• Frequently Asked Questions on Study Abroad for Monmouth University Advisors

    What is the academic advisor's role for study abroad?

    Academic advisors encourage students to make the leap and go abroad to live, learn, and travel for a semester. They provide advice on what courses to take while abroad, and which ones would best help them to fulfill their curriculum requirements. The Study Abroad Office handles all other administrative details and matters regarding the study abroad semester. We have passed the offered courses through department chairs and the Undergraduate Studies Committee for Monmouth course equivalency. Students should bring the course offerings and equivalencies to the advising appointment. For courses listed as elective, substitutions can be used on a case-by-case basis, with department chair and school dean approval.

    Will study abroad program satisfy the EXED requirement?

    Yes, provided students are earning six or more credits while abroad.

    Can students take major/minor, general education, and elective courses?

    For Monmouth sponsored programs, students can take courses to fulfill any of the above requirements.

    Who registers students for study abroad?

    The Study Abroad Office is responsible for registering students for their study abroad semester. However, this can only be done one semester prior to departure because the foreign institutions cannot confirm classes prior to that time. If you are advising students in the spring during the priority registration time, and they want to study abroad for the following spring semester, they should be advised to register at Monmouth for classes on campus temporarily. This is recommended as a safeguard to students in case they change their minds and can no longer study abroad.

    If they do study abroad for that following spring, they would be registered for the program once they have been accepted and paid the study abroad deposit. If they go in the fall semester then they are registered during the prior spring semester. Students are registered in the Monmouth system with a "dummy code" that shows they are on a study abroad semester/summer program and the location. The actual courses and the grades are not inputted until the student return and the grades have been received. All courses and grades are listed on the Monmouth University transcript but NOT calculated into the Monmouth GPA.

    Students should also be advised to attend a First-Step Meeting (times and dates are announced in The Outlook and through student e-mail broadcasts during the first few weeks of each semester). These meetings cover a lot of information on what the program will be like. If students want to apply they should download the Application Packet from the Study Abroad home page that has everything they need to get started including the application and class offerings.

    How are students graded?

    Students participating in Study Abroad through Monmouth University or the College Consortium for International Studies will have actual earned grades posted to their academic record/transcript. Grades will not be used in calculating the Grade Point Average (GPA). Students studying on their own at international institutions (through American institutions other than Monmouth University) must complete the form, Permission to Take Courses at Another Institution. Grades earned of a “C” or better will be posted as a “T” (transfer) grade on the student’s academic record.

    What about the courses abroad?

    Regent’s College: (Semester Program)

    The courses taken at Regent’s College are either 3 or 4 credits. The courses are all pre-approved prior to the student’s departure. Books usually cost under $100. Students are issued mid-term grades directly from Regent’s. Many courses offer lots of extras! Some theatre classes give students free tickets to top-notch productions such as The Lion King, Wicked, and Phantom of the Opera or whatever current hits might be showing. Students have seen musicals and operas as part of some classes. What better place to take Art History? The class actually meets at the National Gallery! Students go on weekend retreats to study English palaces and architecture, and these are just a few examples. When returnees are asked whether the course load and amount of work involved is less, the same, or more then on campus, most students say it was about the same.

    Macquarie University: (Semester Program)

    All courses will equal 4 credits, and students are not issued mid-term grades. Academics in Australia tend to be more rigorous than at US institutions, and many returnees tell us that coursework was the same or more difficult than at Monmouth. The biggest difference is that there is much less continual assessment at Macquarie University. Most classes require one or two major tests and one or two papers. Some classes can have as little as one test and one paper to assess a student’s knowledge.

    There is very little on which to base a grade, and many students do not know how to judge their progress with such little assessment. This can obviously be a source of stress if the student’s personality doesn’t fit with this method. Students earn 3 credits for each class taken, and the extra one credit from each class is given as a free elective. Students can take three courses for 12 credits or four courses for 16 credits.

    Lorenzo de' Medici: (FALL Semester Program)

    All classes are 3-credits and there is an amazing array of class choices in many disciplines. Students are required to take one 3-credit Italian language class during the fall semester.

    Monmouth in Cadiz, Spain:

    All classes will equal 3 credits and are taught in Spanish (except for beginners). Course offerings will be for beginners to advanced, and students can fulfill a 6-credit cross-cultural requirement during this summer program.

    Monmouth in Florence, Italy (4-week summer program) at Lorenzo de Medici:

    All classes will equal 3 credits and are taught in English (except for advanced Italian language classes). Students can choose from over 30 courses available this summer in arts, humanities, social sciences, business, political science, mathematics, studio arts, and, of course, Italian language.

    How do academic systems abroad differ from our own?

    Students are expected to do more self-study and pace themselves accordingly. There are less quizzes/small papers/projects and, therefore, less continual feedback. Most courses require one or two major papers and one exam that may count for a large percentage of the final grade. Few students report being given any actual mid-term exams, and the practice of providing mid-term grades is largely done to satisfy American institutions and students. For many Americans, the lack of continual assessment can be a source of stress. It's best if students are aware of these differences from the start.

    Our London program with Regent’s College is called the "Regent's American College of London," or RACL. It is one of five schools under the Regent’s College heading, and it is set up to more closely resemble the academic expectations of American students. This system more closely reflects our own than the Australian system. However, with adequate preparation and understanding of requirements, most American students perform about the same as they do in the United States.

    Why do we want our students to study abroad?

    The world is fast becoming “one place” in the sense that borders are blurred and the notion of sovereignty is being transformed. Politics, business, and culture are becoming “global.” Pedagogically, it is very important to prepare students to live, work, and transact in a multicultural, global environment. Moreover, an active, well-planned study abroad agenda enhances the general prestige and reputation of the university. It becomes an important recruitment tool for admissions, resulting in more and better-qualified undergraduate applicants.

    Students who study abroad are likely to show employers that they are flexible, can handle ambiguity, are self-starters and adventurous, can work with people from different backgrounds, are sensitive to cultural differences, and often know a second language. This all adds up to stronger job candidates than students who don’t go abroad. The ability to "step-out-of-the-box" shows maturity and initiative that many employers are eager to find in employees.

    What about a pre-departure orientation?

    The Study Abroad Office provides students and their parents with essential information pertaining to their upcoming study abroad at a comprehensive evening orientation. This is mandatory for students, and we encourage them to invite their parents and families ... and most do. We also handle all administrative issues, such as collecting photos for IDs abroad, group flight arrangements, liability waivers, good-bye parties, return parties and evaluations, passport information, insurance, and more. Also, all study abroad students are required to sign a FERPA release online. We also prepare students for their return by giving them important information related to their future housing, parking, and financial aid needs.

    How much additional traveling do students typically do?

    They tend to travel a lot! Most of the students who have attended Regent’s College have visited five to 10 countries. They have a 10-day mid-semester break in London & Florence and a two-week break in Sydney. Our former Australia students have traveled extensively throughout that continent and also to other South Pacific locales, such as New Zealand, Fiji, and Thailand. The Cádiz students will be treated to a four-day tour in Madrid, in addition to many other city tours. The Florence students will be treated to a full-day excursion to Assisi and the Lake Trasimeno region. All programs offer ample free time for students to travel on their own.

    Does someone stay in touch with our students while they are abroad?

    Yes, the Study Abroad Office corresponds with students throughout the entire semester. We send them important information and keep them abreast of all new Worldwide Cautions. We also send presents such as Monmouth memorabilia & Halloween treats. The students tell us that they really appreciate these little thoughts from "home." We are also there to help them with problems that may arise during the study abroad experience.

    Who do I call with additional study abroad questions?

    You can contact Robyn Asaro, Assistant Director of Study Abroad, at 732-263-5377 or rasaro@monmouth.edu, or Dr. Chris Hirschler, Faculty Director, 732-571-4494 or chirschl@monmouth.edu

    What programs does Monmouth offer and what are some of the specifics?

    LONDON, ENGLAND PROGRAM

    Regent’s College is located in the inner circle of the beautiful Regent’s Park. It is the only "green" campus in London and offers students the best of both worlds. While living in the serene and enchanting setting of Regent’s Park, surrounded by lakes, swans, rowboats, fields, an outdoor amphitheatre, and Queen Mary’s Rose Garden, students are only minutes away from the famous Baker Street area. Students live in lovely Reid Hall that accommodates approximately 240 other American students from schools across the United States. Most rooms have views of the park, and accommodations are safe, clean, and comfortable. The Regent’s campus offers a full service "Refectory" for dining, a sports bar, gym, library, student services, bookshop, on-campus travel agent, information technology center, and much more.

    There are more than 2,000 students attending Regent’s College, which is made up of six different colleges. American students are part of the Regent's American College of London (RACL), the only "on campus" residents. The RACL helps to ensure that students are offered classes useful toward their home degree requirements and with similar expectations. Students will have opportunities to meet and interact with others from across the world as many classes draw students from the various colleges.

    Program Dates:

    Spring Semester: Mid-January to early May (limited to 12 students)
    Application packets can be downloaded from the Study Abroad Home page at the start of the fall semester. Application deadline is early October.

    Fall Semester: Early September to mid-December (open to 25+ students)
    Application packets can be downloaded from the Study Abroad home page at the start of the spring semester. Application deadline is late February.

    Requirements:

    • 2.75 minimum GPA
    • Sophomore or above status
    • Recommendation form filled out from Monmouth University faculty member or administrator
    • 500-word essay on why you want to study abroad in London and what you hope to learn from the experience.
    • Admission is open to all majors and disciplines.

    Fees:

    Regular tuition and comprehensive fee, room rates, and meal plan. Choose either a single, double, or triple room.

    Financial Aid:

    All aid is applicable including any Monmouth awards, grants, and scholarships. The only exception is a student’s athletic scholarship and tuition remission. Students should contact the Office of Financial Aid to discuss their individual circumstances. The study abroad contact person in the financial aid office is Sandra Crawford. You can contact Sandra at scrawfor@monmouth.edu or 732-571-3548 to make an appointment.

    Fee Includes:

    Regular tuition, housing, meals, study abroad administrative fee ($250) academic advising, pre-departure services, International Student ID (ISIC), host country orientation and support, airport pick-up service, bus tour of London and welcome dinner, and continued mailings and support from the Study Abroad Office.

    Fee Does Not Include:

    Airfare, passport and/or visa costs, personal spending, personal property, health, accident, and travel insurance.

    Suggested Student Budget:

    Airfare: Due to constant fluctuations in airfare these days, we cannot provide exact costs. Past participants have paid between from $500 - $800. Check with your travel agent or refer to your favorite travel-related or airline Web site for the most up-to-date fare information. Students also may be able to cover the cost of airfare through financial aid.

    Class costs: Some classes require attendance at musicals, theatre productions, palaces, museums, and other historical sites. Students will not be responsible for the entry costs as they are covered by tuition. They may, however, be responsible for transportation costs, which usually involve taking the tube (subway). Most students say the outlay for books is minimal, spending at most $100. It is also recommended to purchase school supplies (i.e., notebooks, pens, folders,) in the US as these items tend to be a bit pricey in the UK.

    Passport: Costs $97 (effective 1/2006) and takes four to six weeks for processing. Non-US passport holders will need to check if visas are required.

    Personal spending: The school week is Monday through Thursday. Most weekends are spent traveling in and around the UK and throughout many other European countries. There also is a 10-day mid-semester break during which students do a significant amount of traveling. Most students visit between five and 10 countries. Many students have done it all on $5,000 and some spent more than $8,000. Somewhere in this range is recommended. This would include meals away from Regent’s, transportation, accommodations, and sightseeing. The very weak US$ doesn't help this situation.

    SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA PROGRAM

    Macquarie University is located 11 miles from the central hub of Sydney. Students will be living on a beautiful, sprawling campus that serves more than 22,000 students from across Australia and the world. There are extensive course options available, and Macquarie is renowned for its academic excellence and eclectic student life. Students will take from three to four classes, which will award them a total of 12 to 16 credits.

    Students will live in Maquarie University Village (MUV) housing that had previously been the Olympic Village during the 2000 Sydney Olympics. Each condo-type unit consists of five private bedrooms, each with a private bath. The shared facilities consist of a large, fully equipped kitchen, dining area, and living room. There is also a front and back yard area for each unit. Hundreds of Americans and international students live there.

    Program Dates:

    Semester One (spring semester): Mid-February to early July
    Limited to 12 students
    Application packets can be downloaded from the Study Abroad home page at the start of the fall semester. Application deadline is early October.

    Semester Two (fall semester): Late July to early December
    Open to 25+ students
    Application packets can be downloaded from the Study Abroad home page at the start of the spring semester. Application deadline is late February.

    Requirements:

    • 2.75 minimum GPA
    • Sophomore or above status
    • Recommendation form filled out by a Monmouth University faculty or administrator
    • 500-word essay on why you want to study abroad in Sydney and what you hope to learn from the experience.
    • Admission is open to all majors and disciplines.

    Fees:

    Regular tuition, comprehensive fee, study abroad administrative fee ($250), and room rate. There is no meal plan to purchase as each unit has a fully equipped kitchen.

    Financial Aid:

    All aid is applicable, including any Monmouth awards, grants, and scholarships. The only exception is a student’s athletic scholarship and tuition remission. Students should be encouraged to contact the financial aid office to assess their individual circumstances.

    Fee Includes:

    Tuition, housing, academic advising, pre-departure services, host country orientation and support, health and accident insurance, airport pick up, a weekend trip, welcome and good-bye dinners, Sydney Harbour Bridge climb, and continued mailings and support from the Study Abroad Office.

    Fee Does Not Include:

    Airfare, meals, passport and visa costs, personal spending, personal property, and travel insurance.

    Suggested Student Budget:

    Airfare: Due to constant fluctuations in airfare these days, we cannot provide exact costs. Previous students, however, have paid between $1,300 and $2,100 roundtrip. Check with your travel agent or refer to your favorite travel-related or airline Web site for the most up-to-date fare information. Students may be able to fund the cost of airfare through financial aid.

    Class costs: Students tend to spend less on books but they should still budget approximately $300. Courses that involve labs or extra-curricular excursions may cost an additional fee. Students will be billed upon their arrival.

    Passport: Costs $97 (as of 1/2006) and takes four to six weeks for processing.

    Visa: Costs around $500

    Personal spending: $5,000 to $8,000 is suggested. Travel within Australia is fairly reasonable and the bulk of expenses would occur during the two-week mid-semester break.

    Meals: $1,000 suggested. There is no meal plan because the condo has a fully equipped kitchen where students can cook their own meals.

    FLORENCE, ITALY PROGRAM

    Please see the Florence, Italy, Summer Program FAQ