Getting Started

Living in an increasingly interconnected world, it is important for students to grasp the nature of today's global economy, politics and cultures. Northwood's Study Abroad program provides students with the opportunity to live and learn abroad preparing students to participate in, and lead, a globalized world. 

A decision to study abroad could be a life-changing decision made during your time in college but this decision is not to be entered into lightly. There are many important matters pertaining to your academic requirements, personal objectives, and investment in this venture that must be addressed in a timely manner.


Exploring Your Choices

It is important to be aware of the differences (academic, financial, and other) between the different programs offered when choosing a study abroad program. There are Northwood sponsored programs and exchange programs available to students.

Faculty-Led Study Abroad 

These programs are designed and managed by Northwood’s International Programs office. They are led by Northwood professors who also teach the course/courses.

1. Short-term programs
These programs usually last one to two weeks with participants earning three credit hours.

2. Semester-length programs
These programs are semester-long, earn up to fifteen credits and are led by Northwood professors. Travel period is between five to eight weeks, however, students are required to participate in the orientations and complete pre and post travel work during the semester. It is not necessary for students to reside on campus in order to complete coursework - before and after travel - but it is important that all assignments are completed in order to receive credit.

You might want to consider these programs if you:

  • feel more secure traveling and learning with Northwood students
  • would like a controlled introduction into international travel
  • desire on-site support from a Northwood program leader

Exchange Programs

Participants in these programs study at partner universities around the world for a summer, semester, or full-year. Participants will pay regular tuition to Northwood and will be enrolled as full-time regular students at the partner university. Students will earn credit from partner universities for coursework completed and transfer them back to Northwood. Unless indicated otherwise, exchange programs are taught in English. Students will have the option to take courses to learn the local language as part of the program even though the main courses will be conducted in English.

You might want to consider these programs if you:

  • would like to integrate yourself fully into a local culture
  • would like to plan your own study abroad activities
  • enjoy independence
  • prefer a wide selection of courses

You may want to talk to the Director of International Education or the Dean of International Programs about programs you are seriously considering. A Meeting can be scheduled by calling 989-837-4327

Choosing a Program

Once you decide to study abroad, the next step is for you to select a school or program that will fit your needs. The International Programs Office is always available for advice and support in your search for a program that fits you.

Here are some important points of consideration when assessing which program is right for you:

  • Your Key Objectives
    • A good starting point in your study abroad journey is examining what aspects of study abroad are important to you. Is it coursework, location, learning a language, cultural experience, travel etc.?
  • Program Considerations
    • What length of time are you interested in – short-term, summer, semester, or a year?
    • Where would you like to study?
    • What is your foreign language ability? (Programs are available in English and in local languages)
    • What is the cost of the program?
    • What financial resources are available for you and the specific program you are considering?
  • Academic Considerations
    • Does your GPA meet the requirement for the program?
    • At the start of the program, will you have successfully completed at least 30 semester hours at Northwood University (e.g., be in your sophomore year), or, if a transfer student, have successfully completed the equivalent of 30 semester hours and completed at least one semester at Northwood University?
    • Does the program fit into your academic plan?
    • Do you want to take classes in English or the local language?
  • Personal Considerations
    • Do you prefer to study with mainly Northwood students, other Americans, a mixture of international students, students of the host country or are you open to a mixture?
    • What type of living arrangement do you prefer? Host family or dorm life.
    • Do you want to plan your own excursions or would you prefer a set itinerary?
    • Do you want to plan your own study abroad experience?