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Study Abroad FAQs  |  Fall 2020 update  | Novel coronavirus updates

Why YOU Should Study Abroad

Professional health education is competitive. Less than 50% of students that apply to medical schools are admitted. There are four applicants for every one seat in physician assistant (PA) programs. We know medical and professional school admissions increasingly focus on students with dedication to community service, so engaging in community activities and research abroad will help any student attempting a health career to create a diverse, accomplished portfolio.

Study abroad programs provide an opportunity for you to develop a valuable skill set that can give you an advantage over the competition by:

  • Exposing you to unique health environments and differences in the human condition worldwide;
  • Expanding your knowledge of culturally specific health approaches;
  • Challenging you to adapt and persevere under sometimes difficult and harsh social and cultural circumstances;
  • Improving your language and cross cultural skills for effective communication across populations;
  • Enhancing your portfolio of experience through the kinds of hands-on research and community-based opportunities you will need to compete and succeed in today’s challenging health professions admissions process.

A Message from the College of Health Solutions

“Study Abroad is an excellent opportunity for students to experience unique cultures, systems (including health care), and perspectives. Studying abroad is one of the best college experiences a student can have, because it challenges them to grow personally, professionally, and academically. It is also a fantastic way for students to get to know their professors. If a student has the opportunity to embark on a meaningful study abroad experience, I highly recommend them to seize the chance.”

- Nate Wade, Senior Director of Pre-Health Advising

Planning Your Program

When to study abroad

When to study abroad

With advance planning, and working closely with your academic and pre-health advisors, you should be able to fit study abroad within your four years at ASU. The Pre-Health Advising Office has provided the following recommended timeline to consider health-related research and study abroad activities. As a Nutrition major, there are a number of terms available for you to study abroad. Check out our recommended options below:

Year Term Recommended Student Action
Year 1 Spring Identify and apply to a pre-health summer program offering clinical or research experience
Summer Complete a pre-health summer program
Year 2

Optimal year to study abroad
Fall Research study abroad programs focused on clinical/research experience, or that allow you to complete major/elective coursework
Spring Option 1: Complete a spring semester, spring break, or post-spring study abroad program
Summer Option 2: Complete a summer study abroad program or a pre-health summer program
Year 3 Fall Research medical school options

Option 3: Complete a fall semester or winter break study abroad program

Begin studying for MCAT or GRE
Spring Study for MCAT or GRE

Take MCAT or GRE in late spring

Begin medical & professional school applications
Summer Submit medical & professional school applications

Option 4: Complete a summer study abroad program
Year 4 Fall - Spring Medical & professional school interview process

Option 5: If you will not immediately enter medical or professional school, complete a winter break, spring semester, spring break or post-spring program

General Advice

General Advice

Advice from the College of Health Solutions

The ASU College of Health Solutions has generated a list of required and recommended courses for entry into medical or professional schools. There is no certainty of earning direct credit for these courses at a foreign institution so it is generally advised that students take these requirements at ASU. Typically, study abroad courses are best applied directly toward your upper division (300 or 400-level) major electives.

Advice from the Study Abroad Office

  • Be sure to view the list of recommended steps for getting started on your study abroad journey.
  • Attend a Study Abroad 101 info session to get all the basic information from a Study Abroad Student Recruiter on program types, eligibility, housing, finances, searching for and choosing a program and the application process. Discover times and locations.
  • Attend a Financing Your Study Abroad workshop to get information on program fees and deadlines, how financial aid can apply to study abroad, how to utilize community-based funding and tips on finding and applying for study abroad scholarships. Discover times and locations.

Meet With Your Academic Advisor

Meet With Your Academic Advisor

How to make an appointment

  • Call (602) 496-3300 to schedule an appointment with your academic advisor.
  • Visit an advisor during walk-in hours in Health South 4th floor.

Key questions to ask

  • What are my remaining degree requirements?
  • How many upper-division credits do I still need to complete for my degree?
  • How many elective credits (lower vs. upper division) do I have left to complete my major?
  • What remaining prerequisites must I fulfill, and how will study abroad impact my progress?
  • Which of my remaining degree requirements could I complete abroad?  Are there any that I cannot take abroad?
  • Can I receive academic credit for an internship abroad?
  • Are there any in-residence requirements I need to be aware of before I go abroad?

Meet With the Study Abroad Office

Meet With the Study Abroad Office

Meeting with a Peer Advisor

Peer Advisors are ASU students who have studied abroad on various types of programs and who are here to help you get started on a journey of your own!  They are prepared to help you understand the different types of programs offered, narrow down your program options, guide you on the application process, discuss program costs, and speak about student life abroad.

No appointments are necessary to meet with a Peer Advisor.

Meeting with an International Coordinator

Your International Coordinator can answer your questions about specific programs, can talk you through the application process, and can help you find funding resources for your particular program on the Study Abroad Office website. Your International Coordinator is happy to meet with you multiple times to answer your questions, and he/she would be glad to schedule meetings in person, by phone, or via Skype.

  • Find the name of your International Coordinator listed on the Study Abroad Office webpage for your program of interest.
  • Schedule an appointment online. Click on the International Coordinator name for your program of interest and follow the prompts to schedule your appointment.
  • Visit an International Coordinator during walk-in hours in Student Services Building, Room 278.

Key questions to ask the Study Abroad Office

  • What are the eligibility requirements for my program(s) or interest?
  • What is involved in the application for my program(s) of interest? Is admission to the program competitive?
  • How will I get ASU credit and grades for the courses I take abroad?
  • What courses are available on my program? How can I get courses approved for my program(s) of interest?
  • What is the cost of participating in my program(s) of interest? What do I need to consider in preparing an estimated budget for my program(s) of interest, and what expenses do I need to plan for up front?
  • Where can I find more information about scholarships for study abroad?

Research Your Funding Options

Research Your Funding Options

Studying abroad is an investment in your future. Like any other type of investment, it requires careful planning and management. However, the personal, academic, and professional rewards that you will gain from this experience will last a lifetime. You should carefully consider costs, budgets, and financing when selecting and preparing for your experience abroad.

Review Cost Sheet

You can find a link to your program’s Cost Sheet near the top of the Study Abroad Office webpage for your program. The Cost Sheet will highlight the costs that are billed to your student account as well as additional estimated costs that are not billed to your student account but that you might expect to spend while abroad. Be sure to note what expenses are included in the fees charged by the Study Abroad Office, and remember to budget additional money for airfare, passport and visa fees, and personal expenses since these are not included in any Program Fee.

Research Funding

Once you have reviewed the Cost Sheet for your program and are aware of the costs you might expect to spend on your program, you can begin to make a plan for financing your study abroad program. You can receive funding for studying abroad through financial aid, scholarships and grants, and community-based fundraising efforts. We encourage you to:

  1. Speak to Financial Aid and Scholarship Services (FASS) about financial aid;
  2. Use our Scholarships and Grants page to search for general study abroad scholarships and scholarships that are unique to your program;
  3. Read the Community-Based Funding Guide for creative ways that past ASU students have funding their programs.

Financial Aid

We encourage you to speak to a Financial Aid Counselor, who can help you figure out how your financial aid might be applied to our study abroad program. Be sure to seek answers to the following questions from a Financial Aid Counselor:

  • How do loans work for study abroad? What kinds of aid/loans do I currently receive, and are there any restrictions on this aid if I study abroad?
  • Have I reached the maximum of (insert name of) loan allowed per academic year?
  • When will funds be released for my semester of participation?
  • How will additional scholarships impact my ASU financial aid?

Major-Specific Scholarships

The College of Health Solutions offers study abroad scholarships for which you may apply.  

Community-Based Funding

Check out the Study Abroad Office website to learn more about community-based funding, including tips and tricks for crowd-source funding. There is funding out there… you just have to ask!

Attend Financing Workshop

Would you like help learning about your financing options? We offer bi-weekly in-person and online Financing Your Study Abroad Workshops. Join us in the MU on Monday afternoons or log in through Adobe Connect (find login information here) on Thursdays to learn how to finance your study abroad program through financial aid, scholarships and grants, and community-based funding.

Helpful Links

“For the most part, studying abroad was about fulfilling a dream, but I didn’t realize the impact it would have on me professionally. The class discussions gave me new insight on contemporary issues and the site visits gave me different experiences I never would have gotten anywhere else. Because of this program, I have gained new confidence both personally and professionally and solidified my passion for medicine.”
- Allison S., participant of Exploring Science & Medicine Through Art & Literature program

Recommended Programs

Although Nutrition majors can participate in any ASU study abroad program, the College of Health Solutions recommends the following programs. You can also find a full listing of CHS Study Abroad programs on our website: https://chs.asu.edu/students/student-life/study-abroad-programs.



Program Type: Faculty-Directed
Available Terms: Summer
Country: France
Unique Features: France is not only known for its beautiful landscapes and historic places, but also for its unique culture of food which is unparalleled in any other region of the world. As such, this program focuses on the intersections of food, culture and health. Students on this program will be exposed to the origins of the French diet and cuisine, rural and urban food systems and dietary globalization. This program is centered in central Paris and includes excursions to Reims, Versailles and Normandy.
Program Type: Faculty-Directed
Available Terms: Summer
Country: Greece
Unique Features: Study happiness and healthy lifestyles on a small, serene Greek Island. Learn why Ikaria has been designated a Blue Zone, one of the five areas where the greatest percentage of people live into their 100s. Learn directly from the Ikarian centenarians what they consider to be the secrets to happiness, healthy aging, and longevity.
Program Type: Faculty-Directed
Available Terms: Summer
Country: Guatemala
Unique Features: This is a once-in-a-lifetime experience in which students will get to learn about indigenous healthcare by making site visits with healthcare providers and conducting interviews in rural communities with Mayan midwives and community health workers and will also assist in data entry and analysis. The program will include trips to several health clinics in the region, as well as archaeological and environmental sites.
Program Type: Faculty-Directed
Available Terms: Summer
Countries: Iceland, Denmark, Sweden, Norway
Unique Features: Food, culture and healthcare related academic lectures and visits.Comparison of health care and food availability in Scandinavia, specifically with the Sami culture to their hometown environment, will allow students to understand the impact of health care and food in various cultural aspects (religion, ethnicity, availability). This allows students to develop empathetic and practical guidance to patients or clients in their chosen careers.
Program Type: Faculty-Directed
Available Terms: Summer
Country: New Zealand
Unique Features: New Zealand’s stunning landscapes—including towering snow-capped mountains, temperate and tropical forests with unique wildlife, active volcanoes as well as geysers and hot-springs, and expanses of dramatic and peaceful beaches—provide the backdrop for exploring the interplay between health, culture, the environment, and sustainability. This interdisciplinary program travels almost the full length of the country, and the friendly multicultural population provides insights into the challenges of providing equitable and effective health care, preserving environmental quality, and promoting food sustainability.
Program Type: Faculty-Directed
Available Terms: Summer
Country: Peru
Unique Features: Visit four cities: Lima, Cusco, Aguas Calientes including Machu Picchu, and Chinchero. Non-nursing majors welcome! Studying abroad on this program will transform the way you think, communicate, shop, learn, listen, love and work. It will shape your career and your role as a global citizen.
Program Type: Faculty-Directed
Available Terms: Summer
Country: Italy
Unique Features: Earn six upper-division credits while living and studying in beautiful and historic Florence, Italy. Academic visits to La Specola Museum (Museum of Natural History), Museo Galileo, Accademia Gallery, and Leonardo da Vinci Musuem.
Program Type: Faculty-Directed
Available Terms: Summer
Country: United Kingdom
Unique Features: Study how people lived and died in the past through global health and bioarchaeology. Go on behind the scenes tours of the British Museum and the Museum of London mummy and skeletal collections. Academic visits to the Tower of London and Highgate Cemetery, while walking in the footsteps of deadly diseases (bubonic plague, cholera) and Jack the Ripper, included. Day trips to Stonehenge, Oxford, Hampton Court Palace, and Darwin's personal home.
Program Type: Faculty-Directed
Available Terms: Summer
Country: Guatemala
Unique Features: Gain BIO 394 internship credit with over two weeks of medical or veterinary field clinics, work with local (English-speaking) doctors and explore the beautiful Guatemala cities of Atitlán Lake, Antigua, Parramos, Sacatepéquez and Chimaltenango. Engage with the local culture through evening activities, and give back to the local community through service days.
Program Type: Faculty-Directed
Available Terms: Summer
Countries: Italy, Spain
Unique Features: Origins, development, and diversity of food preferences and dietary habits in Spain and Italy. Food patterns and attitudes of Spanish and Italian citizens as compared to U.S. citizens. Development of nutrition and health communication materials for selected target audiences. In-depth study of the Mediterranean Diet, its components and research evidence of its health consequences.
Program Type: Faculty-Directed
Available Terms: Summer
Country: Peru
Unique Features: In this six-credit program we examine Peru's rich history and modern food scene to understand the various ways in which food and culture intersect and shape health and social experiences. Join us as we tour museums and famous archaeological sites, including Machu Picchu; visit with local producers at beach, desert and Andes mountain locations; cook traditional dishes; eat world-class meals at a variety of restaurants; and explore some of the most diverse food markets on the planet. Includes stays in Lima, the culinary capital of Latin America, and Cusco, the capital city of the Inka Empire.
Program Type: Faculty-Directed
Available Terms: Summer
Country: Australia
Unique Features: Join us in Australia and New Zealand for an in-depth exploration of sports nutrition and the role that culturally-specific foods have in shaping nutritional guidelines and eating habits of regional athletes. Learn about sports such as Australian football, rugby, netball and cricket and make connections between the strong indigenous cultures and heritage foods across regions of Australia and New Zealand. Sample the local cuisine, take in a sporting competition and soak up the wonderful culture of these two incredible countries.
Program Type: Global Intensive Experience
Available Terms: Spring Break
Country: Dominican Republic
Unique Features: Explore the dichotomy between health systems in the Dominican Republic and Haiti and the sociopolitical forces that have led to the evolution of more effective agricultural, sanitation, and health care systems in the DR. Learn specific skills needed by community health educators to develop a practice of advocacy and discover how to make change happen to improve health for individuals and communities through the practice of digital storytelling and policy advocacy.
Program Type: Global Intensive Experience
Available Terms: Winter Break
Country: France
Unique Features: Spend 2 glorious Winter weeks in Paris, France. Immersive experiential learning in one of the most beautiful and cultured cities in the world. Academic visits to iconic cultural and medical institutions: Institut Pasteur, Universite de Paris, Le Musee Orfila and more.
Program Type: Partnership
Available Terms: Spring Session B
Country: Peru
Unique Features: Live in Trujillo, Peru for six weeks--known locally as the capital of eternal spring. In partnership with Vive Peru, visit families to implement community health programs at the household and community level, and visit the Peruvian Andes and Machu Picchu in your free time. Students will stay with host families who will provide all meals during the program, giving students the opportunity to have an immersive cultural experience.
Program Type: Partnership
Available Terms: Summer
Country: Tanzania
Unique Features: Live and work on the side of Mt. Meru in rural northern Tanzania in the beautiful village of Tengeru. The program is focused on rural global health issues and students have a role in addressing gaps in humanitarian needs through service. Students have an incredible opportunity to work in collaboration with the community to facilitate needed discussions about health, as well as develop projects that support the health needs of the community.
Program Type: Partnership
Available Terms: Summer
Country: Dominican Republic
Unique Features: Improve your Spanish language skills through a homestay with a local family. Examine a range of pre-professional healthcare issues. Engage with local patients and medical staff through a health practicum and clinical rotation. Cover concepts of public health with a focus on the health/illness process and its relation to health management, policies, and coverage.
Program Type: Partnership
Available Terms: Fall, Spring
Country: Costa Rica
Unique Features: Spend a semester in the vibrant and historic city of San Jose while completing up to three courses of college-level Spanish as well as additional electives in areas such as environmental studies and sustainability! Participate in the Bridging Cultures Program to help ease the transition into your study abroad experience, and consider adding an optional Service Learning placement to work in the local community. Enjoy excursions to locations such as Arenal Volcano, Manuel Antonio National Park, and Playa Tamarindo!
Program Type: Partnership
Available Terms: Summer
Country: Costa Rica
Unique Features: Take a course in health care as well as Spanish for Health Professions courses at all levels. Spend one or two summer sessions in the vibrant and historic city of San Jose. Enjoy excursions to locations such as Arenal Volcano, Manuel Antonio National Park, Playa Tamarindo, etc.
Program Type: Exchange
Available Terms: Academic Year, Calendar Year, Fall, Spring
Country: Mexico
Unique Features: Study at the leading private university in Latin America at Cuernavaca, Guadalajara, Mexico City, Monterrey, or Queretaro. Choose from a large menu of Spanish language acquisition courses, regular university courses in Spanish with local students (advanced Spanish proficiency required), and regular university courses in English with local students. The Monterrey, Mexico City and Guadalajara campuses are the largest, see the highest numbers of international students enroll, and therefore offer the most variety of classes in English.

Key Contacts and Resources