Study abroad gives students opportunities to look at the world through a different lens. Plant & fungal research and study happens around the world. Being able to learn about the local flora and expand your world view is a great reason to study abroad at any time as a Botany major.
Prospective Botany Students
If you are considering studying abroad, become familiar with the Botany major requirements and work with your advisor on developing your 4-year plan. Your 4-year plan will provide a sense of how and when study abroad will best complement your major and degree. A common initial question is whether you want or need to take courses abroad that will count for the major, foundational coursework or general education credits. Answering this question by accessing and establishing your goals and priorities can give you a sense of what programs to explore in depth.
You can study abroad at any point during your time at UW-Madison, but most students choose to study abroad during their junior or senior year. We recommend completing core coursework such as the Introductory Biology sequence, mathematics, and chemistry requirements for the major at UW-Madison. This said, you could always study abroad earlier and complete core coursework after returning. If you are applying to professional health programs (such as medical school or dental school), you are advised to complete the majority of your pre-requisite coursework at UW-Madison.
Botany Course Considerations Abroad
Botany students need to keep in mind that at least 15 credits of work in the major/major department must be completed on the UW-Madison campus. Beyond that, there are no requirements for taking a certain number of courses or credits here on campus versus while studying abroad on a UW-Madison-administered study abroad program.
Many study abroad programs offer excellent upper-level bioscience courses. Students often complete courses abroad that count for intermediate/advanced Botany breadth requirement. Some programs have classes already equated to UW-Madison courses that fulfill this requirement. These equivalencies can be found on each program’s academics page. Programs may not have all courses pre-equated simply because no student has taken them in the past. How do you know if a course will likely count as a course for the major? A good guideline is to look for upper-level plant science courses that have science pre-requisites. Once you have identified courses of interest, work with your Study Abroad Advisor to gather syllabi if possible. Then, meet with the Botany Faculty Intake Advisor to determine if and how the course will count towards your major or degree requirements. You will work with IAP to complete the approval process.
Mapping Your Study Abroad Experience as a Botany Major
At UW-Madison, focus on a balanced schedule of courses that begin the curricular building blocks for your major. Investigate winter intersession and summer term programs that interest you. Explore potential semester and summer programs for the future.
At UW-Madison, continue a balanced schedule of classes that build the foundation for your Botany major. You may consider going abroad this year on either a semester or a summer program. Meet with your Botany advisor to ensure you are on track with core bioscience courses. This can also be a year to narrow down programs for future terms.
Many students choose this year to study abroad since you will have likely completed the majority of your introductory coursework. You can take advantage of a range of programs that offer unique and interesting upper-level coursework in the biosciences that will count for the Botany major, how cool to be able to take an Ecology course in another country!
You can study abroad senior year without delay in graduation with careful planning with your advisor. With careful planning you can complete your Senior Thesis requirement with pre-approval. Seniors should be aware of the senior residency requirement – credits 90-120 must be earned in residence (the 30-credit rule). Fortunately, credits earned abroad through UW-approved study abroad programs qualify as in residence. All returned students should meet with career services to explore how to best convey the international experience to future employers, to graduate schools, and on personal statements.
Questions to Ask
Your Academic Advisor
- What Botany classes must I complete for my degree? What courses can I fulfill abroad?
- Do I need to be on UW-Madison’s campus for any courses in my Botany major?
- How many electives do I have outside of my major?
Your Study Abroad Advisor
- What programs offer courses I would like to take?
- How and when do I select courses for my program?
- When will I know course equivalents for my program?
- What is the class structure like abroad?
- What is the application and notification timeline for programs and scholarships?
- Why do I want to study abroad?
- What are my academic and personal goals?
- How will studying abroad enhance my academic and global perspectives?
- How long do I want to study abroad?
- How much can I afford to spend?
Identifying Programs That are Right for You
There are many different study abroad programs available to you. Programs vary in their course offerings, language of instruction, duration, and cost. It is important to consider your goals and priorities in selecting a program. The list below is not exhaustive but is demonstrative of programs that offer bioscience courses. There may be other programs that better align with your goals and interests. To explore all study abroad programs, visit the IAP Program Search page. However, courses offered as part of these programs may not be guaranteed to be the best fit for you depending on where you are in the major.
Australia, Cairns & Townsville: James Cook University
Australia, Sydney: University of Sydney Exchange
Australia, Yungaburra: SFS Rainforest Studies
Belize, Southwater Caye: Ceiba Marine Biology of Coral Reefs
Bhutan, Paro: SFS Himalayan Studies
Chile, Puerto Natales: SFS Climate Studies
Costa Rica, Atenas: SFS Sustainable Development Studies
Costa Rica, Multiple: UW Tropical Horticulture in Costa Rica
Denmark, Copenhagen: University of Copenhagen Exchange
Denmark, Copenhagen: DIS – Study Abroad in Scandinavia
Ecuador, Quito: Ceiba Tropical Conservation Semester: Galapagos, Andes and Amazon
England, Bristol: University of Bristol Exchange
England, London: University of Westminster
France, Montpellier: Montpellier SupAgro Exchange
Iceland, Reykjavik: University of Iceland Exchange
Japan, Obihiro: UW Food Systems and the Environment in Northern Japan
Netherlands, Wageningen: Wageningen University Exchange
New Zealand, Multiple: Massey University Exchange
Panama, Bocas del Toro: SFS Tropical Island Biodiversity & Conservation Studies
Peru, Iquitos: SFS Biodiversity & Development in the Andes-Amazon
Singapore, Singapore: National University of Singapore Exchange
South Africa, Cape Town: University of Cape Town Exchange
Sweden, Stockholm: DIS – Study Abroad in Scandinavia
Thailand, Bangkok: Mahidol University Exchange
Wales, Cardiff: Cardiff University
Search all IAP programs
Research all programs using the IAP Program Search page. The above is not an exhaustive list of all programs that offer Botany courses. There may be other programs that are a better fit for your individual needs or interests.