The academic structure and environment of study abroad programs vary a great deal. As you research your options, it is important to determine which study abroad model best meets your needs. Your choice of academic setting will usually depend on the extent of immersion you are seeking. The following are the most common study abroad models:
Students are enrolled directly in an overseas institution and take courses from the host institution’s regular curriculum. Therefore, courses are usually taken alongside students from the host country and taught in the host country’s language. Students live with host families, in rented apartments or in residence halls with students from the host country or other international students. Direct enrollment is often a good option for students looking for an immersion experience and who have advanced language skills in the host country’s language. The Marquette exchange programs and many of the affiliated programs are built on this model.
Island programs are programs in which American students study and live with other American or international students. These study abroad programs usually operate independently of any academic institution in the host country, and courses are usually taken in English, alongside other American students. Faculty may be from the United States or the host country. This model is a good option for students who want to study in a particular country but are not proficient in the language of that country and may prefer a U.S. classroom style. Housing is usually in residence halls with other American or international students. The John Felice Rome Center and Beijing Center are good examples of island programs.
Hybrid programs combine special courses for the visiting students with courses at the host institution, giving students the opportunity to take some courses with other international students and some courses with students from the host country. Students are housed with host families, in residence halls or in apartments. This model is a good option for students looking for a degree of immersion but who still seek some guidance and structure from a program. The Marquette Study Center in Madrid and Marquette Semester in Chile programs are built on this model.
Service learning programs integrate community-based activities with academic course work. Students, as a part of a course, engage in weekly organized service in the nonprofit sector of a community. The Marquette South Africa Service Learning Program and Casa de la Solidaridad program in El Salvador are international service learning programs.
Internship programs combine course work (usually two to three courses) with an internship for which credit is given. The Center for Education Abroad at Arcadia University (external approved program) offers several options for internships abroad, especially in the U.K.
Short-term study abroad programs usually take place during the summer term or sometimes during winter or spring breaks and range from two to 10 weeks. Typically, three to six credits can be earned during a short-term study abroad program.
Many short-term programs through Marquette are faculty-led programs directed and led in country. Such programs offer students the opportunity to participate in a guided intentional learning program that integrates curricular and co-curricular components over a short time period and for which students earn direct Marquette credits.