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Do You Have Questions about ISI Abroad?

Check the extensive FAQ resource below. If your questions still aren’t answered, reach out to one of our advisors.

  • What is ISI Abroad?
    ISI Abroad is the US Office for Admissions and University Relations for the Umbra Institute in Perugia, and the International Studies Institute in Florence, Italy. It processes all inquiries, applications and pre-departure services including course selections, housing assignments, study visa processing, health insurance, info sessions, handbooks and more. If you plan on attending our programs in Perugia or Florence, the ISI Abroad office will be your go to place for all your application needs.
  • Do I have to be a college student to study with ISI Abroad?
    Not necessarily. While our programs are designed for undergraduate students in the US university system, students and professionals from around the world* are welcome to enroll. All students must have a GPA of at least 2.75 and if they are not currently or recently enrolled in an education program, they may be asked to provide letters of recommendation to supplement their application materials. ISI Abroad programs may also be a good idea for recent high school graduates (18 or older) interested in taking a few online or in-person courses before starting their university experience. Internships are only available to university students (18 or older) or recent graduates. *International students must be able to prove proficiency in English.
  • Do I need to speak Italian to study with ISI Abroad?
    Nope, that’s not necessary. ISI Abroad offers a plethora of elective courses, across various disciplines, in English! While you will have the opportunity to take an Italian language course, most students enroll in Italian 101 while abroad (or, in the summer, choose not to study Italian at all). There are significant benefits to learning a new language, but not knowing the language will not impede your experience.
  • When should I apply?
    The short answer is as soon as possible as most programs become full by the deadline. For the spring semester the deadline is October 15th and June 15th for the fall semester. The summer sessions usually accept applications up to one month in advance.
  • What is the cost?
    Program fees may vary depending on your home university policies. Check with your study abroad office. Our non-discounted tuition and fees can be found here for PERUGIA and here for FLORENCE.
  • Are scholarships and financial aid available?
    Yes! Indicate that you are interested in a scholarship or work-study project when you apply. Florence Scholarships | Perugia Scholarships
  • Can I request to live with my friend?
    Yes, you can! When it comes to roommates, our housing team in Perugia asks that all requests are mutual (meaning if you request a friend, they must also request you). You can submit any housing or roommate preferences on your housing form.
  • When will I find out my course schedule and housing assignment?
    You will receive your finalized course schedule and official housing assignment upon your arrival in Italy. This information will be included in the welcome folder you receive during Orientation.
  • Can I get my own housing?
    Many universities require that students live in housing provided by the Institute and will not allow for independent housing. If your university allows that option, you may find your own housing and received a housing discount from the program fees. Contact us for the housing credit.
  • What is the ETIAS Requirement?
    From 2024, students from these countries will need to complete a quick, online document called the ETIAS (European Travel Information and Authorization System). The ETIAS will cost 7 Euro (roughly 8 USD) and is valid for 3 years. It takes roughly 10 minutes for you to complete the form online and you will then need to travel with proof of your ETIAS throughout your time in Europe. While most applicants will receive immediate approval, some may take longer to process so we advise applying for an ETIAS at least 2 weeks prior to the start of your program.
  • What courses do you have?
    To view current course offerings, we encourage you to browse our students page and select the program option that most appeals to your academic interests. Each program description page includes a link to the most up-to-date course offerings and program activity descriptions available.
  • How do I ensure my credits will transfer back to my home university?
    Each university has a different process when it comes to determining course equivalencies. The best person to reach out to would be your study abroad advisor. Some universities or departments may require you to submit a sample syllabus. Syllabi for Umbra’s courses can be found in the bottom left-hand corner of their course page for Perugia and by request for Florence.
  • Can I get graduation credits for my courses?
    Yes, you can! Schools will often transfer ISI Abroad courses as either transfer or resident credit. However, each university transfers credits differently and it is up to you to ensure your home school will accept our courses. Some will ask you to go through the study abroad office, others will ask you to go through your university’s Registrar or your academic advisor. If you’re unsure, feel free to contact us and we’ll work with you and your advisor(s) to assist you through the course transfer process.
  • Can I change my classes after I arrive?
    For the summer session you cannot, but for the semester, yes, you can change your classes prior to and after arrival. Once you are within 60 days of your arrival, it may not be possible to change your classes during that period. Instead, you can change your classes during the add/drop period once classes begin.
  • Does ISI Abroad work with students who require academic accommodations?
    Absolutely! All students are entitled to a comfortable learning environment. As part of the application and pre-departure process, all students are asked to share if they require academic accommodations. Should you indicate a need in your pre-departure forms, your host Institute’s Registrar will contact you to discuss the best ways we can accommodate your specific needs. However, if you have any particular concerns you would like to address prior to the application and pre-departure processes, you may always use our Contact Form to gain accommodation information prior to your application submission.
  • What is Community Engagement?
    Community Engagement is a way of integrating learners into their host community. This can be done through service-learning, community-based courses, seminar & practica, as well as internship and volunteer options. These opportunities are a great way for you to explore the local culture, develop cultural competencies, and, in many cases, gain valuable career experiences.
  • Where will I live?
    ISI Abroad programs are all centrally located in their host city and student apartments are all located walking distance from our Institutes. This makes it easy for students to not only get to class, but to also embrace the local lifestyle as they navigate community events and local attractions.
  • Will I have time to travel?
    Of course! Travel is an important aspect of study abroad so to help you balance your academic commitments with your independent excursions, ISI Abroad offers classes Monday through Thursday. You’ll want to wait to book your weekend adventures until after you start your program so that you can receive information about your course-related field trips and activities because these can sometimes take place on the weekend. However, once you settle in you’ll find that you have plenty of time to explore locally and throughout Europe!
  • Can I travel in Italy or the EU after my program ends?
    Yes, you can! If you are a US, Canadian, or UK Passport holder, you have a 90-day tourist visa that will automatically “kick-in” once your student visa expires. From that point, you are able to travel within Italy and the Schengen Area for a period of up to 90 days within any 6-month period. It is up to you to calculate this in relation to any other travel you have planned in the 6 months before and after your program.
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