How to Choose a Program

Study abroad programs across the globe range from summer immersions to semester internships. With so many programs to choose from, finding the right program can be a somewhat overwhelming task. We urge you to plan ahead and assess your situation. Start a conversation with family members, friends, faculty, study abroad alumni, and staff at the Center for Global Education. Ponder some of these important questions to help assess which program might be best for you.

Set goals

  • What do I hope to accomplish by going abroad?
  • What are my academic, professional, and personal goals?
  • What type of learning environment do I want to experience?
  • Is study abroad an opportunity I will have again in the future? 

Define and describe the experience

  • What part of the world do I want to study and live in?
  • Am I willing to consider a place that is off the beaten track?
  • Do I want to be in a big or small city?
  • Do I want minimal cultural adjustment or am I seeking something different/challenging?
  • Do I want to study with other Americans, international students, or alongside students from the host country?
  • What type of housing would I prefer? Homestay? Independent Apartment? Residence Hall? 

When and for how long?

  • When should I go? An academic year, semester, summer?
  • If I go for a semester, should I go in the Fall or the Spring? How important are weather conditions for me?
  • What are my options if I am a science, military science student, dual-degree, or nursing student?
  • How will my expected graduation date be affected if I decide to extend my stay as a study abroad student? 

Requirements – am I eligible for the program?

  • Do I have the minimum cumulative overall GPA?
  • Do I have the Business, Arts & Sciences, or Nursing cumulative GPA requirements?
  • Do I have the foreign language prerequisites?
  • Am I in good judicial standing?

Credit, Courses, Grades

  • Do I want to obtain USF credit or transfer credit?
  • Do I want the courses I take and the grades I receive abroad listed on my USF transcript?
  • Do I want to study in another language or do I want courses taught in English?
  • Which courses should I save to take abroad? Which ones should I take at USF?
  • Do I want to fulfill certain major, minor, elective, core, or language requirements?
  • Do I want to take part in an internship while I am abroad?  


  • Do I receive USF financial aid? How much? 
  • What financial resources are available to me?
  • How will I finance the program and other miscellaneous costs?
  • How do costs compare across different programs? What is included in the costs?

Download Frequently Asked Questions

Contact Info

Center for Global Education

Monday-Friday 9 a.m.–5 p.m.

Lone Mountain Main
Room 340 (LMM 340)
2800 Turk St.
San Francisco, CA 94118

Center for Global Education
University of San Francisco
2130 Fulton Street, LM 340
San Francisco, CA 94117
(415) 422-6848