Studying abroad is more affordable than you think

American University students can utilize their financial award packages, scholarships, grants, and loans so that studying abroad through SIS Office of International Programs doesn't necessarily cost more than a semester in DC. While the cost of tuition remains the same regardless of where you choose to go, costs associated with housing and meals are often equivalent to those in DC, and may even cost less.

All students who have completed and submitted their Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) to the Office of Financial Aid by the appropriate deadlines will be considered for financial assistance each year, though federal work-study awards may not be used to pay for study abroad experiences.

Learn more about how to utilize financial aid awards to study abroad. 

Understand costs & billing

  • Costs included in the bill: Standard, full-time AU tuition; the mandatory technology fee; and international travel insurance. Standard payment deadlines apply and students can continue to utilize the American Installment Plan (AIP) to pay for the term abroad.
  • Costs not included in the bill: Airfare, transportation, health insurance, visa fees, miscellaneous personal expenses such as entertainment are paid out-of-pocket, while living expenses such as housing and meals are paid directly to the partner institution or landlord abroad.

Learn more about the cost of attendance.

Find additional funding

There are a wide variety of scholarships, grants, and loans available to help cover study abroad costs. Because application deadlines for scholarships vary, students are encouraged to consider this early in their planning process.

Did you know? Tuition remains the same while you're abroad, while housing and meal costs are often equivalent, if not cheaper.


AU/SIS scholarships

Charles O. and Margaret Lerche Travel Grant
For MA in International Peace and Conflict Resolution (IPCR) program students pursuing practical learning experiences or research in the field of IPCR and American peace policy. The grant may be applied toward travel-related SRP/thesis research, internship experience, or conference attendance.
SIS Graduate Research, Conference, and Internship Travel Support
SIS offers this funding opportunity to help offset costs associated with research, internship, or conference travel. Applications are open twice each year. Students should apply during the application cycle in advance of their planned activities as this travel support is not intended as retroactive funding and is not a reimbursement. The fall application cycle is for activities taking place in the spring. The spring application cycle is for activities taking place in the summer/fall.
Travel Support Instructions and FAQ
Travel Support Application Form
Spring 2024 Application Cycle
Opens: February 1, 2024
Closes: March 1, 2024
Questions? Contact
Tinker-Walker Fellowships, SIS International Development Program
For MA in International Development and MS in Development Management students who are pursuing Substantial Research Paper or thesis research, a practicum, or an internship abroad.

External scholarships

American Association of University Women
Fellowships and grants, including an International Fellowship for women who are not U.S. citizens or permanent residents.
Cosmos Scholars
Provides grants to meet specific research needs not covered by other supporting funds for graduate students at DC-area universities.
Rotary Foundation Global Grants
For graduate students spending one or more academic year abroad.
Rotary Peace Fellowships
Provides academic and practical training to prepare scholars for leadership roles in solving conflicts around the world.

U.S. government fellowships

Boren Fellowships
For graduate students studying world regions and languages critical to US interests (excluding Western Europe, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand).
Fulbright U.S. Student Program
Provides grants for individually designed study/research projects or English Teaching Assistantships to take place during one academic year in a country outside the U.S.


Scholarships for study in Germany
American-Scandinavian Foundation Fellowship
The American-Scandinavian Foundation (ASF) offers fellowships (up to $23,000) and grants (up to $5,000) to individuals to pursue research, study or creative arts projects in one or more Scandinavian country for up to one year.

Latin America

Inter-American Foundation PhD Grassroots Development Fellowship Program
Supports dissertation research in Latin America and the Caribbean for PhD candidates in a US university. Fellows must be US citizens or citizens of the independent Latin American countries.
Organization of American States
Scholarships available for a full academic year (renewable for second year).


External scholarships

Fund for Education Abroad
For students who represent groups that are traditionally underrepresented in education abroad. Award ranges from $1,250–$10,000.
Rotary District Grants
Offers clubs and districts flexibility in carrying out activities that support the Rotary Foundation's mission. Districts may distribute these grant funds for relatively short-term local and international activities.
Diversity Abroad Overseas Ambassador Scholarship Program
Diversity Abroad offers a scholarship to full-time undergraduate students. This award is for students who are typically underrepresented. The award amount is $500 per student.
Tortuga Study Abroad Scholarship 
For passionate under-graduate students who want to explore the world, the winning student will be awarded $1,000 for studying abroad and a travel backpack.

U.S. government scholarships

Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship
The Gilman Scholarship Program is open to U.S. citizen undergraduate students who are receiving Federal Pell Grant funding at a two-year or four-year college or university to participate in study and intern abroad programs worldwide.
Boren Scholarships
For undergraduates studying world regions and languages critical to US interests, on a study abroad program (excluding Western Europe, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand).
Thomas R. Pickering Foreign Affairs Fellowship
For juniors planning to enter the U.S. Foreign Service, includes a summer internship overseas with the Department of State.


AATJ Bridging Scholarship
For study in Japan.
Freeman Awards for Study in Asia
Freeman-ASIA accepts applications from U.S. citizens or permanent residents studying at the undergraduate level at a two-year or four-year college or university who demonstrate financial need to study abroad in East or Southeast Asia.

North America

Killam Fellowships Program
Provides an opportunity for exceptional undergraduate students from universities in the United States to spend either one semester or a full academic year as an exchange student in Canada. Note: Must be a U.S. citizen to qualify.

All Students

Scholarship opportunities for both graduate and undergraduate students while studying or interning abroad.

External scholarships

Christianson Grant
Awarded to individuals who have arranged their own work abroad programs. Proposed programs must be at least six months in length and emphasize a work component. The grant program does not support independent research projects or academic study abroad programs.
Gamma Nu Scholarships Program
Provides support to gay men who want to further their education at a college, university, or vocational or professional training program.
Hispanic Scholarship Fund
Assists students of Hispanic heritage to obtain college degrees.
National Federation of the Blind
Offers scholarships ranged between $3,000-$12,000 to students who are legally blind.
Traub-Dicker Rainbow Scholarship
Scholarship between $1,500 and $3,000 awarded to LGBTW members who identify themselves as women.
United Negro College Fund
The UNCF helps students of African American heritage to achieve success in college.
Six grand prize winners will be awarded $2,500, ten second prize winners will be awarded $1,000, and twenty-five third place winners will receive $500. 
Explore the World Scholarships
Recipients receive $2,000 to help finance their international trip that includes an educational or service component. 
Diversity Abroad Scholarships
Diversity Abroad periodically offers scholarships for students from underrepresented backgrounds in study abroad. They also provide a database of scholarships that can be applied towards a study abroad experience.
ThinKSwiss Scholarships
ThinkSwiss Scholarships support highly motivated and qualified U.S. undergraduate and graduate students to get a research experience or to participate in a summer school course in Switzerland. 
Make Your Mark Scholarship
Open to all U.S. students currently enrolled in a Study Abroad program in an institute of higher education. The scholarship is also open to all active F, J, M or Q visa-holders and DACA recipients currently enrolled in a U.S. institute of education.

U.S. government scholarships

Critical Language Scholarship Program
Offers fully-funded summer language institutes for U.S. university students and is sponsored by the U.S. Department of State.


Blakemore Foundation Language Grants
For the advanced study of Asian languages abroad.
Luce Scholars Program
Provides stipends, language training, and individualized professional placement in Asia for US citizens who are college seniors, graduate students, or young professionals with limited exposure to Asia.
U.S. Japan Council Toshizo Watanabe Endowed Scholarship
The U.S. Japan Council Toshizo Watanabe Endowed Scholarship will support up to the full cost of attendance of a study abroad program in Japan. Scholarship grants awards to students based on financial need and other qualifications.


GoOverseas New Zealand Scholarship
For the undergraduate Scholarship, you can study at any participating program. For the postgraduate Scholarship, you can study at the University of Auckland, University of Otago, or Victoria University of Wellington (there will be one winner for each).

Useful for finding resources and funding for specific locations and disciplines. You should also try looking for smaller, local organizations pertaining to your gender, race, or religion that offer funding.