What is Study Abroad?

Getting Started

VaxjoStudying abroad is an opportunity to take your college education off campus and out into the world. You can study a language or a culture; learn about business in another country and experience anywhere from 1 week to 1 year of your life somewhere completely different. Study Abroad is the opportunity of a lifetime.

The Office of Study Abroad will help you figure out when to go, and what kind of programs are available, and how to choose the one that's right for you. Already know what you're looking for? Use our Program Finder to get started.

do you want to go?
You can travel during spring or winter break, fall or spring semester, during the summer or even for a full academic year. Spring or Winter breaks are short term programs, for 1 or 2 weeks. Summer programs can be anywhere from 2 to 6 weeks, depending on the destination. A semester program will run the duration of an academic semester: 14 to 16 weeks.

type of program is the best fit for you?

Eastern has a variety of different programs available. They are classified as: Third Party, Faculty-Led and Partner programs.

  • A THIRD PARTY program is led by a study abroad company who will take charge of your entire program from start to finish, and provide assistance to you while you’re overseas.

  • A FACULTY-LED program is led by one or two EIU faculty members. These programs typically travel in the summer, or during spring break. Your group will likely consist of fellow EIU students, and you will be taught by EIU faculty.

  • A PARTNER program is an opportunity that is often referred to as "direct enroll." This means Eastern has established a partnership with a university, and students are able to take courses at that institution.


So how do you choose? Here are some examples:

Shannon wants to study abroad, and would prefer to be with other Eastern students. She is looking for a short term program where the itinerary is planned ahead of time and the group travels together. (Faculty-led)

Jeff is interested in spending a significant amount of time abroad. He is very independent, and wants to make his own plans for his coursework and his travels. He is ok with possibly being the only student from Charleston. (Partner)

Brittany wants to study abroad with other US students, but not necessarily Eastern classmates. She wants a program that will give her instruction from start to finish, and take care of all the arrangements for her from curriculum to housing. (Third party)

Still haven't found the right program for you? Ask us about a program petition.

Get Started: Use our Program Finder

Watch Student Videos

Contact Us! Stop by our office in 1207 Blair Hall or call us at 217-581-7267


Application Deadlines

Spring/Winter Break

-October 2, 2015

Spring Break

  • -December 4, 2015

Faculty-Led Summer

 -January 29, 2016

Fall/Independent Summer

 -March 4, 2016