UO STUDY ABROAD PROGRAMS

ADVISING STUDENTS

This page has been designed to help faculty and advisers who are advising students considering one or more study abroad programs. The information here is organized alphabetically by topic.

If you do not find the answer to your questions here, please feel free to call Study Abroad Programs for additional information: (541) 346-3207.

 

Choosing a Program

There are many things to consider when advising students about choosing a program. Some of the major considerations include:

  • Length/term(s) of program: some program run for one UO term, some are very short-term (for example, three weeks in the summer), and some last for entire semesters (sometimes two UO terms, depending on scheduling), or academic years. Some of the programs in the Southern Hemisphere follow the Southern academic year calendar (February to November).
  • Student’s academic goals: is the student hoping to make rapid progress in their academic major(s) while abroad, complete foreign language requirements, gain internship experience and credits, or simply have an immersion experience in a different cultural setting? There are programs available to help meet most students’ goals.
  • Cost: there are varying scales and models of program cost structures, from programs that are comparable to total costs for on-campus studies (with living costs in Eugene), to programs that are considerably more expensive than on-campus study. Students (and you) should remember, though, that most forms of financial aid apply to the required costs in approved UO study abroad programs, and also that there are limits to federal grants and loans.
  • Accommodation options: some programs offer only one guaranteed form of accommodation, while others have the full range. The three major options are: residence halls, home-stays with host families, and shared or studio apartments.

Crediting

  • All courses taken in approved UO study abroad programs receive UO credit, just as if taken in residence at the Eugene campus. Therefore, UO seniors are eligible to study abroad and do not need to worry about the credits taken abroad causing them to fail to meet the residency requirement.
  • Courses in approved UO study abroad programs are evaluated for crediting by OIA staff and the respective academic departments. The OIA program coordinator determines the total number of credits awarded, as authorized by the Registrar’s office, and the academic departments determine the course level, plus whether and how courses apply to departmental requirements. A representative of the Registrar’s office determines whether and how courses apply toward general education requirements.
  • For students who directly enroll in partner universities, course-crediting evaluation occurs while the student is abroad. Faculty should advise students in advance about how courses will likely be counted by the relevant academic department, but the final processing occurs after students send in course information (after prompting) from their study abroad site.

Disabilities

  • Students with disabilities often assume that they cannot study abroad, but this assumption is faulty. While there may be some practical limitations, particularly for students with mobility-related disabilities, there are workable options for most students, even if not always their first choice of program site.
  • Students with documented learning or reading disabilities should consult with a Study Abroad Program Coordinator early in the planning process. In some programs, all instruction is arranged by the UO and/or other U.S.-based academic institutions and, therefore, the ADA is fully applicable, and students may receive essentially the same academic accommodations to which they are accustomed.
  • Students who would like to request accommodations in study abroad programs must provide documentation of their disability status and the approved accommodations up to nine months in advance of their program start date, so that the OIA and its partners have time to make arrangements. Every reasonable effort is made to provide adequate accommodations, though not all accommodations are reasonable in every study site.
  • Students with mobility-related and certain other disabilities may need to prepare themselves for cultural differences in disability accommodation. In many cultures, rather than providing infrastructure for people with disabilities to be fully independent (as in the North American model), local residents instead assume some communal responsibility for accommodating people on a case-by-case basis. For example, in India, passers-by will usually carry someone in a wheelchair up a flight of stairs, over a curb without accessible cutouts, or onto a bus or train.
  • Students with mobility and other disabilities may also benefit from the expertise of Mobility International, located right here in Eugene. http://www.miusa.org/
  • Students with vision-related or similar disabilities who need the assistance of an aid animal should be advised that aid animals often require their own visas and are simply not permitted in some countries. Animals also present additional challenges for finding suitable housing in many programs. Students with aid animals should start talking with a Study Abroad Program Coordinator up to one year before they hope to study abroad. (Note: Pets are not allowed in study abroad programs, only certified aid animals.)

Financial Aid

  • Financial aid is applicable toward the required costs of all approved UO study abroad programs. (Personal travel and entertainment are not required costs and cannot be covered by financial aid funds.)
  • The Office of Student Financial Aid and Scholarships will automatically adjust the financial aid award packages of UO students participating in approved UO study abroad programs once the OIA has registered the students for the study abroad credits. For many students, this can lead to an increase in the amount of aid funding offered (especially loans).
  • There are limits on the “good” sources of federal aid (federal grants and federally guaranteed student loans), but students with additional need have the option to use external student loans and/or parent loans (secured through private lenders) to meet the costs of studying abroad.
  • Students should not anticipate covering 100% of the costs of studying abroad through financial aid, since aid funds are insufficient to cover the total budgets of most study abroad programs. The limits on aid funds are particularly low for undergraduate students in the summer term.
  • There are a number of special sources of funding (scholarships, etc.) specifically targeting students who study abroad. See our Financial Information section for more information.

General Questions

For students who have general questions about UO study abroad programs, you may refer them to Drop-In Advising (11:00 am to 2:00 pm weekdays during the regular teaching weeks of fall, winter, and spring terms, except for exams periods and breaks, and held in the EMU Mills International Center), or to make an advising appointment by calling (541) 346-3207.


Group/Multicultural Requirements

All UO students participating in UO-sponsored study abroad programs or global internships that are ten weeks or longer in duration will automatically meet the "International Cultures" (IC) multicultural requirement. In some cases, students in shorter programs may meet it as well. (Students selecting shorter programs should consult with their program coordinator for questions about the IC requirement.)

Students who need to complete other group and/or multicultural requirements while studying abroad should select pre-approved courses that are already designated as fulfilling these requirements. UO Study Abroad Programs uses the standard UO notations (>2, >IP, etc.) in its course equivalency sheets, to help students plan their progress in general education credits. Equivalency sheets are available in each program’s section of this website. Use the "Find a Program" link or the drop-down menus on the homepage to locate the chosen program.

Important: Students taking new courses while abroad (courses not yet approved for UO credit) should NOT anticipate meeting group or multicultural requirements with those new courses.


Internships

Students who would like to complete internships while abroad may choose from a full-time (12-credit-per-term) internship through the IE3 Global Internships program, or a handful of study programs that offer part-time internships in place of one or two courses.


Language Study/Prerequisites

Some approved UO study abroad programs require that students have anything from one term to four years of college-level course work (or the equivalent) in the local language prior to departure for the program. Many programs, however, have no formal language prerequisites – including some programs in countries in which English is not the national language. Information on language and other prerequisites may be found in the individual program’s brochure, available in this website.

Note: Students may apply prior to completing language requirements as long as they anticipate completing the requirement before the study abroad program begins.


Passports

Students considering study abroad options should be encouraged to apply for (or renew) their U.S. (or other) passports ASAP. Passports are required now for all countries, including Mexico and Canada! Students may begin at the passport website. Passports must be valid for 180 days beyond the return air travel date to the US.


Visas

Some countries require that students obtain student or other classifications of entry visas before leaving the US or immediately upon entering the host country. The OIA and/or the faculty member leading the program will provide students with general advice about visa application processes, but students are ultimately responsible for obtaining all necessary legal travel documents. It is also important to note that, for some countries, visa applications must be accompanied by a visa fee of anywhere from under $100 up to about $500, and that some countries require applicants to appear in person at a Consular, Embassy or other office, sometimes in major US cities like New York, Los Angeles, and San Francisco.