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External Programs

Overview

External programs open a world of additional study abroad opportunities to JMU students. There are literally thousands of study abroad options and we can help you find the best one for you. Even though external programs are technically "non-JMU" programs, you will still apply to JMU's oIP, remain a JMU student, and keep all of your JMU services.
All external program participation must be approved by the oIP.

Why choose an external program when JMU has so many of its own?

Many of JMU's own programs fill up quickly, so there may be long waiting lists. There are also more selections to choose from when you attend an external program. With so many different non-JMU programs available, study abroad can work for all majors and minors in just about any region. FYI: about 200 JMU students each year go abroad on non-JMU programs.

There are three kinds of external programs

  • Another U.S. university's program
  • A national study abroad organization/program provider
  • Direct enrollment at an overseas university

Which option is best for you?

Well, it depends. With so many options available, there are several factors to consider with each type of program: Where, and with whom, will you be living? What kind of credit is granted? How much does it cost? Will you be taking classes with just Americans, or with locals of that country? Are classes taught in English? Are excursions included in the fee? By looking for the answers to each of these questions and others, you can find the program option that will be best for you.

This sounds interesting. Where can I get more information?

  • Come to an Information Session or Walk In hours. Click here for the schedule http://www.jmu.edu/international/abroad/advising.shtml
     
  • Peruse the JMU Office of International Programs Resource Center. Located at JMAC 6, Suite 22, the Resource Center has bookcases full of information on all kinds of external study abroad options, including work, volunteer, and intern abroad possibilities. Stop by during your free time and pick up a few brochures.
  • Make an appointment to speak with an advisor by calling 540-568-6419. The Study Abroad Advisors can help you decide on the right program for you.
  • Browse through some great internet sites on your own to find out about programs; some of the best sites are http://www.studyabroad.com/, http://www.goabroad.com/, and http://www.petersons.com/.
  • Scroll through our list of affiliate programs and other recommended programs.

External Options

Eligibility

To be considered for admission into JMU's international programs, you must be in good academic standing, hold a cumulative GPA of at least 2.00, or the minimum GPA as determined for the program, at the time of application. Applying early and meeting this minimum GPA does not, however, guarantee admission; additional eligibility criteria apply for most programs. Applications from freshmen in their first semester at JMU will be reviewed after semester grades are posted.

Approval is based, minimally, on a verification of your records via PeopleSoft, the university's information system, not limited to but including your status according to Academic Affairs, Student Affairs, Judicial Affairs, and University Finance. Your participation may be denied if your university records or conduct prior to departure raise doubts that you should be allowed to participate in an international experience.

Application Deadlines

Applications are collected throughout the academic year beginning on the first day of fall semester classes in August.

Application Materials

The application for admission has a number of parts, all of which must be received by the oIP before your application can be processed. Please make certain that you have completed all steps in the application process.

A completed External Program application consists of the following components:

  • Application form, available from oIP or downloadable:
    Use Adobe pdf fillable format - please type and print
  • Permission to Take Courses for Transfer Credit Form
    Available from the Registrar's Office or downloadable here in Adobe Acrobat format.
    Required of ALL students studying abroad on an External program. For more information, visit the Registrar's Transfer Credit Information Page.
  • Independent provider's application form Most independent providers' applications require an approval signature from home institution's study abroad office.

Submitting Your Application

Submit your completed application to the Office of International Programs, JMAC 6, Suite 22, MSC 5731, Harrisonburg, VA 22807. You are strongly encouraged to deliver your application in person; however, applications may be mailed to oIP.

External Program Fee

An External Program Fee of $500 per term for Fall or Spring and $250 for Summer term will be charged to each student’s JMU account. This fee allows JMU to cover ongoing administrative costs to assist students who go abroad on non-JMU programs.

Financial Aid

JMU allows financial aid to be applied on External programs subject to the standard restrictions. For more information, please contact JMU's Financial Aid Office. You MUST complete a "Request to Enter into a Consortium Agreement" if you wish to apply your financial aid to an External Study Abroad Program.

Acceptance

The decision on your admission into a program comes in two steps:

  1. Admission is based on your general suitability for study abroad and will be considered based on a combination of factors:
    • your most recent cumulative GPA
    • academic background in your proposed field of study
    • application materials
  2. Official acceptance letter/offer from the external study abroad program 

Things To Remember

  • Know in advance the classes you will need to register for your return semester.
  • If you plan to live in a dorm when you return to JMU, contact the Office of Residence Life before you leave to go abroad!
  • Know who your JMU advisor is and how to contact him/her BEFORE you leave!
  • Make sure you have NO holds on your account!
  • Make sure you are aware of the safety, health, legal, environmental, 
    political, cultural, and religious conditions in your host country.
  • Obtain and maintain appropriate insurance policies and abide by any conditions imposed by your carrier.
  • Make sure you have provided your program with accurate physical and 
    mental health information that is necessary for a safe and healthy study 
    abroad experience.
  • Understand and comply with the terms of participation and codes of 
    conduct of your program, and obey host-country laws!
  • Make sure your parents know how to contact you abroad, and give them oIP's contact information!
  • Be aware of local conditions when making daily choices and decisions.
  • Behave in a manner that is respectful of the rights and well-being of others.
  • Just as at JMU, you are responsible for your own decisions and actions.
  • Make your study abroad experience a great one!

Contact List

  • For any questions or concerns:
    Office of International Programs  
    Tel: 540-568-6419  
    Fax: 540-568-3310  
    Email: studyabroad@jmu.edu
  • For transcript or credit transfer issues:  
    Elizabeth Hash   
    Office of the Registrar  
    Tel: 540-568-2920  
    Fax: 540-568-7954  
    Email: hashea@jmu.edu
  • For account holds:  
    Linda Combs 
    Director, Student Financial Services  
    Tel: 540-568-6505  
    Fax: 540-568-6402 
    Email: combslc@jmu.edu
  • For financial aid or scholarship questions:  
    Susan Moyers  
    Financial Aid & Scholarships  
    Tel: 540-568-7820  
    Fax: 540-568-7994  
    Email: moyerssk@jmu.edu

Once You Are Abroad

Send your contact information (email address, mailing address, phone number, fax number) to oIP, so that we may contact you if necessary and so that we can send you the information needed for you to register for your classes the semester you return!