Major Advising Pages

Learning Abroad in Family Social Science

“Studying and learning in an international setting transforms students into citizens of the world.”
—William Goodman, Undergraduate Program Chair, Department of Family Social Science

Study Abroad Process

This is the basic process you'll complete in order to study abroad. The order in which you do things is somewhat flexible.

Academic Planning

Review the following suggestions from the Family Social Science program before beginning your study abroad research.

You are encouraged to incorporate study abroad into your academic career while still graduating in four years. In order to take courses in your major you need to plan ahead. Here are some guidelines that will be helpful.

There are many valuable courses and internships available for study abroad in English and other languages. If you are interested in an experience in a country where courses are offered in another language be sure to plan to do an intensive language study abroad program or take the appropriate language classes. It will open up more opportunities and make the experience richer.

Best time to go abroad

Non Family Social Science course requirements

Internships

Core major courses

Upon return from study abroad

Remember

Programs

Africa and the Middle East

Kenya

Minnesota Studies in International Development (MSID)

  • Program focuses on international development in the context of Kenya through coursework in the first half of the semester and an internship in the latter half
  • Past internship placements include social work agencies, youth projects, women’s groups, orphanages, health clinics, community centers, and many more.

Senegal

Minnesota Studies in International Development (MSID)

  • Program focuses on international development in the context of Senegal through coursework in the first half of the semester and an internship in the latter half
  • Past internship placements include social work agencies, youth projects, women’s groups, orphanages, health clinics, community centers, and many more.

South Africa

University of Stellenbosch (available through CIEE South Africa)

  • The department of Sociology and Social Anthropology and Psychology offers courses that may be a good fit for Family Social Science students
  • A traditionally Afrikaans-speaking university with an increasingly wider selection of courses in English.
  • Learn how the post-apartheid transition to a multi-racial democracy has affected families

Tunisia

SIT Tunisia- Emerging Identities in North Africa

  • Study how western-style capitalism, Maghreb relations in North Africa, local and national politics, and engagement with Europe are shaping identity in Tunisia
  • Particular focus on youth identity and issues of unemployment, Islam, emigration, political participation, and hip hop culture
  • An independent study project (ISP) gives students the opportunity to explore issues related to youth, families, or other areas of interest

Americas

Argentina

Study Abroad in Buenos Aires 

  • Study in Buenos Aires, the "Paris of the Americas"
  • Learn or improve your Spanish with intensive language courses
  • A semester-based service-learning opportunity is available through non-governmental organizations and other community service organizations devoted to helping children and adults who do not have access to basic rights such as education, health, or a home
  • Take a variety of courses in English

Ecuador

Minnesota Studies in International Development (MSID)

  • Program focuses on international development in the context of Ecuador through coursework in the first half of the semester and an internship in the latter half
  • Past internship placements include social work agencies, youth projects, women’s groups, orphanages, health clinics, community centers, and many more.

Asia and Oceania

Australia

University Study in Australia: James Cook University

  • Unique School of Social Work and Community Welfare offers a diversity of courses as well as the departments of Sociology, Psychology, and Anthropology
  • Well known for its program in Indigenous Australian Studies whose courses offer opportunity for a comparative perspective with the indigenous populations in the U.S

Study & Intern in Sydney

  • Offers a 6 credit professional internship placement along with coursework in the humanities, social sciences, and business
  • Students can get experience working with a variety of types of families, such as aboriginal families or economically poor families.

University of Queensland, Brisbane (available through Arcadia Australia and IFSA-Butler Australia)

  • School of Social Sciences provides a variety of courses that are of interest to Family Social Science students
  • Courses listed under Arts such as Anthropology and regional specializations such as Asian Studies or Australian Studies may also be relevant

Thailand 

MSID - International Development in Thailand

  • Based in Chiang Mai, Thailand
  • Explore the complexities created by issues such as environment, globalization, public health, and social justice
  • Contribute through an internship or research project with a nonprofit organization
  • Instruction is in English; no prior Thai required

Europe

Balkans

SIT Serbia, Bosnia, and Kosovo: Peace and Conflict Studies in the Balkans

  • Based in Serbia, this program looks at the political, social, and economic transition of a region emerging from conflict
  • An independent study project (ISP) gives students the opportunity to explore a particular area of interest related to families in post-conflict regions

Austria

IES Vienna

  • Take psychology courses while studying German language and area studies
  • Instruction mostly in English. Two years of German required for courses taught in German.

Denmark

Study Abroad in Denmark - Child Diversity & Development

  • Learn how the recent rise in immigrants has affected the Danish idea of family and social services for families; Instruction is in English
  • Complete a practicum in a preschool to learn Danish early childhood education practices

Ireland

University College of Cork (available through Arcadia Ireland)

  • Ireland’s leading research institution and offers innovative, research-led curriculum, taught by world class academics
  • Faculty of Arts offers many relevant courses such as Youth and Community Work, Social Work, Sociology, Applied Psychology, and Social Policy

Norway

The New Norway: Globalization, National Identity, and the Politics of Belonging (HECUA)

  • Explore how the welfare state works in the context of a social democracy facing challenges posed by immigration
  • Students can study the new challenges faced by families in Norway and see what the socialist government is doing to confront the issues

United Kingdom

Middlesex University, London (available through IFSA-Butler England)

  • Choose from courses in sociology and social work that have an emphasis on family
  • Course examples include Sociology of the Family and Intimate Relations, Group and Family Work, and Gender, Family, Sex, Society and Politics

Northern Ireland: Democracy & Social Change (HECUA)

  • Provides a background on the historical, political and religious roots of conflict as well as the prospects for peace and the progress being made
  • Includes a seven-week internship that can explore areas such as working with families in stress, single parents, or economically poor families

Study & Intern in London

  • Offers a 6 credit professional internship placement along with coursework in the humanities, social sciences, and business
  • Past placements include a youth jobs center, a women’s center, an alternative medicine clinic, and many other opportunities to work directly with families.

University of Nottingham (available through Arcadia United Kingdom)

  • Find interesting course offerings in the Sociology & Social Policy and Education units
  • Well-known for its social sciences, this institution would be a particularly good match for students with concentrations in economics or mental health

Additional Options to Consider

Work, Intern, and Volunteer (WIV) Abroad Programs (non-credit)

  • Interested in work, intern, and volunteer opportunities abroad? Thinking about teaching English overseas? To explore your options view the online WIV or teaching English first step modules

Student Project for Amity Among Nations (SPAN)

  • Design and conduct an independent research project in one of four countries. Sites vary each year. Spend the year preparing your project at the University of Minnesota, collect information on your summer abroad, then complete your thesis upon return

Student Experiences

Kristi V. Studies Development in Kenya

  • On the MSID program, Kristi studied development in Nairobi and interned in rural Kisumu with an organization that educates Kenyans on health issues.

Emily S. Studies and Interns in London

  • Emily interned with a non-profit family center in London while taking courses. She learned about her field and developed skills in working with homeless and refugee families.

Visit the Learning Abroad Center's Student Experiences web page for details on other students' experiences studying abroad.