An important objective of educational travel programs is to teach students how to bridge cultural distance. Research remains inconclusive to what extent and under what circumstances students actually learn from educational travel experiences. This paper examines the influence of cultural distance on the perceived learning effects of the overseas internship, specifically cross-cultural competencies and management skills. It is shown that asymmetric cultural distance and psychic distance have a negative relationship with the perceived learning of management skills and interaction with locals. Students traveling to low-income countries in Sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia in particular tend to face difficulties.

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ERIM Article Series (EAS)
Annals of Tourism Research: a social sciences journal
Erasmus Research Institute of Management

van 't Klooster, E., van Wijk, J., Go, F., & van Rekom, J. (2008). Educational travel. The Overseas Internship. Annals of Tourism Research: a social sciences journal, 35(3), 690–711. doi:10.1016/j.annals.2008.05.003