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Faculty-led Program Proposals & Renewals

This page is under construction. (12-22-19)

This page contains general information about proposing and renewing faculty-led study abroad programs. 

Introduction to faculty-led study abroad at EIU

Unit A & B faculty with international expertise from all departments are encouraged to lead and teach short-term study abroad programs. Faculty-led study abroad (FLSA) offers an international view of your discipline and a convenient way for students to include international education in their course of study. Many EIU students cite participation in faculty-led study abroad as one of the highlights of their EIU career. Approximately two thirds of all EIU students who study abroad enroll in faculty-led programs.   

Faculty should begin the planning process at least 18-24 months in advance and should be prepared to dedicate a reasonable amount of time and effort to the overall development and recruitment process. Faculty-led programs are short-term (1 to 8 weeks), take place during the summer term or over spring break, and offer 2 to 12 credits- making them a popular program option for students. Programs are supported and approved by the instructor's home department/college and are managed, facilitated, and supported by the Office of Study Abroad. The Study Abroad Office is the managing fiscal agent for all faculty-led programs- developing and managing all program budgets and advertised program fees. Faculty are expected to obtain and submit price quotes from all on-site service providers (host schools, third party providers, vendors, etc.) with their proposal/renewal. Upon program approval, EIU's Assistant Dean of International Education, Mr. Andy Kabasele, oversees the negotiation and execution of all program contracts and agreements in consultation with EIU's Business Office and General Counsel.

The Office of Study Abroad is committed to supporting faculty and departments with their international education programming and curriculum integration goals. Students significantly benefit from these experiences and it is our goal to collaborate with departments to make study abroad more accessible, affordable, and academically advantageous for students. The Office of Study Abroad expects to award over $70,000 in scholarships for FY2020. We administer several endowed study abroad scholarships, the Talented Student Award, and the Office of Study Abroad Grant. Applications are submitted through the EIU scholarship portal, Academic Works. Applications are reviewed by the faculty study abroad sub-committee of the International Education Council in three separate rounds per year (fall, spring, summer). The Office of Study Abroad notifies selected students of the amount of their award(s) one week prior to the program's commitment deposit (down payment) deadline. The Pine Honors College and College of Liberal Arts and Sciences maintains similar deadlines for their respective study abroad scholarships in a concerted effort to notify students of any awards they're set to receive before we ask them to put down a cash deposit. Scholarship funds are then disbursed to student accounts at the start of the study abroad program.           

New and returning faculty leaders are encouraged to attend study abroad seminars led by the Office of Study Abroad and to participate in EIU's bi-annual study abroad fairs during the fall and spring semesters. Faculty leaders are ultimately responsible for student recruitment and are expected to actively recruit students for their own program. All faculty-led programs are subject to the minimum student enrollment guidelines as set forth by Academic Affairs/UPI, which is 8 students per course. Faculty whose programs do not meet the required minimum enrollment by the students' posted commitment deposit deadline will receive a program cancellation notice from the Assistant Dean of International Education. When this occurs, faculty will only be required to submit program renewal information for the following two years.  
Faculty and department leaders are encouraged to meet with the Assistant Director of Study Abroad to discuss international programming goals and to learn about existing EIU partner schools/providers that could support short-term programs or other program types.

Commitment to diverse, equitable, and inclusive practices

The Office of Study Abroad encourages and supports faculty from diverse backgrounds to lead study abroad programs. We value the participation of under-represented faculty in international education and understand the importance of having diverse faculty lead students abroad. In addition, we highly encourage faculty to submit new proposals for programs in the following under-represented regions: Africa, Middle East, South America, Caribbean, Eastern Europe, Southeast Asia, and Oceania.

Choose your program development path

1. Third Party Program Provider (recommended)

The Office of Study Abroad is affiliated with a number of third party program providers and encourages faculty to explore the customized faculty-led program options and international destinations available through each affiliated provider. The advantage of working with a program provider is that they take full charge. They plan the majority of logistics, make housing & transportation reservations, and provide full on-site support. Faculty leaders are able to focus more on academics and less on program administration and logistics. Faculty considering this option will be asked to submit a price quote from the provider with their proposal. Upon approval of a proposal, Study Abroad ensures that the proper contract is executed between both parties (EIU & Provider) and processes all invoices and payments.

      EIU Affiliated Program Providers:

      IES Abroad International Education of Students
      AIFS American Institute For Foreign Study
      API Academic Programs International
      CIS Abroad Center for International Studies
      CIEE Council on International Educational Exchange
      ISA International Studies Abroad

      Program example:

      Faculty with

2. Host Institution (recommended)

In addition to affiliated third party servicers, EIU is directly partnered with over 30 accredited institutions around the world. Between EIU's Exchange Partners and our Direct Enroll Partner Institutions, faculty may be able to identify a pre-approved host institution to aide in the servicing of the program. The services typically provided by a host school include housing/room & board, classroom space, library/internet access, on-site orientation, some activities/excursions, and occasionally, academic instruction. Faculty considering this option will be asked to submit a price quote from the host school with their proposal. Upon approval of a proposal, Study Abroad ensures that the proper contract is executed between both parties (EIU & Host) and processes all invoices and payments.  

3. Independently (faculty who have extensive experience living in the host country may choose this option)

Faculty with significant ties to the proposed site, who speak the local language, and who are willing to make all the necessary program arrangements may opt for this path. By not outsourcing the planning & logistics, faculty are able to cut down on costs. Doing so however is more time consuming than the first two options. 

Policies and Procedures

Faculty are expected to review Internal Governing Policies 46.1 Credit Hour Policy and 56 Study Abroad while planning a study abroad course/program.  Faculty-led program proposals are submitted each year during spring semester for the following academic year (i.e. for spring break and summer 2021 programs, proposals are due by April 3, 2020). This is to provide sufficient time to thoroughly market & promote, and recruit the required number of students for the program to run. All program budgets are developed and managed by the Office of Abroad and are 100% self-supporting.  

Program approval and renewal

Program proposals are reviewed and approved by the faculty study abroad sub-committee of the International Education Council and the Office of Study Abroad. Programs are approved on a three-year cycle. After which a new proposal must be submitted and re-approved by the OSA & IEC. Within the three year cycle, only a Renewal Form need be submitted to update and reactivate the program. Renewal forms are for faculty to indicate updated program information such as official dates, updated price quotes, revised target student population, revised advertising content, and minor changes to program logistics. Faculty are not permitted to advertise their program to students until after notification of program approval from the Office of Study Abroad and the International Education Council. The Office of Study Abroad will then develop and publish the billable program fee to the program's dedicated web page on the Study Abroad site. This launch generally takes place at the start of the fall semester in time for the study abroad fair in September and simultaneously opens online applications for the program. 

Compensation and travel expenses
Programs may include courses taught by the faculty leader, and/or courses taught by instructors at a (contracted)  partner institution abroad. Faculty leaders who teach are compensated per UPI guidelines and are eligible for full coverage of travel expenses. Faculty leaders who do not teach are not compensated, but are eligible for full coverage of travel expenses. Travel expenses include round-trip international airfare, mileage to/from US airport, lodging, per diem, international insurance, airport pickup and drop-off, on-site transportation, program-related activities/excursions, international cell phone minutes/data, and visa/entry fees. 

Contracting with on-site host schools/providers

Any international host school, program provider, or vendor that provides on-site program-related services must work EIU's Assistant Dean of International Education, Andy Kabasele, in consultation with the EIU Business Office/Legal Department, in order to execute the appropriate contract and/or agreement. On-site services include academic instruction, room and board, transportation, classroom rental, excursions/tours/activities, etc.  All international agreements are signed by authorized EIU signatories from the Business Office in the name of the EIU Board of Tustees. Faculty are not authorized to sign any contract or agreement on behalf of the University. 

Accompanying individuals (non-EIU travelers)
Family members, minor children

Faculty planning to bring family are expected to review EIU's revised policy regarding accompanying guests on faculty-led study abroad programs. We understand that our faculty leaders have families and that it can be a challenge to balance wanting to lead a study abroad program and raising a family. It is important to understand how best practice influences the rules that govern international education. Accompanying guests- especially minor children- on university-sponsored international programs presents challenges to administrators, paying student participants, and the University as a whole. Faculty leaders are strongly discouraged from bringing minor children on a program. Due to the nature of study abroad and the responsibility to students it entails, faculty are expected to be on call 24/7 for the duration of the program.       

Proposals for New Programs

The deadline to propose a new program for 2021 is April 3, 2020. Programs are approved on a three-year cycle. 

For the current 2020 cycle, approved proposals will be valid through spring/summer 2023 programs and new proposals must be submitted in April 2023 for 2024 programs. 

Renewing Approved Programs

Per the cycle outlined above, program renewal information must be submitted each year the program will run until between 2022 - 2023.

The deadline to submit program renewals for 2021 programs will be July 3, 2020.

Strong proposals include:

Clearly and thoroughly laid out academic goals that are enhanced by the program site(s).

Faculty leaders that have strong ties to and familiarity with the program site. It is strongly recommended that the faculty speaks the language of the host country.

A thorough assessment of the risks involved in and associated with the countries visited and the specific program activities.

A plan to assess the academic goals of the program.

Program activities that provide opportunities for students to interact with people of different backgrounds, cultures and abilities.

A detailed program-spending plan (with solid price quotes from providers/vendors) that covers the estimated costs of the program and accurately reflects the program itinerary. Both the spending plan and proposal should include solidly-identified housing, classroom spaces and field trips.

Courses that generally mirror courses taught on campus in terms of academic rigor. Elements of tourism are inevitable in study abroad programs, but the Office of Study Abroad is committed to facilitating and providing high-quality international academic programs.

A clear relationship to the sponsoring department. Program leaders are full-time faculty in the sponsoring department (or an associated discipline), the program aim aligns with departmental goals/priorities, and the coursework has been vetted and approved and complies with EIU's Credit Hour Policy

A thorough and comprehensive pre-departure orientation plan that informs students of academic requirements, behavioral expectations, health and safety considerations, and living and travel arrangements.

A student recruitment plan.