As you survey the more than 190 study abroad programs and 150 global internships available to UO students, you may find yourself overwhelmed by the sheer variety on offer. However, there are a number of important considerations as you explore the available programs, and taking these into account may help you focus your attention on just a few programs, making your decision much easier.
Some UO programs are designed for UO students with particular majors or minors, and there may be one that fits your area of study. On the other hand, many programs offer courses of interest to students in several different fields. To simplify the issue, you might opt to search for program offerings by major or field of study, using Advanced Search. Major information also appears on the country map pages, in the program list in the lefthand navigation menu. Where it says “most fields of study,” follow the link to the host university website for more information.
While many programs are open to everyone with at least sophomore standing (45+ credits) at the time of departure on the program, some programs are limited to students with at least junior standing (90+ credits). Also, there are a few programs for which freshmen are eligible to apply. In addition, most programs require at least a 2.50 overall GPA, although some programs may have a much higher minimum GPA requirement. Be sure to check out the eligibility requirements for each program that interests you and plan accordingly. Each program brochure includes a section called “Admission & Preparation,” which includes eligibility information.
Some of our programs allow for rapid progress in the UO langauge sequences, offering the option to complete two sequence terms in one term of enrollment, or sometimes even three sequence terms. You will find language-immersion programs in countries that speak Chinese, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Russian, and Spanish. For more information, feel free to consult the appropriate program coordinator.
There are several different kinds of programs among those offered by the UO. Some programs allow you to study alongside host nationals at a local university, taking classes taught either in English or the host national language (or a mix, with some classes in English). In other programs, you may be part of a close-knit group of students taking the same or similar classes and traveling together to several sites around your local area or the country of study. Read more about the types of programs offered. In general, exchanges and OUS (Oregon University System) exchanges accommodate direct enrollment in local courses. AHA (UO Center) programs and UO Global Seminars programs usually involve studying together with a group from the US, though some programs involve language course work with other students from outside the host country. SIT and Wildlands programs are field-based and include only North American students in the classrooms, though there is a lot of field interaction with host nationals. CIEE programs tend to blend the US study center environment with access to courses at host universities. And IE3 Global Internships are full-time professional experiences, often completely individualized for UO participants.
The kinds and number of courses offered vary widely among the different programs offered. You may find that the courses that best meet your needs are in a different site or even a different country from what you originally had intended to choose. To learn about the courses available in your program, first read through the materials available online on this website, then follow the links from the program brochure to the foreign university’s own website. If you can’t find course information online, ask the program coordinator or a study abroad adviser to help. You can read lists of the courses already approved from each partner university in this website.
All UO-sponsored study abroad and global internship programs earn you “residence” credits that are listed directly on your UO transcript. This means that you are not transferring the credits from another school but actually earning them directly through the UO. Because of this policy, even seniors are able to study abroad without worrying about the requirement that 45 of your last 60 credits must be earned at the UO. This policy also means that most forms of UO financial aid may be applied to the costs of studying or interning abroad.
In UO-sponsored programs (as opposed to other programs abroad that are not sponsord by the UO), you are far more likely to earn directly applicable credits toward your major(s), minor(s), language requirements or general requirements. In many cases, we can give you a good idea of how the credits will apply toward your degree before you depart on the program.
People often worry that study abroad programs are only for students with advanced foreign language skills, or people whose studies focus on language or international studies. Many UO-sponsored programs offer courses that cater to students in particular majors, and these programs generally provide instruction in English. In addition, some programs are direct exchanges with foreign universities that offer courses in English in a broad range of fields and subjects. You can register for courses taught in English in locations that you may not have considered - like Finland, or Thailand.
Even if you don’t see what you’re looking for among our sponsored programs, come in for advising or email a coordinator. We may be able to help you find an existing program that works for you. Some students have designed their own internships, for example, in the IE3 Global Internships program, and many academic programs can accommodate independent study courses or other special projects. Although this may take a little extra effort to set up for yourself, it will certainly be easier than establishing a relationship with a whole new institution, only to have to try to transfer your work back to the UO later!