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Undergraduate Study at UW–Madison

Academic Programs Abroad

The Value of Study Abroad
Academic Credit and Eligibility
Costs and Affordability

Study abroad programs provide students with opportunities to gain the global competence vital in the twenty-first century. Each year UW–Madison sends more than 2,000 students on study abroad programs around the globe. Study abroad provides a unique learning environment that extends and enhances courses taken on the home campus.

International Academic Programs (IAP) serves as the primary study abroad office on campus, offering more than 210 programs in over 60 countries around the world. IAP program offerings, available to all majors, range from short-term, faculty-led opportunities to intensive language study, internships, a semester or a year at a university overseas, service learning, and programs with special themes. Students can visit the Study Abroad Resource Center, 106 Red Gym, to meet with returned study abroad students and professional study abroad advisors who can help students prepare and research study abroad options.

In addition to IAP, the College of Agricultural and Life Sciences, College of Engineering, and Wisconsin School of Business also offer international programs. These programs serve specialized needs within these schools and colleges for their undergraduate students.

The Value of Study Abroad

Study abroad plays a crucial role in preparing students to broaden their international awareness and sharpen their skills for today's global job market. Regardless of their major, students will find that study abroad has much to offer. The availability of a variety of program sites and durations allows students to select programs based on their individual academic interests and personal goals and objectives. Students can choose from programs specifically designed to further their language skills or choose from programs featuring courses taught in English, and which require no previous foreign language training. Students can also find programs that incorporate internships for academic credit, service-learning opportunities, and independent field research.

Academic Credit and Eligibility

Credits earned through UW–Madison study abroad programs are considered "residence credits." Credits and grades will be posted on the UW–Madison transcript. In general, credits earned abroad can count toward fulfilling college and major requirements in any UW–Madison school or college. Seniors who complete their major and degree requirements while abroad on a UW–Madison program may graduate at the end of their study abroad program.

Each study program has its own eligibility requirements. Opportunities are available to students at all academic levels and for a range of program durations from one week to one year. Interested students benefit by talking with their academic advisor early in their academic career about how study abroad can fit into their academic plan.

Costs and Affordability

All programs are developed as cost-effectively as possible, recognizing the financial concerns of students. Overall the cost of study abroad includes items that students would have to pay for whether they were at home or abroad: academic fees, room and board, health insurance, and everyday living expenses such as telephone, local transportation, books, and supplies.

Students who study abroad in UW–Madison-sponsored programs are eligible to use federal financial aid toward the costs of the program. Students choosing a summer program of at least four weeks also are eligible to use federal financial aid. In addition, students can apply for scholarships specifically designated for use with study abroad programs. These include UW–Madison, national, and international scholarship opportunities. Students can also use most campus and academic department scholarships for UW–Madison-sponsored study abroad programs.