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This chapter provides a brief survey of recent research on language learning in study abroad, explaining the rationale for the current volume. Many studies focus on outcomes, variously defined as holistic constructs, skills, or aspects of communicative competence. There are also many studies documenting the qualities of the study abroad experience from the perspective of students. Fewer in number are the studies adopting holistic approaches to language learning as a dialogic and situated affair, studies examining the subjective aspects of language development in intercultural contexts, and research offering the potential for comparative perspectives through scrutiny of less-commonly studied encounters of students and local communities abroad. Following this introductory survey, the author provides an overview of the volume.


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