group of U of M Students in front of a windmill in Spain

Learning Abroad in Special Education

    Gain a different cultural perspective on Special Education. Different nations and cultures have very different practical expectations for children with special needs. A learning abroad experience can open your mind to how different nations and cultures work with and value their citizens who have disabilities. 

     

    Department Recommendations 

    Fulfill Requirements

    Major Requirements

    Meet with your Special Education Departmental Adviser to determine appropriate course equivalencies for your major before applying to a program. Use the Academic Planning for Study Abroad (APSA) Form to structure your academic planning.

    Consider the following:

    • You may be able to take several of your elective courses during your study abroad experience.  
    • You may, with prior approval be able to take some required courses and some foundation courses, such as child psychology abroad.  
    • The Teaching Practicum in France offered through the Learning Abroad Center (LAC) allows students to examine French education practices and complete a portion of your teaching practicum through teaching English in a French school. See program listings in France for more information below.  

    Liberal Education Requirements

    You can fulfill liberal education requirements while abroad. Consult the U-Credit Abroad Search for more information.

    College/Department Scholarships for UofM Students

     

     

    Programs

    Africa and the Middle East

    Kenya

    MSID—International Development in Kenya

    • Term: Fall or Spring semester
    • Participate on the Education & Literacy academic track, as part of the International Development course, which will focus your studies and help prepare you for your internship.
    • Students will analyze the educational system, government policy, and impact on local educational structures, the disparities in access to education, and the relationship between education and development.
    • Past internship placements include teaching in the schools, youth projects, women’s groups, orphanages, health clinics, community centers, and many more.

    Senegal

    MSID—International Development in Senegal

    • Term: Fall or Spring semester
    • Participate on the Education & Literacy academic track, as part of the International Development course, which will focus your studies and help prepare you for your internship.
    • Students will analyze the educational system, government policy, and impact on local educational structures, the disparities in access to education, and the relationship between education and development.
    • Past internship placements in education include teaching in the schools, youth projects, teaching and assisting at an orphanage, working at youth care centers, working with youth with special needs.
    • Language prerequisite: Minimum 4 semesters college-level French

    Americas

    Costa Rica

    Universidad Nacional de Heredia, Costa Rica (available through IFSA Costa Rica)

    • Term: Fall, Spring, or Academic Year
    • Offers students the opportunity to take integrated courses in a variety of areas
    • Students may also pair up with Costa Rican students to volunteer at a local primary school every week
    • Available to Spanish speakers

    Ecuador

    MSID—International Development in Ecuador

    • Term: Fall or Spring semester
    • Participate on the Education & Literacy academic track, as part of the International Development course, which will focus your studies and help prepare you for your internship.
    • Students will analyze the educational system, government policy, and impact on local educational structures, the disparities in access to education, and the relationship between education and development.
    • Past internship placements include teaching in the schools, youth projects, women’s groups, orphanages, health clinics, community centers, and many more.
    • Language prerequisite: Minimum 4 semesters college-level Spanish

    Asia and Oceania

    Australia

    Macquarie University (available through Arcadia Australia and IFSA Australia)

    • Term: Fall, Spring, or Academic Year
    • Institute of Early Childhood has an outstanding international reputation.
    • Sample courses include Child Development: Approaches to Theory and Practices, Curriculum and Play in Early Childhood, Early Childhood Math, Science and Technology, Developmental Difference and Disability, Early Education for Young Children with Disabilities, Early Childhood Management, Family and Communities in a Culturally Diverse Society

    Thailand

    MSID—International Development in Thailand

    • Term: Fall or Spring semester
    • Participate on the Education & Literacy academic track, as part of the International Development course, which will focus your studies and help prepare you for your internship.
    • Students will analyze the educational system, government policy, and impact on local educational structures, the disparities in access to education, and the relationship between education and development.
    • Past internship placements include teaching in the schools, youth projects, women’s groups, orphanages, health clinics, community centers, and many more.

    Europe

    Denmark

    Study Abroad in Denmark (DIS)

    • Term: Summer, Fall, Spring
    • Particularly suited for students in education, child development, and psychology
    • Combines theory with a supervised practicum experience in a daycare center, early education institution or after school program
    • Summer program offers 3 or 6-week programs with courses such as Children with Special Needs, Children in a Multicultural Context, and Cross-cultural psychology
    • Semester and Academic-Year coursework have track options. Each track has one required core course with two accompanying study tours, including a Child Diversity and Development track.

    France

    Teaching Practicum in France

    • Term: Fall, Spring
    • Complete your teaching practicum through teaching English in a French school
    • Language Development in Cross-Cultural Perspective, Directed Research, Comparative Education and Pedagogy as well as humanities and business courses in English are also offered  
    • Fulfill Liberal Education requirements
    • Begin or continue your study of French with a French language course
    • Courses pre-approved to UofM credits and UofM degree requirements
    • No language prerequisite. Coursework in English.
    • Additional information about the program including videos of student experiences 

    United Kingdom

    Study & Intern in London

    • With an internship in an urban school, you will have the opportunity to interact with students as a classroom assistant and receive guidance from the local teachers
    • Semester students take classes in history, literature, theatre, economics and many other subjects and can participate in an internship
    • Summer students could take the Child Development in a British Context and also participate in an internship

    Additional Options to Consider

    Global Seminars

    • 3-week, 3-credit programs at the 3000-level led by University of Minnesota faculty and staff over Winter Break or May Session.
    • Fulfill Liberal Education requirements, or earn major/minor credit.
    • Explore an exciting location and topic! Check out this year's Global Seminars!

    Non-Credit Opportunities

    • Non-credit opportunities can be a great option for students who do not need academic credit but want to gain skills and experience abroad related to their field of study.

     

    Student Experiences

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