OREGON STATE UNIVERSITY

Study Abroad Advising Guide

Students planning to go abroad rely on a number of resources as they select a program, make their pre-departure preparations, complete their international experience and reintegrate into life in the United States and at OSU. The office of International Degree and Education Abroad (IDEA) provides services and programs to assist students at each stage of the cycle. IDEA also works closely with academic advisors to ensure that students communicate with their departments about the courses they will take and how those courses will fit into the student's academic curriculum at OSU.

Below are the various resources available to students as they explore education abroad:

ONLINE FIRST STEPS PRESENTATION

View the online First Step presentation. This presentation will provide students with information on:

  • how to research for the right programs and the resources our office offers
  • how to finance an education abroad experience
  • how to navigate through application procedures

Student are to download and complete the IDEA Pre-Advising form after viewing the presentation.

STUDY ABROAD RESOURCE CENTER (SARC):

  • University Plaza, 1600 SW Western Blvd., Suite 130, open 8 am to 5 pm, Monday through Friday.
  • Contains program brochures and scholarship information; travel resources; program evaluations; information for students of color, LGBT and disabilities; and materials on cultural adjustment.
  • Computer for researching programs and resources online.
  • International Degree program guide and thesis examples.
  • Staffed during the week by International Ambassadors.

NEXT STEPS PEER-ADVISING SESSIONS:

  • After viewing the online First Steps Presentation all students interested in participating in an education abroad program must schedule a Next Steps Peer-Advising session with an International Ambassador (education abroad returnees).
  • They may set up a meeting by sending an e-mail to intl.ambassador@oregonstate.edu or calling (541) 737-3662. Alternatively they can attend a meeting at the following drop-in times and locations: University Plaza, Suite 130 (SW corner of 15th and Western), (M-F, 10 am- 4 pm).
  • They need to bring their completed Pre-advising form to their Next Steps peer-advising session.

EDUCATION ABROAD ADVISORS:

  • After their peer-advising session, an IDEA Ambassador can schedule them an appointment with an education abroad advisor and/or the Head Advisor for the International Degree (ID).
  • Education abroad advisors work with programs in particular regions, but are familiar with all options.

ACADEMIC ADVISORS:

  • After narrowing program choices, students should meet with their academic advisors to discuss the courses available abroad and how those courses fit into their academic program.
  • Students are strongly encouraged to maintain contact with academic advisors while abroad in case their course options change.

PREDEPARTURE

Once a student applies for an education abroad program, they can expect the following steps:

  • The IDEA Enrollment Manager will process their online application and review the student's disciplinary record at OSU.
  • After acceptance into a program, the student works with an advisor or program coordinator responsible for that program.
  • For co-sponsored programs, students may also work with a program/enrollment manager from the program provider.
  • Pre-Departure Orientation is offered each term to all OSU students accepted into an education program. Topics covered include cultural adjustment, health and safety abroad, travel tips, managing finances, and course registration information. International Ambassadors offer their advice and answer students' questions about living and traveling abroad.
  • Site-specific orientations: Most programs offer an orientation meeting with site-specific detail. Topics covered may include local culture, academics and local education systems, housing arrangements, excursions, local places of interest, food and amenities at the host institution. Check with program for more details.
  • On-site orientations: On-site orientations include information about local transportation, banking, dos and don'ts in the local culture, living with host families, relationships with landlords, and the schedule for classes and program excursions or activities. Check with program for more details.

(See "Applicants" in the Student section for more information)

WHILE ABROAD

Students can experience significant stress in the first few weeks of adjusting to a new culture. Problems that arise can seem more challenging during the adjustment period. Students have a number of resources available to them once they arrive on-site. They include:

  • On-site program staff (resident director, housing coordinator, students services on host campus, etc.)
  • OSU education abroad advisors
  • Web resources (cultural adjustment, health and safety, etc)

Students also have access to a number of academic resources and are encouraged to utilize these resources while abroad:

(See "Students Abroad" in the Student section for more information)

RE-ENTRY

Many education abroad participants report that coming home is as challenging, if not more so, than adjusting to the host culture abroad. Students often feel isolated and disconnected from friends and family who cannot relate to their experience abroad. Our office provides services to assist students who are returning to campus after a study abroad. Returning students can:

  • Apply to become an International Ambassador, a group of students who work with study abroad staff to share their experiences with others. International Ambassadors staff the Study Abroad Resource Center, lead First Steps meetings and give presentations about their experiences abroad.
  • Serve as an English Language Conversant to share your own language and culture with an international student at OSU
  • Attend the annual Northwest Returnee Conference, designed for all students who went abroad
  • Utilize web resources on the study abroad website on reverse culture shock and building on their international experience

(See "Returned Students" in the Student section for more information)