The Effects of Internship Abroad Curricular Experiential Interactions on the Cultural Intelligence of Program Participants

Lisa Lambert Snodgrass, Purdue University


In recent years, the demand for more interculturally competent and culturally intelligent candidates has risen. Employers seek workers who are highly adaptable to the global marketplace. International internship abroad programs offer a ripe training ground for college students to gain valuable international and intercultural experience. This study examined the effects of internship abroad experiential curricular interactions on the cultural intelligence of program participants. The objectives of the study included: (1) Determine if there is a significant difference between the pre-test and post-test Cultural Intelligence Scale (CQS) scores of program participants after completing an internship abroad program; and (2) Determine if the CQS subscale pre-test and post-test scores of participants reflect cultural intelligence growth with respect to program design and implementation of critical culture elements of critical knowledge, critical thinking, critical community, and critical pedagogy. The participants in this study were college students from a large Midwestern university who enrolled in an experiential internship abroad program. The findings indicated there was significant growth in cultural intelligence in the experiential programs that incorporated elements of critical culture, including critical knowledge, critical thinking, critical pedagogy, and critical community.




Greenan, Purdue University.

Subject Area

Multicultural Education|Education|Curriculum development

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