Q: I’m thinking about studying abroad, how do I learn which programs are available?
A: There are 5 steps:
- Review our website.
- Attend an information session (if information sessions aren’t currently being offered, skip to step three).
- Set up a time to meet with a Global Learning Advisor in the RISD Global department. To schedule an appointment, visit risdglobal.youcanbook.me.
- Meet with your academic advisor.
- Work closely with a Global Learning Advisor and your academic advisor (in your major) to complete your application(s).
Q: Do I have to meet with someone from RISD Global?
A: Yes, a meeting with RISD Global staff is required before applying to any programs. Note: in cases of faculty-led travel courses and field trips, your main point of contact may be the faculty member, but RISD Global is always here to answer any questions about upcoming travel.
Q: When do I need to start planning for studying abroad?
A: The sooner the better (even first-year students should start looking into travel options). It is never too soon to start planning for studying abroad.
Q: Are classes taught in English?
A. Some partner schools teach courses in English, but it is very important to verify this information before applying to the program. If you can’t find this information, you should check with RISD Global staff.
Q: Is there a language requirement?
A: Different programs have different requirements, but it is strongly recommended that you study the native language of the country where you’ll be studying prior to your departure. There are numerous language programs available nearby or online.
Q: What is the difference between RISD in Rome: European Honors Program (EHP) and RISD in the World: Exchange Program?
A: The European Honors Program (EHP) is a studio-based, interdisciplinary program in Rome that has been RISD-operated since 1960. The Exchange Program allows you to spend a semester studying in your major area at one of RISD’s partner schools.
Q: Do I need a visa?
A: Each country has specific visa requirements, so it is essential to research this as soon as you have been accepted to a program. Visa applications can take up to a few months to process. It is the student’s responsibility to secure the appropriate visa. RISD Global can assist with preliminary research.
Q: Are scholarships available?
A. Yes, there are some scholarship opportunities available. Information about scholarships for Wintersession can be found here.
RISD Global Exchange
Q: How do I find the list of partner schools that offer exchange with RISD?
A: Here's the list of partner institutions.
Q: Do I apply directly to the school(s)?
A: No, you need to work directly with RISD Global to apply.
Q: How many schools can I apply to?
A: We recommend that you apply to no more than two of our partner schools.
Q: The deadline for the exchange program school(s) I’m applying to is later than the deadline on the RISD Global website. What is the actual deadline?
A: All application materials must be submitted to RISD Global by the deadline posted on the RISD Global website (no exceptions). If the exchange partner school’s deadline is earlier than RISD Global’s, we will work with you to make sure your application goes out on time.
Q: Why do I need to submit the application(s) to RISD Global instead of directly to the partner school(s)?
A: Partner schools will only accept applications submitted by RISD Global on your behalf.
RISD Global staff review completed applications and only two RISD students are permitted to apply to the same partner school per semester. RISD Global will approve which students may apply and will notify students of their decision before the partner school deadline. Once nominated, applications will be sent by RISD Global to the partner schools unless an application needs to be submitted online. If a partner school requires an online application, then after the student has been nominated, he or she completes the online application. These partner school programs are very competitive and applications will not be accepted after the RISD deadline.
Q: Which application materials do I need to submit by the RISD Global deadline?
A: RISD Global requires copies of your passport, transcript, portfolio, and a personal essay. If you are applying to two partner schools, you will need two copies of each of these materials. Please make sure each essay is catered to the specific partner school program.
Q: Who sends my application(s) to the partner school(s)?
A: After you’ve been nominated by RISD Global, RISD Global will be responsible for mailing your application(s) to the partner school(s). However, if a school requires an online application, you will need to complete the online application after being notified by RISD Global.
Q: How should I format my portfolio?
A: Please check with the partner school’s application requirements for portfolio submission guidelines.
Q: I want to do an exchange with a school that’s not on the list. Is this possible?
A: Unfortunately, RISD Global cannot help you arrange exchange with schools we are not partners with. The good news is that we have a lot of partner schools, in a lot of cool places, offering great programs.
Q: Do exchange credits count as transfer credits?
A: Good news: credits you receive during a semester abroad will be counted as regular RISD credits! After returning to campus, you need to meet with your department head to determine exactly how these credits will appear on your transcript.
Q: If I’m an Illustration major, can I apply for study abroad in Photography?
A: Generally students apply for exchange programs in their major area. If you would like to study abroad outside of your major area, please keep in mind these considerations: you need to have approval from your department head; you need to have a strong portfolio in your non-major area; and since you would be devoting a semester to non-major elective study, you need to make sure your major credits are in order.
Q: Can I suggest or start an exchange program relationship between my school and RISD?
A: RISD is always investigating potential partners for exchange, in alignment with our strategic plan. This process would typically begin with a faculty member contacting the Director of RISD Global at firstname.lastname@example.org.
RISD in Rome: European Honors Program (EHP)
Q: What is the European Honors Program (EHP)? How is it different from the Exchange Programs?
A: EHP is a studio-based, interdisciplinary program in Rome that has been RISD-operated since 1960. EHP students receive academic and personal support from an on-site director and a RISD faculty member serving as Chief Critic. The Exchange Programs, on the other hand, can be with any of our exchange partners in any of their global locations.
Q: Who is eligible for EHP?
A: Juniors and seniors with a GPA of 3.0 or higher.
Q: Is the EHP course of study always the same? Will my experience be like my friend’s experience, who went last year?
A: The Chief Critic will be your main instructor in Rome and is a different RISD professor each year. The Italian language and art history components of the program are relatively consistent. Attend an EHP information session to find out more!
Q: How do I apply? Which materials are required?
Q: Is a portfolio required for the EHP application?
Incoming Exchange at RISD
Q: Does my school have to be a partner institution with RISD if I want to do an exchange at RISD?
Q: How do I know if my school has a partnership with RISD?
A: Check the list of partner institutions.
Q: How do I apply to RISD?
A: For complete information go to incoming exchange.
Submit online application (via SlideRoom):
- RISD application for exchange
- Statement of Intent
- Transcript of grades at current school
- 2 Faculty letters of recommendation
- Portfolio of 10-20 images of recent work.
Q: How do I register for courses?
A: You will be able to register for courses after (not before, unfortunately!) your arrival on RISD’s campus; your academic advisor and RISD Global advisor at RISD will provide guidance on this process. Please keep in mind that it is important to look over your department course listing before attending RISD (Fall semester courses might not be available until the very end of summer). However it is important to know that you will not always receive your first choice of courses as exchange students arrive to campus after regular RISD students have already registered. Also, often times Department Heads/Academic Advisors will encourage you to take specific courses, based on their understanding of their area, your interests and work.
Q: How do I find housing?
A: The first choice is that you work with the RISD Residence Life office to locate on-campus housing; there is usually enough availability to meet the needs of our exchange students.
If you choose off-campus housing, neighborhoods to consider include: College Hill, West Side, Armory District, Federal Hill, and the East Side of Providence (not East Providence which is farther away) via craigslist. RISD Global is also happy to connect you with RISD students that are studying abroad or people living in the local area looking to sublet.
Q: Why is health insurance required and how do I sign up for it?
A: All incoming RISD exchange students are required to sign up for the HTH Health Insurance prior to arrival so as to cover any medical accidents and/or emergencies while studying and living here in the United States. In case of an emergency, it is important that every student has the same medical insurance coverage.
Q: How do I sign up for health insurance as an American AICAD Mobility student?
A: All AICAD students are required to have health insurance while on campus but are not eligible for HTH or RISD health insurance. Please inquire if you are able to purchase health insurance at your home institution.