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This session begins with a brief overview of the major trends in contemporary education-abroad research and an assessment of the major methodological and design challenges. We'll briefly look at the major theoretical models that traditionally have informed education-abroad research and conceptual frameworks from related disciplines that may further extend this research. Commonly used instruments are discussed in the context of measuring outcomes. Notable gaps in existing research and needed directions will be discussed. This session will be particularly relevant for both U.S.- and internationally based educators interested in establishing a research agenda for U.S. education abroad.