Study Abroad FAQ

Do I have to be fluent in a foreign language to study abroad?

Most UMW Faculty-Led Programs do not require proficiency in a foreign language; language requirements vary for UMW Approved Programs (for a summer, semester, or year abroad). CIE encourages students to study foreign languages abroad and engage in local culture; however, fluency in a foreign language is not required for many programs. Most programs offer at least some courses in English.

The program costs for study abroad vary depending on the length of the program, who is offering the program, and where you are going. Exchange Programs allow UMW students to pay regular UMW tuition and study overseas without paying additional tuition to the host institution. Other programs charge a fee that usually includes tuition and housing. Look into potential programs to find out the exact costs as well as any “extras” such as group excursions or additional resources available to students. Be mindful of exactly what is and is not included in the program cost, such as airfare or ground transportation while abroad. Read more about Fees & Payment Information.

Students must have a minimum GPA of 2.0 to study abroad, though many programs require a higher GPA for participation. Students must be in good standing with all university offices and must have completed at least 12 credit hours at UMW. Read more about Requirements & Eligibility for UMW Approved Programs.

Students interested in a summer, semester, or year-long education abroad program should meet with their academic advisor to determine which courses to take. A course approval form containing planned courses and departmental signatures for course equivalencies is due prior to departing for all education abroad  programs, with the exception of some UMW Faculty-Led Programs which offer courses for UMW credit directly. Stop by CIE in Lee Hall Suite 434 for more information.

Yes! Whichever type of approved study abroad experience you choose, the credits will transfer back to UMW. Credits may transfer as UMW equivalent, general elective, or major elective courses. Credit is applied upon receipt of transcripts showing successful completion of course work. A signed Course Approval Form is required in order to guarantee that a course will transfer back as anticipated. Some Faculty-Led Programs are offered for UMW credit rather than transfer credit. Read more about how education abroad credits count toward your degree.

Yes!  View a complete list of UMW Education Abroad Scholarships as well as external scholarship opportunities.

CIE strongly urges students to apply for the many Education Abroad Scholarships available to them before resorting to loans. Contact the Financial Aid Office for information about loans, grants, and other means of financial assistance.

I’m ready to go abroad for a summer, semester, or year! What’s next?

Are you ready to learn more about going abroad through a UMW Approved Program? Contact CIE or walk in to Lee Hall Suite 434 and meet with a peer advisor. Then complete the UMW Approved Program Checklist to stay on track as you prepare to depart.

Complete the Checklist