks to how much an individual
believes that hard work will result in a successful
outcome. Finally, valence is the value and respect that
an individual places on the outcome of a task. According
to expectancy theory, people are mostly goal-driven
(Vroom, 1964). Wigfield and Eccles (2000) stated that
expectancy also includes "influence performance, effort,
and persistence" (p. 69).

Achievement Task Value
Achievement Task Value states that people will have
more drive and look for opportunities in tasks in which
they believe that they will have success (Eccles &
Wigfield, 1995;. Pintrich & De Groot, 1990) In a study
abroad leadership situation, the leader will possibly
have experienced prior success in such a task. There
are four parts of achievement task value (Eccles et al.,
1983; Wigfield & Eccles, 1992): attainment value
(importance), which places internal importance or value
on a specific task; intrinsic interest value, the
enjoyment of a task; extrinsic utility value focuses on
the relevance of a task to career and exterior goals;
and finally, the cost of a task. This is where the
individual weighs the possible negative cost associated
with a specific task.
Goal Setting Theory
Goal-setting theory states that an individual's
behavior is based in his or her values, intention, and

goals. (Locke, 1968; Steers & Porter, 1974; Tubbs, 1986;
Yearta, Maitlis & Briner, 1995). Within goal setting
theory, a moderately difficult task will lead to higher
performance and satisfaction (Locke & Lathem, 1990;
Campbell, & Ilgen, 1976;).
Prior Experience
Leader experience and leader effectiveness is
impacted by the experience of the leader (Avery,
Tonidandel, et al., 2003). For example, Colbeck,
Cabrerra, and Marine (2002) stated that the prior
experience of engineering faculty who have worked in the
field creates an understanding of teamwork differently
from those faculty members who had never worked in the
field. Similarly, a group leader who has traveled to a
destination will have a different relationship with the
place and people than one who has never been there.
Hudson (1991) and Kegan (1982) believed that in the
life cycle in human development all prior experiences
impact adults. Human development is fluid and each

stage of development stems from prior experiences that
reach back into childhood. Brookfield (1996) believed
being a learner influenced his role as a leader and the
experiences of learning changed his teaching and
leading. Avery, Tonidandel, et al., believed that those
leaders "who have served as followers will make better
leaders" (2003, p. 675). There is, however, a lack of
literature surrounding students who have traveled abroad
and became group leaders later in life, Gerber stated,
"making decisions based on experience involves a careful
process of reflection and then action" (2001, p. 77).
Chapter 2 examined literature surrounding
motivation of the leader for travel, situational
leadership, motivation, expectancy theory, goal-setting
theory, and prior experience. In combination, these
factors work together to structure effective leadership
for a faculty member in a study abroad situation.

This research examined perceptions of individuals
who had led a study abroad experience, and was grounded
in a small body of literature that examined faculty
leader perspectives. The four research questions are as
1. Are there common motivators shared by study
abroad leaders?
2. How does the study abroad leader believe his or
her prior experience affects his or her self-perception
as a leader?
3. What is the study abroad leader's perception of
his or her role as a group/educational leader?
4. What are the deeper philosophical beliefs of
successful leadership abroad from the perspective of the
study abroad leader?

The study had two phases. In Phase One, five
experienced study abroad leaders were interviewed face-
to-face. In Phase Two, an open-ended survey based on the
interview responses was developed and distributed to
study abroad leaders in the United States.
This study was descriptive. The first phase
consisted of a guided face-to-face interview with five
experienced study abroad leaders. The interview
protocol is based on leadership and study abroad
frameworks (Avery, Tonidandel, et al. 2003; Brewster,
2002; Gardner, 1990; Heifetz, 1994). From that data, an
open-ended survey was designed and distributed to
leaders at credit granting institutions in the United
States. The distribution occurred via e-mail. The open-
ended survey data allowed greater sampling than the
interviews and add veracity to the interview data
(Krathwhol, 1993).

The participants for Phase One were selected using
a purposeful sampling and consisted of five group
leaders who have led students abroad at least five
times; thus those leaders have a "track record." The
five participants were Randy, Gordon, Mary, Amy, and
Randy has extensive experience in study abroad both
domestically and internationally. During his more than
30 years as a visual art educator and a high-level
administrator at a small art college, Randy has led up
to 300 students at a time to New York City and up to 50
students to Italy, as well as several trips across
Western Europe, Greece, and Turkey. All aspects of
planning the trip fell under Randy's control and he had
experience planning itineraries, budgeting, and travel
arraignments. For later trips, Randy worked with an
educational group tour company based in Boston,
Massachusetts, citing the enormous resources and
contacts these professional companies have available.

Gordon began his association with study abroad soon
after the completion of his graduate work and has
traveled to Guatemala, Peru, Spain, Rome, and Western
Europe. Like Randy, Gordon has experience both as a
faculty member (photography and the visual arts) at a
large, public, doctoral/research university, as well as
experience as a high-level administer at an art college.
Gordon planned all aspects of his trips and cited
mentoring as the single most important training tool he
experienced as a leader.
Mary is employed at a Jesuit institution and is a
working author and poet. There was great joy in Mary's
professional life exposing her students to the
literature and poetry of Ireland. The Jesuit tradition
of service to others and respect for life shaped Mary's
philosophy and viewpoint surrounding education and the
study abroad experience for both herself and her
students. Mary was very interested in the Jesuit idea
of "teaching the whole person."
Amy is a full-time tenured faculty member of an
independent doctoral/research university. The

institution has an extensive and successful junior year
abroad program at no additional cost to the student.
Working as a well-published and respected art historian.
Amy has led students to Western Europe and the
Netherlands and teaches art history in context to the
specific trip.
As an instructor of Spanish, Roseanne began her
association with study abroad at a large public
doctoral/research university in the southern part of the
United States. Mentoring under more experienced study
abroad faculty, Roseanne traveled to Spain, Western
Europe, and Central America. Of the five participants
of Phase One, Roseanne was the most reluctant of the
leaders and described her leadership style as a "control
freak and cranky."
Participants in Phase Two were drawn from only
credit granting institutions throughout the United
States. The initial e-mail invitation went to 102 group
leaders from 27 colleges and universities. Through
research on the World Wide Web, faculty who were
identified on the institution's web site(s) as those who

had conducted "Faculty-Led Study Abroad Programs" were
invited to participate. Forty-six faculty members
partially completed the survey with 12 answering each
The participants in this study included both female
and males. The level of education of each participant
was not a factor in their inclusion in the study, only
that they had traveled abroad with students.
Demographic Information
In Phase one, the participants were identified by
gender, number of trips led abroad (five or more) and
academic discipline. The Second Phase included faculty
who had traveled abroad with students regardless of the
number of trips in which they had previously
This research was rooted study abroad literature,
basic leadership theories, prior experience, training,
self-perception as a leader, leadership philosophy,

organizational skills, and the personal motivation of
the leader. The questions that guided those interviews
are found in Appendix A. The questions were developed
to elicit information directly related to the research
questions. Phase Two of the study grew from the
information and data gleaned from the interview
responses and led to the creation of an open-ended
survey found in Appendix B.
Data Collection Procedures
For Phase One, the researcher conducted one guided
interview with five study abroad group leaders. The
interviews were tape-recorded and transcribed. From
these interviews, an open-ended survey was developed to
gather more data from a larger number of faculty members
who have traveled with students abroad.
The procedures for Phase Two included accessing
study abroad and departmental websites from colleges and
universities in the United States to pinpoint possible
participants. The researcher contacted potential
participants via e-mail to solicit participation. That

survey was distributed via Zoomerang making the results
anonymous unless the faculty member wished to become
known to the researcher so she or he could obtain a
summary of the results.
Analysis Procedure
Using the interpretive/constructivist method, the
data was coded to reveal categories and similarities and
then to draw conclusions. This method allowed for
"multiple realties, each related to the complexity of
naturally occurring behavior, characterized by the
perspectives of the participants" (McMillan, 2000, p.
4). The open-ended guided e-mail interviews were coded
for content and meaning. The researcher analyzed the
data to identify themes. The researcher recognized that
the open-ended format would allow the participant to
describe freely their experiences and thoughts.
Codes were incorporated into common themes and
established categories. The researcher then examined
the themes, patterns, and connections and defined what

the common experiences of study abroad group leaders
The participants in Phase Two of the study were
anonymous to the researcher. It was not mandatory to
answer each or any of the questions in the online
survey. There was an error in the Zoomerang program
during the survey7 s first 3 days online and some
participants may have answered more than once or their
responses may not have registered at all.
Interrater Reliability
To establish interrater reliability, both the coder
and rater had an 80% agreement on the reliability of the
data. The rater was given two questions of the online
survey (questions #5 and #7) and the rater then coded
that data into categories and themes. The rater
concluded similar themes and groupings and both rater
and coder conferred about their findings and the data.

For this study, 46 faculty members from accredited
four-year institutions of higher education participated
in one of two phases of study examining common
motivations and characteristics of faculty who lead
students in a study abroad experience. There are two
different data sets, the first from the guided
interviews (Phase One) and second from the anonymous on-
line survey (Phase Two). The questions posed in Phase
One and Phase Two differed slightly. The researcher
dropped two research questions after the initial
interviews because they resulted in redundant
Study Results
The results of this study are presented according to the

1. Are there common motivators shared by study
abroad leaders?
2. How do study abroad leaders believe his or her
prior experience affects their self-perception as
3. What is the study abroad leader's perception of
his or her role as a group/educational leader?
4. What are the deeper philosophical beliefs of
successful leadership abroad from the perspective of the
study abroad leaders?
The following information answers the research
questions by reporting data from each of the two phases
of the data collection.
Question #1
The first research question was, "Are there common
motivators shared by study abroad leaders?" In
answering this question, three major factors emerged as
important to the respondents: personal growth, love of
travel, and financial benefits.

love and extended that to her students nurturing their
growth in the process.
Amy believed that the time she spent abroad with
students played an important role in student growth and
change. Amy recalled:
I have done both long-term and short-term
classes and I mean I really think the one time
that I was with kids for ten-week quarter
abroad I really saw people's whole lives -
, whole life perspectives change.
Student growth was not always immediate or certain
While academics and learning may have been a concern
among the group leader's goals, Roseanne believed that
students often missed the growth experience while they
pursued immediate gratifications. She stated:
I would say overall thinking about
philosophically what schools want to
accomplish through study abroad programs, it's
a very small amount of academic learning and
in a lot of student's cases probably none.
Study abroad for kids is really, at least from
the United States, a way to break free, a way
to try themselves out in a totally foreign
culture, which means in their minds that they
have very little responsibility.
Student growth and personal growth did not come
without some costs. Personal growth for Randy was most
apparent during, a trip to the Uffizi Museum in Florence

Most of the situations were very positive...
immersing yourself suddenly in real life, in
something that you have studied or have been
involved in theoretically for so long was
The study abroad experience, while enriching, also
involved great responsibility. Gordon echoed the
sentiment addressed by Amy:
I don't know if that is enough of a motivator
to offset the responsibilities and the other
problems involved, of some of the things that
can happen with taking student abroad. I have
horror stories.
Personal growth and student growth were intertwined
for many of the respondents in Phase One and Phase Two.
Learning in-situ affected the student as well as the
leader and the leader as teacher. Amy reported that she
was able to facilitate student change and growth,
thereby impacting her teaching and exchanges with
You know, I think it is a superlative way to
be able to teach art history, I wish I could
do it all of the time, actually. I think it
is important to get students to experience
other cultures and I have seen how they

While student growth was important for the leader
to facilitate, Gordon reported his own transformation:
Visiting Italy was just such an eye-opening
experience. I mean from the art standpoint.
Seeing art that I had never seen before,
seeing art I thought I knew, but really didn't
know, until I saw it in person. It was those
types of things, and then my own travels that
made me more and more anxious to get students
involved in study abroad.
Student and personal growth, Phase Two respondents.
Eighteen out of the 46 Phase Two respondents stated that
personal and student growth was the main reason to
become a study abroad group leader. One Phase Two
respondent stated, "it is wonderful to see the light
bulb go off...." Another Phase Two participant stated
the importance of "cultural enrichment for myself, and
students hoping the experience has a lasting impact on
the way they practice nursing."
Another Phase Two respondent stated, as a motivator
to travel, "sharing with students the experience of
enlightenment that occurs when one travels to a new
environment." Personal growth was not always viewed as a
heavy and serious matter. One Phase Two participant

approached personal growth with humor and
Every year I get to see six Shakespeare plays
performed. That has added immeasurably to my
fund of Shakespeare knowledge and to my
classes. I could not afford this without
student supportand I need something to worry
about every day anyhow.
Love of travel. Phase One respondents. The love of
travel played an important part in the motivation of
faculty. All five of the Phase One Respondents stated
that travel as an adult shaped their desire to become a
group leader. Interestingly, only Randy of the Phase One
participated in an instructional travel program. None
had lived abroad as children and all wished they had had
the experience of more travel in youth.
Randy stated,
Really, I think the main motivation is the
love of travel and wanting to experience those
things that travel can provide you, in terms
of leading, the learning, and growth.
Additionally, Gordon stated the "most important one
is enjoying the whole idea of traveling yourself." While
Amy repeated that student growth and personal growth are

important, she too acknowledged that travel without
students would be a different experience:
You know I think it does take a certain type
of person to want to do this kind of traveling
because if there is any way you can afford it
by yourself, you would, you know, just would
go, as opposed to going and taking on all this
Love of travel, Phase Two respondents. Eleven of
the 22 Phase Two respondents who had traveled both as a
child and as an adult stated that the experiences
influenced their decision to become a group leader.
Seven of the Phase Two respondents reported that as
children or teenagers they had lived abroad or formally
studied abroad. One Phase Two participant cited the love
of travel as important, "I enjoy sharing my love of
travel and of travel to Ireland in particular, with
Finally, two respondents of Phase Two cited
extrinsic motivators for their travel with students.
One stated, "to fund my research," and another reported
to "obtain credit in a school approved program." A
Phase Two respondent reported, "the desire to transmit

love of the literature we study, combined with sharing
the culture of Sweden" shows personal growth because the
respondent was sharing and giving to the student.
Another Phase Two participant stated that "being part of
student transformation" as an important motivator.
Financial benefits, Phase One respondents. One
advantage of the study abroad experience for the faculty
was the no-cost opportunity to travel abroad.
Incorporated into the cost of student travel were the
faculty expenses. This situation allowed faculty to
spend from several days to an academic year abroad
inexpensively. Gordon stated,
Very honestly, I think most faculty members
who get into study abroad get into it because
they themselves like to travel. I mean, let's
face it; it is a very nice way to enjoy summer
travel at someone else's expense. I think that
has to be 99% of the motivation for most
people to do it.
Randy rated his motivations for travel. They are,
"love of travel, travel, the financial ramifications,
the camaraderie, and the personal growth." Roseanne
believed that her main motivators were not financial and

felt that some of her colleagues mistook her intentions.
"I get upset when you hear colleagues belittling it and
making comments or talking like you are trying to get
away with something."
Financial benefits, Phase Two respondents. Only 4
out of 23 of the Phase Two participant stated "Its a
cheap way to travel." One Phase Two respondent stated
that the benefit financially came through "fund(ing) my
In the first situation, the travel expense is
rolled into the cost to the student. In the second
case, the faculty member could use the trip to gather
data for his or her own field and academic work.
Summary of Question #1. The most common motivators
for faculty include personal and student growth, love of
travel, and the financial benefits. Being involved with
personal and student growth dominated in the
respondents'! statements. Even though they do not have
the formal language to say, "I am intrinsically
motivated," their actions spoke where words failed them.

Question #2
The second research question, which examined the
prior experiences of the study abroad leader was, "How
do study abroad leaders believe his or her prior
experience affects their self-perception as leaders?"
The life cycle of a person contains many events
that shape his or her actions and behaviors (Kegan,
1982). Self-efficacy is one's belief that they can or
can not accomplish a specific task or goal (Bandura,
1986). Self-efficacy is belief that a person has that
she or he can accomplish any given task (Bandura, 1986).
Prior experience and self-perception first few
trips, Phase One respondents. Roseanne believed that
she volunteered to the study abroad program because she
felt a certain level of coercion. Of all the
respondents of the study, Roseanne was the only one who
stated she did not go into the process willingly.
During the first few trips Roseanne perceived herself
the as "a reluctant leader." Here prior experiences of
having raised two children as a single mother also

impacted how she related to the students. She had the
perspectives of both their teacher and a parent.
Amy had a very clear understanding on how her self-
perception has changed over the years:
I think it was fine (my self-perception, the
first few trips). It has just gotten better.
The first time it was so exciting and so new
and it was fun. I think that what I have
gotten over time is just more organized and at
the same time gotten creakier and older, and
probably not quite as nimble as I used to be.
She also stated that the prior experience of traveling
was important:
I regret that I never studied abroad in high
school or college. I had traveled, maybe
three or four times to Europe by myself
backpacking in the 70's. Which was fun, and
during the time that I was studying art and I
got to see a lot of it. Those experiences were
really important for me.
Randy saw the change from his early days as a group
leader to the present quite dramatically. He stated
that the first trip he took with students he was
"nervous as hell and panicky, excited, but nervous."
Randy had the unique experience of traveling to the same
location as a leader as he had as a student. He stated
this prior experience impacted him as a leader:

I was a bit of a hellion (as a student). So,
that taught me...we knew where to hide our
beer. There was a funny little corner in the
closet and you could open the window if you
wanted to cool it off (and) you could put it
out on the air conditioner. So, ten years
later, twelve years later, when I became a
leader all I had to do was knock on the door
and say, "get that beer out of that funny
little corner in the closet and get it off the
air conditioner."
Randy stated, "I over prepared the first time. And
it was in response to weakness that I saw in the way
other people organized a trip." As Randy gained more
experience in study abroad, he asserted,
I think from previous travel that I had a good
idea of what sort of problems in terms of
disciple, in terms of frustration that
participants would face, I had a pretty good
idea of what was going to happen on trips.
Gordon believed that during his first few trips he
was "maybe not relaxed enough, I think I was a little
uptight. I worried a little bit too much. I was, if not
paternal, then I hovered over them".
During the course of his years traveling abroad
every summer, Gordon found he had to reexamine his own
feelings of needing to control the students because it

was not healthy for him, nor beneficial to the students.
He discovered,
I think at some point you just have to say,
"you are responsible," but "you are not
responsible," in a sense. I had to just loosen
up and come to realize that outside of the
academic program, these kids have to be
responsible for themselves. Just like our
students right here (in the USA). I don't
know what they do on Saturday nights. I think
that you feel responsible since, again, you
are in a foreign environment, but at some
point you just have to loosen up and say "what
they do outside of the academic program has to
be their business."
Mary stated that during her first trip abroad she
was "a little harassed, frazzled, optimistic, and
idealistic." Since that first trip abroad, Mary and her
students have traveled to the same location for 10
consecutive summers and she understood that "there are
not many surprises and the surprises that do happen, are
from the hand of God."
Prior experience and self-perception first few
trips, Phase Two respondents. Of the Phase Two
respondents, 13 of the respondents stated that they were
"optimistic" during their first few trips. Twelve

perceived themselves with "high confidence" but only 2
felt "well trained." One respondent stated that she or
he felt "cautiously optimistic", another stated she or
he was "flexible, with a stomach of steel" and another
felt "enthusiastic." On the other hand, one stated, "I
felt more like I was a member, not a leader."
The prior experience for 15 of the 24 Phase Two
respondents stated that prior travel influenced their
self-perception. A Phase Two participant reported:
Traveling abroad myself is the single most
important life event that has influenced my
performance as a group leader. I understand
the difficulties, but I also know the rewards
outweigh the problems.
Another reported:
My early life experiences in countries other
than the U.S. I have traveled with family. I
have the knowledge that various cultural
experiences will enhance students' lives in
ways otherwise impossible.

Of the 24 Phase Two respondents who answered the
question regarding self-perception, 9 stated that their
self-perception did not change over time. Another
participant stated that
My (self-perception) has not changed; I
realized that the more optimistic,
professional, patient, and team oriented the
group leader is, the more those
characteristics will be reflected in the
Eight of the Phase Two respondents reported that
their confidence had increased since their first trips.
One participant marked a change in self-perception with
the following statement: "Reality has temperedbut not
destroyedthe optimism. Increasing structure improved
preparationfor both students and faculty. Another
stated: "I am almost without nerves these days (17 trips
to the same placesand the group is small); High
comfort/confidence level." Not all the Phase Two
respondents stated that they had become more confident
or relaxed. One reported,
Now, I believe that I have a great
responsibility to know where the students are
and what they are doing. I was more relaxed at
the beginning, because all students were

Yet another participant replied: "I'm still nervous,
perhaps more so because I know what can go wrong, but
I'm better prepared to handle the problems."
Summary of Question #2. The faculty who
participated in both phases of the study, with the
exception of Roseanne, reported that they went into the
process with optimism, excitement, and confidence.
Their prior experiences as travelers seemed to influence
strongly their perceptions of themselves as leaders.
Question #3
The perception of the role each leader held for
themselves was as varied as each of the leaders.
Question #3 addressed their perception of their role
abroad as an itinerary planner, teacher, learner, and as
a disciplinarian. The third question was, "What is the
study abroad leader7 s perception of his or her role as a
group/educational leader?
The logistics surrounding foreign travel are
difficult and they are more of a challenge in the post

September 11 world. The group leader must be able to
organize a group of travelers from the United States,
organize an itinerary, and be accountable for their
Role of itinerary planner, Phase One respondents.
Randy stated that he believes that the itinerary was of
highest importance:
I think the most important thing is the
itinerary. If you are controlling the
itinerary then you are controlling the core
mission of the trip and you can create
learning situations to facilitate for what you
hope is going to take place.
Gordon reiterated the sentiment that the role of
the group leader must include the ability to plan an
effective itinerary:
Even if it is just a ten day travel trip, I
think the itinerary has to project very clear
goals and objectives, this is not to say that
in between there can't be fun times, and
recreational times.
While the actual planning of the itinerary of the
trip was important to Amy during her trips abroad, she
learned that the unwritten details of the itinerary
could not be ignored. She saw her role as being both an

educational leader but also a leader in a nurturing
What I have realized every time is how the
creature comforts are the most important.
Really making sure people have gone to the
bathroom, making sure nobody goes into a
museum on an empty stomach. So, it is not so
much the educational things but the real tour-
guide-leader kinds of things that you have to
do. You need to see when people are getting
tired and they have had enough that they need
a different kind of activity.
Roseanne believed that although the role of being
the organizer was important to the successful outcomes
of a trip, time was a great teacher and there were going
to be surprises:
With more experience, you understand better
what to do before you go. I think it all
hinges on the planning beforehand. Once you
get there, it is sort of beyond anything you
can do.
Role of itinerary planner, Phase Two respondents.
A Phase Two participant stated similarly that the
itinerary was important to them as a group leader:
"being a good planner, being adaptable to any situation
encountered abroad, and not departing from the group

Acting in the role of organizer, one Phase Two
participant stated that planning the same itinerary over
several years elevates problems. He or she understood
that the students were adults and needed an opinion
about what they could or could not do:
I do the same itinerary every year (6 plays in
London and Stratford). The plays and a few
sites are the only required pieces,, so the
students have at least 50% of the time to
pursue their own interests. I do try to make
sure that they don't waste this time, urging
various sites on them. No one ever misses a
Some problems and issues can arise abroad that
planning cannot foresee. One Phase Two participant
shared this situation:
We had a case of musical beds, when a couple
of students decided sex was more important
than friendship with their regular roommates.
This created a ricochet effect on several
students. I only found out about it by
accident. I talked to the two students
involved, told them I didn't care where they
had sex, but they couldn't inconvenience their
roommates (chosen, not assigned) on an
excursion. They behaved after that.
Role of teacher, Phase One respondents. Knowing
the students in a classroom setting before travel was
very important to Mary for several reasons. Mary had

complete control on who traveled with her on her annual
trips to Ireland. Her criteria were extensive, besides
having had each student in class, she checked their
disciplinary records, met with parents, and had all
students sign a contact. She stated,
Well, I think you have to be a little bit off
to lead a group of college students to a
country where there is bar on every block.
But, really, the challenge of it I love. I
love the way you get to know your students. I
know my students well before I take them; I
don't take them unless I have had them in
Gordon viewed his role as teacher as very important
to the success of his trips. He stated,
I have former students who I still write to,
from friendships that I made, basically, on
trips, because your student-teacher
relationship changes a little bit in those
types of situations. I think it is important
that faculty still keep the faculty-student
division, but within that model, some really
nice, close, friendships form.
Randy was in a situation that allowed any student
who had the financial means to participate in the trip.
Through his role as teacher, he understood the risks of
taking students he did not know well.

Role of teacher, Phase Two respondents. One Phase
Two participant reported that knowing students in the
classroom enhanced the travel experience:
I conduct student pre-study abroad class that
educates students about all rules, culture
expectations and differences and all other
necessary information regarding the trip.
Contracts signed by each student acknowledging
expectations and resulting actions prior to
The role of teacher was multifaceted for another
Phase Two participant who stated,
Giving students space to explore on their own.
Making sure that the academic side of the
program remains a central element of the
program. Insuring that the students do not run
into troubles I cannot solve as a leader.
The role of teacher and immigrant played an
important part of the approach of another Phase Two
participant, "As a teacher of language and an immigrant
myself, I feel young Americans need to be exposed to
other cultures as often as possible."
Role of leader as learner, Phase One respondents.
Faculty who participate in a study abroad situation
differed on the usefulness and effectiveness of

pretravel training. Mentoring proved to be a powerful
prior experience in training leaders for the study
abroad experience. Roseanne stated,
For the German program, I was being groomed to
take it over and I was in training with the
person who had developed the program at
another university and brought it with him.
Randy believed strongly that being mentored and
learning as an underling were the best ways to prepare
an individual for the position of group leader in a
study abroad situation. He recounted his own experience
as an underling and the experience shaped his later
self-perception of confidence:
It prepares you to take a leadership role. It
gives you a few previews where you don' t have
as much responsibility. Then you can go and
accept a leadership role later.
Randy also used a sports metaphor and related his
role as group leader to a coach:
You do a lot of coaching. You serve a coach, a
guide to the participants and then when
trouble happens you become the executive
decision maker, you become the person that is
willing to accept the responsibility and the
consequence of the decisions. Hopefully, all
of those things contribute to a successful

Gordon perceived his role and as one who was very
thorough and capable, "I think that most of the problems
that we had were generated by students breaking the
rules not by any lack of leadership." Randy reported
that his perceived role had changed over time. His role
as leader was still paramount, but how he approached
that role had evolved and changed:
If somebody is going to be misbehave they are
going to misbehave regardless if you have
posted rules or tattooed rules or whatever
rules you've got on them...those kinds of
things you kind of learn to be more relaxed
about. Not lax, but more re-laxed about.
Gordon and Roseanne both believed that they were
mentored well and that having been in the role of
learner, their role as a leader was more effective.
While Amy believed that she was prepared for her role as
leader by her own personal travel and university
workshops, Randy's participation as an underling
prepared him to lead. Mary had a unique view of her
I have seven younger brothers and a younger
sister so that may be part of it, you know,
leading people around and then, you know, my
teaching, I have been teaching for a long
period of time.

Mentoring also proved a powerful training method
for Gordon, who stated he saw his role as a learner and
Phil became an excellent mentor. I have to
say that I would not trust a study abroad
program to any faculty member who had not at
least done it under somebody else at some
point in time. It is just much, much too
complex an organization.
Randy also believed that mentoring shaped his role
as leader:
I think by being a participant as an underling
on trips is always a good idea and serving as
lieutenant, serving as a second in command or
even a third or fourth in command on a few
trips is going to give you experience and
allow you to visualize and anticipate problems
that happen.
Role of leader as learner, Phase Two respondents.
Of the Phase Two respondents, 38 believed that acting as
a subordinate on a trip would have helped them be better
prepared from their first journey abroad. Nine of the
Phase Two respondents believed that to be mentored by an
experienced .successful trip leader would have helped
them the best while 30% believed there is nothing one
can do besides simply to learn firsthand by leading a

trip themselves. One Phase Two participant reported,
"experience provides excellent education."
Role of disciplinarian, Phase One respondents.
Traveling to Europe with adults who have reached legal
age but not legal drinking age can be problematic. Each
of the five Phase One Respondents experienced at least
one encounter with underage drinking in Europe. Being a
disciplinarian influenced the role of the leader because
leading students is not leading a group of one's peers,
thus the dynamic is weighted with more responsibility to
the leader. Roseanne had a very disturbing incident,
she recalled,
I could tell you horror stories about drinking
and drinking parties. A young woman first
night in Rome, she thought she was going to be
cool and get in a car with a couple of
Italians and she was raped.
On another trip, she also had to address a
student's drinking:
You know what happens the first time you get
on a plane to go abroad and it is free booze
the whole way and all these kids are going
"Whoa! This is cool." This one kid had always
been under his parents' thumb and all of

sudden he was experiencing a lot of freedom
and drank himself crazy on the plane.
Gordon felt that by setting ground rules he could
minimize problems with alcohol and drugs:
You give them the ground rules, you know about
drugs. We would have meetings prior to leaving
about drugs and alcohol and just emphasized
the seriousness of it just very, very
strongly. I think if I had to do it again, I
would take one of those meetings sessions and
show everyone Midnight Express.
Drinking and alcohol were not the only disciple
problems that the leaders encountered. Roseanne found
that enforcing a dress code proved problematic:
For the first couple of years girls were
running around in short-shorts in Rome and
Florence. No matter how many times you tell
them that when we go to the Vatican you have
to have your shoulders covered. Invariably,
someone would show up in the morning with a
tank top. You tell them the night before, "now
remember the dress code," someone would say
"oh, but they aren't going to care." We had
some students who couldn't go in and we say,
"hey, we told you. Those guys standing there
in those Swiss Army outfits are there for a
Curfew infractions caused Gordon concern and he
One year we tried a monastery and it was good
except the students were locked out at an
early hour, which made them very angry. They

were standing in the street yelling up, "open
this G.D. place!" It was very embarrassing.
Role of disciplinarian, Phase Two respondents. Six
of the Phase Two respondents acknowledged alcohol played
a role in their travels with students and they wished
they had been able to handle the situation differently.
One Phase Two participant stated that the one problem
they had encountered was, "drinkingwish I had better
asked for self control."
Alcohol use by the students became easier to manage
as leaders gained experience with study abroad. Another
Phase Two Respondent reported that drinking is not
easily combatable:
Dealing with discipline problems (e.g., late
night hours, drinking, adventurous young
womencuriously, not the men). There is only
so much one can do to control behaviors of
"adults." This is a perennial problem; I try
to deal with damage control as much as
Another participant related this incident: "a student
got drunk in Paris, broke a plate glass window in a
bistro, and ended up in jail. I had to negotiate at 2

Another Phase Two participant believed that making
the student responsible beforehand could help in such
Giving students a realistic picture of what to
expect and what will be expected of them can
help. Require them to read the State
Department website warnings about the
penalties for drug and alcohol use in other
countries, and the limits of official U.S.
assistance in these cases.
And a different participant reported he or she
would simply give a "lecture on drinking." While some
respondents believed that dealing with problems became
easier over time, another stated an opposite opinion, "I
don't think it (a lecture) can deal with all discipline
problems; there are always surprises as far as student
cooperation are concerned."
One Phase Two respondent reported a situation that
was unique among all of the respondents:
A student completely lost it, yelling, and
cursing at me over a minor disagreement. I was
sorry I hadn't spotted the homesickness
earlierif only so she could avoid
embarrassing herself.
Summary of Question #3. The role of leader was
shaped in part the mentoring each experienced before

taking on such a position. Their experiences abroad
helped them shape itineraries so that they could
exercise their leadership in both facilitating learning
outcomes and addressing safety and group enjoyment.
Question #4
The fourth question focused on leadership
specifically and the beliefs that the respondents in
both Phase One and Phase Two held, about leadership in a
study abroad situation. The research question was,
"What are the deeper philosophical beliefs of successful
leadership abroad from the perspective of the study
abroad leaders?"
When the question was posed to Amy about her
leadership philosophy, she found it difficult to find
the words, stating, "Ah. I don't know, I don't know,
there is probably some educationaleze terms for
different leadership abilities that I may or may not
have." However, Amy did execute very clear leadership
traits such as clear direction, organizational skills,
human compassion, and strength of character. The role

of the leader in study abroad is molded by the nature of
round-the-clock work demands. The work of the leader
includes the realization that their time commitment is
large and 9 of the Phase Two respondents cited this as
being a common experience. Gordon reported that a leader
must understand "the amount of work, time, and effort,
and the fact that you are working 24 hours a day. You
are on 24 hours a day." Mary reported that responses
she received from colleagues and friends are "you must
be crazy you take teenagers" and "isn't that a 24-7 job
and it is definably a 24/7 job." Roseanne reported, "it
is not for the faint of heart" and Mary reported, "my
husband always says that 'any reasonable, sane person,
would not do it.'"
Varieties of skills are viewed as essential by Amy,
who stated that as leaders
You have to be a good communicator, they have
to be a good planner, good problem solvers
because as detailed a plan that you have
something is always going to occur and
interfere. Ah, I think they have to think-on-
their-feet, I think they have to exhibit the
same enthusiasm that you are hoping your
students are going to get from the study
abroad experience.

According to Randy, "you've got to anticipate, be
able to respond and you have to be pretty positive in
Mary keeping with her Jesuit mission stated her
leadership style as "compassion, capital responsibility,
compassion, again just...leading by example, I truly
believe in love, and I mean real love and believing in
the Jesuit tradition of teaching the whole person."
All Phase One respondents reported that their
leadership philosophy was shaped by the responsibility
that accompanies traveling with young adults in a
foreign country. Gordon stated, "You have to be anal
retentive, you have to be sticker for detail, you have
to be 110% responsible, you have to be able to stay
The ability to be an effective leader and balancing
the fact that travelers are over 18 and legal adults but
perhaps still somewhat immature can be difficult.
Adding to this difficulty is that the leader and the
home institutions are accountable for the student's
actions. Randy reported,

Toward the last trips, I wouldn't worry as
much because you learn that the participant
has to take some responsibility and you hold
them accountable for those responsibilities
and try not to be the end-all for everybody.
Roseanne said, "you have to know that 24 hours you
are on call. And you hope that you have enough life
skills that you can make good decisions," and "it is a
lot of work, I think that is the biggest thing I can say
about study abroad, it is a lot of work, it is a lot of
work." The philosophy that Roseanne had toward
leadership in a study abroad situation was that
responsibility was the first and most important trait a
leader has to possess.
Roseanne's self-proclaimed leadership style and
philosophy was "a control freak and cranky" and she
believed that sometimes her leadership had very little
impact on the students who were legal adults:
I remember one night the students had very
strict hours of curfew, 10 o' clock, at a
convent and so they are outside banging on the
doors, on the metal gates, ringing the
doorbells and we are saying to ourselves, "oh,
why us?" So, it is just that craziness that
takes over kids that does not allow really one
moment of rest while you are there.

Gordon related, "They (leaders) can't be anybody
who waffles. Ah, again, even if you do waffle I think
you have to present, to the students especially, very
direct feelings that you know what you are doing."
Leadership surrounding medical emergencies weighed
heavily on the minds of the group leaders. Four of the
five Phase One respondents had experienced at least one
serious medical emergency involving students' while
abroad. Gordon had a male student who binge drank and
slipped into diabetic shock, Randy was with a student
with a ruptured appendix, Mary sat in a hospital room
after a student had shattered his wrist, and Roseanne
had a male student break both of his ankles in a fall.
One Phase Two respondent reported,
We had a student with epilepsy so profound
that she had a computer chip implanted in her
skull...she was caught in a cycle and had to
be hospitalized. The Spanish doctors were not
even familiar with the computer chip
Gordon stated, "I mean these are the things as a study
abroad leader you lay, you stay awake at night thinking

Summary of Question #4. The leaders in Phase One
and Phase Two reported that an effective leader should
be able to understand potential problems, be able to
lead and discipline adult students and discipline, and
have the ability to cope with medical emergencies.
The leadership philosophy that a study abroad
leader holds is unique to their personal experiences and
this researcher found that respondents of both phases of
the study might not have had a formal, verbal method of
articulating a leadership statement; they did practice
and hold important the above listed leadership
qualities. Amy stated in frustration when asked what
she felt were good leadership traits for a study abroad
leader, "I know this is a leadership thesis, but why
don't you tell me some leadership traits." While Amy
may not have had the language to verbalize formal
traits, she indeed exhibited all the traits mentioned
above and showed great empathy and concern for her
students while abroad and stated that her personal
philosophy would be to simply "be there."

In this chapter, summaries and'interpretations,
theoretical foundations, will be presented and
connections to the conceptual framework will be made.
Finally, the implications for the practice and
suggestions for future research will be made. Data from
this study support the assertion that there are common
motivators, self-perceptions, roles, and leadership
philosophies held by the respondents of both Phase One
and Phase Two of this study.
Question #1
1. Are there common motivators shared by study
abroad leaders?
Question #1 focused on the elements that motivate
study abroad group leaders to develop, lead, and
continue to travel abroad. While the literature
specific to study abroad revealed very little, the

literature about motivations for faculty to perform
in the classroom was relevant.
According to Leonard, et al., (1995) there are five
main motivators for faculty:
1. Instrumental Motivation
2. Intrinsic Process Motivation
3. Goal Internalization
4. Internal Self Concept-based Motivation
5. External Concept-based Motivation
This research suggests that each of these five
motivators impacted faculty who traveled abroad.
Student Growth
Goal internalization is tied to a person's value
system and their own moral compass and participants of
both Phase One and Phase Two reported that they were
concerned for mental well-being and personal
achievements of their travelers.
Randy, Gordon, Mary, Roseanne, and Amy had
approximately 75 years collective study abroad
experience between them. Their excursions took them

across the globe. While the details of each trip
varied, the common intrinsic motivation of student
growth was consistently important. All five of-the
Phase One participants stated that student growth was
important to them as study abroad group leaders. Phase
Two respondents stated that one motivation was student
growth. However, faculty may not always have a direct
infliience on student growth. Growth happens within the
student as they navigate through foreign streets,
restaurants, and interact with their foreign peers Helms
& Thibadoux (1992).
Helms & Thibadoux (1992) believe that being abroad
encourages student growth by helping the student develop
higher self-confidence, acquiring tolerance to those who
do not speak their language, and an understanding of the
importance of knowing world history and politics.
Going abroad with students allows the faculty
member to enhance the student's growth by drawing upon
what Razzano (1996) identifies as "authentic materials"
and "authentic teaching aids." Amy believed that
assisting students in the classroom in becoming familiar

with works of art they will encounter abroad also
increases their growth because they then have a point of
reference for understanding when they see authentic
works of art. She stated:
I used to have people gathered around the
painting in a museum and point things out and
now I don't do that at all. I let them go
through at their own pace and when I see them
looking at something then I will go over and
see what they are seeing. I have given over
the discussion of things to them much more
because, to them it should be something that
they are familiar with. It is just refreshing
their memory. We are teaching objects of art
and architecture we know that they will see on
the trip. Hopefully, there is familiarity in
it. I think that a lot of the thrill about
going to these museums is not so much seeing
art for the first time, but in recognizing
things that you know and realizing that you
are there with the original. That is what a
lot people saywow, this is the real one.
Personal Growth
Internal Self Concept-based Motivation states that
a person is driven by the knowledge that they can be
helpful in the outcome of a given task, and all of the
Phase One respondents believed that their task as group
leader assisted their students in having a enriching and
successful trip abroad.

Randy stated that when embarking on a trip with
students, one must remember that there are "pretty
wholesome" motivations the task, meaning that he
believed that people took on the task of leader for more
altruistic reasons than any other. Mahan and Stachowski
(1985, p. 9) stated that when faculty go abroad they
experience growth because travel enriches the faculty
members global or "pluralistic outlook." Razzano (1996)
stated that faculty who went abroad returned to the
United States with and reported that their teaching was
enhanced because of travel abroad.
As faculty members who have traveled with students
abroad and then returned to their classrooms, both Phase
One and Phase Two respondents believed that their
teaching had been impacted and changed. One Phase Two
respondent stated:
As a teacher of language and an immigrant
myself, I feel young Americans need to be
exposed to other cultures as often as

An interesting motivator that developed from Question #1
among Phase One respondents was the emergence of
personal relationships; each one referred to the
camaraderie between themselves, colleagues, and students
as important. Just as important were the relationships
that developed and became deeper with their peers and
faculty who traveled with them from home institutions.
Financial Rewards
All five of the Phase One respondents stated the
financial advantages of travel with students as an
important factor in motivating them to undertake the
task of group leader. Phase Two respondents were not as
clear about their financial motivations but it did play
some part in that group's motivation. Faculty who
travel with students abroad have the cost of their
expenses (hotel, flight, ground transportation, etc)
folded into the student cost, thus making the journey
affordable to the faculty who may or may not be drawing
a salary for the time of the trip.

Both Phase One and Phase Two respondents confirmed
the importance of Instrumental Motivation, which is tied
to monetary rewards and explains those who reported that
the reduced financial burden was a motivator for leading
students abroad.
External Concept-based Motivation addresses the
need for a person to be accepted by a group while
striving for the greater good of the group. All Phase
One respondents and several Phase Two respondents
reported that they examined their leadership either
abroad or upon their return. How they worked within the
group dynamic and fostered an educational and cultural
enriching experience for their students was evaluated.
Question #2
2. How does the study abroad leader believe his or
her prior experience affects his or her self-perception
as a leader?
The question regarding prior experience was
deliberately broad. Prior experiences that often shape
a leader extend to their childhoods and young adult

years. Brookfield (1995), Kegan (1982), and Kotter
(1988) discuss that the life cycle is adaptable and
shapes the whole person. Hotter's modified chart,
figure 1.1 (See pg. 12) points to life stages that
influence a leader.
Every trip that a leader takes abroad has fluidness
about it. While no two trips are ever the same, even in
the instance of repeated itineraries, prior experiences
with a location can give the leader skills to handle
unforeseen events. Although the respondents stated that
their perceptions of themselves had not changed, it
appeared that with each subsequent trip they felt more
confident, calm, and relaxed. Kegan (1996) suggests
that this process is to be expected as experiences
continue to shape a person throughout their life.
Leaders continue to grow through their own travel abroad
Question #3
3. What is the study abroad leader's perception of
his or her role as a group/educational leader?

Leadership as situational and authority-based
guides the discussion of the results for this question.
Senge refers to situational leadership as learning
driven (1999). While leadership in a study abroad
situation is shaped by the unique situations
encountered, the perspective of the learning while
leading cannot be ignored. Viewing the role of a study
abroad leader from a learner perspective fit well with
the results of this study. The four main roles the
respondents discussed were itinerary planner, teacher,
learner, and as disciplinarian. Common themes were:
being adaptable, being able to adjust to changing
situations such as different personality types, illness
and challenges such as strikes, political challenges,
legal, and logistics.
Keegan (1982) believed that as a person moves
through life they change and adapt to new situations
where each experience teaches the individual to be a
learner driven leader. The researcher's own personal
experiences confirmed that authoritative leaders were
less effective and that one must be adaptive and caring