Preparing to Study Abroad

Preparing to study abroad requires a fair amount of self-reflection. Consider your reasons for studying abroad, what you're looking for in a location, and what you hope to gain from the experience (e.g. language acquisition, resume building, cultural experience, personal development, etc.).

Review Partnership Websites

Review the websites of American Institute for Foreign Study (AIFS)Central College Abroad (CCA),  Council on International Education Exchange (CIEE)Internships in Francophone Europe (IFE)International Programs for Service Learning (IPSL), and International Studies Abroad (ISA) (Tokyo program only) to find out information about the programs they offer, including dates and locations, coursework, internships, etc.

Attend an Information Session

The information session is your first step in the study abroad process. You'll learn about different program options, the step-by-step process for planning a successful study abroad experience and about the ways we can assist you. You'll also hear from students who have recently returned from study abroad programs.

Obtain or Renew Your Passport

You must have a current, valid passport to study abroad.

Learn About Countries of Interest

Do you know anything about the people, government, cities, culture, religion, etc.? Knowing a little more about locations will help you to make an educated decision about your study abroad destination.

Visit the Study Abroad Office

Pick up brochures and discuss programming options. Make an appointment with the director of study abroad for more in-depth program information.

Discuss Finances

Meet with parents and the Office of Financial Aid to determine the best way to fund a program and begin budgeting. While discussing issues related to finances, please consider the following items: program cost (housing, tuition, meals, etc.), international travel costs (international airfare, ground transportation), in-country travel costs (excursions not included in program cost), passport fees, visa fees, inoculations. In addition to your financial aid, you may be also be able to secure scholarships to cover these costs.

Meet with Your Academic Advisor

Discuss how to integrate study abroad coursework with degree requirements. Courses offered abroad vary greatly depending on the program. Students are frequently able to take courses that fulfill Core Requirements, especially courses in Perspectives Areas 1, 3, 5 and Cultural Contrasts.

Review the Core Courses Taken Abroad [pdf]. When you submit your application to the Registrar's Office, they will review it and indicate if the selected courses count toward the Core.

Depending on the program, you may be able to take courses to count towards your major. Be sure to discuss the courses offered in your program of choice with your major advisor to see if they apply to the major. In order for a course to count toward your major, you must have the department chair's signature of approval on your application form.