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Once You're Back in the United States


Faculty-Directed Programs

Upon successful completion of courses abroad, all earned credits and grades (where applicable) will be recorded by the MSU Office of the Registrar and posted to STUINFO. MSU students will have the appropriate courses recorded on their regular transcripts.

Non-MSU students wishing to have credits transferred to their home institution must request a transcript from the MSU Office of the Registrar. This is not done automatically. You can order a free paper copy or an electronic (PDF) file. The intended recipients will receive an email with a secure access code and a link to a secure website where the official transcripts will be presented via PDF. If you place your order online, you will receive an email when the transcript notice has been sent to the recipient and when the transcript has been viewed. More information about this electronic transcript option can be found at the MSU Office of the Registrar website.

Exchange/ Direct-Enroll/ Non-MSU Programs

On these programs, you will receive A transcript from your host institution with the record of your academic performance will be sent directly to either the Office for Education Abroad or the Office of the Registrar. It may take four to eight weeks from the time of receipt for the credit to appear on your MSU transcript. When you return to campus, check periodically with the EA program coordinator and/or your academic adviser in your college to verify that your transcript is being updated correctly.

Post-travel health recommendations

There are a few health issues that you will need to consider when you return from abroad:

  • If you become ill within 12 months after traveling, make a medical appointment and tell your physician which countries you visited while abroad.
  • If you have been taking anti-malarial medication, continue doing so for the prescribed length of time after you return home.
  • If you were sexually active while abroad, schedule an appointment with a health care provider to check for sexually-transmitted diseases.

Remember that your study abroad accident and sickness insurance covers you only while you are abroad, so make sure that you have adequate coverage in the United States.

Culture Shock Revisited

As difficult as it is to adapt to an entirely new culture, it can be just as challenging to come back home after being away for any period of time. It is best to know what you might encounter in order to prepare for this adjustment period.

Expect to experience some measure of reverse culture shock. Reverse or re-entry shock can be defined as the unexpected confrontation with the familiar (R. Michael Paige). Remember that the world at home didn't stop while you were gone. Upon your return home, you may find that you aren't the only one who has changed during your absence. Everyone and everything else will have changed too! Remember to take time to readjust slowly.

You'll notice that you may think differently about the United States. You'll spend time reflecting on the differences between the U.S. and your former host country, just as you did when you left. Friends and family may be interested in stories or photos for a while, but "really don't understand." It may be difficult for you to express your feelings in words. Remember that many people may have difficulty relating to what you are saying because it hasn't been part of their experience.

Avoid experiencing anxiety about getting a job when you return home. Your study abroad experience can open employment doors for you, so be creative while abroad, ask for interviews by email, and promote the self-reliance and maturity that you have gained through your experience. When you return, check the Education Abroad website to see when the "Unpacking your Study Abroad Experience" workshops are held. These workshops, sponsored by EA and Career Services and Placement, help show you how to use your international experience as a résumé booster.