How long is a Travel Study course?
These programs typically last between one to eight weeks, and are credit-bearing international experiences that include activities, organized excursions, and cultural encounters.
What is considered by the International Education Steering Committee (ISEC) when choosing a program and a faculty member to lead a Travel Study course?
The Committee looks for well-designed and complete program proposals. ISEC takes into account the ability of faculty facilitating the course to move their students safely and deftly through the Travel Study experience.
What are obstacles that prevent students from participating on Travel Abroad courses?
It is imperative that a study abroad course promotes inclusivity. Some reasons for non-participation include but are not limited to: Financial Reasons, Family Obligations, Work Obligations, Fear of Travelling/the Unknown, Proper Courses are not Offered for Credit, and Illness(es) or Disability(ies).
What are questions to ask when considering if a Travel Study program will be successful?
- Does the program fill a curricular need for your department?
- Is there an existing Otis program that already meets these needs?
- Does the program offer something unique that cannot be accomplished on campus, like an opportunity to be immersed in a unique or different culture?
- What is the specific reason that this program should take place in the specified location?
- Does the time of year when the program is planned appeal to students? Is the length of the program appropriate for the academic content?
- Are seasonal costs, airfare, lodging, food, etc. higher or lower during the time this program will be offered?
- Is the political/economic situation stable in the country of destination?
- Is there enough student interest to ensure that the minimum enrollment requirements are meet?
When do Travel Study Courses take place?
Travel Study Courses (TSC) typically occur during Spring Break after Spring Semester ends, and after Fall Semester ends.
What is the faculty to student ratio?
When using a Program Provider, the ratio and price breakdown can vary. Remember, the Program Provider is your in-country support staff.
The preferred faculty to student ratio: 6-15 students: 1 administering faculty. 16-20 students: 1-2 administering faculty, may participate.
If your course is not working in collaboration with a Program Provider, the preferred student to faculty ratio is adjusted accordingly. 6-9 students: 1-2 administering faculty. 10-20 students: 2-3 administering faculty.
Additional faculty may participate but, at the Department's expense, and approval by the International Education Steering Committee.
Who approves my application proposal?
Prior to submitting your proposal to the Center for International Education you must obtain approval from your Department Chair. Once you have obtained this signature, the International Education Steering Committee will review your proposal.
How long is the planning process for a Travel Study course?
From start to finish, it generally takes 12-18 months to plan, apply and get approved for a course
Am I on my own to plan my Travel Study course?
No. The approved program provider and Center for International Education will help you plan.
What if I cannot find a program provider to help facilitate my Travel Study course?
In the event a program provider cannot be located to help provide support, you will need to locate a local ground operator or partnering institution that can assist with the program logistics and facilitation of your course, acting as a Third Party Provider. In this event you will need to complete and submit a Provider Request Form with your Travel Study Proposal.
What are my responsibilities before leaving?
RECRUIT! The faculty drives the marketing, promotion, and enrollment for the class. Darren Grosch, Director of International Education, will be available to assist you with marketing and working with the program provider.
Additionally you will be expected to:
- Participate in Travel Study Faculty Workshop
- Read the Leader Guide & Safety Guide
- Facilitate at least two in-country Otis’ Travel Study Orientations with students
- Communicate with your students prior to departure.
- Complete and update all required pre-departure materials such as first 72 hours, Itinerary, and risk-management plans.
What are my responsibilities while I am on a Travel Study Course?
The roles and responsibilities of the Trip Leader extend way beyond the traditional classroom and/or academic advising setting with which you are familiar and experienced and in which boundaries are clearly defined between faculty and students. Travel Study, by definition, is a 24/7 involvement for participants and the Trip Leader alike. This means that you will handle non-classroom issues and situations which differ significantly from the demands and challenges of the classroom environment. In your position as Trip Leader, daily interactions, and close living quarters will acquaint you with student life and culture outside the classroom. You will need to establish appropriate boundaries between you and the students while you are Trip Leader of a study abroad program.
Additionally you will be expected to:
- Maintain a Travel Study Log
- Oversee an in-country orientation
- Hold regular meetings with students throughout the program, including the facilitation of a Mid-Course Reflection and Transference.
- Provide space for End-of-Course-Feedback
- Oversee the in-country program academics
- Maintain regular contact with Otis CIE Director
- Serve as liaison between the host institution and/or program provider and CIE
- Facilitate cross-cultural learning opportunities for students
- Manage cash advance funds
- Take lots of pictures/video!
What are my responsibilities post-Travel Study Course?
- Submit Trip Folder/Travel Study Course Log
- Submit Course Debrief
- Submit receipts for cash advance funds to Business Office (if applicable)
- Exit Interview with CIE Director
- Present your Travel Study Experience to Otis Faculty and Students
Is financial Aid available to students for Travel Study programming?
Students may use their Fall/Spring financial aid award to participate in travel study if they have not used it during the regular semesters.
What do I get for all of the above?
An amazing opportunity to enhance lives!