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Throughout the study abroad process, you should become familiar with the following requirements.


All applicants must meet a series of requirements in order to be approved for study abroad, including strong grades and school/departmental backing. Read all application requirements.


Students must complete a series of steps before departure such as attending an orientation meeting, and completing necessary forms. Read all pre-departure requirements.


General requirements

Students must take a sufficient number of courses while abroad. Carefully review the Credit Enrollment web page for NU requirements and check with your program regarding their enrollment requirements.

Special requirements

Please review the following requirements, which may not apply to all students. Students who do not follow these requirements risk losing credit.

  • Housing requirement (All Programs)
    If your program offers housing options, you are not permitted to make your own housing arrangements. If you have mitigating circumstances and believe you should be allowed to make your own arrangements, please discuss this with your Study Abroad Adviser. 
  • Language requirement
    You must enroll in at least one language course, or one course taught in a local language other than English, throughout the duration of your program. 
    Exceptions: Programs in the UK, Ireland, Australia, and New Zealand as well as the Duke Classics program in Rome (for which students are required to take Latin and/or Greek rather than Italian).
  • Internships and service learning for credit
    If you are seeking credit for an internship or service learning experience, it must be unpaid, work must be substantial, and your work must receive academic evaluation. For details, read Internships and Service Learning.
  • Research and independent study for credit
    If you are seeking credit for research conducted abroad, your work must cover subject matter that is taught in Northwestern’s undergraduate curriculum and may need various approvals. For details, read Research Abroad.
  • Business and Law coursework
    To receive credit for business and law courses, the courses must be comparable to those offered at Northwestern. For details, see Taking Business and Law Courses Abroad.

Program-specific requirements

Many, but not all, programs have specific requirements that participants are expected to follow. Northwestern also has program-specific requirements regarding housing and course enrollment for many programs. Carefully review program information to see if requirements exist for your program. Contact your Study Abroad Adviser with questions!