Frequently Asked Questions about Study Abroad

Study Abroad students having a great time

Where is the Study Abroad Office?

The Study Abroad Office is located in Berns Student Center Room 1 next to Housing and Residence Life.

Why should I study abroad?

  • Study abroad is an excellent addition to any academic program, regardless of your major.
  • Study abroad is a unique opportunity to learn about the world and broaden your horizons while continuing your academic education.
  • Study abroad gives you the chance to look at life through a different perspective and to enhance your professional, academic, and cultural understanding. You’ll be surprised how much you learn about yourself, too.
  • Study abroad is a valuable experience that will enhance your resume. Many employers are looking for individuals who have practical experience living in a different culture. Studying abroad affirms to employers you are an independent and resourceful risk-taker who is able to deal with the stresses of uncertainty and unexpected challenges.

When should I start planning to study abroad?

Now! Planning early is essential to studying abroad!

When should I study abroad?

When you should study abroad depends on several factors, such as your year in school, your major(s)/minor(s), graduation requirements, leadership positions and other campus commitments, etc. For example, some majors may require you to be on campus for particular terms; whereas, sometimes required courses may be offered only during a certain term. Early planning is key in helping you decide when studying abroad best fits into your four-year plan. Speak with your academic advisor and the Study Abroad Office in order to find the program that best suits your four-year plan.

Can first-year students study abroad?

First-year students are eligible for MU faculty-led summer programs the summer after their first year at Methodist. Although most semester programs require at least sophomore status, some first-year students who want to study abroad during their sophomore year may need to apply during their first year, depending on application deadlines for specific programs.

Can I study abroad multiple times?

Yes, as long as you plan early, it’s usually possible.

Where can I get information about study abroad locations? Where can I study abroad?

For information on all the faculty-led programs visit the Faculty-Led Programs page. If you are interested in spending a summer, semester or year abroad see the Summer, Semester or Year Programs page. Once you have reviewed some of the study abroad information, we recommend you meet with the Study Abroad Office about the specific programs (s) in which you are interested.

Is it possible to study abroad through programs not offered by Methodist?

Yes, you may study abroad through a third-party provider or on a direct exchange program. For more information, visit the Summer, Semester or Year Programs page.

What GPA do I need to study abroad?

You must have at least a minimum GPA of 2.0 to study abroad. MU faculty-led programs require a minimum GPA of 2.0. Summer programs, third-party providers, and direct exchanges, vary in their minimum GPA requirements anywhere from 2.5 to 3.2. Check individual program webpages for specific GPA requirements.

Do I need to know a foreign language?

A small number of programs have a language requirement. Individual program webpages will list what (if any) foreign language requirements there may be.

How much does it cost to study abroad?

The cost of studying abroad varies by program and term. See the individual program webpages for specific program costs. Some programs may be less expensive than a semester at Methodist, while others may be more expensive. This is due to what the program cost covers as well as exchange rates and the cost of living in the program location.

Is financial aid available?

Yes, there are opportunities for financial aid through Methodist and through other means. If you are concerned about the costs of study abroad, make sure to read the Financial Aid for Study Abroad page and contact the Study Abroad Office with questions or for further information.

Are scholarships available?

Yes, there are national scholarships are available. A list of national scholarships can be found on Financial Aid for Study Abroad page. There are also Methodist travel grants available for students with at least a 3.0 GPA. The application is also on the Financial Aid for Study Abroad Page. There are also other scholarships for specific study abroad programs, such as third-party providers. More information may be found on their individual websites.

Do I get grades for my courses?  Will my grades count in my GPA?

For all MU faculty-led programs, grades will be transferred from abroad and will factor into your Methodist GPA.  For non-Methodist programs, you must speak to the Study Abroad office to see how credits will transfer.

How do I apply for a passport?  Where can I get a passport photo taken?

Please visit the U.S. State Department website for detailed instructions. Businesses that have in-store photo processing may also have passport photo services. Note: The cost and number of pictures that you receive may vary by store. You may also check the U.S. State Department website to search for passport application facilities and photo services.

Do I need a visa?

Some programs do require a visa. The cost of the visa as well as the application process may vary by country and type of program.  If you are traveling on a faculty-led MU program, the faculty leader will notify you if you need a visa. If you are going on a non-faculty-led MU program, the Study Abroad Office can direct you to sources to find visa information otherwise not listed for your specific program.