Can I afford this?

For many programs, you simply pay Penn State tuition. As a matter of fact, for summer and some semester programs, out-of-state students pay in-state tuition rates. For more information about costs and funding, visit Costs & Funding Study Abroad on the Global Penn State website. To apply for Travel Grants through the College of Engineering, complete the online Travel Grant Application.

Do I have to speak a foreign language?

No, most programs do not require you to speak the language of the host country. While foreign language study is encouraged, all programs offer courses taught in English.

I’m not at University Park. Can I still study abroad?

Absolutely! Regardless of your campus location, the College of Engineering encourages you to study abroad. Nearly all of the College’s programs are also open to students at other Penn State campuses. Many campuses have their own programs, too. For those planning to transition to University Park, planning to study abroad the summer before can be a terrific way to begin making new friends and network, easing the transition process.

Will studying abroad delay my graduation?

It’s all about planning. If you plan far enough in advance, you and your adviser can map out a program that should allow you to keep a normal progress toward your degree. Keep in mind that you can also study abroad in the summer—a good choice for students who have a very strict schedule of courses to complete at their campus location. Also, consider saving some general education and elective courses to take while abroad. It can be easier to find Gen Eds and electives abroad and these courses are often easier to transfer back to Penn State than some major-specific courses. Because of their motivation and excellent planning, many students who study abroad graduate more quickly than their peers who stay at home!

What are the deadlines to apply?

  • Summer study abroad: February 1
  • Fall and Academic Year study abroad: March 1
  • Spring study abroad: September 15

What courses can I take while I study abroad?

Any! You can take major courses, general education (including inter-domain) courses, and in some cases your entrance-to-major courses. If you are pursuing a minor you can take courses to help fulfill those requirements and for some programs you can also complete internship or research credits.

Do I have to take engineering courses when I study abroad?

No. Some programs require that the majority of your courses to be engineering, while others allow you to take any courses you want/need. You also don’t need to choose an engineering program. To search for a program outside of the College of Engineering visit the Penn State Global Programs website.

Can I go on a Non-Penn State study abroad program?

Students may choose to participate on a study abroad program that is not officially approved by Penn State Education Abroad (a Non-Penn State Program). However, this involves several additional steps that must be completed in order to receive academic credit. For information about what students need to do to have their courses evaluated, please visit the Admissions Office website.

Students should also be aware that there is limited support for this option. For details please visit the Global Programs website.

How much extra money do you recommend for books and spending money?

Budgeting is very personal. Non-billable items are outlined in on the program specific budget sheet found on the Education Abroad search pages. Non-billable items include: course materials (like books), meals (if not included in the program); public transport; travel and any other personal expenses, like laundry, telephone and even wireless costs in some locations.

What is the best method for me to access money while abroad?

You can access your bank accounts through ATMs abroad with your debit card. Contact your bank to notify them the card will be used overseas and inquire about any fees they might charge and partner banks they work with overseas. You should also consider a credit card with options for cash withdrawals to minimize the risk of fraudulent activity and theft of your money. You can research options with major credit card companies and with AAA Travel. This option allows for emergency funds to be added to your account within minutes if needed.

What is the difference between a course equivalency and a course substitution?

The Education Abroad office manages course equivalencies. This is when a Penn State course number is assigned to a class taken abroad.

Course substitutions are done at the college level and is the process of placing courses students take abroad into their audit to meet a degree requirement.



The mission of Global Engineering Engagement is to create an environment that embraces the values of international education, where access to global exposure and opportunities to develop cross-cultural competence is pervasive. We believe that it is within our reach to ensure that all engineering students can become internationally engaged.

Global Engineering Engagement

College of Engineering

The Pennsylvania State University

208 Hammond Building

University Park, PA 16802