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Northwestern Programs

In Northwestern study abroad programs, go abroad for one quarter as part of a Northwestern cohort. These programs offer a set curriculum based on a specific program theme, which is developed jointly between Northwestern and the partner university. Coursework engages with the location, sometimes involves Northwestern faculty, and typically includes field trips, excursions, and other experience-based activities.

Northwestern financial aid may be used for participation on Northwestern study abroad programs.

Some programs:

  • Include courses that are taken for direct credit, which appear on your Northwestern transcript
  • Offer a combination of Northwestern and transfer credit or transfer credit only
  • Are open to non-Northwestern students
  • Involve Northwestern faculty as professors, resident directors, or both

All programs:

  • Offer a high level of on-site support
  • Offer program housing organized by GLO and the partner university
  • Offer a set curriculum of courses, so students must enroll in all courses offered on their program 
    • No course changes or substitutions are permitted

Explore Northwestern Programs

Academic Expectations

Northwestern study abroad programs provide a rigorous, interdisciplinary course of study around a program theme. As Northwestern programs, GLO study abroad experiences are designed to challenge you academically through stimulating coursework and discussion, which are enhanced by field visits, cultural exploration, and other location-specific resources. You should expect to dedicate similar amounts of time and effort to your coursework abroad as you would during a quarter on campus at Northwestern, but you should also approach the learning environment as an opportunity to connect in-classroom activities with out-of-classroom experiences. 

Although we encourage you to take advantage of opportunities for independent travel, cultural activities, and exploring your host city and country during your free time, you are expected to participate fully in all classes and program-sponsored excursions, arrive on time to all activities, and complete all assigned work by the deadlines provided, regardless of additional activities you may wish to pursue. If you must be absent for a class or activity, you are expected to notify your professor and/or Program Director in advance, and you are responsible for making up any work you may miss. If you have any questions or concerns about these expectations, contact your GLO adviser.

Please also understand that even though your courses have been designed to meet Northwestern academic standards, they are taught – in many cases – by local instructors. Therefore, you are expected to learn and follow the classroom norms and culture of your host institution. 

Cultural Expectations

Northwestern study abroad programs provide you with the comfort of a relatively familiar academic and social setting, since your curriculum aligns with your on-campus studies, and you are living and studying with a group of your Northwestern peers. However, this structure can sometimes lead to a Northwestern “bubble” or “island” phenomenon abroad, which may pose a challenge to getting to know local people and having positive cross-cultural experiences. It is important that you make a concerted effort to cultivate relationships with students at your host institution, with your host family (if applicable), and with community members in the city where you live.