Frequently Asked Questions

Click a question to view the answer. If your question is not answered below, email your question.

Who can help me figure out what option is best for me?

Study abroad advisors as well as peer advisors are available to answer your questions and provide suggestions based on your wants and needs in a program. To see options to meet with us, visit our Make An Appointment page.

It's helpful for advisors to know more about what you are looking for in a program, so be sure to come prepared with things like types of classes you would like to take, timeframe you are thinking about going abroad, and any other information that would help us know more about you and your needs in a program.

Your academic advisor can also help you determine when is good to study abroad based on your plan of study, and what classes you would need to stay on track for graduation.

Is it expensive to study abroad?

That depends. Studying abroad can be as inexpensive or as expensive as you make it. Just as there are a wide variety of programs, they also vary in cost. Factors to consider are program type, how much you pay at Purdue, and the cost of living in the place where you will study. However, the single biggest factor is usually how much independent travel you do on weekends and breaks.

Some students can even manage to study abroad for less than staying at Purdue by choosing their program and location wisely. A study abroad advisor can help you navigate programs that are within your budget.

Check out our Scholarships and Cost & Financial Aid pages for more information on study abroad scholarships and financial aid!

Does financial aid apply?

Yes. Students participating in Purdue-affiliated study abroad continue to receive most of the same forms of federal financial aid they would receive to study in West Lafayette. If you do not currently qualify for financial aid, you may qualify while studying abroad because of additional costs associated with your program.

Please note some scholarships and aid may not apply to all program types, and it is important to review the information on our Costs & Financial Aid page for more information.


Are scholarships available for studying abroad?

Yes. Some are specific to certain majors, or countries, or study abroad programs; others are open to a wide range of study abroad participants. You should also check with your department head and organizations in your community.

[Click here for more information on scholarships.]

What is the difference between the program types?
Great question - we have a guide to the different program types that you can find here.
When is the deadline to apply?

This may vary by the term you are applying for and the specific program. In general, the following guidelines apply although you should always check the exact deadline for the program you are interested in. Deadlines are found on the program page on our website, scroll until you see the deadline section.

Summer/Fall/Academic Year programs with early deadlines = February 1st
Standard deadline for Summer/Fall/Academic Year programs = March 1st

Spring Semester programs with early deadlines = September 1st
Standard deadline for Spring Semester programs = September 15th

Departmental Programs (spring break, Maymester, winter) are typically on a rolling basis, check program page or with program leader for specific deadlines.

This information is given as a guideline, some programs may have different deadlines. When in doubt, please check with the study abroad office. Some programs will reach capacity before listed deadline, and applying early is encouraged.

Will my classes transfer back to Purdue?

Yes. Study abroad coursework is considered Purdue coursework and not transfer credit. You will receive Purdue credits and letter grades for some classes; you will receive only Purdue credits for others (Pass/No Pass). You should begin working with an academic advisor and a Study Abroad Liaison well in advance of going abroad to make this go smoothly, and study abroad advisors can help you understand the process.

There is no list to tell you exactly what classes you can take where, since there are many options available on many different programs. Students work with their study abroad advisor, academic advisor, and study abroad liaison (a person on campus who assigns the exact Purdue credit to an overseas course) to get courses pre-approved before starting their program. This allows students to take a wide variety of classes abroad that can still count towards graduation requirements. Some programs, like Departmental or Purdue-Administered programs, offer pre-determined credit.

If I study abroad will I still graduate on time?

You should. We work hard to make sure that taking part in one of our programs will not delay your graduation. With reasonable planning, any Purdue student can have a great international experience and still graduate on time.

When should I study abroad?

Most programs allow students to study abroad in their sophomore, junior, or senior years. Purdue summer programs allow students to study abroad the summer after their freshman year. Students can study on Purdue study tours anytime during their Purdue career, as long as they are in good academic standing.

Am I eligible to apply to study abroad?

Students are considered eligible to apply for a study abroad program if they meet all of the following conditions:

  • GPA level required by the program
  • Completion of program's course prerequisites, if applicable
  • Favorable letter of recommendation
  • In good academic standing, both at the time of application and at the start of the program
  • Not the subject of disciplinary action including probation at the time of application or at the start of the program

Please review our full eligibility policies here.

Can international students study abroad?

Yes! However, you may not study abroad in your home country.

Do I have to speak a foreign language to study abroad?

No. Over half of our programs allow you to take courses in English, either in English-speaking countries or in specially-designed programs in other countries. However, Purdue does offer many options for students who wish to take some or all of their courses in another language.

Can I study a foreign language while abroad?

Yes! Study Abroad is a great time to learn a new language or become more fluent in one you are already studying. There are language intensive programs available for interested students.

How long can I study abroad?

Purdue has options as short as a week or as long as a year. Some students even do multiple programs. Note that a very high percentage of study abroad participants report that they wish they had gone for a longer term!

Can I study abroad after I graduate?

Yes!  Students who have graduated from Purdue may study abroad the term immediately following their graduation. They will be enrolled at Purdue as a full-time student during the term they are studying abroad and required to complete all coursework for the program. All credits and grades earned abroad will be reflected on the student’s transcript as post-baccalaureate. Note that graduated students who study abroad may not be eligible for financial aid and should check with the Division of Financial Aid.  However, graduated students are still eligible to apply for the Purdue Moves Scholarship.

[Click here for more information on study abroad after graduation.]

Where will I live?

Housing options vary by program. Typically students choose between dormitories, shared apartments or home stays with local families.

Can I work while I'm abroad?

This depends on the flexibility of your visa and is possible in some locations, but not others. Check with the consulate of your host country to be sure, or ask a study abroad advisor to help you figure this out.

When will I know if I am accepted?
Applications are typically reviewed on a rolling basis, once complete. Please note if you have finished your application extremely early, we may wait for the current semester's grades to post before reviewing (i.e. we wait for fall grades to post before reviewing for summer or the next fall). If you are applying closer to the deadline you typically hear back within one week. Acceptances are sent by email.
How do I know if a program still has available spots?
If spots fill up in a program, we will close applications for the program. In the program search, you will see a note that says "enrollment is currently closed" and the application button on the program page will not be present.
How do I submit a claim for my health insurance?

When outside of the United States, you will likely be asked to pay for your medical care first and then will need to seek reimbursement. When you submit claims for reimbursement, you will need to have the itemized bill(s) translated into English. Please be sure to take copies of all paperwork for your files.

When can/should I apply?
Applications for a term typically open approximately one year in advance of when you will study abroad. For example, spring applications generally open around spring break of the previous year, summer and fall applications generally open after the start of the previous fall semester. Most study abroad applications involve several steps, such as an essay and academic recommendation - so please be sure to start the application ahead of the deadline so that you can finish it in time!
Which Colleges and Schools offer International/Global minors?

Internationally-oriented minors are available through several of Purdue's Colleges and Schools:

Check with each College or School to see how study abroad fits into its particular requirements. 

How does housing work if my campus housing contract is for one year, but I want to study abroad for one semester?

Students living in University Residences may contact them for information regarding a fall-only or spring-only contract and should pay close attention to dates and deadlines for signing up for housing. For fall-only, students usually contract for the full year and then cancel the spring portion of their contract through the Gold Form. For Spring-only, the contract portal for spring-only contracts typically opens in October. Cancellation fees are waived if you are cancelling to study abroad.

For students living off-campus, they should consult with their landlord for options. Sometimes, students will sign a single-semester lease, sublease for a semester, or terminate their lease early.

Students may wish to consult for sublease listings or to list a sublease.