Publication details [#63030]

Martínez-Arbelaiz, Asunción, Elisabet Areizaga and Carmen Camps. 2017. An update on the study abroad experience: language choices and social media abroad. The International Journal of Multilingualism 14 (4) : 350–365.
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While increasing numbers of university students study abroad in diverse European countries, little is known about the communicative practices eased by this exchange situation in an increasing globalised world. This inquiry describes the language-linked practices of 37 Erasmus students in Donostia-San Sebastián, Spain. The paper employed used a questionnaire to tap into the students’ routines concerning their use of social media, mass media, resources for study or work, and face-to-face interactions. Specifically, it tried to discover how often these students employed these different forms of communication and which language they used: their native language, Spanish or English. Results display that social media platforms like Facebook or Skype are employed in students’ native language more often than in Spanish or English. WhatsApp, however, is equally employed in the three languages, which may indicate the creation of an international multilingual community. Traditional sources of input, like newspapers, TV, and radio, have a reduced presence in any language. Finally, the predominance of English in academic tasks indicates the Englishisation of higher education [Coleman, J. A. (2006). English-medium teaching in European higher education. Language Teaching, 39(1), 1–14]. These findings have important implications for pedagogical interventions and the design of materials for language teaching abroad. KEYWORDS: Mass media use, social media use, study