Education Abroad program offers students a world of opportunities

Studying abroad can be a great way for students to travel and earn college credit at the same time. However, the plethora of programs available can often be daunting to students, Mara James, the education abroad coordinator for UAA, said.

Students have numerous options to study abroad with UAA. There are many programs in hundreds of countries and varying lengths of stay, program costs and specific programs. Graphic by Jian Bautista.

“Students may have a lot of misconceptions as to what programs are available. They think that they can only do semesters or year-long programs, but there is so much more than that. They can do shorter programs, and they can also do more than one program,” James said.

UAA offers many of its study abroad programs through affiliate programs, including Academic Programs International, or API, which currently offer 258 programs all over the world, AIFS, which provides resources to the LBGTQ+ community and Semester at Sea, where students can study on a vessel at sea.

Program lengths and prices have a wide range, and students can customize program searches based on length. Stays can be as little as under a month to a full year. Students can also complete more than one program while getting their undergraduate or graduate degrees.

Study abroad programs can also be very affordable for students, with prices starting as low as $2,000. Scholarships and grants, as well as UAA financial aid, can also be applied to certain programs.

Students are eligible to study abroad as long as they meet the general requirements. All students applying for Education Abroad programs through UAA must fulfill minimum requirements including:

  • Be a degree-seeking student at UAA working towards a certificate, associates, bachelors, masters or Ph.D. Students do not need to have a declared major.
  • Complete the equivalent of full-time semesters, 24 credits total, at UAA before the first semester abroad.
  • Have a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.50 when the application is due.
  • Good academic, disciplinary and financial standing at UAA.

While UAA has specific guidelines to qualify for education abroad programs, other requirements may be needed by the host program the student is applying to, such as a higher GPA or a specific language proficiency. However, meeting minimum requirements for UAA or the host program does not guarantee admittance to any program.

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In addition to the requirements, UAA has specific deadlines in place to apply for study abroad programs. Students should email the Office of Academic Affairs at [email protected] to get started with the process. The following deadlines may be different from the program the student is applying to.

Term: Academic Year 2020-21

Deadline: March 1. Applications will be accepted on a case by case basis until April 1.

Status: Open


Term: Fall 2020

Deadline: March 1. Applications will be accepted on a case by case basis until April 1.

Status: Open


Term: Spring 2021

Deadline: Oct. 1

Status: Open

Along with study abroad, UAA also has other travel options for students, such as student exchange and programs that work directly with specific universities. Direct exchange programs are available through the University of Stirling, in Scotland, Hokkaido University of Education in Japan and Iwate University, also in Japan.

There are other specialized programs, such as North2North, which offers study in northern countries, including Sweden and the Faroe Islands, a culinary arts and hospitality program offered in Florence, Italy.

There are many options for students to see the world. James’ own experience studying abroad in France helped her see the importance of student travel.

“I thought it was really interesting to get an educational experience from a university that was not American. It provides you with a perspective from a different place on Earth that can be very valuable as a student,” James said.

For more information about study abroad programs, visit the UAA Office of Academic Affairs webpage. Scholarship and grant information for study abroad can be found at the site as well under Education Abroad Scholarships.

For questions about study abroad, contact the UAA Office of Academic Affairs through email at [email protected].