Study Abroad for Faculty Advisors: General Information and FAQs

Almost 30% of Loyola students study abroad before they graduate. Because there are so many study abroad options, it can be quite confusing for students and for you as an advisor. The Center for International Education (CIE) works individually with students and with faculty and departments to make sure that students select a program that is a good fit for both their academic program and personal goals. CIE has prepared the attached FAQs and the major advising guides to help you as an advisor sort through all the new exchanges and programs and better advise students for study abroad. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact Debbie Danna, Director, or Alisa Townes, Study Abroad Advisor, at or 864-7550. 

Click here for Loyola programs and exchange partners with programs in different majors.

Why encourage students to study abroad?

Students who study abroad and are immersed in new cultures and situations develop personally, academically and professionally. The benefits of study abroad for students’ academic and personal growth are best reflected in their own comments provided below. 


  • “The content of the material and the overall themes of my courses were not, however, like those that I am used to at Loyola. I loved the differing approaches and philosophies, and it has helped me change the way I think about my courses here. I have a broadened worldview because of it.” -- Radboud University, The Netherlands

  • “I believe that the courses were overall on par with Loyola, though the environment at Keele was better for fostering independent study and research while Loyola's courses are better at covering a more diverse curriculum that strives to interconnect different fields.”  --  Keele University, U.K.

  • “I would say that it made me more aware of the lack of real information about the rest of the world that is available in Western media. This awareness, I feel, will improve my critical thinking.”  – Beijing Center, China

Personal Growth

  • “I have matured more in the past semester than I have in the past 21 years of my life.” -- Nanzan University, Japan

  • “The greatest benefit I gained from my study abroad experience was self-confidence from the realization that I am capable of achieving things I have always wanted to do, but that seemed out of reach from my reality. I trust my instincts much more now and am better at standing up for what I believe in, speaking out against discrimination, and improvising in every situation.” – Non-Loyola program in Senegal

Professional Growth

  • “Not only were the course strategies different, but they offered several classes that Loyola does not. I learned a lot about Industrial/Organizational psychology that I don't believe I could have learned at Loyola, and I was happy to get this opportunity to learn more and decide where I want to go with my career in psychology.” -- University of Amsterdam, The Netherlands

Study abroad can also help students distinguish themselves for graduate school and jobs. In today’s global economy, many graduate programs and employers prefer candidates who have international experience. A 2012 survey by IES Abroad, a consortium of 200 major U.S. colleges and universities, found that nearly 90% of its study abroad alumni found their first job within six months of graduation. This compared to only 49% of respondents in a separate survey of the general college undergraduate population who had found work within a year of finishing school. 

Frequently Asked Questions 

  1. Where can students study abroad?
  2. When can students study abroad?
  3. What should students consider when selecting a program?
  4. What is the difference between Loyola and non-Loyola programs?
  5. What is an exchange program?
  6. What is ISEP?
  7. Will credits transfer from abroad back to Loyola?
  8. Can students take major, minor, honors and/or common curriculum courses abroad?
  9. How does study abroad affect GPA?
  10. What are the GPA requirements to study abroad?
  11. Can students use financial aid or scholarships abroad?
  12. Are additional scholarships available for study abroad?
  13. How can advisors help?
  14. What are the next steps?


Where can students study abroad?

CIE offers programs in 50 countries. You can find all program options by country with an easy online search:

When can students study abroad?

Students are eligible during the summer between their first and second year and for semester and year long programs at the beginning of their sophomore year, but most students go abroad their junior year. Transfer students can study abroad after their first semester at Loyola.

What should students consider when selecting a program?

Classes. Cost. Goals. Language. Location. Find a detailed list online

What is the difference between Loyola and non-Loyola programs?

Loyola programs are led by Loyola faculty or hosted by our exchange partners. Non-Loyola programs are run by other universities or third party providers and are not affiliated with Loyola but are often excellent choices. Loyola aid cannot be used on non-Loyola programs.

What is an exchange program?

Loyola has signed exchange agreements with approximately 20 institutions that have been carefully selected to supplement Loyola’s programs. Exchange programs allow our students to enroll directly in a university abroad for a semester or year, typically while paying their regular Loyola tuition and fees. Students from partner universities also attend Loyola on exchange.

What is ISEP?

Loyola is a member of ISEP which has exchange programs at universities in over 50 countries. Students pay Loyola tuition, room, and board on ISEP exchanges which makes this a very good option for Ignatian scholars as well as other students with significant amounts of Loyola aid. ISEP Direct is a fee based program and can be quite economical depending on the country.

Will credits transfer from abroad back to Loyola?

Yes! All study abroad credit is transferable with department approval. Courses taken on Loyola summer and short-term programs count as Loyola credit. For semester and year-long programs, students must complete a course approval form and have it signed by the academic advisor, the department chair and the college and this determines how the courses will transfer.

Can students take major, minor, honors and/or common curriculum courses abroad?

Yes, students can take major, minor, honors and common curriculum courses abroad. Students will have more options when studying abroad if they save their major or general electives plus certain advanced common curriculum, such as humanities and social sciences which are usually readily available abroad and are often related to the host country. Search programs by major:

How does study abroad affect GPA?

As of the 2013 academic year, all grades obtained on study abroad will appear on a student’s transcript. Grades on foreign transcripts will be translated into Loyola grades by CIE staff. For students on Loyola exchanges, the grades will be averaged into their Loyola GPA. For students on ISEP and non-Loyola programs, the grades will not be averaged into their Loyola GPA. Faculty-led summer and short-term course grades are treated as regular Loyola credit.

What are the GPA requirements to study abroad?

Most semester and academic year programs require a 2.75, but some require a 3.0. Most summer programs require students to simply be in good academic standing.

Can students use financial aid or scholarships abroad?

Students can use Loyola tuition scholarships and financial aid on Loyola and ISEP exchange programs. Federal aid can be used on most programs abroad. Resources for summer programs are usually limited to loans.

Are additional scholarships available for study abroad?

Scholarships are limited but additional scholarships can be found at: The College of Arts and Sciences offers LaNasa Scholarships for Loyola summer programs.

How can advisors help?

Talk to your advisees early, especially freshman and sophomores, about studying abroad, so that students have time to plan and fit study abroad into their plan of study. A great question is “When are you planning to study abroad?”

What are the next steps?

Students should review all the resources on our website: and sign up for an advising session with a peer advisor or the study abroad advisor online: