What do I need to do?
You're now on track to take part in a Study Overseas experience. There are a number of things you need to do to ensure a successful experience.
Every student on a mobility program needs to have:
- A valid and current SMART application/registration
- A written host acceptance document, showing start and end dates for their program (where applicable)
- Credit approval, verified by their Faculty in SMART
- A valid passport and any visas required
- Travel arrangements and accommodation organised (some programs, such as some study tours, may organise this for you)
- Finalised their financial arrangements including Centrelink and any funding applications (such as OS-HELP)
- Checked that the University's travel insurance policy covers their needs, and the requirements of their host institution where applicable
- Subscribed for travel alerts with Smartraveller
Remember that your SMART application contains lots of useful information about your overseas program!
What is SMART?
SMART (Student Mobility Applicant Registration Tool) is the online application system Study Overseas uses to manage students’ applications to overseas programs. If you participate in an exchange program, study tour, or Government funded program, you will apply for your program through SMART. If you arrange your own program, you will register your program in SMART after applying for it directly with your program provider.
In SMART, you have an applicant profile and complete an applicant checklist that contains questionnaires and important information for you to read and complete. You will also be able to obtain credit approval from your Faculty via a SMART questionnaire.
Registering in SMART
If you're going on an exchange or study tour, you will already have an active application in SMART related to your program. Just be sure to check your emails and login to SMART to monitor your progress. Study Overseas staff and/or your course coordinator will be guiding you through your next steps.
If you have organised your own self-reporting program, such as a study abroad program, internship or placement, you need to register your program in SMART in order to access our support documents and Faculty Approval portal.
Even if you aren't expecting to receive credit (or any formal recognition) towards your degree, you can register a non-credit program (along with written approval from your Head of School) to ensure you are covered by our travel insurance.
If you are a semester exchange student, you will have been emailed a link to our Exchange Essentials resource, which is only available to students in their pre-departure period. Check your University email to access this link.
Credit Approval and Transfer
Fitting overseas study into your degree
In most cases, students do not need to extend their University of Adelaide degree when they study overseas. This is because their overseas study is approved for credit before they depart.
It is expected that any overseas study you take through us will receive either a number of units’ credit (3 or 6 for a short program, 9 or 12 for a semester program) or fulfilment of a required component of your degree program (for example, a required placement or work experience).
Some programs, such as exchange programs and study tours, require confirmation that credit will be granted in order for you to be eligible to participate.
Some self-organised programs will not receive credit or fulfil degree requirements. In this case, you should be aware that you will need to have approval from your Head of School to participate in the overseas program in order to be covered by the University’s travel insurance policy.
For students who wish to receive credit towards their degree for their overseas program, all Faculty credit approvals are made through your application in the Student Mobility Applicant Registration Tool (SMART). Your credit is never guaranteed until your Faculty Advisor has finalised their approval in SMART.
In order to receive credit approval for your overseas study program, you need to submit a request via your SMART application. When you complete and submit the Faculty Approval (Request) questionnaire, your Faculty receives an alert to complete your request. Credit approval can take up to 8 weeks to be completed.
For some program types (such as study tours), your credit approval is confirmed before you are accepted into the program. If you're not sure, check your SMART application.
Many programs require students to obtain full-time credit for their participation. In most cases, full-time credit is interpreted as:
Program duration Full-time credit Study tour 3-6 units International Summer or Winter School 3-6 units Semester exchange 9-12 units per semester (host university may have a minimum enrolment) Internship, placement, work-integrated learning Where units do not apply, "full time" can be determined by the contact hours required of the program
Students with a disability may be able to participate in programs on a part-time basis. See 'Students with a disability' below for more information.
Exchange and International Summer/Winter Schools students
At the conclusion of your program, your academic transcript will be sent directly to the University of Adelaide by the host University. If you receive a transcript directly from your host university, please send it to Study Overseas for verification, and not to your Faculty who will not accept transcripts provided by exchange students. Pre-approved credit will be awarded based on successfully receiving a passing grade for courses at the host university. A grade of NFE (No Formal Examination) will be shown on your University of Adelaide academic transcript. Please note: Timeframes for receipt of results and transcripts from different universities vary, and on occasion transcripts are received after the anomalies deadline for graduations.
If you have arranged your own study abroad program, placement or internship, you are required to register your program through SMART and seek Faculty Approval prior to departure. Upon your return, you will be responsible for providing a copy of your transcript, or proof of completion directly to your Faculty so that pre-approved credit can be transferred and reflected on your transcript. Please note that your Faculty may arrange for you to complete extra assessment before credit is awarded for your overseas experience. If your overseas experience is contributing to placement hours, you will be required to submit proof of completion as per your Faculty’s requirements.
Visas, travel and accommodation
You are entirely responsible for finding out about visa requirements for the country that you intend to travel to. You are also responsible for all aspects of your visa application(s). For legal reasons, Study Overseas is unable to provide any advice about visa requirements or applications. For more information about visas and requirements for travel, see the embassy or consulate of the country you plan to study in.
Students who are not Australian citizens will need to be aware of visa implications regarding leaving and returning to Australia and any impact studying overseas may have on their post study visa requirements.
While Study Overseas cannot provide you with visa advice, you have the support of the embassy/consulate of your host country and also information provided by your host. For support a little closer to home, your preferred travel agent or the staff at FCM Travel Solutions (08 8211 6785) are available to speak with you and point you in the right direction for applications.
You should not book flights or travel overseas until you have received your official acceptance into your overseas study program or host university, and your credit approval has been finalised by your Faculty in SMART. While timeframes can be tight and it is tempting to book flights as early as possible, unless you receive these confirmations, your acceptance and credit is not guaranteed, and you may find yourself out-of-pocket for any arrangements you have made.
Check your acceptance documents for information about your accommodation. For some programs, such as study tours or other short programs, your accommodation may be included. For longer programs such as semester exchange, you may need to find your own on-campus or private accommodation. Where we have information about the accommodation offerings for a particular university, that information will be published on that university's information page.
Enrolment and fees
Enrolling and incurring fees at the University of Adelaide
Some program types, including semester exchange and study tours, require students to enrol in a course at the University of Adelaide in order to incur University of Adelaide fees (and pay them as normal; for example, by deferring them to a HELP loan).
For a study tour, this may be a specific academic course, or a placeholder course that can cover multiple programs. The correct course code should be listed on your study tour's brochure page in SMART, or in your Credit Approval questionnaire.
If you are participating in an exchange program, you will need to enrol in placeholder exchange courses (found under EXCHANGE in the University of Adelaide Course Planner) to the value of your approved study in the semester(s) in which you will be overseas. You should not enrol in any on-campus Adelaide courses. Your enrolment will also need to correspond with the School / Faculty from which you are receiving credit. Your Student Success Team will be able to confirm appropriate enrolment requirements.
Enrolling and incurring fees at another university, or with a program provider
If you are participating in a study abroad program, or an independent program through another provider, you may need to pay fees directly to your university or provider. This may mean that you are not required to enrol at the University of Adelaide, but you should verify this with your Faculty or School.
While exchange students do not pay fees to their host university, you will still need to enrol in your classes. Your host university will provide you with information and support for this enrolment.
There are three main things to consider when managing your finances for an overseas study experience:
How much money will I need to budget to fund my experience?
The cost of an overseas experience varies significantly depending on location, duration, and your personal lifestyle. If you are participating in a study tour or another pre-organised short program, some or all of your major expenses may be covered in the program fee. If you are participating in a longer or more independent program, you will need to do some research into the costs you should anticipate. Where available, our exchange partner pages will contain information about these costs.
We have developed a handy budgeting tool to help you manage your costs. While this has been designed for exchange programs, you can easily adapt it to your own program type.
Please note that some programs will require payment in advance, and some exchange partners require proof of funds before you can be accepted into their program. We therefore recommend you investigate your financial requirements as early as possible.
How can I achieve my budget?
To explore funding sources offered through Study Overseas, visit our funding page.
How can I access my money while I'm overseas?
Before you depart, consider how you will access your money once you're on your program. Depending on your banking arrangements, international transaction fees can be expensive. Discuss your options with your bank. If you're travelling on a long-term program, it might be preferable to open a local bank account (which can require extra paperwork from you). On a short program, a prepaid travel money card can save you fees and protect you from currency fluctuations.
Insurance and safety
University of Adelaide travel insurance
Apart from making sure you have appropriate travel insurance cover, there are several other things you are responsible for doing in order to maximise your safety while overseas.
Activate the AlertTraveler® Mobile App
Follow the instructions in your SMART application to download and activate the Mobile App, AlertTraveler®, and gain access to a world of country and city intelligence, location safety scores and real-time alerts, about incidents and events that may impact your location.
AlertTraveler® also provides local emergency response numbers based on your GPS and SMART itinerary and contact details for the University of Adelaide insurance provider emergency 24 hour assistance line.
Keep local emergency phone numbers with you at all times
Often the best source of support is the local services in your country. You can find the emergency numbers for your host country in Smartraveller by checking 'local contacts' in the travel advisory for your destination. Write down your local emergency phone numbers and keep them with you at all times. We also recommend keeping your travel risk management provider and travel insurance provider details on hand.
Know what to do in case of an emergency
What you do in an emergency will depend on the nature of your situation, but here are some general steps to keep in mind.
- Move to a safe location
- Contact the local number for emergency response
- Respond to instructions by authorities, your host university, and the Australian Embassy or Consulate
- Contact your risk management provider and/or insurer
- Communicate with your family, the University of Adelaide Insurance Office (firstname.lastname@example.org), and your Faculty.
If you are covered under the University of Adelaide Travel Insurance Policy, your risk management provider is:
AIG Travel Guard
For Emergency Travel Assistance call: +60 3 2772 5641
From within the USA: 1 866 814 3375
From within China: (020) 3210 7866
Please refer to the Travel Insurance website for your policy number.
If you are not covered by the University of Adelaide Travel Insurance Policy, contact the insurer under which you are covered.
Subscribing and Registering to Smartraveller
All students are advised to subscribe for alerts for countries they intend to visit as part of their travel.
Should an overseas crisis occur, Australian citizens and permanent residents should register their details with Smartraveller so that the Australian Government can contact you as needed.
Subscribing and registering to Smartraveller can be done at: https://www.smartraveller.gov.au/.
You can always called Smartraveller if you need urgent help on 1300 555 135 (in Australia) or on +61 2 6261 3305 (from overseas).
If you are travelling to a country with a safety level of 3 - "Reconsider your need to travel" - or higher, you will need to obtain special permission from your faculty to travel to that destination. Please contact your Student Success Team for more information.
Know how to access information and support
The best way to manage your safety is to learn how to avoid dangerous situations and to get help as soon as you're concerned about your safety.
Read the health and safety advice for your destination on Smartraveller.
Research your host institution or provider to find out what support services they offer.
At any point in your exchange experience you can always reach out to the University of Adelaide for support - whether from Study Overseas or other ancillary services such as the Student Life Counselling Support and Disability Support before departure. If you would like to know more about how we can help you, please contact email@example.com.
Seeking help and advice
As you prepare to depart on your overseas experience, or even while you're away, you may find you need some extra help or advice to keep things running smoothly. There is much support at your disposal - use this list to find the best service for you.
Responsible area Can help you with.. Contact Your faculty Enrolment, degree check, courses and credit, any matter relating to your degree faculty advisors Study Overseas Issues with accessing SMART, OS-HELP, extending an exchange program, support in resolving issues with host or provider Study Overseas SMART/Email Viewing your Faculty credit approval, important advice and links, exchange application instructions, host acceptance documents Log into SMART Host or provider Visa advice, financial requirements, accommodation, other destination information Check your documents Insurance Office Advice regarding travel insurance, including when to purchase additional insurance Insurance Office AIG Australia Making a travel insurance claim (contact immediately in a claimable event) Claims process Counselling Service Concerns about settling in and adapting overseas, before or after your experience Counselling Service
Talking to other studentsYou may wish to reach out to other students for advice about your overseas study experience. You can speak to other University of Adelaide students via:
- Receiving their contact details via email/SMART (if you are part of a travelling cohort, such as an exchange or study tour where student details are shared by us)
- Joining the Study Overseas Chat Facebook group
- Reading our student news stories
- Joining the Global IQ Connect program - this can help you develop your intercultural awareness before you depart!
Advice for International Students
For the most part, international students enjoy the same opportunities as domestic Australian students when it comes to studying overseas. If you are an international student, there are a few things you should note before you apply for a Study Overseas experience:
- You must ensure that the course load you intend to take overseas will correspond with your Australian COE duration.
- You should be aware of the impact any offshore study may have on your post-study visa application – particularly the two year onshore study requirement.
- If you are in Australia on an Australian Awards Scholarship, please note that the guidelines require that you reside in Australia, and the scholarship cannot be used to study in a third country.
- Some overseas partners do not permit applications from students who are or have been citizens or residents of that country. If you wish to study in a country of which you are or have been a citizen or resident, please speak to Study Overseas first.
- Some funding options are restricted based on citizenship (as well as other eligibility requirements). If you will be relying on accessing funding in order to finance your overseas experience, please review the eligibility criteria before you apply.
If you are unsure about your visa or COE status, or other matters in relation to your international student status, you can seek advice from International Student Support.
If you are an international student, you should be aware that the visa requirements of your host country may be different to those of other students travelling on the same program as you, so you should ensure that you fully understand the requirements for your own travel.
You should also ensure that your Australian visa will be in good standing while you are overseas and when you return.
If you are participating in an overseas program that requires your continued enrolment at the University of Adelaide, you will still be liable for your tuition fees in Adelaide, and you must pay them by the Adelaide due date.
For all support services available to international students, please contact International Student Support.
Students with a disability
Students of the University of Adelaide who have a disability or ongoing medical condition can and do go on exchange and study abroad programs.
Disabilities and conditions may include learning difficulties, medical conditions, mental illness (including anxiety and depression), sensory impairments (e.g. vision or hearing), mobility issues and so on.
To help you decide what you may need to consider in relation to your specific condition you will need to make contact with a Disability Advisor via the Disability Support page.
It is important that you advise a Study Overseas staff member of your specific requirements at the time of application or earlier so that we can do everything possible to help you find an appropriate host institution that can support your needs. Students should be aware that services and processes can differ substantially overseas and by initiating contact early you can maximise your chances of finding a suitable host institution.
Applying for a program
If you are interested in applying for a study tour, in addition to registering with Disability Support, you should contact the Course Coordinator or responsible staff member as listed on the program brochure in SMART to discuss your requirements.
Students completing an overseas internship, placement, or study abroad program (including summer and winter schools) will usually organise these independently or through a third party provider.
In addition to registering with Disability Support, you should contact your program host or third party provider directly to discuss your requirements.
As part of the application process, exchange applicants are required to find three preferences of destination, in accordance with the preference guidelines. While researching your preferences, you should look for information on their website about any relevant Disability / Support / Accessibility Service that institution may offer.
Once you form an idea of your preferred institutions, you should contact us to let us know your situation and what you are considering. In some cases we may be able to find out if your preferences can accommodate your needs.
Please note: Some institutions may only be able to give a general indication of available support services at this early stage. In many cases they will not be able to provide specific advice until you have applied directly, at a later stage of the application process.
- Make contact with Disability Support before you commence your exchange application.
- Research your preferred institutions to see what information about their support services can be found on their website.
- Contact Study Overseas to start a conversation about suitable destinations based on what you have found. You will need to give us permission to discuss your case with Disability Support and our partner institution(s) for us to take action on your behalf - we take confidential matters seriously and will only disclose what you tell us with your permission.
- Maintain an ongoing dialogue with Study Overseas and Disability Support as we continue your application process.
Can I take a reduced study load while on exchange?
There is an expectation that students will study a minimum 9 unit load per semester while on exchange. If you wish to be exempt from this rule, you will need to speak with us prior to the application deadline. Students will need written support from both Disability Support and their Faculty. Written support for a reduced load from your treating medical practitioner can be lodged with Disability Support who can liaise with Study Overseas on your behalf. Written support for a reduced load from your Faculty can be via email to Study Overseas. Study Overseas can then contact your preferred institutions and investigate whether a part-time arrangement is possible.
Please note that a reduced study load may impact your eligibility to access OS-HELP loans and Government support for students studying overseas. If you receive support such as Centrelink payments, you should contact Centrelink directly to confirm whether or not you will still be eligible while overseas.
If you have any further questions about managing your disability while overseas, please contact Disability Support.
Study Overseas guidelines
The Study Overseas Program Guidelines provides information about the administration of University of Adelaide students undertaking overseas study programs, including exchange, study tour and study abroad, for credit or recognition towards their University of Adelaide award course, with the exception of dual degree programs. These Guidelines include technical requirements for each program type, as well as the responsibilities of both the University of Adelaide and individual students.
University of Adelaide students wishing to undertake study at another Australian institution for credit towards a University of Adelaide award course are not addressed in this Guideline and should refer to the Cross Institutional Students web page.
While you're overseas
If you want to keep in touch with Study Overseas and share your experiences from abroad, feel free to:
- Email us your written pieces, photos and videos
- Tag us with #uaoverseas or @uaoverseas on Instagram
- Join the conversation in our Study Overseas Chat Facebook group
When you return
There are so many ways to keep the experience alive when you return! Please consider:
For more information, visit our get involved page.