Studying abroad requires advance planning, some flexibility, and good communication with the study abroad office.
While most students study away their junior year, it is possible as early as second semester in your sophomore year or as late as your senior year. You may also choose a semester, year-long, May term* or summer program. Whatever you choose, it takes careful planning and it’s never too early to start.
Step 1: Attend Study Abroad & Away 101 and Review Requirements
- The first step for all students who plan to study abroad OR Away (in the US) is to attend a Study Abroad & Away 101 Information Session, which are held monthly throughout the semester. This is required for all students and will give you a basic overview of the process and what options are available.
- Students should also attend the fall Study Abroad Fair, generally held every October, as well as any additional information sessions or events as appropriate.
- Learn about what you should do now to prepare to meet the requirements of your program and to Clark when you’re ready to apply.
Step 2: Research and Come to Drop-in Hours
- Research! After you’ve learned the basics, it’s time to do some research. Utilize our website, our network of Global Ambassadors and attend events and info sessions offered by the office to learn more. Read about how to choose a program. It is really important that you know what to expect in terms of classes, housing, support on site and budgeting.
- Do you already have a few programs in mind? Have no idea where to start? Browse our program lists on the Terra Dotta portal.
Step 3: Fill out an Interest Form at least one year in advance of your desired semester abroad
- This is so that we can keep you in our pipeline, remind you of important deadlines, applicable events and scholarships and other general reminders.
- Intent forms are due in December of the academic year prior to the desired study abroad period. Check out this FAQ about why filling out an Interest Form is so important!
- Submitting an interest form does not commit you to studying abroad. BUT, students who do not submit one may be ineligible when it comes time to apply.
Step 4: Apply!
- After you have narrowed down your program choice, you should be researching courses and obtaining approval from your faculty advisor for any major or minor requirements you wish to fulfill abroad.
- At this point, you should also have declared a major. You will also need to narrow down a choice for a faculty reference, so be sure you are thinking about a faculty member with whom you’ve taken a class that you might be able to ask.
- Students should apply through Clark’s international application portal, Terra Dotta.
- Students should be applying both to their program of choice and to Clark, both by the Clark deadlines. For example, if you plan to study abroad in the Spring, your application will be due the preceding Fall.
- No late applications are accepted.
Once you are accepted, there is lots more to do – applying for housing, visa (if necessary), finalizing course enrollment and making travel plans! We cannot stress how important it is to plan early.