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2015, Cilt 5, Sayı 1, Sayfa(lar) 068-079
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DOI: 10.5961/jhes.2015.110
Academic Staff's Views About International Scholarships and Support Programs
M. Ertaç ATİLA1, Ö. Faruk ÖZEKEN2, Mustafa SÖZBİLİR3
1Erzincan University, Faculty of Education, Department of Primary Education, Erzincan, Turkey
2Ağrı İbrahim Çeçen University, Vocational School, Ağrı, Turkey
3Atatürk University, Kâzım Karabekir Faculty of Education, Department of Secondary Science and Mathematics Education, Erzurum, Turkey
Keywords: Higher Education Council, Scientific or Technological Research Council of Turkey, International scholarship, Study abroad, Academic staff

The aim of this study is to determine views of academic staff who have been to the United States in order to do a research study by means of scholarships and support programs provided by the Higher Education Council or Scientific or Technological Research Council of Turkey about the scholarship programs. The qualitative study is carried out as a holistic multiple case study research design. The data were gathered through semi-structured interviews from 10 academic staff who participated the scholarship program. Data were analyzed with content analysis technique. The results indicated that application process, time and financial resources were important for the preferences of academic staff in scholarship and support programs. The main reasons for applying the scholar program to undertake an international research study are grouped under three headings as academic, socio-cultural and foreign language improvements. The main influencing factors behind the researchers' preferences to go the United States are its' level of advancements in scientific research and peer influence. Concerning the duration of a research study in abroad the participants thought that 6 months to one year is adequate time and this time depends on the foreign language skills of the researchers, the field of study, subject and project. The main drawbacks of an international research study visit are the long waiting times for having the United States visa with no adequate support, the cost of health insurance and visa, lack of speaking foreign language skills, and adaptation time in the first arrival. As a result, the experienced participants suggested that the future scholarships have to cover health insurance; the researchers have to be supported for developing their foreign language skills and develop a clear research agenda and project prior to going abroad. .

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