Study Abroad 101
Steps to Success
- Browse programs on the EMU Study Abroad website
- Set goals and choose a program
- Meet with Study Abroad and Academic Advisors
- Research the budget and speak with financial aid
- Make a financial plan
- Make a learning plan (including cross-cultural learning)
- Experience the world
What type of study abroad programs are available?
The Office of Study Abroad offers a number of program options ranging from one week to a full academic year. The types of EMU-approved programs available are; Faculty-Led, Exchange, and Partner provider programs. Students may also participate on a non-EMU program, though credit transfer might be more difficult and financial aid and EMU scholarships may or may not be applicable to the non-EMU program. Students may not use Federal Financial Aid for direct enrollment in a foreign institution.
These programs are taught and led by EMU Faculty with a cohort of EMU students and guest students from other universities. Program lengths range from one week to one semester. Classes can range from pre-departure preparation for teaching abroad to those that are taught in the host country(ies) through an interactive style. Lectures may take place in museums, at inter-cultural events, and at historical and cultural sites. Since the credit is already vetted, and all financial aid and scholarships are usually applicable, these are usually quite easy to make a part of your academic career.
Semester or academic year programs are typically programs where students study abroad at one of our partner institutions as a full-time student earning transferable EMU credit.
- Direct Exchange programs may have limited numbers that we can send each semester, as they are based on available exchange numbers.
- All Exchange programs have eligibility criteria, but some programs do not place restrictions on how many students we send.
- Amenities: students will have access to dining halls, residences, fitness centers, and educational support resources depending on the program location. Classes are taught alongside host country students and other international students. Host university staff will provide academic, administrative, housing, social, and cultural support to students abroad.
- All students applying for Exchange programs must meet with a Study Abroad Advisor.
These are programs that have been approved by EMU for students to earn transferable EMU credit and use their EMU aid and scholarships. Classes are held in host institution facilities with other program participants. Partner administrative staff are located in close proximity to the host provider, and are responsible for supporting students’ academic programs, internship placements (if applicable), and other student services. Usually, all students meeting selection criteria can study at our partner provider programs.
How do I know what study abroad program is right for me?
Spend some time thinking about your goals before you begin your search.
- Think about why you are studying abroad and how your program will align with what you hope to achieve both personally and academically. Think about what skills you might gain in an International experience.
- Consider how long you would like to be abroad (one week, four weeks, a year?)
- Consider your finances realistically. Have you looked through the program costs and done a budgeting plan for your program?
- Please also check with your academic advisor to see what course work you have left that can be fulfilled abroad.
Make sure to speak with a Study Abroad advisor to consider your best options. We are here to help you through the entire process!
When can I study abroad? Can I only study abroad once?
Determining when the best time for you to study abroad largely depends on your current major, the type of program you are interest in, and what year you are. Most programs are open to students who have completed a semester at EMU and are in good standing. Some programs will have additional requirements to consider. Transfer students should speak with an APA advisor to determine their eligibility status.
There is no limit to the number of study abroad you are allowed to participate in.
How do I know if I am eligible for an EMU study abroad program?
All eligibility requirements can be found listed on the program’s brochure page on the website. If you are unsure of your eligibility to participate on a particular program, please contact us.
I haven’t studied a foreign language. Can I still study abroad?
Coursework in English is available on almost every EMU sponsored programs. Most programs do not require any prior host country language experience.
Can I study a foreign language while abroad?
EMU offers a number language immersion programs in French, German, Japanese, and Spanish. In addition, students have the option to study the language of the host country when participating on exchange or provider programs.
How early can I start applying? When is it too late to apply?
All program deadlines can be found on the program homepage. You are encouraged to apply and complete your application early. Most programs will be available for the upcoming cycle by Fall every year. At the start of the Fall semester, the programs for upcoming Winter Break, Winter Intersession, Summer and the following Fall should be listed online.
When applying for any Faculty-Led program all program deadlines are final unless a program deadline extension is given. This is so that hotels, logistics and payments may be made. For all other programs, it may be possible to apply after the program deadline, on a space available basis. Please contact the office in regards to if your program is still open to application.
Can students with only certain majors study abroad?
No. All majors can study abroad especially when planning ahead. Credits are offered for general education and elective credits, or for majors or minors. During the planning process, make sure to speak with both a Study Abroad advisor and Academic advisor to determine which program will best meet your academic and professional needs.
Will I need a visa?
Depending on the location and duration of your program, and your status as US citizen, some programs will require visas. Please refer to the program brochure page or contact our office for more information.
International students often require visas for countries that US citizens do not. Because it may take a while to process a visa, it is a good idea to plan and apply for a visa at least six months ahead of your projected study abroad date.
I am an EMU student, can I use my Financial aid and EMU scholarships?
Yes. All EMU study abroad programs are eligible for using your EMU Financial Aid and EMU Scholarships. Please print a budget sheet (available on every program page) and speak with a Financial Aid Advisor in determining your financial aid package for the term you are studying abroad. Though you may apply your aid, there is no guarantee that it will cover the entire cost of the program.
Is it expensive to study abroad?
Most financial aid and any EMU scholarship you receive may be applied to EMU sponsored study abroad programs – talk to your advisor in the Office of Financial Aid about your individual financial aid package. If you are a non-EMU student, we recommend starting with your home institution study abroad office.
Every program offers a budget sheet of exact and estimated costs. It is your responsibility to begin working on a plan for your program abroad.
The time to plan is the moment you have chosen a program. Do not wait until you are accepted to make a financial plan. You may miss critical deadlines, and lose out on scholarships and crowd-funding or other sources of financial support.
Will studying abroad for a semester/year cost more than a regular semester at EMU?
Tuition and housing on a long term program is generally comparable to a semester at EMU, but study abroad fees sometimes include extras such as airfare and visa. It is important to consider the program fee and budget accordingly. Faculty-led programs are relatively inexpensive and tuition and fees are the same you pay on campus.
What funding or scholarships are available for study abroad?
There are a wide variety of scholarships to help your bottom line. Some are specific to certain majors, or countries, or study abroad programs; others are open to a wide range of study abroad participants. There are EMU-specific scholarships and nationally-competitive scholarships. You should also check with your department and organizations in your community. Consider also alternative funding options such as fundraising, GoFundMe, etc. Please visit our Financial Aid and Scholarship pages for links to scholarships.
How do I register for the course(s)?
Once you have been accepted, completed post-acceptance forms and any other post acceptance requirements, you will be sent a CRN to register for the course(s)
How does billing work for my study abroad?
After you have registered for your study abroad course charges will be put on your account (E-bill). This will include a registration fee, program fee, and University tuition and fees. The due date for payment aligns with the University billing calendar, and all questions may be referred to Student Billing Services.
Can I use a payment plan?
Yes. Payment plan options can be set up through Student Business Services.
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