As a worldwide leader in international education, the Carlson Global Institute systematically measures how studying abroad impacts students’ global competence. Since 2011, Carlson MBA students have completed the Global Mindset Inventory (GMI): a statistically reliable and valid measure of intercultural sensitivity and awareness. The assessment was designed to provide greater insights and recommendations for students to increase their self-awareness, passion for diversity, and ability to understand and communicate more effectively across cultures.

For the first time this year, the 3M Foundation provided funds to support this crucial research.

“We’re providing over $12 million a year [to education]. In order to keep doing that, we need to understand which elements of the curriculum are most impactful, why they’re effective, and how we can continue to accelerate students’ learning,” says 3M Strategic Initiatives Specialist Matt Ladhoff, ’16 MBA.

The GMI has been praised by peer institutions and firms as a valuable tool for measuring an individual’s global mindset—a trait that employers, 3M included, increasingly demand from their leaders.

“In order to be successful, our business leaders must have diverse experiences and perspectives. Studying abroad better prepares students for future opportunities at 3M and in the larger business community,” says Ladhoff.

Upon reviewing recent GMI results, the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB) recognized the Carlson School’s efforts to demonstrate what students learn from studying abroad. AACSB approved the GMI as an effective tool for assuring learning objectives in global education.

“Our partners have consistently expressed a need for employees who are able to adapt quickly to change, knowledgeable about various cultures, able to work effectively anywhere in the world, and able to come up with creative solutions to problems—whether here or elsewhere,” says Assistant Dean of Global Initiatives Anne D’Angelo. “The GMI provides evidence that studying abroad creates those effects.”