The Effect of Study Abroad Homestay Placements: Participant Perspectives and Oral Proficiency Gains

Authors


Abstract

Although the study abroad homestay context is commonly considered the ideal environment for language learning, host-student interactions may be limited. The present study explored how language development of students of Spanish, Mandarin, and Russian related to student and host family perspectives on the homestay experience. The study used pretest and posttest Simulated Oral Proficiency Interviews to investigate student oral proficiency gains and surveys to examine beliefs of these students (n = 152) and their hosts (n = 87). Students and families were generally positive about the homestay, with significant variation based on language. A significant relationship was found between students' oral proficiency gains and their being glad to have lived with a host family. Significant correlations were also found between students' language learning satisfaction and their satisfaction with the homestay.

Ancillary