How to Choose a Program

It is important to determine what you want to get out of an experience abroad. If you would like to know what past Study Abroad participants' thought of their experience abroad, take a look at these reflections. Also, think about what is important to you. Below is a guideline that can help you identify your goals.  

 

Academic

  • Do you want to learn in a classroom or in the field?

  • What kind of courses do you want to fulfill abroad?

    • Major/Minor

    • General Education/Issues

    • Internship/Independent Study

    • Learn a new language

 

Career Path

  • What is your dream job? How can Studying Abroad help you achieve that goal?

  • What activities abroad will make your resume stand out?

  • What skills do you want to develop abroad to help you with your future career?

    • Language

    • Maturity

    • Flexibility

    • Intercultural competence

    • Internship experience

 

Logistics

  • How long do you want to Study Abroad?

    • Academic Year 

    • Fall/Winter Semester

    • Spring/Summer Semester (Typically 2-8 weeks)

  • What is your budget?

    • Program cost varies by destination

    • Be flexible with your location and realistic about your budget

  • Where would you like to live?

    • On campus housing

    • Apartment

    • Home stay

 

Geographic Interest

  • What region of the world are you interested in?

  • What culture do you want to learn more about?

  • If you're planning on studying a language, have you considered all of your options?

    • German: Austria, Switzerland, and others

    • French: Morocco, Madagascar, Belgium, and others

    • Mandarin: Taiwan, China, and others

    • Spanish: Mexico, Chile, Costa Rica, Peru, and others

 

Prioritize 

Now that you've identified the goals of your Study Abroad experience, it's time to be realistic. Most likely you will not be able to find a program that completely fits your needs, this is why you should prioritize your goals. Try ranking you goals starting with 1 being the most important to you. For example, place 1 for budget if money is the most important factor in choosing a program for you. 

To find a program that fits you best, use the Program Comparison Chart to help you visualize the pros and cons of each program.

 

Page last modified March 10, 2014