This article reviews literature from 2006-2016 on study abroad (and other forms of travel) to investigate frameworks that create the best plausible opportunities for transformative learning within study-abroad experiences. According to the literature reviewed, in order to be considered travel for transformation, the travel experience must respect the values and knowledge of the host culture, acknowledge the presence of differences in privilege among study-abroad participants, and utilize environmentally sustainable practices. In addition, the duration, purpose of travel, and degree of immersion plays a significant role in perspective transformation. A repeated benefit to study-abroad programs among the articles indicate that study abroad is better positioned for transformative learning than the traditional classroom environment is that it situates the student in a new context where the place, culture, people, and hopefully the language are “other.” While almost all of the literature reviewed for this article included cautions to avoid essentializing and exploiting the host culture, very little could be found on the possible negative outcomes to participants—and especially the host culture—when students from the United States study in other contexts. Therefore, the author recommends that future research investigate the possibility of study abroad as exploitation of both the host culture and the participants of the study-abroad program.



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