Semester Abroad

Application Process & Deadlines

As you embark on the incredible adventure of spending the semester or year abroad, it is important to begin planning how that time fits into your overall Penn experience. The Penn Abroad team is here to guide you through the process as you define your goals, choose a program, and complete the application process. All students applying to semester abroad programs are required to apply through Penn Abroad. Use the information and steps below to begin this exciting journey.

We are now accepting applications for Spring 2021. Take the first step by signing up for an advising appointment. Interested in a future term and want to stay up to date on semester opportunities and deadlines? Sign up for our mailing list.

You are expected to meet certain minimum requirements in order to study abroad on a semester program. Individual partner institutions may have additional GPA minimums and language or course prerequisites. You can refer to program specific information within PASSPORT.

Penn Abroad General Eligibility Requirements:

  • You are required to have a minimum GPA of 3.0. Please note that some partner institutions require a higher minimum GPA

  • Grade notations I, II, (incomplete) or NR (no grade reported) should not appear on your transcript

  • You must be in good academic and disciplinary standing at Penn

Note: If you do not meet these eligibility requirements, please bring this to the attention of your Global Programs Manager.  In some instances, your study abroad application will be considered as long as certain conditions are met before your semester abroad.

Please refer to the full listing of academic information for questions regarding registration, transfer credit, grades and academic policies.

As you explore program options, consider your academic and personal goals. Once you know why you want to study abroad, it will make it easier to decide where you will study abroad. Thinking through these questions will help you navigate the many exciting program options.

Questions to Consider:

  • Why do I want to study abroad?

  • What are my main goals for when I am abroad?

  • How will this experience help my overall learning and future career?

There are also a number of ways to learn more about program options and the student experience. Follow these important links to learn how different programs fit within your personal and academic goals:

Information Sessions and Events

Hear from Past Participants

Penn-Approved Program Options

Studying abroad for a semester or a year will require careful planning. Application deadlines for Penn-affiliated programs vary, but generally follow the following timeline:

  • Spring Semester: early September to mid-October
    (start your application process in April of the previous academic year)

  • Fall Semester/Academic Year: early February to mid-March
    (start your application process in November of the year prior)

There are some deadlines that fall earlier than the usual timeline, so it is important that you review specific program information in PASSPORT to confirm application deadlines. You can also learn about the program and get updates by joining our mailing list.

Once you have selected a program, you are ready to begin the application process. Meeting with a Penn Abroad Global Programs Manager for an advising appointment is the first step to open your online application within our PASSPORT system.

Meet with an Advisor

Once your application is open, you are required to complete the materials checklist by the listed deadline. This checklist includes the requirements set by Penn Abroad and the host institution. Some supporting documents can be completed online while others should be submitted directly to the Penn Abroad office. Through your application homepage, you will be able to track the status of your application from anywhere.

In addition to meeting with a Penn Abroad Global Programs Manager, you are also required to meet with your home school academic advisor for study abroad. During this meeting, you will determine academic eligibility, course choices, and begin the course approval process. Select your school to get in touch and schedule a meeting with your home school academic advisor for study abroad: 

The College of Arts & Sciences

The Wharton School

The Huntsman Program

Penn Engineering

Penn Nursing Science

You should also meet with your academic advisor to determine which courses will fulfill major requirements.