So you want to study abroad. The only problem: you just don’t know where to go!
With four year-round study centers and numerous summer program options, FSU
International Programs has many different opportunities that can make deciding
where to go as difficult as deciding what to do once you get there!
Below are some general guidelines to think about as you navigate this decision
process. There are four main areas that might help you select the program that
is right for you: money, length of stay, course offerings, and location and
types of activities. Decide which of these big-picture ideas is the most
important factor in determining your ability to go abroad, and then go from
The financial aspect is probably the biggest deciding factor for most students
when it comes to study abroad. Many students don’t realize that studying abroad is actually comparable
in cost to studying at a university in the states after all living costs are
considered for a semester (housing, food, personal expenses all add up!) Still,
there are certain factors that can make some programs more cost effective than
others. It is important to realize what is included in each program
fee; it is more than just tuition. If money is the determining factor in your program
selection, keep the current exchange rate in mind as it will dictate your total
overall program cost.
One of the most important things to budget for no matter where you are is food
expenses. Of course, if you elect to eat out in your host country every night,
your expenses are going to escalate. If your selection is based on finances,
then you might want to consider our locations that have meals or meal vouchers included in them.
Remember, even if a program does not have meals
included, most housing facilities will have kitchens that can be used to help stay on
Length of Program
Tying in with the financial aspect of study abroad would be the program length.
Obviously, semester long programs are going to feature a higher price tag than
shorter summer programs. Keep this in mind when selecting your program. Some semester students
assimilate better into the culture, benefiting from the lengthier stay. Other students prefer a shorter program,
which may cost less, fit into mapping requirements, and cause less disruption to outside commitments in the U.S.
FSU has four year-round study
centers that allow for fall or spring semester-long studies: Panama City, the Republic of
Panama, Valencia, Spain, London, England, and Florence, Italy.
Deciding how long you want to be abroad can help pinpoint the most
appropriate program for you.
Classes/Area of Study
After money, the next most important deciding factor in selecting a program is
probably the types of courses that are offered. FSU
International Programs are academic programs first and foremost, so it is
important to select a program that will either benefit your intended course of
study or overall academic experience. Meet with your advisor to help identify classes you could take
abroad and when the best time to take these courses would be. First, you will
need to decide if you can only go on a program if it has classes for your major.
Our four year-round locations, Panama City, the Republic of Panama,
Valencia, Spain, London, England, and Florence, Italy, always have a core of liberal studies
course offerings that students across the university must take regardless of
major. These locations are ideal for most students who still need to complete liberal studies requirements.
We also offer many curriculum-focused programs at our study centers and other locations around the world.
These programs are ideal for students who need upper-division courses
that will apply to specific majors or minors.
Money and classes aside, the program location is inevitably what determines the
overall feel and experience of your time abroad. Each host country will have its
own distinct character that will truly shape the life-long experiences you have.
For this reason, make sure to give some thought to the type of setting in which
you will be spending your time abroad. Some broad generalizations can be made to
help hone in on a particular part of the globe that suits your travel
personality, and tying in with location are the types of excursions each program
Our European locations feature a traditional study
abroad approach in that classroom lectures are often complimented by the
cultural offerings of the host city. A greater sense of the culture at large is gained by overnight trips that are
included to other major cities.
If museums and theater are not really your idea of an exciting time abroad, then
you might want to consider our Latin
and South American programs.
In place of walking tours and ballets, students may be zip-lining through
rainforest canopies, hiking, and white-water rafting.
The choices don’t end there, however! Programs in Asia and Australia
expose students to the rich heritage and unique way of life by
visiting both big cities and small villages.