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SIS Abroad

Undergraduate International Dual Degree Programs

SIS currently offers a one-of-a-kind dual undergraduate degree program with Ritsumeikan University in Japan. This program allows undergraduate students to earn two BA degrees from two universities in four years. AU students can choose to pursue a BA in International Studies or a BA in Language and Area Studies. At Ritsumeikan, students study in the College of International Relations. With degrees granted in two countries, students participating in the dual degree programs gain the knowledge, skills, and practical experience to excel in careers in both countries.

All programs operate out of the SIS Office of International Program Development. For more information, contact sisabroad@american.edu.

How the programs work:

  • Students register for regular AU courses (including General Education Requirements) during their first two years at AU. While studying at the partner institution in the third and fourth years, students register for AU/SIS exchange credit.
  • Students pay AU tuition and fees.This allows them to apply their financial aid packages to their semester abroad. As dual degree programs are designed for the independent undergraduate student, additional program fees do not apply.
  • Students pay limited fees to the partner institution. These fees can include welcome programs, state-mandated insurance, and activities fees.
  • Students are responsible for their own accommodation, airfare, ground transportation, school supplies, and other personal living expenses while at the partner institution.

Eligibility requirements:

  • Once enrolled at SIS, students will need to apply to a specific program through the SIS Office of International Program Development.
  • Good academic and university standing. 
  • Approved plan of study. Students must meet with their academic advisors to get approval for the courses they plan to take prior to departure.

How to apply:

  • Application deadlines vary according to program, but students need to begin planning their application during their first year at SIS. All application materials are received and processed by SIS; students may not apply directly to the partner institutions. Partner institutions make the final admissions decisions for dual degree programs.
  • Students should attend an info session for the specific program they are interested in and/or meet with the SIS Office of International Program Development to receive program-specific application materials. 

Once accepted by the partner institution:
  • Students will work with the partner institution to register for classes, find housing, and enroll in welcome programs.
  • Students will be required to attend a pre-departure orientation at SIS prior to attending the host institution. Program details, cross-cultural communication, safety and health concerns, and other important issues will be covered at the orientation.
  • Students will need to submit a Consent and Release Form, Emergency Contact Form, flight itinerary, proof of insurance, and a legible copy of their passport picture/number page at the orientation.
  • Students will be required to purchase supplemental international emergency health insurance through the university.The cost of coverage per semester is approximately $85.
  • Good academic and university standing.Students must have at least a 3.0 GPA at AU and be cleared by Judicial Affairs and Mediation Services (JAMS) for participation.