Publication Date



This paper utilizes primary source documents from the first officially sanctioned US study abroad programs in the 1920's to argue that the discourse about the first study abroad programs for US students was a break from the Grand Tour tradition of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. Instead, this paper suggests that study abroad represented an experimental and innovative approach to the acquisition of knowledge for US undergraduates. The discourse of those who created these programs and those who participated was distinct from the Grand Tour in three ways that are described in the paper as, distinct by design, distinct by omission and distinct by experience. These three areas of distinction refute the contemporary narrative that conflates the Grand Tour with study abroad.

Author Supplied Keywords

Study abroad, Grand Tour, Travel, Education, Tourism, US higher education, Education abroad


College students; Education, Higher--United States; Foreign study

Publication Information

International Journal of Tourism Anthropology, 2015, Volume 4, Issue 3, 238-251.

© 2015 Inderscience

Archived version is accepted manuscript.





Document Type

Journal Article

Included in

Education Commons