Learning Abroad for Math and Statistics Majors

The Mathematics and Statistics Department encourages students to think broadly about their goals for study abroad in choosing a destination.  While many Mathematics and Statistics majors study abroad in the English-speaking world (e.g., the United Kingdom, Australia, and New Zealand), many participate in English-language programs in non-English speaking countries.  Students are encouraged to consider their time abroad as an opportunity to pursue academic interests outside of Mathematics and Statistics and to select a study abroad location that will support them in developing interests not necessarily related to their major.

Study Abroad

Where to Study
The Mathematics and Statistics Department encourages all majors to consider study abroad for a semester during the junior year. Planning for a semester abroad should begin with discussions with the student’s faculty advisor in the sophomore year.  Some students combine a Fall or Spring semester with a summer study program, internship, or research project to extend their experience abroad.  

For a list of where past and present physics majors have studied and a summary of the courses they have taken abroad, check this searchable database.  Note that this is not a definitive list of what is possible and should serve only as a useful guide and planning resource. The McCulloch Center for Global Initiatives Study Abroad website is also an excellent resource for programs, application procedures, deadlines, financial aid, and more. Laurel Fellowships (need-based financial aid) are readily available to qualified students.

When to Study
Most mathematics and statistics majors study abroad during their junior year.  We strongly recommend that you take Mathematics 251 (Laboratory in Mathematical Experimentation) and either Mathematics 301 (Real Analysis) or Mathematics 311 (Abstract Algebra) before going abroad, especially if you plan to go abroad for the entire junior year.  If you are unable to take either 301 or 311 before going abroad, you should plan to take it while abroad and meet with your academic advisor to identify an equivalent course abroad.  We strongly encourage you to meet with your advisor to map out courses you will need both on campus and during your time abroad to ensure that you meet requirements for the major.

Credit Transfer
Students who want to apply credits earned from courses taken while studying abroad to satisfy a requirement (major, minor, language, or distribution) should contact the chair of the department before applying for the program.  In some cases, the chair may require additional information, including a syllabus, before providing written approval for a course.

Summer Internships and Research Abroad

A summer internship or research project abroad is a good way for students to apply and develop their skills and explore possible career paths while engaging with cultures and perspectives outside the United States.

Mathematics and statistics majors are encouraged to explore summer opportunities abroad.  A number of summer research opportunities are available.  The Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) program, funded by the National Science Foundation, offers programs for undergraduate research both abroad and in the U.S.  The DAAD RISE program also offers funded summer research opportunities in Germany for students in the sciences.

  • Funding is available through the Lynk Universal Application Form (UAF). For more details about internship opportunities and funding, please contact Kirk Lange, Director of International Experiential learning at the McCulloch Center.  

Next Steps

Students interested in exploring possibilities for learning abroad are encouraged to contact the McCulloch Center for Global Initiatives. April Stroud is the primary advisor for study abroad, and Kirk Lange can offer guidance on internships or research abroad. Students should also consult with their advisor about how they can best connect and integrate learning abroad with their work in the major.