Most exchange students now come to Scandinavian countries not because they are students of the languages of the countries concerned, but because they wish to experience study abroad and can do so in Scandinavia through the medium of English used as a lingua franca. This paper reports on a three-year study (2005-2007) of the language experiences and language-related attitudes of exchange students in Sweden and Denmark. The study includes some 240 subjects who were interviewed individually three times each during their stay in Scandinavia and who all, at the end of each interview, completed a simple vocabulary test and a picture description test. On this basis, the paper addresses issues such as the following: Though the incoming exchange students' studies are to be in the medium of English rather than Swedish/Danish, does language learning nevertheless still play a role in their motivation for going on exchange? If so, which languages do they hope to learn or improve? Do they in fact make progress, or believe they make progress, in their language skills? Do they encounter any difficulties related to language use during their stay? Who do they interact with, and what languages do they use for their interactions? What contributions do these exchanges make to European goals of promoting 'mother tongue plus two'? The paper sheds some light upon these questions and considers the implications of the answers found thus far.
udvekslingsstuderende; Skandinavien; studieophold i udlandet; motiver; sproglige færdigheder; exchange students; Scandinavia; study abroad; motivation; language skills