(For students considering studying abroad for a semester or year)
Oglethorpe students seriously considering studying abroad at one
of our partner institutions, or at any non-partnership university
throughout the world, should follow the steps outlined below.
Step 1: Review and Select a Study Abroad Destination
This is a crucial decision, based upon a number of factors, including your goals, your field of study, your career path. Select a college or university abroad only after you have consulted with the Director, researched the websites, and reviewed the materials available in the OUSA office on the second floor of the library. You can review our partnership institutions and non-partnership possibilities on the website under Academic Enrichment. You should also carefully examine the application procedure, semester dates for the college, and the costs, and then begin the process with the OUSA office, as well as consult with your advisor about courses you would like to take abroad.
Step 2: Get Advised
After you have made a preliminary choice for a study abroad destination, set up an appointment with the OUSA Director. If you have decided upon studying at a partnership college, you can find the OU faculty contact for that school on the OU website to determine if that college is where you would like to spend a semester or a year.
The Director reserves the right to deny students any study abroad excursions if, in his or her opinion, the student is not academically ready, based upon GPA, and/or upon discussion with the faculty advisor; or, if there are valid financial reasons that would indicate the inability to manage living successfully abroad.
Students should review with their academic advisor what specific courses they would like to take in the program abroad. As a rule, all courses and course credit hours in an approved program will transfer to OU. Grades made in the courses abroad do not affect the GPA at OU; GPA at OU is GPA at OU, and this is true for all universities.
You will need to get approval from your academic advisor or a professor in the discipline for courses and credits required in your major and minor. The best idea is to secure the course descriptions from the college, and discuss this with your academic advisor. Most course descriptions can be found on the website of the college you wish to attend abroad.
In addition, every student attending an approved semester or year abroad MUST petition the Core Director to receive equivalency for one semester of the junior year core (either 301 or 302). The student decides the course for which he or she would to petition for equivalency credit in the junior core, and informs the CORE Director and the academic advisor.
Step 3: Calculating the Costs
Most of our partnership colleges will cost you almost exactly what you pay at Oglethorpe, excluding transportation to and from the international destination. In addition, if you live off campus, you must calculate living expenses for your time abroad for room and board on or off campus abroad. The study abroad office at the study abroad destination will work with you closely to find and determine housing.
Costs for non-partnership colleges will vary, and some offer comparable tuition rates to OU. In calculating the costs, you will also need to pay a nominal fee to Oglethorpe before embarking upon your study abroad stint. This fee covers administrative costs to maintain your enrollment while you are abroad. Finally, you should make arrangements to discuss your financing options with the Financial Aid office for any non-partnership colleges.
Step 4: Apply for Scholarships
All students accepted into non-partnership colleges can search for additional scholarship at studyabroad.com or other global websites like CAPA, AFIS, or Arcadia that offer financial help for study abroad at non-partnerships. Additional scholarship aid exists for students studying at the partnerships at University of Dortmund in Germany and at Otaru University in Japan under agreement terms.
The Halle Foundation also supports students studying at Dortmund, and other foundations may be able to assist you in finding financial aid. Students will receive announcements from the OUSA office concerning application deadlines for these awards.
The Japanese government also furnishes generous support to students studying at Otaru. The scholarship includes round-trip air transportation, and a monthly stipend sufficient to cover room, board, books, and other essentials. Deadline for submitting applications for this scholarship is December 15th. (See the faculty contact for application information for the Otaru scholarship).
Other sources to support your study abroad can be found by exploring student aid websites, researching grants or scholarships given by your selected college abroad, or by securing students loans in the Financial Aid office. Please direct any questions about funding your study abroad to Financial Aid. The OUSA office will only advise you on any aspect of applying to your study abroad destination in conjunction with the advice of the OU faculty contact for that college.
Step 5: Apply and Maintain Contact
Apply to your chosen college abroad, either through hardcopy applications via mail, or through the college’s website application. When you receive notification of acceptance, you must make a copy of all the paperwork for OUSA files: your application, any correspondence with housing or academic advisors abroad, and any acceptance letter you receive.
In addition, you must meet with the OUSA Director here at OU during the application process for any college, and maintain e-mail contact with the OU office to insure you are submitting what is necessary for your acceptance. If you need to apply for a student visa, you need to work directly with the OUSA office in obtaining one from the respective consulate.
During the application process, you should also insure that you have secured a valid passport, and you will need to photocopy it for our files here at the OUSA office.
Finally, we will need to have on file a copy of your ticket to your destination.
Step 6: Secure the Certificate of Acceptance for Study Abroad
After you have been accepted at a college abroad, you must also obtain from the OUSA office either a Certificate of Acceptance for OU partnerships colleges or a Letter of Transient Status for all other study abroad colleges. These must be signed by the OUSA Director, your advisor, and the registrar. Students will NOT be allowed to study abroad without completing this step at Oglethorpe.
At the registrar, you must enroll for one of the following
courses FOR EACH SEMESTER YOU ARE ABROAD, and each of these designations will also have an additional notation for each university:
FOR 412 for non-partnership colleges abroad
FOR 415 for partnership colleges abroad
FOR 420 for study abroad at our partnership colleges in
China, Mexico, or Russia
This "course" keeps you enrolled at OU while you are abroad for
the semester or year, and thus you do not have to re-enroll upon
Bring the Certificate of Acceptance or the Letter of Transient
Status to the Financial Aid office for final approval for the
distribution of funds.
Step 7: Finance Your Study Abroad
Schedule an appointment with a Financial Aid counselor. You must
bring the Certificate of Acceptance signed from the OUSA office, and
in this meeting you will calculate your exact costs and determine
what resources are available. Information on these resources can be
found on the
Financial Aid Site. Click on "Study Abroad" for specific
application procedures. Bring any additional cost information for
tuition, fees, and housing that you will be required to pay outside
of your obligations to Oglethorpe. In addition, housing costsóroom
and boardóat any study abroad institution are your responsibilities.
You should make housing arrangements and financing of those
arrangements with the study abroad institution before you depart.
Step 8: Obtain Insurance for Your Time Abroad
Oglethorpe University requires all study abroad students to have both life and medical insurance BEFORE embarking upon a study abroad program. In addition, your insurance should also cover any and all expenses that might occur due to your untimely death abroad, commonly called repatriation insurance. You will need at this point to discuss with your parents how you will be covered for health insurance while abroad. Call your insurance company first, and determine if you will be covered during your time abroad. In addition, the OUSA office has information on companies which specialize in covering students while abroad. It is your responsibility to inform the OUSA Director the name of your insurance company.
Step 9: Purchase Airline Tickets
You should reserve your ticket far enough in advance after you
have been accepted to feel comfortable about your travel. You must
copy your ticket info and give the Director of International Programs a copy for your
file. Be sure to alert your contact via e-mail at your study abroad
college, and inform him or her of your flight so that someone is
there to meet you at the airport.
Step 10: Stay in Touch With OU
You should contact the OUSA office as soon as you can after you arrive in the country of your study. In addition, the office can be contacted anytime, night or day, should you need help on any matter. You can call the OUSA Director on his or her cell at any time.
OU would like for you to contact us at least once a week, through a brief e-mail, and let us know how you are doing. You can contact the OUSA Director directly through e-mail on campus.
Upon your return, report to the OUSA office, complete an exit review, and be sure to contact the registrar here at OU and abroad about any transcript procedures for obtaining your grades. It is your responsibility to insure your transcripts are sent in a timely manner, and you should alert the registrar at your study abroad office in your designated country of study and give them the address of the registrar at Oglethorpe.
Dr. Jeffrey Collins
of International Programs
2nd Floor, Philip Weltner Library, Oglethorpe University
Office phone: 404.504.3452
Cell Phone for International Use: 678.772.7921