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Education Abroad Overview

Administering over 275 programs in more than 60 countries on every continent, the Office for Education Abroad is proud to be ranked among the top U.S. institutions for education abroad for more than 20 years. Thousands of Spartans engage in cultures different from their own every year and gain meaningful skills that can position them for academic and professional success.

In addition to MSU students traveling abroad for study, the Office for Education Abroad welcomes international students from all over the world through the American Semester Program (ASP) and the facilitation of exchanges between MSU and partner institutions.


The Office for Education Abroad provides high-quality learning abroad programs and excellent services to cultivate globally-engaged citizen leaders who are ready to change the world.


Our global educator mindset combines with campus and international partnerships to position learning abroad as a high impact practice that fosters student success.

The Office for Education Values, Put students first, Work with integrity and professionalism, Hold one another accountable, Think innovatively, Promote diversity, equity and inclusion, and Maintain an educator mindset


For the Office for Education Abroad (EA)

Institutional Framework and Values

  • EA services are supported by funding practices that prioritize student access to learning and development abroad
  • EA options are designed and approved with concern for affordability and accessibility
  • The EA experience is at every stage underpinned by the inclusive excellence principles of diversity, equity and inclusion
  • EA practices throughout adhere to MSU policies

Recruitment, Application and Admissions

  • Students are recruited for EA through ethical practices
  • Timely and accurate EA program information is shared with students, to inform program selection and planning
  • Transparent information is provided to students, to support their sound financial decisions
  • Information on EA programs in every major area of study is made available to students
  • Advice on alternative program options is shared with students when their programs of preference are unavailable
  • Clear, reasonable and consistently applied eligibility criteria and defined selection processes are used to consider students for EA participation
  • Timely communications on the status of their EA applications are provided to students, to inform their decision-making and planning
  • Timely and knowledgeable guidance on EA course approvals is given to students, to aid planning for credit transfer and degree completion

Program Quality

  • Program directors and personnel are qualified and prepared for their programs
  • EA programs are developed with clearly articulated academic, professional and intercultural learning outcomes, enabling student decision-making based on alignment with their academic, professional and personal development goals
  • EA programs respect host cultures and maximize their situation within/draw on the unique learning opportunities of the host cultures
  • Program content and design attend to the inextricable concepts of language and culture
  • High quality program design and effective program delivery is ensured through consistent program reviews

Student Success

  • Health, safety and security program protocols are robust, and students are prepared and supported on-site through systems based on location and type of learning experience
  • Students are prepared for the EA experience based on program location, type of learning experience, and their individual needs
  • Specific advice on how to be academically successful within the context of their host cultures and educational systems is given to students
  • Students receive ongoing support from MSU during their EA experiences
  • EA programs and services are continually strengthened through assessment of student learning
  • Intentionally designed opportunities upon return from EA are made available to students, which include critical reflection, articulation of acquired knowledge, skills and perspectives through demonstration to community, and integration of learning

Education Abroad at MSU

  • National leader in education abroad participation for more than 20 years (according to the most recent IIE Open Doors report, #12 for study abroad participation)
  • Ranked #1 for study abroad among public universities (tied for 13th overall) in U.S. News & World Report Best College Ranking.
  • High-quality, good value programming connected to university and college strategies, leveraging faculty research with strategic partners, and building on MSU’s history and culture
  • More than more than 275 programs in over 60 countries and on all 7 continents
  • One-week programs over spring break to full academic year options
  • Wide range of valuable experiences including international internships, undergraduate research abroad, and global service-learning opportunities around the world
  • Focus on the value of education abroad including the knowledge, attitudes and transferable skills students can acquire that prepare them for success after graduation
  • Unique First-Year Seminars Abroad that give students an academic and social head start at MSU
  • Generous scholarship opportunities available to help students offset financial concerns from endowments totaling more than $4.5 million
  • Students welcomed from all over the world through the American Semester Program (ASP) and the facilitation of exchanges between MSU and partner institutions.
  • Cooperation with the MSU Resource Center for Persons with Disabilities to open opportunities to students facing physical, emotional, or mental challenges
  • Collaboration with academic advisers to ensure education abroad programs meet student academic needs and interests and fits within their academic plan
  • Pre-departure orientation and re-entry activities to enable students to gain the maximum benefit from their experience abroad
  • Full-time staff dedicated to overseeing international health and safety concerns, and responding to emergencies abroad involving students, faculty or staff. 
  • Nationally-recognized Education Abroad Security and Risk Assessment Committee that serves in an advisory capacity on policy and procedures and as a liaison to senior MSU leadership