You are here: American University Provost AU Cornerstone Abroad Frequently Asked Questions


The AU Cornerstone Abroad (Cornerstone Abroad) program is a spring semester study abroad opportunity offered exclusively to AU first year students. Cornerstone Abroad allows you to get a jump start on your international education—letting you experience international culture firsthand while supported by AU and international university partners.

Central to the Cornerstone Abroad opportunity is your UK study abroad experience, where you will immerse yourself in British culture and study at one of England’s top universities—Bath Spa University (BSU).

AU Cornerstone has between 20 – 25 students. Deposits are accepted on a first-come, first served basis.

You can find a breakdown of the cost of the program on the program cost page (update link). The tuition, room, partial board, and fees are billed directly through American University. Additional expenses may include: food, transportation (to Washington, DC; the flight to/from UK; and transportation in country), books and school supplies, entertainment and social activity expenses.

The Cornerstone program is reserved for full time, first year degree-seeking students at AU; therefore, financial aid is available for those who qualify and may be applied to this program. For information about financing options, consult with youruniversity financial aid counselor.

The American Payment Plan (APP) is available to Cornerstone program students. An alternative to paying in full at the start of term, the APP divides the fall and spring semester balance into convenient, interest-free monthly payments. For information, call AU Central at 202-885-8000. Set up an online payment plan.

AU and BSU courses provide students the opportunity for active learning, collaboration, teamwork, and interactive discussions. More information on the program courses is available on the curriculum page.

You have access to the Academic Support and Access Center (ASAC) on AU's campus. ASAC can be reached by phone at 202-885-3360. More information about ASAC accommodations and services is available online.

New requests for accommodation should follow the Three-Step process. Once students receive information from AU's ASAC regarding approved accommodations, Cornerstone staff will work with BSU to request accommodations for the semester abroad. Please be aware that we cannot guarantee that facilities or support services will be available at BSU in the same range and quality as on AU’s campus.

These details are to be determined. Information will go out late summer 2021.

You will have access to BSU facilities and activities. These include computer labs, library, fitness center, resource centers, clubs, speakers, campus events, etc. Specifically, BSU’s Student Support Service has practitioners on staff that offer counseling and guidance to students.

For students with disabilities, BSU also offers guidance and practical support to students. Additionally, BSU has a Writing and Learning Center that offers academic writing, reading, and digital literacy assistance to students.

These details are to be determined. Information will go out late summer 2021.

All students will need an updated passport that does not expire within 6 months of the start date of the program. Students should make sure their passports are in good condition, as damaged passports can be refused for travel use (at the airport in the US or upon entry in UK). Students who do not have a passport or who need a new passport should apply for one by June.

Students will apply for a Short-Term UK Study Visa in order to participate in Cornerstone Abroad. This visa allows students to study in the UK for the length of the program. Students will receive more information about the visa process late summer 2021. Students who travel internationally with their passport prior to the start of the program should contact Cornerstone Abroad staff to discuss the logistics and timing of obtaining their visa.

Students live on-campus at BSU in flats/apartments. Each accommodation consists of suites with single bedrooms, private bathrooms, a shared kitchen, and a communal area for 8 -12 students.

Each student will receive a linen pack (sheets, towels, pillow, and comforter). However, students may also shop for room items once they arrive in UK. Each flat’s kitchen will have plates, eating and cooking utensils, pots/pans and one week of groceries upon arrival, so students will have several days before needing to shop for meals.

A meal plan of one meal per day in the campus cafeteria is included (M-F), and students will be responsible for their other meals (using the residence hall suite kitchen or on campus). In late summer 2021, students in the program will receive more information about the residence hall, what items to pack, and other information

Housing & Residence Life at AU will assign students to their cohort floors. Students in living-learning communities will room with other students in the same cohort.

On BSU’s campus, students are assigned to a campus flat/apartment with other Cornerstone Abroad students. All bedrooms are singles.

Bath, England has a population of 176,000 residents, of which 20,000 are college students. It is famous for the Roman Baths, Bath Abbey, once home to author Jane Austen, and is a UNESCO World Heritage City. It is a cultural hub with music and comedy venues, festivals, museums, and great restaurants.

Included in the cost of the program is a day trip to Stonehenge, as well as a weekend trip to London. Students can take personal trips as long as they do not conflict with their academic responsibilities and scheduled excursions with their cohort.

DC law and American University policy states that all students must have health insurance - through their parents or through AU. If you have insurance by way of your parent's plan or your own, you can waive AU Health Insurance through your portal. More information about the Student Health Center and insurance requirements is available on the website.

Students need to have their own international insurance that will provide coverage overseas. Students will also be enrolled in AU's Emergency Medical Insurance for international travel. However, this only covers students during the program dates and in the country of the program site (and is for emergencies only). While at BSU, students will have access to the campus medical center, which is staffed by doctors and nurses. To use this service, students will need to register with the Medical Service when they arrive on campus. All students are required to have private health insurance for their time outside the US (see AU policy and DC law stated above).

The Bath Spa University Chaplaincy is represented by chaplains from the Anglican (Episcopalian), Catholic, and Methodist denominations. The Chaplaincy provides a unique, confidential space where worshipers and inquirers of all faiths can come and chat and spend time working through any issue they may have. They run a Soup Lunch every Thursday at noon that raises money for the WaterAid charity. If you are looking to connect with other faiths, you can contact the Student Support Team who can provide contact information and places for the Bath and Bristol areas.

Veteran Affairs does not allow students to use Yellow Ribbon benefits for study abroad programs.