Cost of Studying Abroad

Cost is obviously a factor students need to consider when selecting a program—or deciding whether or not to study abroad. (We would argue, of course, that the benefits of studying abroad justify the expense.) Costs vary considerably by program. We encourage students to “shop around”, selecting programs that match their pocketbooks as well as meeting their academic and personal goals.

When comparing program fees, students need to look carefully at what’s included and what’s not included. For each UI study abroad program, the Study Abroad office produces “cost sheets” which add up all anticipated expenses, including air fare and personal spending money. Students participating in non-UI programs would need to collect similar information from their program provider.

While important, cost is only one factor among many when selecting a program. Although it would cost a resident student less to participate in our exchange with the University of Seoul in South Korea than to participate in our Critical Studies Program in Paris, if you are studying a specific language you should probably consider available options based on that criteria.

Mandatory Study Abroad Administrative Fees

Students studying abroad remain enrolled at the University of Iowa, with all the attendant benefits, but are not charged regular UI tuition or mandatory fees unless they’re participating in an exchange program.  Regardless of the type of program, all students do pay a study abroad fee of $400 (base fee) appearing as a charge on the U-Bill.  The UI is not unique in charging these fees. During the last decade most public universities have moved to a “fee-based” model, shifting more of the cost of studying abroad to the students actually studying abroad.

Students who are not participating in a reciprocal tuition-exchange program will be charged the aforementioned $400 base fee plus the Study Abroad Admin Fee, based on 17% of tuition for the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences (UI tuition and fees are posted on the Office of the Registrar’s website) for the appropriate number of semester hours awarded by the University of Iowa. This fee is determined in the same way for all students each session in all programs, as illustrated in the table below. For 2016-17, this 17% amounts to $50 per semester hour for resident students and $194 per semester hour for non-resident students. Note that there is no difference in resident/non-resident Study Abroad Admin Fees courses offering ≤ 4 semester hours (applicable to Summer and Winter session programs).  In addition to these administrative fees, the program or course fee will also appear on the U-Bill.

Study Abroad Administrative Fees, Effective Fall 2016

Program Session s.h. Misc Fee Fees Resident Fees Nonresident
UI short-term 1 $400 $50 $50
UI short-term 2 $400 $101 $101
UI short-term 3 $400 $151 $151
UI short-term 4 $400 $202 $202
UI short-term 5 $400 $252 $970
UI short-term 6 $400 $303 $1164
UI short-term 7 $400 $353 $1358
UI short-term 8 $400 $404 $1552
UI short-term 9 $400 $454 $1746
UI short-term 10 $400 $505 $1940
UI short-term 11 $400 $555 $2134
UI semester 12 $400 $606 $2326
UI semester-exchange 12 $400 $0 $0
Non-UI any 0 $400 $0 $0

Students who participate in a UI reciprocal tuition-exchange program will not be charged the 17% tuition portion of the administrative fee as they’re already paying tuition & fees to the UI (exchange program).  However, UI reciprocal tuition-exchange program students will pay the UI tuition and fee for the college in which they are currently enrolled (there is no waiver for the Fee portion in these cases). Students who choose to study in a program offered by another institution (paying tuition and fees directly to them - external study abroad program - will remain enrolled at UI and be charged the $400 Study Abroad Admin (base) fee but not the 17% tuition portion of the administrative fee.

Study Abroad Administrative Fees, Summer 2015 through Summer 2016 (past fees for reference purposes only)

Program Session s.h. Misc Fees Fees Resident Fees Nonresident
UI short-term 1 $400 $49 $49
UI short-term 2 $400 $98 $98
UI short-term 3 $400 $147 $147
UI short-term 4 $400 $196 $196
UI short-term 5 $400 $245 $955
UI short-term 6 $400 $294 $1146
UI short-term 7 $400 $343 $1337
UI short-term 8 $400 $392 $1528
UI short-term 9 $400 $441 $1719
UI short-term 10 $400 $490 $1910
UI short-term 11 $400 $539 $2101
UI semester 12 $400 $588 $2292
UI semester-exchange 12 $400 $0 $0
Non-UI any 0 $400 $0 $0

Mandatory Travel Insurance For UI Students Traveling Abroad For Educational Purposes

All students studying abroad must follow UI International Programs Study Abroad procedures regarding travel insurance. Students traveling abroad under the auspices of the University of Iowa are required to register their travel with the Study Abroad office, and to submit paperwork pertaining to health, safety, and liability issues, including a photocopy of their passport. They are also required to purchase the Regents International Health Insurance plan and will be automatically signed up for the coverage and billed for it when they register for the appropriate study abroad course section. The cost for this international travel insurance is currently $1.31 per day for the length of the program. Students registered in any “ABRD:xxxx" study abroad course will see the insurance cost appearing as a charge on the U-Bill separate from the study abroad course fee. Typically this insurance charge will post to the U-Bill one or two weeks prior to the start date of the study abroad program.

Detailed instructions may be found on the Study Abroad website under Health Insurance Information and International Travel Insurance Plan FAQs for UI Students.