Study Abroad Tips
Choosing a Study Abroad Program
Keep Your Academic Interests in Mind
Choose a study abroad program with courses that best suit your academic interests and will help you meet your degree requirements. This way, the coursework will be of greater interest to you and you’ll have a more enriched academic experience.
Consider All Your Options
Do not forget that ASU offers more than just summer programs. You can also study for a semester or academic year at one of our partner schools and earn credits that fit your degree plan. You will be even more independent than participants in the summer programs, and will have the time to study the language and culture of your host country and make new friends.
Get Started Early
Once you have chosen the program you want to participate in, make sure to get your application submitted as soon as possible. Summer trips tend to fill up much faster than semester and academic year programs. For summer programs, we also advise that you talk to the faculty director(s) to get more information about the trip.
Ask Lots of Questions
For summer programs, talk with each of the faculty directors to get a feel for what will go on during each trip. That way, you will have a better understanding and an easier choice to make. Each trip will benefit all its participants, but it’s up to you to make the most of whatever you choose.
Advice for While You’re Abroad
Money and Documentation
- Carry an ATM card for quick, easy access to cash, if needed. (If your destination has few ATMs, traveler’s checks may be a good alternative.) Call your bank or credit card company prior to departure to let them know of your travel plans and ensure that no security block is placed on your account.
- Do not flash large amounts of money while paying bills.
- Be sure your credit card is given back after each transaction.
- Conceal personal valuables (traveler’s checks, money, passport, etc.) in several places to avoid easy theft. Put them in different pieces of hand luggage, close to your body or in the hotel safe.
- Keeping a rubber band around your wallet or keeping it in zipped parts of a handbag makes it harder for a pickpocket to steal.
- Report loss or theft to appropriate authorities, and keep a copy of the report for insurance purposes.
- Report the loss or theft of your passport to the nearest U.S. Embassy or Consulate.
- Make a photocopy of your passport and keep it in a separate location or hotel room safe in case your original passport is lost or stolen.
- Be polite and low-key. Avoid loud conversations and arguments.
- Learn about local rules and obey them.
- Keep hotel and car keys with you.
- Avoid taking pictures of police, military personnel and military installations.
- Learn some of the local language so that you can obtain help if needed.
- Do not leave bags unattended in public areas. Packing light will help.
- Keep a low profile. Dress and behave conservatively, avoiding any sort of flashy items indicating that you are a wealthy foreigner (jewelry, luggage, rental cars, etc.).
- Avoid dangerous areas that often involve shortcuts, such as narrow alleys and poorly lit streets. Try not to travel alone at night.
- Penalties for drug violations, including possession of small amounts of marijuana or cocaine, are severe in many foreign countries and are strictly enforced, so avoid engaging in such activity.
- Contact the nearest U.S. Embassy or Consulate if you have been arrested. Though consulate staff cannot get you out of jail, they can assist and advise you and provide a list of local attorneys to help you.