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Departmental exchange process & deadlines

  • Departmental exchanges focus on a specific academic discipline and restrict participation to students in the department.
  • Departmental exchanges include both outbound exchanges (UW students who study abroad) and inbound exchanges (students from partner universities who come to the UW). The number of inbound and outbound students should balance out each year.
  • It is the responsibility of the department to review balances with partner universities and communicate with counterparts about space availability.  Utilizing the exchange balance dashboard can facilitate this process.
  • On this page you’ll find information about both inbound and outbound processes as well as program fee information.

Outbound exchanges are typically semester or year long exchanges. Some universities have dates that overlap the UW quarters.   

  • Opening exchanges – Departments request that UW Study Abroad open exchange applications for the upcoming cycle – UW Study Abroad will send out a survey for feedback on which exchange applications to open.
  • Recruitment – Departments recruit students and promote their programs.  Students can see available program options through the study abroad website
  • UW Study Abroad Application – Students apply to departmental outbound exchanges directly through the Study Abroad application system. 
  • Application review – Following the application deadline, departmental exchange coordinators review applications and make decisions about which students to accept, waitlist, or decline. Departmental exchange coordinators can manage applications and update statuses as necessary following the guide before the decision date. 
    • Message students about acceptance status and send accepted students information about next steps and partner applications.
    • Students should commit to their exchange and sign their contract by the deadlines.
  • Nomination of UW students to the partner institution – Departmental exchange coordinators should work with partner institutions on this process as dates and process vary by institution.
  • Admission to Partner Institution – Students will be admitted directly to partner universities and should receive a letter of admission. Departmental exchange coordinators can work with the partner universities on this process.  
  • Exchange preparation and pre-departure requirements – Departmental exchange coordinators provide orientation and partner institution information to committed and contracted students.
    • Students must complete several mandatory pre-departure requirements that are outlined in their Study Abroad application (submit a copy of your passport, attend orientation, submit payment contract, complete a health survey, etc.) in order to be concurrently enrolled. 
  • Course enrollment while abroad – Although UW academic departments establish and maintain these exchanges, all UW students participating in departmental exchanges for UW credit must concurrently enroll with UW Study Abroad. Concurrent enrollment maintains student affiliation with UW while away, allows resident UW credit for courses taken abroad, and allows students access to financial aid.
  • Credit Conversion – Departmental Exchange coordinators and academic advisors can work with students pre-departure on how courses can be converted back to UW credit. However, credit won’t be converted until students return and complete the credit conversion process.

General timeline for outbound exchanges: 

Academic Term Autumn Semester exchange start Winter/Spring Semester exchange start
Application Deadline January 31 (priority deadline for all exchanges) May 15 (if a 2nd round is opened)
Decision Date February 15 May 27
Deadline to Commit and Sign Contract Three weeks after acceptance Three weeks after acceptance
Deadline to complete pre-departure requirements August 1 November 15


Inbound exchanges are typically 1, 2 or 3 quarter long exchanges.

  • Student selection by partner institution – Partner universities conduct their own initial application and selection process. They then communicate with departmental exchange coordinators on which students they plan to send.
  • Nomination of inbound students to UW – This is done by either the departmental exchange coordinator or the partner university, depending on preference.  
  • UW Study Abroad Application: after nomination, students will be prompted to begin a study abroad application. Departmental Exchange Coordinators should be copied on the email students receive. Students will need to upload the necessary documents directly to their application using the Visiting Exchange Students page as a guide.
    • Graduate Students – in addition to the study abroad application, graduate students will need to complete a Visiting Graduate Student application. The department reviews and approves the graduate school application in order for students to be admitted through the graduate school.  Graduate students will also need to apply for a DS-2019 during the application process.   
  • Admission to UW – Student documents will be processed and students will be admitted by either ISS (undergraduate) or GEMS (graduate).  After students are admitted, they’ll receive an acceptance letter and information about creating a NetID. Students can also begin applying for housing at this time. 
  • DS-2019 issuance – Once admitted, the admissions office (either graduate or undergraduate) will issue the DS-2019 (the certificate of eligibility for exchange visitor J-1 status) and other relevant acceptance and immigration items in order for students to enter the U.S.
  • Course enrollment – departmental exchange coordinators work with inbound exchange students on enrollment in departmental courses 

General timeline for inbound exchanges

Academic Term Autumn Quarter start


Winter Quarter start


Spring Quarter start


Application Open January 1 June 1 September 1
Nomination Deadline March 15 July 1 October 1
Application Deadline April 1 August 1 November 1
Admissions Decisions (for undergraduate students) Late May/Early June Mid/Late October Mid/Late  January
DS-2019 issuance Mid/Late June Late October Early February
Course Registration

(Period II for first quarter and Period I subsequent quarters)

June – September November – January February – March


Home tuition

  • All UW student exchanges operate using the home tuition model, wherein UW Study Abroad pays inbound student tuition fees using the program fees that outbound students pay.

Outbound programs

  • Outbound UW students pay a program fee equivalent to UW tuition (1.5 quarters of UW tuition for semester-long exchanges, and 3 quarters of UW tuition for academic year exchanges).
  • Program fees are determined according to residency status:  in-state students pay an exchange fee equivalent to in-state tuition, and out-of-state students pay an exchange fee equivalent to out-of-state tuition.
  • This fee is billed to students via MyUW according to the regular UW tuition billing schedule together with the Study Abroad Fee.
  • In most cases, students pay housing and any additional fees directly to the host institution or housing facility.
  • Students should be advised early that they need to plan for additional expenses such as international airfare & transportation, books & course materials, visa & passport fees, study abroad insurance and personal expenses.
  • Students who will be using financial aid to cover expenses will need an official budget from our office. To obtain this, students may request a budget by emailing
  • UW Study Abroad has various scholarships that are awarded to students who indicate they wish to be considered in the application process. There is no separate application required.
  • Pell eligible students who are accepted to exchanges and have unmet need are guaranteed a UW Study Abroad Scholarship.

Inbound programs

  • Inbound exchange students pay tuition to their home university. 
  • Fees will appear in student accounts but UW Study Abroad will pay for student tuition before the tuition deadline for the quarter.
  • Students are responsible for non-tuition fees (U-pass, International Student Health Insurance Plan, course fees etc.)