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First Steps & Advising

If you are interested in studying abroad, there are multiple ways to learn more about the planning process and programs available to you. Take the first step by utilizing one or more of the resources below.

Learn About the Study Abroad Process

Complete a First Steps Workshop

First Steps Workshops are offered during the Fall and Spring semesters. Complete one of these workshops through your college to learn about what it means to study abroad and the factors to consider when selecting a program. Check the Study Abroad Calendar to find dates and times for the in-person or online workshops.

All programs offered by the university are listed in an online platform called My Study Abroad. Visit the Program Search page for more information.


The University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign are committed to providing high-quality advising and resources to all students. Our advising practices are grounded in the Forum Standards of Good Practice for Education Abroad.

Staff approaches advising as a collaborative process in which you are responsible for being an active, reflective, and educated participant in your education abroad experience. We provide professional, inclusive guidance and resources throughout the entirety of your education abroad experience.

Students may work with multiple individuals and offices throughout the study abroad process. Below is the initial advising process recommended for all students.

Advising Process

Step One: Discuss Your Plans with Your Academic Advisor

As soon as you begin considering study abroad, discuss your plans with your academic advisor. Your academic advisor can answer questions about when to study abroad as it relates to your academic schedule and how study abroad credits will fulfill academic requirements.

Step Two: Schedule an Appointment with Your college Study Abroad Office

After you have met with your academic advisor, schedule an advising appointment with your home college's study abroad office (or representative) to learn more about the process and select a program that meets your academic, professional or personal goals. Study abroad advisors can:

  • Explain how study abroad credits will fulfill academic requirements,
  • Provide in-depth knowledge about programs,
  • Privately address any specific questions or concerns you may have about studying abroad, and
  • Share information and resources to navigate the process.

Step Three: Meet with the Office of Student Financial Aid

Most financial aid packages will apply to study abroad program costs, so it is important to understand how much of your financial aid will transfer. Start by visiting the Financial Aid page.

Step Four: Apply for Scholarships

There are university-sponsored, donor-funded, and national scholarships available to many students. Explore the Scholarships page for more information.

Study Abroad Office

How to Schedule an Appointment

College of ACES

ACES Study Abroad

Schedule an Appointment

College of Applied Health Sciences

Illinois Abroad and Global Exchange

Schedule an Appointment

College of Education

Office of International Programs

Schedule an Appointment

College of Fine and Applied Arts

Illinois Abroad and Global Exchange (Andy Hinnant)

Schedule an Appointment

College of LAS

LAS International Programs

Schedule an Appointment

College of Media

Media Study Abroad

Schedule an Appointment

Gies College of Business

Gies Global Programs

Schedule an Appointment

Grainger College of Engineering

International Programs in Engineering (IPENG)

Schedule an Appointment

School of Information Sciences

Illinois Abroad and Global Exchange (Joy Phaphouvaninh)

Schedule an Appointment

All Other Colleges

Illinois Abroad and Global Exchange

Schedule an Appointment

Ongoing Advising

Students are highly encouraged to seek advising from both their academic advisor and study abroad advisor at multiple points throughout the study abroad process, including when navigating the course approval process:

  • You can earn major/minor, elective, and/or gen ed credit while abroad. Check each program's online brochure page in My Study Abroad to find a list of available courses on that program.
  • You will complete a course approval process to determine the credit equivalency for each course you take abroad.
  • Some programs may offer a vast course catalogue, where you can take courses in many disciplines, while others may focus on a specific discipline and will have a more limited course selection.