Mount Mercy University
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Cedar Rapids, IA 52402
319-363-1323
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Study Abroad Process

Procedures for U.S. Students Studying Abroad

Below are the steps you will want to follow to help ensure that your study abroad program fits in to your plans for graduation and to facilitate transfer of credit for your program. If you want to spend an academic year or semester abroad, you will want to start the process several months, or even a year, in advance. Summer programs generally require a bit less preparation time. Please note that procedures for international students going abroad difer from the steps outlined below. 

Before you study abroad

  1. As early as your freshman year, you can come to the Study Abroad Fair or attend an information session on study abroad and begin talking with your adviser about general plans for fitting study abroad in to your plans for graduation. Start thinking about when will be the best times for you to fit in study abroad and what classes you need to graduate.
  2. Make an appointment with the study abroad adviser to assist you in narrowing down your options and finding a program to fit your academic and personal needs. Compare programs and budgets. Gather information on classes conducted abroad, including number of class hours, course description, and a syllabus, if possible.
  3. Consult with your academic adviser about fitting studying abroad in with your plans for graduation. 
    1. Determine if study abroad courses count towards core requirements. The global awareness requirement can often be met by study abroad classes.  The literature, history, fine art, philosophy, and social science core requirements can often be met through study abroad, while natural science with lab and religion tend to be the most difficult to meet abroad.  
    2. Discuss the possibility of credits from your study abroad program being accepted for your major..
    3. In some cases, study abroad classes are counted as electives. If you know that you will study abroad, you may try to save some of your electives for study abroad.
  4. Ask your study abroad provider/host university for petitions or detailed course descriptions for all courses that interest you.  Submit a petition to the Office of Academic Affairs to receive transfer credits. Remember that approval of petitions depends on the documentation you are able to supply, so you should try to provide detailed information, such as course descriptions or syllabi, especially on classes for major requirements.You will want to petition at least 1-2 extra courses in case you need to make changes.
  5. Work through the Mount Mercy application and the application for your host university/provider. Once you are accepted by Mount Mercy, you can begin the Enrollment forms on the Mount Mercy application.
  6. With the help of your host university/provider, prepare a budget for your program. You will find a sample budget in the Enrollment forms.  Make an appointment with your financial aid officer to inquire about how financial aid might apply. Be able to provide information on the specifics of your program. Bring copies of your approved petitions for credit. The Office will work with you to complete a consortium agreement with your study abroad provider if necessary.
  7. Arrange to cancel your room and board contract with Residence Life, if applicable.
  8. Register for Study Abroad directed study classes and withdraw from any other Mount Mercy classes that will occur during the term that you are away.
  9. Ensure that the Financial Aid Office has received all necessary information from your host university or study abroad provider.
  10. Update address and contact information with Registrar’s Office.
  11. Participate in pre-departure orientation with Office of International Programs and submit final information form.

After your program is complete:

  1. Check to see that the Registrar’s Office has received your transcript. If your transcript is coming directly from a foreign university, you may need to have it evaluated through a transcription service.
  2. Make an appointment with your academic advisor.
  3. Stop by the Office of International Programs to discuss your program and fill out an evaluation.
Mount Mercy University Office of International Programs and Student Services