Each year degree-seeking international students studying at the University of Wisconsin–Madison choose to participate in a study abroad program. Some students choose to go back to their home country, while others choose to explore another part of the world.
If you do choose to study abroad here are some things to keep in mind:
- There are program options from one week to one year, so there are durations available for all students.
- You should talk with International Student Services (ISS) regarding your study abroad program to complete appropriate paperwork & make sure U.S. visa stipulations are met and how your visa status might be impacted.
- You will receive UW-Madison residence credit for all course work completed on an approved study abroad program.
- You can graduate abroad; however, be sure to discuss this with ISS. This may impact your U.S. student visa status and ability to re-enter the United States.
- Student visa requirements vary by country, so you will want to explore application requirements well in advance of the program. You may need to apply for “transit visas” to pass through a country on the way to your final destination. Carefully think through travel routes to get to your study abroad destination.
Questions to ask your academic advisor:
- What classes must I take on campus for my major?
- Are there any core or major requirements I can take abroad?
- What pre-requisite courses do I have to take, if any, and how will study abroad affect that?
- How many elective credits do I have remaining in my major? Are those elementary, intermediate, or advanced?
- Can I fulfill any breadth/depth requirements abroad? What would be best?
- How should I follow up with you after I confirm my study abroad plans?
- How might other parts of my identity affect my experience?
If you are a citizen of a country other than the United States and will remain/study in, or travel to your country of record (the location of your permanent residence), UW-System’s health, medical, and repatriation insurance will not provide coverage. You will have to obtain and provide documentation of alternative international health and medical insurance that will cover your needs both while in and during any period of transit to/from your country of record. This may include participation in a national healthcare plan or coverage provided under a personal healthcare plan in your country of record. If you have questions about this requirement, please speak with your Study Abroad Advisor.
All other students participating on an international program will automatically be enrolled in Cultural Insurance Services International (CISI), the university’s international health, medical and repatriation insurance policy.
International Student Services
Embassy and Consulate Contact Information
We ask students to share their experiences on how various parts of their identity impacted them while they were abroad in their program evaluations. Below are tips and advice given by Badgers about their individual experiences and thoughts. These do not represent all experiences in a location. Our staff is happy to talk with you about any questions you may have.
“As an international student, working with peers from other country in another country is very interesting experience. Being an international student helped me more to merge into a new group.” –Ecuador past participant
“It’s a different experience to go to France with other U.S. students. I felt this experience kind of improved my English.” –France past participant
“I had less culture shock to experience than the US students.” –Japan past participant
“Due to my identity I may not have the excitement like other students in the program who were having their first time in Japan, but my past experience and language skills helped me to learn new hidden things and to have better communication with local students.” –Japan past participant
“As a Chinese student who transferred to the US, I think I did a good job representing two cultures. In addition, I was expecting big expat groups of Americans or Chinese but they are in fact very few: I spend my entire time here with Europeans.” –Netherlands past participant
“If you’re thinking “is it weird for an international to study abroad”- don’t. If you really want to go for a study abroad experience, do it. More than anything, experiences are what really grow us.” –South Korea past participant