Last Updated on February 6, 2023 by AIFS Abroad
Are you ready to begin the study abroad application process, but you’re not sure where to start? Good news – AIFS is here to support you throughout your journey and help you turn your study abroad dreams into reality. From deciding on a program, to scheduling flights, to welcoming you to your new city and school, we’ve got you covered.
Follow these nine steps for a seamless study abroad application process:
1. Choose when and where
Take the time to consider what you want your study abroad experience to be like. When evaluating your study abroad options, consider the location, dates and duration of the program.
Location: If you are having trouble deciding where to study abroad, ask yourself questions like:
- Do I want a big city experience or somewhere quieter?
- Do I prefer an English-speaking country?
- Do I want to immerse myself in a particular world language?
You can also browse our blog to find in-depth information on specific locations. Current and recent participants frequently share tips and their experiences abroad on the AIFS blog.
Dates and Duration: AIFS offers study abroad programs during the fall and spring semesters, January term, summer term and academic year. Programs vary in length from about 3 weeks long to semester-long programs.
2. Choose your courses
Do you have a dream career or a course that you need to take while abroad? AIFS programs offer a range of unique course options, including internship and volunteer opportunities. Make sure to talk with your academic advisor to decide the best courses for you to take while studying abroad.
You can browse our programs by city, country, term, or courses offered. Prerequisites vary by program. Be sure to take note of any requirements and deadlines of the program you are interested in.
3. Talk to family and your school
It’s never too early in the study abroad application process to talk to your family or support network. Their questions can be addressed sooner if you start the conversation early. Your loved ones can find information on safety abroad, program dates, program fees, and benefits of studying abroad on the AIFS website.
You’ll also want to make an appointment with your academic advisor and the study abroad office at your school. They can help ensure the credits you earn abroad are approved for transfer credit at your home university. Your school may also have its own study abroad application process with specific steps and deadlines that are separate from AIFS.
4. Fund your program
Are you receiving financial aid? Meet with the financial aid office at your home university to see if the financial aid you receive can be applied to your time abroad. AIFS also offers funding towards your program. Be sure to ask us about our scholarships and grants for study abroad students.
5. Submit your online application
Create an account on our website to begin your study abroad application process. Once you have submitted your application fee, you will have a small list of tasks to complete with help from your AIFS Enrollment Team. Please note, students applying must have their courses approved by their school as part of the application process (unless they are participating in a gap year program). The application typically includes an official transcript, passport photos, a signed course selection sheet and a disciplinary clearance form.
Feel free to reach out to one of our Program Consultants with any questions about the application process.
6. You’re accepted!
Congratulations! Once you submit all the required documents, your application is officially considered complete. You should receive an acceptance decision within approximately two weeks via email. Be sure to read the email thoroughly.
7. Pay your deposit
You’re ready to enroll in your program! Secure your spot by paying your deposit.
8. Prepare for your departure
You’ll need a valid passport – make sure that you apply for (or renew) your passport as soon as possible. Also ensure that you carefully read all the information provided to you by your Admissions Officer, since you may need to apply for a student visa.
Bonus tip: Itching to have your bags packed already? You can browse our blog and YouTube channel to find advice from alumni and recent study abroad participants, including tips on what to pack for your upcoming adventure of a lifetime!
9. Arrive and let your adventure begin!
You did it! Pack your bags, board your flight and get ready for an unforgettable experience. Remember, AIFS is here to support you every step of the way. Our programs have an on-site Resident Director to help you with any questions you may have throughout your program.