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Types of Programs

Types of Programs

The Study Abroad Office values the opinions of the administration, faculty, and staff at The University of Mississippi.  UM administration, faculty, and staff often have contacts at institutions abroad.  We encourage anyone interested in expanding our offerings to contact the Study Abroad Office.  We also want to hear your input on our current offerings and how we can make the experience better for our students.

Study abroad participation has grown both at UM and nationally in the short-term field.  At UM, most students enroll in short-term programs in the summer, with about half studying on faculty-directed programs.  Increasingly, students are studying on longer-term programs, such as exchange programs for a semester.  Exchange programs are the most cost-effective type of program and offer a valuable experience for students.  The following types of programs are specific to UM. 

Faculty-Directed Programs

The faculty-directed model is widely used at UM, and faculty members are creative in the development of their programs.  There are several different models in use at UM.

Faculty-Directed Programs Offered in the Summer or Winter Sessions

  • Generally 2 – 4 weeks

  • Programs begin and end on specific dates, sometimes including time prior to the program on the UM campus

  • Faculty member alone assesses coursework

  • Faculty member serves as resident director with additional responsibilities of supervisor, disciplinarian, problem-solver, etc.

Faculty-Directed Programs Offered During Spring Break

  • Generally 1 week

  • Travel to destination country during spring break

  • Accompanied by contact hours before and/or after the travel portion

  • Faculty member alone assesses coursework

  • Faculty member serves as resident director with additional responsibilities of supervisor, disciplinarian, problem-solver, etc.

Faculty-Directed Programs When Faculty Member Is Not The Instructor

  • Faculty member works with Study Abroad Office and partner university in developing curriculum taught by host institution faculty

  • Faculty member serves as instructor of record for UM resident credit

  • Faculty member can review coursework and grades (for example, the summer German language grades assessed by partner institution are reviewed by a UM faculty member to determine grades based upon proficiency level)

Cost-sharing Faculty-Directed Program

  • Two or more faculty members work together to develop programs in the same location

  • Two sets of students go abroad, sharing accommodation, excursion, and transportation expenses, thus reducing the costs

  • Students are assessed by the appropriate instructor alone

  • Faculty members serve as resident directors with additional responsibilities of supervisors, disciplinarians, problem-solvers, etc.

Faculty-Directed Service Learning Program

  • Faculty member establishes a service learning program with the Study Abroad Office in accordance with the Standards of Good Practice

  • Generally non-credit-bearing programs

  • Faculty member serves as resident director with responsibilities including supervising, disciplining, problem-solving, etc. 

  • Occasionally two or more faculty members propose a team-taught course, but the cost of two salaries often make these cost-prohibitive for UM students.  These types of programs would function as a faculty-directed program offered in the summer, winter, or spring break session.

Exchange Programs

The Study Abroad Office provides quality exchange programs to UM students, faculty, and staff.  There are currently around 90 exchange partners providing long-term and short-term programs.


  • Students receive tuition waivers at the exchange partner, paying the more affordable UM tuition through the UM Bursar Account

  • Students receive resident, ABCDF credit

  • Students can use financial aid as if they were taking courses on the UM campus

  • Students qualify for additional aid and scholarships just for studying abroad

  • Partners offer opportunities for joint research and faculty exchange

  • Partners offer opportunities for faculty and staff exchange

  • Partners often offer home stays and/or host institution mentors and roommates

  • Student support is shared by the Study Abroad Office and the international office at the exchange partner

  • The partner international office supports the students as UM supports our exchange students, creating trust between the offices

  • International students increase cultural awareness on the UM campus by studying as exchange students at UM

Short-Term Exchange Partner Programs

Many partners have short-term (often summer) programs at lower costs than faculty-directed programs.  The Study Abroad Office offers short-term programs at exchange partners for a lower cost than faculty-directed programs.  Some exchange partners have summer schools offering 3 to 12 credits during the summer.  The cost is often based upon the exchange agreement where students going in the summer are exchanged for international students coming to UM for the summer or semester.  Students take courses with host institution students and other international students, often integrating home stays and excursions.  

Affiliate Programs

Affiliate programs are offered by the Study Abroad Office and facilitated by an affiliate organization.  Students are generally in class with other students from U.S. institutions.  In recent years, affiliate programs have integrated language pledges, host institution roommates, and home stays, adding quality experiences.  Student support is shared by the Study Abroad Office and the affiliate organization.  These affiliate organizations have full academic, organizational, and administrative set-up on site.  Because of the high level of student support, the price is higher and sometimes cost-prohibitive for UM students.  Students are less independent than students participating in exchange programs, but the affiliate programs may be the perfect fit for some students.  


Developing a study abroad program is a significant investment of your time and energy.  It’s important then to periodically take stock of how the program is evolving.  The essential question is ‘have you accomplished what you set out to do?  And ‘how do you know?’  You’ll be asked to answer that question each year of the program.  Periodically, the Study Abroad Office may take a closer look in 3-5 year cycle of program review.  Here are resources and approaches that are available to you for this important question.

Student Feedback

The Study Abroad Office surveys all students after their programs.  These evaluations are voluntary and generally help the Study Abroad Office in its goal of “customer satisfaction” rather than a tool to measure learning.  It is important to also conduct evaluations specific to your program and review UM evaluations conducted through  Student evaluations of all programs are available for review to any interested parties. 

Faculty Feedback

The faculty member is the best evaluator of the program.  Please make sure to provide the Study Abroad Office with an instructor evaluation after the program.  Discuss the beneficial activities and those that did not meet your expectations with your study abroad advisor and make adjustments in future offerings.