Eligibility and Application Process
Costs and Program Fees
Academics, Credit, and Program Details


Do I have to speak a foreign language?
No! Many programs are taught in English, even in non-English speaking countries. However, study abroad IS the best way to learn a foreign language!

Is my eligibility for a program determined based upon my GPA at time I apply or based upon my GPA at the time I will begin my study abroad program?
Eligibility is based on your UMSL cumulative GPA at the time of application. Students are expected to maintain that GPA or higher during any subsequent terms prior to departure.

May an academic reference letter be submitted by e-mail?
You should submit the request for a reference letter through your online application and the reference should reply electronically. 

May I use an academic reference from a college that I previously attended?
Only transfer students who have had only one semester at UMSL may request academic references from previous colleges; however, they must still submit at least one from an UMSL faculty.

May I submit reference forms from my academic advisor or employer?
Yes, but only in addition to, not in place of, the required number of forms from UMSL faculty.

When are announcements made of acceptance into a Study Abroad program?
You should hear from the Study Abroad Office about the status of your application within two weeks of the final deadline for your program.

Can I study abroad during the last semester before my graduation?
Yes; however, this is discouraged. Often, we will not receive your transcript from your host institution until several months after your term abroad, delaying your graduation term. Additionally, should a course you require no longer be offered abroad, you may further delay graduation. Students who study abroad during that last semester risk extending their graduation term.


Is study abroad expensive?
For most programs, you pay UMSL tuition and you can use your financial aid, making study abroad as affordable as studying at UMSL.

Can I charge the program fee for a faculty-led program to my student account?
Yes. The non-refundable deposit will be charged to your student account as soon as you are accepted to the program. The program fee will be charged to your student account when you are registered for your study abroad class. Non-credit fees and non-UMSL fees must be paid to the Study Abroad office by check or money (made out to UMSL).

If I have already paid the program fee for a faculty-led program, but suddenly cannot take part in my Study Abroad program, can the payment be deferred to a program in the next semester?
No. Students enrolling in programs should understand their payment is the firm commitment to participate. Immediately upon receipt of your payment, the Study Abroad Office begins making reservations and payments on your behalf. Deposits and programs fees are non-returnable and non-transferable (unless the program is canceled by the Study Abroad Office). 

What is the difference between tuition and program fee?
Many short-term and some semester programs require a program fee in addition to tuition. The tuition expense is either charged to your UMSL student account or billed by the host university. You would pay this through the appropriate cashiers office. Tuition covers course-related (academic) expenses. The deposit and program are charged to your student account as well, but program fees cover various program items outside of the course expenses. These vary by program but may include excursions, museum fees, some meals, accommodations, in-country transportation, airfare, etc. 

Does my deposit count toward my program fee?
The deposit is used to pay for program expenses but it is listed separately from the program fee because they are due at different times. 


Are there scholarships?
Yes! International Studies and Programs offers merit-based scholarships, and several other campus departments and private organizations also provide study abroad scholarships.

Are scholarship decisions made prior to the deadline of the program fee payment?
Typically, no. Scholarship decisions are made near the end of each semester, usually after the final payment for a program fee is due. 

When are scholarship awards disbursed?
No more than ten days before the start of the semester/term (by the UMSL academic calendar).

Is it possible to get more in scholarships than the cost of the tuition portion of the study program itself?
Unless you receive additional scholarships from other sources, UMSL International Studies & Programs scholarships will likely not cover the entire cost of your program.

If I am not a full-time UMSL student, can I still qualify for a scholarship?
Scholarships are for full-time degree-seeking UMSL students only.

Will the credit apply towards my degree?
All study abroad programs are for academic credit. By planning in advance with your academic advisor and the Study Abroad Office, you can find a program that fulfills degree requirements.

How do I apply for a scholarship? 
The scholarship application for study abroad is available through the Office of Student Financial Aid. Information on applying for scholarships is available here.


What classes can I take abroad?
There are options for all majors on Study Abroad. Students should review the various program types and then should speak with their academic advisor to identify which program may best fit their academic needs and goals.

How will my credits transfer?
That depends on the program. Students earn UMSL in-residence credit on exchange and most faculty-led programs. Students participating on Non-UMSL and Affiliate programs will earn transfer credit that is not considered in-residence. The easiest way to remember is that if you pay UMSL tuition, you are earning UMSL credit; if you do not pay UMSL tuition, you are earning transfer credit.

May my significant other/parent/friend who is not a student come with me?
Yes, depending on the program. Some short-term programs are open to External Participants. External Participants must fully participate in all program activities and coursework and have the same responsibilities as a student. An External Participant fee is required should they not seek credit. External participants may also visit you while you are on a semester program (or live with you if you intend to make independent housing choices). In this case, they may be required to obtain a different visa type than a student visa and you would need to look into that accordingly. Study Abroad staff do not offer visa guidance.

May my child come with me?
Children are not eligible to participate in any programs. It may be possible to have your child accompany you on a semester program and this has been done in the past (albeit very infrequently). You would need to consider housing, childcare/school, immigration requirements, etc. You can contact the host university to determine what assistance they may be able to offer you; however Study Abroad staff are unable to offer visa guidance.

Can I choose different housing than the option listed on the website? 
Students participating on semester or exchange programs may make independent housing arrangements; however, there are many additional issues to consider when selecting your own house. A few items include whether or not the housing is furnished; interaction with other students/immersion opportunities; location; cost, etc.