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Choosing a Program

With hundreds of programs available, choosing one may be overwhelming. Consider the following aspects when choosing a program.

Questions to ask yourself

Courses?
  • What kind of courses are you looking to take?
  • What courses will your academic department let you take away from Tarleton?
  • Are you able to take courses taught in a language other than English?
Cost?
  • What is your budget?
    • The cost of the program can vary greatly depending on the type of program, the location, the amount of travel, and a variety of other factors.
  • Will you be paying out of pocket, using student loans, using scholarships, using grants, using other aid programs, or a combination?
    • Remember that you can only depend on the study abroad scholarship when you have confirmed participation on a program.
Location
  • Is there a particular location you would like to go?
  • Do you prefer a large city, a small city, or a town?
When would you like to go abroad?
  • What term or terms do you want to go abroad? Academic year, fall, winter, spring, or summer?
What kind of living situation would you prefer?
  • How do you feel about homestay (living with a local family)?
  • Do you want to live in an apartment or dorm?
  • Do you want to arrange your own housing or would you like someone to arrange it for you?
Other Considerations
  • Do you have any medical conditions that might require accommodations?
  • Do you have dietary restrictions?
  • Do you have any cultural or religious considerations?

Things to remember during the process:

Flexibility
  • The are a variety of program types
  • Often students must choose between the locations they want to go and the courses they want to take
  • You may not find a program that meets all of your criteria. That's okay! Chances are you are going to have the experience of a lifetime.
  • Be open to different locations
  • Consider what courses might complement your professional goals
Language
  • Most programs are taught in English and many other programs allow you to learn the local language.
  • Knowing a foreign language may open additional options for you, but there are hundreds of English language programs available in various locations.
Process
  • Everyone who studies abroad has different goals, different requirements, and different background. Finding something that fits your needs takes some work, but it's worth it.
  • You will have to talk to your academic advisor and study abroad advisor (possibly several times).
Back-up Program
  • If for some reason your first program choice becomes unavailable you will save time if you have a secondary program in mind.
Deadlines
  • You need to be aware of application deadlines, payment deadlines, and any other dates related to your program. It is recommended to start planning 10-12 months in advance. Once you have chosen a program it is time to apply.