Feb 28, 2024  
2019-2020 Undergraduate Catalog 


International Affairs

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Associate Vice President: Bradley Bond

The Division of International Affairs supervises and coordinates the international activities of the university in order to encourage greater internationalization of programs, curricula, faculty, staff, and students. Division staff bring the perspectives of the world to NIU and the expertise of NIU to the world through international mobility for faculty, students, and ideas.

For students participating in an approved transfer agreement leading to a joint degree between Northern Illinois University and a partner international university, Northern Illinois agrees to accept the completed international transfer curriculum as the equivalent of the lower division general education requirements for a baccalaureate degree. In making such collaborative arrangements with sister institutions around the world, NIU will allow students to transfer this portion of their baccalaureate degree from the international university to NIU without incurring a loss of credit. Successful completion of this package of courses assures students that all lower division general education requirements are fulfilled.

Study Abroad Programs 

Director: Anne Seitzinger

The university offers a wide variety of opportunities for students to study abroad while continuing to remain enrolled at NIU. Most courses are approved equivalencies of current NIU courses and are applicable to campus degree programs with the approval of relevant academic departments. Students are covered by NIU’s accident and illness international travel plan while overseas. Eligible students can apply their financial aid award toward overseas programs, and there are some scholarships available for study abroad. Courses are available in both the English language and in various foreign languages.

NIU is known nationally for the extensive study abroad programs that are offered to undergraduate and graduate students. Both graduate and undergraduate credit can be earned. The faculty-directed programs take place primarily during the summer and winter periods and range from three to six weeks. Listed below are all of the study abroad programs that NIU currently offers. Students who would like more specific information should contact the Study Abroad Office. 

Cosponsored Study Abroad and Internship Programs

Director: Anne Seitzinger

These programs are open to undergraduate students only.

NIU currently offers programs worldwide for students from all majors and interests, for various periods of time. These programs include academic residential, academic internships, and one-on-one student exchanges in Europe, Latin America, Asia, Africa, and Australia. Cosponsored study abroad programs are administered by other institutions or organizations and supported by NIU. Students receive NIU credit if the program has been preapproved by the student’s academic department. On-site staff provide support and services for students. Cosponsored program sites include Argentina, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Belize, Bolivia, Botswana, Brazil, Canada, Chile, China, Costa Rica, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Fiji, Finland, France, Germany, Ghana, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, India, Indonesia, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Republic of Korea, Laos, Madagascar, Malaysia, Mongolia, Morocco, Nepal, The Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Panama, Peru, Poland, Portugal, Russian Federation, Rwanda, Samoa, Serbia, Sierra Leone, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan, Tanzania, Thailand, Uganda, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, Uruguay, and Vietnam.

NIU currently offers faculty-directed programs in over 18 different countries. Most NIU administered programs are directed by an NIU faculty member, with cooperation from various NIU departments, and offer specialized credit and residential study abroad during the fall and spring semesters, spring break, summer session, and winter break period.

Unless otherwise noted, in all cases undergraduates must meet NIU undergraduate admission requirements, and graduate students must meet Graduate School requirements or apply for and obtain permission from the Graduate School to register as a student-at-large.

Argentina: Latin American Culture and Spanish Language. Mid May to early June. In cooperation with the Centro de Español como Lengua Extranjera (CELE) at the Universidad Nacional de Cuyo in Mendoza, Argentina. The program will introduce students to Argentine and Latin American culture, the courses and the program are designed to be a gateway to pursue other interests and fields.  (UG)

Belize: Health studies. Early to mid-June. In cooperation with the University of Belize. Examination of the health care system in Belize and the impact of the World Health Organization; insight to the indigenous languages and culture of bush healing; interaction with students from the University of Belize; interdisciplinary networking of students from various health science programs. (UG or GR)

China: History, Culture and Society. Mid May to mid-June. In cooperation with Chongqing College of Posts and Mobile Telecommunications (CMT) and Shanxi Agricultural University College of Telecommunications (CT). The program allows students to focus on developing a deep understanding of Chinese history, culture and life. It will consist of in-class “traditional” lectures as well as interactive sessions with students in China, travel-study to explore contemporary issues and more.  (UG)

England: NIU at Oxford: Biological sciences, English, and political science. Late June to late July. In cooperation with Oriel College, one of the 34 colleges that make up Oxford University. Courses offered at the undergraduate and graduate levels are designed to take advantage of the unique resources of the British setting. Formal class meetings supplemented by individual tutorials. 
(UG or GR)

France: La Vie Provençale, Aix-en-Provence. Late May to mid-June. In cooperation with IAU College in France. Students will develop a profound understanding and appreciation of French culture through this immersive experience. Participation in this program will greatly benefit the language competence of the students and is therefore an integral part of the French Language Curriculum at NIU. (UG)

France: NIU College of Law in Agen: Late May to mid-July. In cooperation with the University of Bordeaux-Montesquieu IV. Designed to give non-French speaking students an understanding of the French civil law system and the legal system of the European Union. Language of instruction is English. (LAW)

Germany:  Deutschland Heute: Facets of Contemporary German. Mid May to early June. In cooperation with Internationales Haus Sonnenberg, St. Andreasberg, Germany.  Students will be introduced to Germany’s language and culture in an immersion setting. Students will deepen their knowledge and add further impressions during trips to sites spanning the northern half of Germany from Bremerhaven to Hanau. (UG)

Ireland: Exploring Ireland’s Health Care Services. Early to late July. Students will learn about the history of Ireland’s health care system and the variety of Ireland’s health services. This will include specialties in nursing, public health, and health studies. (UG or GR)

Madagascar: Past and Present: Biodiversity, Extinction and Conservation. Early to late June. Provides students with the opportunity to learn first-hand about primate biodiversity, extinction, forest fragmentation and conservation in Madagascar, one of the world’s foremost biodiversity hotspots. (UG or GR)

Mexico: NIU-Human Connections Global Internship. Mid May to mid-June. Students will engage in an immersive international internship experience; learn through dialogue and human relationships and begin to understand the needs and capacity of diverse global communities; and gain leadership and professional skills through engagement in their internship and workshops with local leaders. (UG)

Mexico: Developing and Facilitating Socially Responsible Experiential Learning Opportunities. Early to mid-July. Students will learn how to develop, facilitate, and create experiential learning opportunities for students. In particular, the course will focus on study abroad, service learning, sustainable volunteering, and internships. Through course work, students will learn about how to create and facilitate these types of experiences for students. There will also be an experiential component to the course in Bucerías, Mexico. (GR)

Poland: Exploring Contemporary Graphic Design. Mid-March. In cooperation with the Academy of Fine Arts in Katowice. Provides the opportunity to meet and work with students at the Academy of Fine Arts in Katowice. Students will focus on graphic design and studio art practice. The program will integrate historical information and contemporary trends in European graphic design and art. (UG or GR)

Russia: Moscow: Theater and performance studies at the Moscow Art Theatre (MXAT). Fall. Directors, actors, theater scholars, and teachers of the MXAT School administer daily instruction to NIU School of Theatre and Dance students. Teaching focuses on acting, voice, movement, and Russian theater history. Students take daily classes at the MXAT School. (UG)

Spain: Spanish Language and Culture in Toledo. Mid-June to mid-July. In cooperation with the University of Castilla-La Mancha. Provides immersion in the language and culture of contemporary Spain. Minimum cumulative GPA of 2.75 and 3.00 in Spanish courses. (UG or GR)

Tanzania: Environment and Society in Tanzania. Mid to late May. This two-week field course will involve travel to Tanzania to learn about and experience the landscape, natural environment and local cultures of Tanzania. Students will have an opportunity to diversify their educational experience through “living it and seeing it” in the natural environment. The program allows students to broaden their knowledge of Africa and learn through exploring the interplay of culture, economics, politics and environment in the context of change. (UG or GR)

Tanzania: Experiential Learning with NGOs. Late June to late July. Learn about Nongovernmental Organizations (NGOs) in developing countries, the relationship between governments and NGOs in Tanzania, and the challenges and rewards of engaging with grass-roots NGOs in a project for building improvements in a school. (UG or GR)

Worldwide: International business seminars. Late December to mid-January or mid-May to mid-June. Allows students interested in pursuing a career in international business or related field to acquire a firsthand view of international business practices and experience the excitement of traveling outside the United States. Includes visits to European manufacturing, retailing, and financial organizations/industries that engage in international business. (UG or GR)

Faculty-Directed. Undergraduate or graduate credit for students traveling independently overseas who engage in a significant independent research project under the direction of a member of the NIU faculty. Type of academic credit and number of semester hours of credit dependent on the nature of the project and to be determined by the faculty member directing the research project. (UG or GR)

INTL 101. STUDY ABROAD PROGRAMS (1-9). Course work undertaken as part of an approved university study abroad program. Discipline-based course used to reflect credit given, with departmental approval, for course work for which there is no NIU equivalent course available. May be repeated to a maximum of 9 semester hours.

INTL 201. STUDY ABROAD PROGRAMS (1-9). Course work undertaken as part of an approved university study abroad program. Discipline-based course used to reflect credit given, with departmental approval, for course work for which there is no NIU equivalent course available. May be repeated to a maximum of 9 semester hours.

INTL 301. STUDY ABROAD PROGRAMS (1-9). Course work undertaken as part of an approved university study abroad program. Discipline-based course used to reflect credit given, with departmental approval, for course work for which there is no NIU equivalent course available. May be repeated to a maximum of 9 semester hours.

INTL 401. STUDY ABROAD PROGRAMS (1-9). Course work undertaken as part of an approved university study abroad program. Discipline-based course used to reflect credit given, with departmental approval, for course work for which there is no NIU equivalent course available. May be repeated to a maximum of 9 semester hours.

International Student and Scholar Services

Program Director: Stephanie Brown

The International Student and Scholar Services Office assists all nonimmigrant students, scholars, faculty, and staff at Northern Illinois University. The office follows up with all immigration regulation-related matters of the university as required and necessary; processes immigration documents for all nonimmigrant students, scholars, faculty, and staff; coordinates all admission efforts for incoming international undergraduate students; and advises all international students, scholars, faculty, and staff in immigration-related issues. 

The office provides ongoing support for all nonimmigrant population on campus in their academic, cultural, and social adjustments with such programs as comprehensive orientation programs, workshops in various topics, and other activities as necessary. Through these efforts, the office makes continuing efforts to help international students, scholars, faculty, and staff to gain the maximum benefits from the many opportunities that the university offers, and also to increase international understanding and appreciation for diversity on campus.

International Training Office

Director: Sim Tissa, Ed.D.

The International Training Office (ITO) develops and implements high-impact, innovative, and results-driven training programs that address societal and institutional needs of developing countries.  The International Training Office’s programs and initiatives provide opportunities for NIU faculty, staff, and students to share their knowledge and expertise with training participants from diverse cultural backgrounds. Since its establishment in 1981, the ITO has successfully implemented training programs that match participants’ needs with the strengths, capacities, and interests that exist within the faculty of NIU.  Through the years, the ITO has been a facilitator of change and an active partner in developing the human resource potentials of individuals, groups, and communities worldwide.


Course List

Also see “Inter-College and University-Wide Interdisciplinary Courses” for IDSP 301 and IDSP 401.



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