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Programs : Brochure

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  • This program is currently not accepting applications.
Dates / Deadlines:
Term Year App Deadline Decision Date Start Date End Date
Spring 2017 02/01/2017
Rolling Admission 03/10/2017 03/20/2017

** Indicates rolling admission application process. Applicants will be immediately notified of acceptance into this program and be able to complete post-decision materials prior to the term's application deadline.

Indicates that deadline has passed
Fact Sheet:
Area of Study: Art Program Type: Faculty Directed
Class Eligibility: Graduate Student, Junior, Senior, Sophomore, Student At Large Housing Options: Hotel
Language of Instruction: English Program Provider: NIU Faculty
Program Description:

Exploring Contemporary Graphic Design in Poland


Faculty Director:
Prof. Aleksandra Giza

Program Overview

This is the 12th year this study abroad program has been offered. The primary purpose of the program is to provide participants with the opportunity to meet and work with students at the Academy of Fine Arts in Katowice. Students will focus on graphic design and studio art practice. The program will integrate historical information and contemporary trends in European graphic design and art.
    Goals of the program are:
-    to provide a cultural and historical background for the study and understanding of design, art, and architecture in Eastern Europe (particularly Poland).
-    to develop the students’ appreciation for graphic design and art from a variety of different perspectives and global viewpoint.
-    to demonstrate certain methods used in design education in Poland unique to the NIU program.
-    to enable students to interact and work with peers from different cultures.

To download a complete description of the program click:  Poland-Art Spring 17.pdf

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Course Offerings


ARTD 418A – Special Problems in Visual Communication     4 semester hours
Description:  Specific studies in related areas of visual communication.  Topics announced.  May be repeated to a maximum of 12 semester hours.
Prerequisite:  Successful completion of sophomore review in visual communication or consent of school.

ART 489 – Topics in Art:  Collaborative Art     4 semester hours
Description:  Concentrated study with professional artists and/or art educators.  Studio, lecture, and discussion, and/or field trip.  May be repeated to a     maximum of 12 semester hours.

ART 689 – Topics in Art:  Collaborative Art    4 semester hours
Description:  Concentrated study in art.  Studio, lecture and discussion, or field trip.  Topics announced.  May be repeated for a maximum of 8 semester hours as elective credit to be applied toward an advanced degree with school approval.  May not be substituted for art history or seminar.

INDEPENDENT STUDY/RESEARCH PROJECT: Individuals desiring to earn three additional hours of undergraduate or graduate credit may do so by engaging in an independent study/research project under the direction of Professor Giza. The project must (1) relate to a topic or subject introduced during the study abroad program in Poland, (2) have prior approval of Professor Giza, (3) be of genuine interest to the student, and (4) be completed and submitted for final evaluation to Professor Giza not later than October 1, 2015. Graduate student projects should reflect a higher level of scholarly accomplishment and research (beyond that of the undergraduate level) and should be related to their professional career or specialized focus of study.  Participants who enroll for the independent research project will receive 4 semester hours of credit in one of the following NIU courses:


ART 490 – Independent Research     4 semester hours
Description:  Work on individual problems in the student’s major field.  May be repeated to a maximum of 9 semester hours.
Prerequisite:  Consent of school.

ART 690 – Independent Study    4 semester hours
Description:  Work on individual problems in student’s chosen field.  May be repeated.  Multiple sections may be taken within the same semester.
Prerequisite:  Consent of school and instructor.
HONORS CREDIT:  Qualified students may also elect to receive Honors credit for any study abroad course(s) with the approval of the NIU faculty or instructor responsible for the course.  For more information please contact the University Honors Office.

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Student Life

Participants will reside in the Hotel of the Academy of Physical Education in Katowice in twin bedded rooms with bath and toilet facilities and will be provided breakfast daily throughout the period of residency.  Some lunches and dinners will be included.  

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Application Information

Click here to begin the online application process for this program. The online process provides guidance on requesting information, advising, or applying for the program.  For non-NIU students only - please note that at the time of application, non-NIU applicants will be expected to submit a signature verification form and copy of their ID to the Study Abroad Office.  More detailed instructions can be found on the website or by contacting the Study Abroad Office at (815) 753-0700 or

$200 APPLICATION FEE/DEPOSIT:  A $200 application fee/deposit is required of all applicants.  The $200 is broken down into $100 for the non-refundable application fee and $100 for a program deposit.  Both the application fee and the deposit will be applied to the total balance of the program cost.  The $100 deposit is refundable only if the participant withdraws prior to the withdrawal deadline indicated on the program materials or for medical reasons verified by a physician if the withdrawal takes place after the withdrawal deadline.  
The $200 application fee/deposit will be charged to NIU students’ NIU Bursar's account.  (Checks and money orders cannot be accepted from NIU students.)  Non-NIU students must submit a check or money order in the amount of $200.  More detailed instructions regarding the application fee/deposit can be found on the seminar application website.
IMPORTANT – All applications will be categorized as “Pending – No Deposit” until the $200 application fee/deposit has been received (or, in the case of non-NIU students, once a check has been received).  The Study Abroad Office will not consider or process applications without the $200 application fee/deposit.  In order to reserve your place in the program you must submit the $200 deposit within 14 days of application.  After 14 days applications without a deposit will be changed to inactive.

Application deadline: February 1, 2017

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The program is open to undergraduate and graduate level students who meet the NIU general admission requirements, and who are interested in design and media arts.  Students from majors outside the design and visual communications will be considered on a case-by-case basis.  Currently enrolled students must meet College of Visual and Performing Arts course GPA requirements.  Graduate level students must also meet NIU Graduate School admission, course and GPA requirements.
Students must be in good academic and disciplinary standing at the time of application.  Students who are on academic or disciplinary probation are not eligible to participate in study abroad programs.  Applicants must participate in the entire program and satisfy NIU undergraduate or graduate admission and course requirements.  
Students cannot have any encumbrances against their NIU records.  Any encumbrances placed on a student’s records by NIU (i.e., the Graduate School, Undergraduate Admissions, Bursar’s Office, Accounts Receivable, Registration and Records, Office of Student Conduct, Health Services, Parking Services, etc.) must be cleared before a student is granted admission to a study abroad program.
For undergraduate students to be admitted to the program, an applicant’s official transcript must be on file in the NIU Study Abroad Office.  Students who are currently enrolled at NIU, or who have previously enrolled at NIU, do not need to request an official transcript; the Study Abroad Office will make this request on behalf of the applicant. Students who want to participate in the program and earn academic credit from NIU who have not previously enrolled at NIU, or who are not currently enrolled at NIU, should ask the Registrar at their institution to forward an official transcript as soon as possible to the Study Abroad Office.  (Student-issued transcripts and photocopies are not acceptable.)  Questions relating to the admission requirements or transcripts should be directed to the Study Abroad Office.  
Students who desire to obtain graduate credit must either be admitted to a graduate program within the NIU Graduate School, or be admitted to the status of a "student-at-large" (SAL) within NIU's Graduate School.  For students to be admitted to the program for graduate credit, the applicant's official transcript must be on file in the NIU SAO.  Students who are currently enrolled at NIU, or who have previously enrolled at NIU, do not need to request an official transcript.  However, students who will participate in the program in order to earn academic credit as an SAL (students who have not currently enrolled, nor are previously enrolled at NIU) must provide a transcript from the baccalaureate institution and from any institution at which graduate credit has been earned.  This document must be provided to the SAO before a student can be admitted as an SAL to the program.  (Student issued transcripts and photocopies are not acceptable.)

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Program Fees

NIU PROGRAM COST:  The program cost covers the following cost-related services: 
  1. Accommodations and two meals daily while the group is in Poland.
  2. Land transportation in Poland.
  3. Admission fees to cultural and historical sites visited as part of the daily schedule.
  4. NIU undergraduate or graduate credit.
  5. International Student I.D. Card.
  6. NIU Student Medical Insurance
PROGRAM  COST:  $2,900*
*This amount represents the total in charges and fees that will be paid to NIU for this program.  Please note that the following charges will post individually on your MyNIU account:
•    Study Abroad Program Charge
•    Study Abroad Administrative Fee
•    NIU Student Medical Insurance

All prices quoted are subject to change. The information contained in the program documents and forms is presented in good faith and is believed to be correct as of the date presented. Northern Illinois University reserves the right to amend, modify, revise, or delete any information appearing in these documents, including but not limited to the cost of the program.

Non-NIU students should consult with their home institutions regarding additional costs that may apply to study abroad. Non-NIU students are responsible for any study abroad charges imposed by their home institution.


•    Airfare
•    Meals not included in the program cost.
•    Cost of acquiring a passport (approximately $130).
•    Two Passport size photos.
•    Additional costs associated with obtaining a visa for non-U.S. passport holders.
•    $40 Undergraduate application fee for non-NIU undergraduate students.
•    Independent travel and visa costs associated with independent travel.
•    Expenses for free-time pursuits.
•    Expenses and purchases of a personal nature.

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Financial Aid

As a participant in a study abroad program through NIU, you may be eligible for: Pell Grant, SEOG, Perkins Loan, PLUS Loan, Subsidized or Unsubsidized Stafford Loan, MAP Award or your privately awarded scholarship with consent of awarding organization. Tuition waivers do not apply. Please contact the International Affairs Business Manager, Tim Condon, at (815) 753-9530 or

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Withdrawal Policy

WITHDRAWAL FROM  THE PROGRAM:  Applicants withdrawing from the program after February 1, 2017 will not be refunded the $100 program deposit.

Applicants withdrawing from the program after thiis date will also be held accountable for any funds obligated to overseas vendors and agents on the applicant’s behalf.  This provision is in effect even if the applicant has not submitted the $100 deposit or additional payments, and if the applicant is applying for financial aid.

If the applicant must withdraw after 02/05/2016 for medical reasons, funds obligated on their behalf to overseas vendors can only be refunded if:
  1. The request is submitted to the Study Abroad Office in writing and accompanied by a signed statement stating that travel is not advised from a physician on the physician’s letterhead; and
  2. NIU is able to obtain refunds from overseas vendors and agents; and
  3. The program still has the minimum number of participants required to operate

CANCELLATION OF THE PROGRAM: The Study Abroad Office reserves the right to cancel this program if the minimum required enrollment is not attained.  If, prior to the commencement of the program, a U.S. State Department Travel Warning is issued for Poland, all applicants will be notified promptly of the warning and the possibility of cancellation of the program.  If, during the course of the program, a U.S. State Department Travel Warning is issued for Poland, students will be promptly notified of the warning and the advisability of canceling the program.

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Passport/Visa Information

PASSPORT:  --IMPORTANT--  All participants are required to possess a valid passport by February 1, 2017.  Important Note:  U.S. passports must be valid SIX months beyond the intended stay overseas.  Individuals who do not currently possess a valid passport should apply for one immediately.  Applicants who apply for a passport after January 1 should request expedited services or apply in person at the Chicago Passport Agency.  If applicants are not within the Chicago area, they must apply at the nearest passport agency.  Information on acquiring a U.S. passport is available at the U.S. State Department’s website:  Foreign passport holders may need special visas for travel and are responsible for obtaining all necessary visas.
VISA:  A visa is not required for US citizens staying in Poland less than three months.  Foreign passport holders may need special visas for travel in Poland and are responsible for obtaining all necessary visas.

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Contact Information

Please contact the Study Abroad Office
Williston Hall 417
Northern Illinois University
DeKalb, IL 60115
Phone: (815) 753-0700

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This program is currently not accepting applications.