Theses and Dissertations

Issuing Body

Mississippi State University


Molina, Danielle K.

Committee Member

Cutts, Qiana M.

Committee Member

Taylor, Leonard D.

Committee Member

Moyen, Eric A.

Date of Degree


Document Type

Dissertation - Open Access


Higher Education Leadership

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D)


College of Education


Department of Educational Leadership


Faculty who teach at the college level are often responsible for their own pedagogical training and development, and leading a short-term study abroad program may be one strategy for helping faculty with this development. This study explores the experiences of faculty who have led short-term study abroad programs and provides insight into how the experiences align with experiential learning models and ways that they can lead to pedagogical development. Nine faculty members were interviewed and asked questions about their teaching backgrounds, their introduction to study abroad, and their experiences related to teaching and learning while abroad. The findings show that faculty have opportunities for learning while leading programs abroad and that the learning opportunities could spur pedagogical change and improvement. To ensure that faculty learn from their experiences, they should progress through a formal experiential learning process that requires them to reflect on and conceptualize their experiences and then plan to implement changes. A model for guiding faculty through this process is proposed. Recognizing and reflecting on experiences leading programs abroad has the potential to impact faculty teaching, and a formalized experiential learning process will ensure that faculty fully realize the benefits of these experiences through improvements in their teaching.