As you begin to consider the possiblity of a study abroad program we encourage you to use the steps below to determine if you qualify and then consider how to begin the process of selecting a program that's just right for you!
Step #1: Do I Qualify?
You must be a matriculated degree candidate with a declared major. You cannot study abroad if you are an "undeclared student."
You must have a minimum 2.5 GPA in order to participate in most programs. Some programs require a 2.8 or even a 3.0 minimum GPA.
You must have completed a minimum of 24 undergraduate credits prior to your departure.
If you are a "transfer student" please contact the Office of International Programs for information on additional application requirements.
Step #2: Choosing A Program
What Country? Do you want to improve your language skills? Is your major best served by studying in a specific country? Have you always wanted to travel to Japan, Ireland, Argentina?
- Do you need courses that work toward your major? Your minor? Or will you take mostly general electives?
- Do you want to live with a host family to fully immerse yourself in the culture and language? Do you want to live in campus housing? Do you prefer off-campus housing with other study abroad or international students?
- What is included in the program fee? Can you afford to pay more for a semester abroad or do you need to stay within your current budget?
- Which program provider best suits your needs? Compare study abroad program providers. Which program offers the features you want such as a home stay, excursions, a field study component and falls within your price range.
Use our handy table to compare programs and find the right program for you.
Consider visiting Abroad 101's site to see how other students have rated study abroad programs worldwide. You can even find reviews from USM students!
Another great resource is the Student's Guide to Studying Abroad: Resources, Scholarships, and Tricks for Your Learning Adventure.
Step #3: Consider USM's Exchanges and Partnerships
USM has several "reciprocal exchanges" and partnerships with schools around the world. These partnerships provide students the opportunity to study at quality intuitions while receiving access to discounted tuition rates, additional scholarship funds and other benefits.
Step #4: Check out USM's Approved Programs
USM has relationships with excellent service providers which manage study abroad programs all over the world.
Our office has catalogs for many of these providers and you're welcome to stop by our office at 101 Payson Smith on the USM Portland Campus to pick a few up.
Step #5: Meet with a Study Abroad Advisor
Looked at some of the options but still need help sorting through the choices? Found the perfect program but need to know "what next?"
Contact the Office of International Exchange to sign up for an appointment with a study abroad advisor. Simply stop by the office at 101 Payson smith on the Portland campus, call us at 780-4959 or drop us an e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org to register an appointment.
Step #6: Apply!