For the 2021-2022 Academic Year, GW will operate study abroad with limited activity and capacity. As the world begins to heal from a global pandemic, and student mobility begins its slow restart around the globe, many pandemic-related health and safety concerns and governmental restrictions are still in affect and have impacted the number and type of available study abroad and exchange opportunities worldwide. We believe that this is the best plan to continue to mitigate risks and safety concerns due to COVID-19. However, a program's ability to ultimately run still hinges on risk and safety assessments regarding COVID-19 and emerging variants, as well as the ability for U.S. citizens to enter foreign countries during the pandemic. Please see the available options outlined below and explore frequently asked questions further down the page.
The Office for Study Abroad is excited to explore the available international education opportunities with you. We hope to help you step beyond your comfort zone, to try something new and perhaps unexpected, and to focus less on destination and more on the academic and professional fit of a program. For more information, reach out to your study abroad advisor.
*Note: All fall and spring locations subject to Travel & Risk Safety review
Study Abroad Options
Fall 2021 Available Options
Spring 2022 Available Options
GW-Branded Programs Only
GW-Branded Programs + Limited Expansion
The Office for Study Abroad has created a questionnaire for Fall or Academic Year 2021 applicants whose program will not be offered for the fall semester.
It is essential for students to log on to GW Passport to find and complete this questionnaire as soon as possible to indicate your study abroad preferences given the current options. The questionnaire can be found linked within your primary program's application under the E-Signature Document entitled "Study Abroad Options for Academic Year 2021-2022". You can also find the questionnaire here. Completion of this questionnaire will trigger follow up communication from your Study Abroad Advisor.
The current available options to chose from include:
- Switch your program for Fall 2021 to an available option per the list above* (space permitting - limited availability)
- Options with current availability include:
- Defer to Spring 2022 within the options listed above
- Wait and plan for study abroad after Spring 2022 (Fall 2022 or later)
- Withdraw entirely and do not study abroad
- Study Away (external to GW)
*Note: These programs are still subject to a risk and safety assessment regarding COVID-19 and emerging variants, as well as the ability for U.S. citizens to enter these countries.
As conditions and vaccine rollouts continue to improve in many countries around the globe, the Office for Study Abroad remains hopeful that our GW-branded programs in France, Spain, United Kingdom, Chile, and Northern Ireland will be able to operate as planned. However, ultimately, these programs' ability to run is still contingent on risk and safety concerns and assessments regarding COVID-19 and emerging variants, as well as the ability for U.S. citizens to enter these countries during the pandemic.
By limiting the number of programs offered, we are able to focus our attention on a wider variety of factors within each program site and conduct more extensive risk and safety assessments with stakeholders across the university and with our partners abroad. We will continue to provide updates to students as final go/no-go decisions are made.
Yes, GW will require all study abroad participants for fall 2021 be vaccinated from COVID-19 prior to departure. You will find a new Post-Decision material in your GW Passport program application where you can upload a copy of your COVID-19 Vaccination Requirement Clearance from GW Colonial Health Center that states that your documentation was approved and you are compliant with the university's requirement. You will not be considered fully committed to the program and ready to register until this has been uploaded.
Pandemic-related health and safety concerns and governmental restrictions have affected the number and type of available study abroad and exchange programs worldwide. Many institutions and organizations are taking the approach of a slow restart to allow for greater control over risk migitation and focused efforts on country and program site monitoring.
Within our fall offerings specifically, GW has on-site Residential Directors at our Study Centers, maintains close relationships with our partners and leadership at Queen's University Belfast as part of the Global Bachelor's Program, in addition to local staff resources to assist our students if needed.
Acceptance in or commitment to a program, as articulated in your Pre-Decision materials in GW Passport and during our Post-Decision email correspondences, was not a guarantee that the program would be able to run for fall. Each program's ability to run was contingent upon a formal decision from GW leadership as well as continued risk and safety assessments regarding COVID-19 and emerging variants and the ability for U.S. citizens to enter foreign countries during the pandemic.
If your program for fall is no longer offered and you would like to switch to one of the available programs for fall 2021, you must first complete the "Study Abroad Options for Academic Year 2021-2022" questionnaire as soon as possible and indicate your interest in switching. You may select more than one program.
Upon receipt of your completed completed questionnaire, the GW Study Programs team and Advising team will reach out to you with next steps and offer advice on which program may be best suited for your academic interests. Ability to successfully switch programs is dependent on space within the program and the program's ability to operate is still dependent on final travel and risk safety review.
If your program for fall is no longer offered and you would like to defer instead to spring 2022 within the available options, you must first complete the "Study Abroad Options for Academic Year 2021-2022" questionnaire as soon as possible and indicate your interest in deferring. You will be asked to confirm whether you are deferring a current program application that will be offered in the spring (per the list above) or deferring to spring within a new application if your current application will not be offered in spring 2022.
Upon receipt of your completed completed questionnaire, the Advising team will reach out to you with next steps to process your deferral.
By indicating your intent to study abroad in spring 2022 now, you will be first in the queue for allotted program space for spring.
If your program for fall is no longer offered and you would like to withdraw entirely, you must first complete the "Study Abroad Options for Academic Year 2021-2022" questionnaire as soon as possible and indicate your intent to withdraw.
Upon receipt of your completed questionnaire, the Advising team will reach out to you with next steps to process your withdrawal.
If you have yet to select the "commit" button on your program application, you may be able to withdraw yourself by selecting "withdraw" instead.
Students can test out of the language requirement by completing a language placement test with the Spanish department and sending their results to Tyler Kinslow.
Unfortunately, no, our Study Centers, exchange partners, and program providers are still only able to accept a limited number of students. If you are interested in spring 2022 study abroad, we recommend indicating this interest in deferring your application sooner rather than later within the "Study Abroad Options for Academic Year 2021-2022" questionnaire.
Yes, if you defer your application now within the approved options for spring 2022, you will be considered first in the queue! Please make sure to submit your intent to defer as soon as possible within the "Study Abroad Options for Academic Year 2021-2022" questionnaire linked in GW Passport.
If your Fall or Academic Year 2021 program required a program deposit, which you have already paid, the Office for Study Abroad will advocate on your behalf for a refund. You should also check your program's cancellation policy for more information as you may already be entitled to a refund. Many providers have very flexible policies for refund and cancellation as a result of the pandemic.
If you have applied in fall for an approved option for spring 2022 (see list above) and would like to defer, our provider partners should be able to transfer your payment to be attributed to the spring semester. You can verify this by contacting your program provider directly.
No, the Office for Study Abroad will notify both our provider partners and exchange partners to let them know that we are unable to operate these programs for the upcoming semester. At this time, we will also rescind all home school nominations or approvals.
If you choose to study abroad for fall on a program that is no longer within our temporarily consolidated approved programs list (see list above), this would be considered "Study Away" and external to GW. You would not have GW's support or approval to participate and you would be participating on the program independently.
Students interested in this option should speak with their Academic Advisor and the Office of the Registrar for more information on how this process works. It is important to note, though, that this option comes with its own financial and academic limitations.
The Office for Study Abroad is not able to accept petition requests for study abroad for Academic Year 2021-2022.
Yes, you are able to study abroad in your second semester of Senior year. However, we strongly recommend you discuss this option with your Academic Advisor to understand how this may impact your graduation timeline. Depending on the dates of your program and the timeline for transferring credits, this may delay the conferral of your degree.
The Office for Study Abroad will honor any approvals for fall 2021 within GW CATS for the spring 2022 semester for students deferring to an approved option from the list above.
GW is only allowing study abroad through our Study Centers and Queen's University Belfast (as part of the Global Bachelor's Program) where we will have on site staff and established relationships with institutional partners and leadership for fall 2021. If space allows, you can switch to the GW Study Program within your current program's country or consider deferring to the Spring options or waiting till the subsequent academic year for study abroad.
The Office for Study Abroad has been consistent with our messaging to students to discourage beginning any processes that may incur nonrefundable costs. GW is not able to refund students for these unrecoverable fees.
At this time, we recommend discussing visa cancellations with your consulate and seeking flight cancellation and refund information from your airline provider.