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If a quick trip on the 1 train to SoHo takes you a week to schedule and plan, imagine how much preparation a semester abroad requires! It'll take hours of research, multiple conversations with advisers, and a few tearful goodbyes.

Luckily for you, Spectrum has made your life just a bit easier by compiling all the information out there about studying abroad in one handy-dandy location.

You already have a handful of dates to keep on your radar, but if you're considering studying abroad in the summer or fall, make sure you pay attention to these too. It's never too early to start planning.

Deadlines

Since you must meet various deadlines before you can apply for a program, figure out the time frame of your due dates so you can plan accordingly.

Columbia deadlines:

Clearance deadlines

Fall and year programs: March 15 Summer programs: May 1 Spring programs: Oct. 15?

Registration deadlines

Fall and year programs: April 15 Summer programs: May 15 Spring programs: Nov. 15

????Application deadlines vary by program, but generally, fall program applications are due in March and spring ones are due in October?

Barnard deadlines:

Submit "Intent to Study Abroad" form:

Spring program: Oct. 1 at 5:00 p.m. Fall or year program: Feb. 15 at 5:00 p.m. Application deadlines vary by program, but generally fall program applications are due in March and spring ones are due in October

Explore your options

Once you decide where you want to go and what you want to study, scroll through your options to find your perfect study abroad program. If you're a Columbia student, you can do a CU-administered or approved program; BC, here is a list of the approved programs.?

Additionally, both Barnard and Columbia have interactive maps where you can click on any country and see what study abroad programs are available. We've linked them below.

Read the fact sheet

After clicking on a program, you will see a brochure page. In a rare occurrence of Columbia actually making something easy, they've put everything you need to know in one spot (requirements, academics, application, etc.). Every program has this "Fact Sheet," seen below, which will be key to deciding if the program is for you. It also tells you the language of instruction and number of language semesters required to take the program.

Note for anyone who is interested: This is a direct enrollment program at Bocconi University in Milan, Italy

Most importantly, this table will help you weed out programs. For example, this one tells me that the program is only for Columbia College students who are actually nominated by Columbia. As a Barnardigan, I frowned and quickly exited out.

Pre-application

CC, SEAS

Do you have a stellar GPA (3.0+)? Have you completed a majority of the Core? There are many requirements you need to make sure you've completed before embarking on your journey, so make sure you meet them all.

GS

You need the same ol' GPA as CC and SEAS (3.0). In addition to at least beginning your language requirement, you need to take an additional course related to the area in which you'll be studying. You can see the full list of requirements here.

Barnard

First, check your eligibility (must have completed two years of the language spoken in the host country, be in "good academic standing," etc.)! Then, attend a study abroad information session (the next one is this Friday, Jan. 20, in 318 Milbank) before making an appointment with a study abroad adviser to hash out your plans. Each week's appointments will be listed on the Barnard study abroad website on the Friday the week before the appointments are set to take place and come in convenient 20-minute blocks.

Quick application info

For Columbia-administered programs, all you need to do is click the "Start an application" button on the top right corner of the program's page.?

For Columbia-approved programs and Barnard-approved programs, you'll have to apply directly to the program provider.?

You don't have to rush the planning process right now since you have two to three months until the application deadline. However, start thinking about it now because time flies when you're a Columbia student. Nonetheless, have fun in your endeavors abroad.

Are you planning on jetting off next year? Tell us where you're going and what you've been doing to prep on Facebook, Twitter, or on Snapchat @CUSpectrum.

Isabella Monaco is a Spectrum associate editor and a Barnard first-year. She researches study abroad programs to procrastinate. Reach her at isabella.monaco@columbiaspectator.com.

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