Scan and click through the QUESTIONS ASKED AND ANSWERED IN THE DECISION MAKING PROCESS
- Explore the Education Abroad website.
- Schedule an information meeting with the Education Abroad Coordinator via email.
- Email the program leaders directly with specific questions.
- Apply on-line to the program of your choice.
- Once accepted into a program, meet with an OIP advisor for registration, financial aid, and other questions about the connection between SOU and your sojourn abroad.
QUESTIONS ASKED AND ANSWERED
IN THE DECISION MAKING PROCESS
Do I know my study abroad program options?
The first type is a Reciprocal Exchange program where you enroll at a foreign university and earn SOU credit, and pay SOU tuition and fees. These programs are generally the least expensive options.
The second type is a Transfer Credit program in which you study abroad with an affiliated or non-affiliated program provider. You choose from courses offered at the host institution, and a transcript is sent to SOU for the course credit you earned, transferring back as graded or pass/fail, depending on the program site.
A third type of study abroad is to Research, Intern, or Volunteer abroad program. Some of these experiences can be credit bearing, but course approval must be confirmed before going abroad.
The fourth type is Faculty-led program, which involves studying at a host institution with a SOU professor and a group of SOU students, earning SOU credit, and paying SOU tuition and fees. These are held much less frequently than the other three options.
What experience am I looking for?
If you are looking to live abroad from a quarter to an academic year (note that some programs are on the semester system) attending a host university and receive letter grade credit, then you want a Reciprocal Exchange, where academic courses are similar to those at SOU.
If you want to study with a group of students from around the U.S. and around the world, and have more choices of excursions to attend, or you are unable to find a Reciprocal Exchange program that fits your course or location needs, then you want a Transfer Credit program.
Current Transfer Credit opportunities: Geo International
Finally, those of you who are looking for work experience, field based research programs, internships, or volunteer experience can search for a program beyond the traditional credit bearing study abroad experience.
Current SOU Intern and Volunteer opportunities: IE3 Global Internships.
Where in the world do I want to go?
Do you want to go to Western Europe, Eastern Europe, Asia, Africa, Pacific Islands, Australia, Central America, South America, the Caribbean, or another region of the world? Think about what you want to see and experience, what skills and knowledge you want to gain from living in a certain area of the world. Also, think about which culture(s) you would like to learn about.
Possibilities Arranged Geographically: SOU Education Abroad Programs
AHA International has specific guides to find a program by discipline,location, and length: Find an AHA Program
When do I want to go?
Do you want to leave for your study abroad during the summer, fall quarter, winter quarter, spring quarter, between quarters during winter break, or during spring break?
Nearly all programs operate year around, although some are only available during the summer.
Possibilities Specifically Designed for Summer: SOU Summer Programs
GEO International has specific guides to find a program by discipline, location, and length: Find a GEO Program
Are there programs for my major?
A few of the programs are linked to majors or minors, especially in foreign languages.
More common, however, students earn credit for university studies and/or elective credits.
Making sure that you do not lose time in your progress toward a degree is perhaps the most important reason to plan your international experience a year in advance. As with all academic planning, it is essential you work with your academic advisor when considering a study abroad program.
AHA International has specific guides to find a program by discipline, location, and length: Find an AHA Program
How do I find a program?
There are literally hundreds of program choices, making the selection of the one right one for you seem at times like a daunting task.
Begin by exploring the OIP Education Abroad website.
Attend one of the open information meetings held on the first and third Mondays and Tuesdays of each month at 12:30 PM in the Office of International Programs, SU 321. Peer Counselors and Advisors are available at those times that would be happy to talk to you about available opportunities.
By far the best way to obtain information about a specific program is to email the experts who sponsor it. Each program has an email link to ask questions and receive answers to your specific queries.
Complete the on-line application form for the program with Oregon Abroad, AHA International, or for one of the six direct exchange programs. Oregon Abroad and AHA will notify OIP when your application is complete.
Once you have been accepted into a program by Oregon Abroad or AHA International, make an appointment with OIP to review your plans. You will complete the required paperwork for SOU to process financial aid and ensure that your participation in the program will be properly credited upon completion.
Will study abroad delay my graduation?
Study abroad will not delay your graduation date if you plan your education abroad experience well in advance. With proper planning and consulting with your academic advisor during the exploration process, studying abroad doesn’t have to delay your expected graduation date.
Depending on your program selection, some programs will issue academic credits immediately after the program while others might take a while to process.
Do I have time to travel on my own?
Depending on the program type and number of weeks in country, you may have time to plan your own trips. Some programs may allow you to travel early or stay after the program end date.
What credits do I want to earn? How do I find the course listings online?
Like SOU, foreign universities have many more courses listed in their catalogs than can be taught each term.
To determine courses available and credits: IE3 Global Internships
Do I need to know the language?
The majority of Transfer Credit Programs, unless they are intensive language programs, offer study abroad classes taught in English. If you are taking language courses abroad, a basic understanding may be needed. Courses may also be taught in English at the foreign institution, but some universities will require you to be proficient in the host country language to take courses.
How far in advance do I need to plan and apply to a program?
Will it cost more to go study abroad than to study in Ashland?
To live in another country at times may be cheaper, especially over a longer period of time, a quarter to a year. Some areas that have low costs of living are Latin America, Asia, and Africa. Other areas like Europe and Australia, tend to be more expensive.
You should research what expenses are included in each program and then put it into perspective given the incredible personal and educational opportunities. Keep in mind that you will have additional costs such as travel to the country,in-country travel, souvenirs, passport, immunizations, etc.
How do I get funding? Are there scholarships available?
You can start applying for funding up to a year in advance of your study abroad departure.
For information on scholarships for Education Abroad: Scholarships
For information on financial aid for Education Abroad: Financial Aid
Is study abroad safe?
Overall, yes. Making good decisions about your activities while abroad is an important part of staying safe. Just like in the U.S., the consumption of illegal drugs or too much alcohol, unsafe sex, walking alone, or drawing attention to yourself may put you in a risky situation. Staying safe is of the utmost importance in a study abroad program. For more information please see the Safety information on our website.
Are there locations where I cannot study abroad?
Destinations around the world that are identified by the Department of State with travel warnings are not available as study abroad locations for undergraduates; credit cannot be earned and students will be unable to access their financial aid or scholarship support.
Please refer to the US State Department website for information.
Can I talk to other SOU students that have studied abroad on my program?
Former study abroad students that have returned from the program may be contacted through Education Abroad Peer Advisors or a professor to speak with students regarding their experience abroad. Former students are a valuable resource and can share their experiences abroad.