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.

Deadlines vary by program and destination. You are invited to join our mailing list to receive reminders, updates on programs, events, and future application deadlines.

Get Started & Learn More

explore

Choosing a Program

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:

schedule

Timeline

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 early 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.

Note: The last day to request an application be opened is 3 days before the program application deadline. Please plan accordingly.

list

Eligibility

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.

psychology

Participant Expectations

Studying abroad is a rewarding experience that will require a high level of personal investment from you, the student, and guidance from Penn Abroad. The expectations laid out on this page are critical to having a successful semester abroad. Every student participating in a Penn Abroad program, regardless of location, is required to abide by all the expectations and conditions set forth below:

  • Patience, flexibility, and open-mindedness throughout all phases of the study abroad application process and experience abroad.

  • Personal investment in all phases of the study abroad experience. This includes but is not limited to:

  • Taking ownership of the experience from start to finish; do not expect others to complete any aspect of the study abroad process on your behalf

  • To serve as an ambassador of the University of Pennsylvania and accept your responsibility to act as a global citizen while studying abroad.

  • Active engagement and participation in the host university/program and local community.

  • Willingness to adapt to local academic and living conditions, even when this is difficult or inconvenient

  • Uphold the highest standards of precautions and concern for the health and safety of the global communities you join, including any health and safety standards set by Penn for your destination.

  • Engage in appropriate social behavior that abides by the rules and guidelines set forth by Penn and your host university/program, including but not limited to, organizing, hosting, or attending gatherings on or off-campus, consuming alcohol, and using drugs. Alcohol consumption and recreational drug use will not be considered an excuse for unauthorized risky behavior.

  • Regular communication with Penn Abroad and your host institution throughout your time abroad. When prompted for a reply, Penn Abroad expects a reply from all students within 24 hours. Additionally, at any time, should you – the student – feel unsafe or not properly cared for, it is expected you contact Penn Abroad and your host institution/program to rectify the issue.

  • Constructive and thoughtful feedback on your experience abroad

account_tree

The Application Process

Once you have selected a program, you are ready to begin the application process. Attending a Semester Abroad advising session is the first step to opening 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. Additionally, students in the College of Arts & Sciences are required to obtain approval from their major advisor, who is listed in Path@Penn. Select your school to get in touch and schedule a meeting with your home school academic advisor for study abroad: 

explore

Choosing a Program

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:

schedule

Timeline

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 early 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.

Note: The last day to request an application be opened is 3 days before the program application deadline. Please plan accordingly.

list

Eligibility

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.

psychology

Participant Expectations

Studying abroad is a rewarding experience that will require a high level of personal investment from you, the student, and guidance from Penn Abroad. The expectations laid out on this page are critical to having a successful semester abroad. Every student participating in a Penn Abroad program, regardless of location, is required to abide by all the expectations and conditions set forth below:

  • Patience, flexibility, and open-mindedness throughout all phases of the study abroad application process and experience abroad.

  • Personal investment in all phases of the study abroad experience. This includes but is not limited to:

  • Taking ownership of the experience from start to finish; do not expect others to complete any aspect of the study abroad process on your behalf

  • To serve as an ambassador of the University of Pennsylvania and accept your responsibility to act as a global citizen while studying abroad.

  • Active engagement and participation in the host university/program and local community.

  • Willingness to adapt to local academic and living conditions, even when this is difficult or inconvenient

  • Uphold the highest standards of precautions and concern for the health and safety of the global communities you join, including any health and safety standards set by Penn for your destination.

  • Engage in appropriate social behavior that abides by the rules and guidelines set forth by Penn and your host university/program, including but not limited to, organizing, hosting, or attending gatherings on or off-campus, consuming alcohol, and using drugs. Alcohol consumption and recreational drug use will not be considered an excuse for unauthorized risky behavior.

  • Regular communication with Penn Abroad and your host institution throughout your time abroad. When prompted for a reply, Penn Abroad expects a reply from all students within 24 hours. Additionally, at any time, should you – the student – feel unsafe or not properly cared for, it is expected you contact Penn Abroad and your host institution/program to rectify the issue.

  • Constructive and thoughtful feedback on your experience abroad

account_tree

The Application Process

Once you have selected a program, you are ready to begin the application process. Attending a Semester Abroad advising session is the first step to opening 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. Additionally, students in the College of Arts & Sciences are required to obtain approval from their major advisor, who is listed in Path@Penn. Select your school to get in touch and schedule a meeting with your home school academic advisor for study abroad: