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Study Abroad Hidden Gems in Fall 2023 

by AIFS Abroad
Image of 3 cities: Salamanca, Spain; Perth, Australia; Limerick, Ireland

Let’s be honest. With so many incredible options, it can be overwhelming to decide where – and what – to study abroad this fall semester. We’ve rounded up some of our favorite hidden gem study abroad programs that offer you unique cultural (and academic) experiences. 

Here are our top 6 hidden gem study abroad programs for Fall 2023: 

Why I Loved Studying Abroad in South Africa | AIFS Study Abroad
AIFS Abroad student in South Africa

#1: Global Service Learning | Stellenbosch, South Africa

Global Service Learning (GSL) is an experiential learning program offered by the Global Engagement Centre of Stellenbosch University and presented in collaboration with a local primary school. It comprises 90 class hours and 45 hours of on-site community engagement located in the western wine country near Cape Town. 

This program is situated at the intersection between (international) education, community engagement, and sustainable development and aims to harness students’ self-reflection to engage with contemporary global issues in a local context and use the community engagement elements critically as a tool for social impact. Students earn 12-15 credits between coursework and service hours course. 

The GSL Program is ideal for those interested in education, international policy, human development, sustainable development and global issues in Africa. 

AIFS Abroad student in Salamanca, Spain

#2: Medical and Health Program | Salamanca, Spain  

All courses are taught in English except for one course (Health Communication) which is available in English or Spanish. Spanish language study is not a requirement. This program is intended for students of health sciences (medicine, nursing, health management, pharmacology, or biology). Students can choose up to 5 courses; a minimum of 2 and a maximum of 4 must be from the Health and Medical Program. Students with an Intermediate and above level of Spanish can choose to take courses in Spanish from the Spanish and International Studies Program.  

Courses: Health Communication; Human Genetics; Molecular and Cellular Bases of Disease; Bioethics  

AIFS Abroad student in Maynooth, Ireland

#3: Irish Cultural Heritage Certificate Program | Maynooth, Ireland 

The Certificate in Irish Cultural Heritage offers an inter-disciplinary overview of Irish culture with a focus on archaeology, history, language and literature. Students choose either Introducing Irish Cultural Heritage or Introducing Settlement and Society in Early Ireland and then select three additional courses from the following list.  

This program has field seminars at the Boyne Valley World Heritage Site which includes the three largest artificial structures in Neolithic Europe dating from 3300-3000 BC; the Hill of Tara, the great monastery of Clonmacnoise and the prehistoric complex at Emain Macha which contains archaeological sites dating from 2200 BC. Students may have to pay a small supplement to participate in some of these excursions. 

Courses: The Cultural Heritage of Newgrange; Cultural Heritage and the Irish Literary Tradition, Cultural Heritage and the Early Irish Heroic Tradition; The Cultural Heritage of Royal Sites; Irish language 1; Medieval Philosophy 

AIFS Abroad students in San José, Costa RIca
AIFS Abroad students in San José, Costa Rica

#4: Certificate of Knowledge Program | San José, Costa Rica  

Take a Spanish language course for 4 semester credits and 4 elective courses for 3 or 4 credits each from one of eight fields of study and earn a Certificate of Knowledge in that chosen field by the end of the semester. Students on the Certificate of Knowledge Program take the same Spanish courses and elective courses as students on the Spanish Language, Liberal Arts and Environmental Sciences Program. 

Study Fields include: Artistic Development; Healthcare Approaches and Systems; Global Leadership 

Student Studying Abroad in Limerick, Ireland | AIFS Study Abroad | AIFS in Limerick, Ireland
AIFS Abroad student in Limerick, Ireland

#5 Full Curriculum: Engineering and Business Courses | Limerick, Ireland  

AIFS Abroad participants studying in Limerick can choose from a wide range of courses from across the university’s curriculum if prerequisites are met. Along with other international students, you will take classes alongside University of Limerick students and become fully integrated into the student body.   

Science and Engineering study fields include:

Chemical and environmental science, computer science and information systems, civil engineering and materials science, design and manufacturing technology, electronic and computer engineering, life sciences, math and statistics, mechanical, aeronautical and biomedical engineering and physics and energy.  

Kemmy Business School: AACSB-accredited courses in accounting and finance, economics, management and marketing and personnel and employment relations. 

6 Lesser-Known Differences Between Australia and the United States | AIFS Study Abroad | AIFS Study Abroad in Perth, Australia
AIFS Abroad student in Perth, Australia

#6: Study and Internship: Exercise Science Internship | Perth, Australia  

Students with an interest in exercise science can take an unpaid, for-credit internship as part of their course load.  

This Work Integrated Learning unit has been designed to provide study abroad students with practical field experience in the area of Exercise Science. The skills gained in this program are essential to increasing one’s understanding of the need for exercise programs in a healthy population. From this practical placement, students should begin to recognize the skills that are necessary to develop and implement exercise programs in healthy individuals. Additionally, students will be provided with the opportunity to extend classroom theory to the field.  

Dependent on student enrollment, students will complete up to 120 hours of practical work experience (unpaid) in the field. This experience may include working within a gym setting, sporting team, clinic, or providing assistance to ongoing research within the fields of sport and exercise science. Current research projects within this area include the use of blood flow occlusion to increase performance in trained cyclists, the impact of high-intensity aerobic exercise on cognitive function in older adults, the use of interval training in pre-diabetes, injury prevention programs in cricket and determination of visual cues associated with success in striking sports. 

Bonus: we have more hidden gems for studying abroad this fall. 

If these Fall 2023 semester program options don’t quite speak to you, don’t worry – AIFS Abroad has a giant range of study abroad and internship programs in amazing places across the world.  

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