提携校間の夏期交換留学プログラムの意義と可能性 : 留学形態の多様化に向けて
The Effectiveness and Possibility of A Summer Student-Exchange Program Between Sister Schools : For Various Types of Study Abroad
This paper examines the effectiveness of a summer student-exchange program between sister schools. Tokyo University of Agriculture and Technology (TUAT) has been running a summer student-exchange program with its sister school, Purdue University (Purdue) since 1992. This program has provided students with the motivation to pursue research in their major, and an opportunity to create good relationships between students at sister schools. This success is made possible by the establishment of an academic purpose for the program and the systematic support from the two schools. Generally, summer study-abroad programs can provide students with opportunities to enjoy intercultural experiences in a foreign country without disturbing their regular course work. However, there is a danger that a short-term summer program without a specific purpose may give students little sense of achievement. We, therefore, have set an academic purpose, which is to broaden students' perspective on their major field of study, Agriculture, both academically and practically. This has established the program as part of academic activities. In addition, we offer many opportunities to the students at both universities to help each other in their respective countries and gain mutual understanding. Purdue students stay in Japan for six weeks during June and July, and then TUAT students leave for America and stay there for four weeks in August. The students host each other in turn. Also, during the stay, they expand their knowledge and experiences regarding their major through an internship or a farm stay. Interviews with the students returning from the program show that they have learned new aspects of their major, and have been motivated to study further. Moreover, the students from both universities keep in touch with each other after the program. This program has proved to be meaningful both for the students' major study and the sister-school relationship.