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Program Types

NIU is formally affiliated with, or directly sponsors, many study abroad programs. The programs that are approved through the Study Abroad Office may allow transfer of credit to an NIU degree. Regardless of the type of program, all students apply through the NIU Study Abroad Office and remain registered at NIU during their study abroad experience.

Students can choose among several ways to study overseas. Staff in the Study Abroad Office can help students select from the following options.


NIU-Administered Programs (Faculty-Directed) - Summer/Winter Sessions

NIU faculty members and academic departments organize NIU study abroad programs for undergraduates, graduates, students-at-large (SALs), and professionals. Students will earn NIU credit (usually 3 to 6 hours) in NIU courses, and remain registered at NIU while abroad.

While some programs are residency programs, others are travel seminars that introduce students to various countries and their cultures.  Most faculty directed programs are offered during the summer session. Some are offered during winter or spring break.

NIU administered programs offer a lower-cost alternative to the usual semester or academic year study abroad experience.  All NIU administered programs are lead by NIU faculty members. Students and faculty will have the advantage of a significant international experience that enriches the international flavor of NIU campus courses.

Click here for a full listing of Faculty Directed programs.


NIU Cosponsored Programs – Fall, Spring, Summer, Academic Year

NIU approves many carefully-selected study abroad programs operated by other institutions in different countries.  The Study Abroad staff strives to balance freedom of choice with the quality of programs available to NIU students.

These programs offer opportunities for meaningful study and life in an environment that provides American style support services. Foreign study centers arrange these programs for a group of U.S. students.

Click on a program provider to learn more about their individual programs.

CEA DIS IFSA-Butler Salzburg College USAC
CIEE EPA ISA Semester at Sea  


Academic Internships

Academic internships allow students to progress toward their academic degree while earning practical experience in the field. Internships provide work experience in a realistic environment. They are available during the summer or the semester. Internships are available in a wide variety of disciplines, including liberal arts, sciences, visual and performing arts, education and business.


Non-NIU Programs (Programs not affiliated or in partnership with NIU

Non-NIU programs are defined as those programs offered by a provider other than those affiliated or in partnership with NIU.  NIU-sponsored study abroad programs have been vetted and meet academic and programmatic standards set forth by NIU.  The best way to find a program that will work for you is to come to the Study Abroad Office and meet with a study abroad advisor who can help you choose one of NIU's approved programs.  If you are interested in a program not vetted or sponsored by NIU you may petition to apply for this program; however, this must be done through the petition process through the NIU Study Abroad Office. Please start this process at least a year in advance.