Semester & Year Away Overview

A semester, or even a full academic year away, is an amazing opportunity to delve deeply into another culture, to experience a very different educational model, to immerse yourself in new ways of learning.  All Colorado College students are eligible for a combination of blocks away and full semesters, so it is possible for any CC student to participate in the type of long-term, immersive learning that a semester or year away can provide.  This page will give you all the basics and all the links to start on that journey.

While Colorado College's innovative Block Plan provides opportunities for students to enroll in a single course that travels to other parts of the world, sometimes a more immersive, longer-duration, multi-subject semester or year abroad is more aligned with student interests and academic goals.  This is why CC, in addition to its Block Away offerings, also maintains a pre-approved pool of over 120 different half-semester, full semester, and full academic year opportunities around the world.  This pool includes CC faculty-led half-semester & semester programs as well as university exchanges and direct enrollment programs which allow students to spend a semester immersed in the life of a renowned global university; single-subject immersive semesters in fields such as Computer Science, Mathematics, Environmental Sciences, or language immersion; and multi-subject semester programs designed specifically for students at U.S. colleges and universities. 

Students who opt to join a semester or year away program will pay standard CC tuition for their time away (and can transfer all their credits earned back towards their CC degree progress, with proper approvals) and all billing for other semester away charges (lodging, for example) will be billed through CC. This allows the college to provide financial aid just as it would for an on-campus semester, ensuring that a semester away is offered at a cost comparable to a semester on campus, reducing the financial barrier for students to participate in both semester and year abroad opportunities.  

For any CC-led program, courses are part of the Colorado College curriculum and are enrolled directly through CC, while for partner-sponsored programs, credit is treated as transfer credit and the Global Education Office maintains a course transfer database, making it easy for students to select courses and know the CC equivalencies before they depart.  Students can sign up for courses on our partner programs and know in advance that the credit is transferable and applicable to their CC degree.  


The process of selecting a semester or year off-campus program is different for every student, depending on academic goals, major and minor, language ability, and other considerations. Here are things to do to help you decide which program below is a good fit:

Usually the best place to start is to meet first with your academic advisor (in your major or possible major) to determine what your academic goals will be for your semester or year off-campus. Some students are looking to fulfill a certain major requirement or two, or really perfect their language proficiency, or challenge themselves to think differently about social justice or community learning, or do an internship or research project...the list goes on and on. Once you know more about what you specifically are looking for academically, the easier it will be to find a program that fits.

Discuss also with your advisor when it might make the most sense to go. Students typically study off-campus any time from Spring semester of sophomore year through Fall semester of senior year, depending on courses they should be here on campus to take. Think creatively.

On the most second Fridays of each block there is a "Planning Your Off-Campus Study" lunchtime workshop in Tutt Library 238 at 12:15pm, in conjunction with the Sophomore Jump program, but open to all. This is a great opportunity to start the process and get all your questions answered.

Look at the advising guides available for many academic majors and areas of interest.

Check with your department/major handbook to see if there is a section about off-campus study or any recommended programs that they really like. Please also see our departmental listing of credit transfer policies from study abroad.

Spend a good chunk of time browsing through the approved programs list below, to get a sense of what is even out there, and the different models and opportunities that you might have through off-campus study that you may have never even imagined existed.

Once you have talked with your academic advisor and have a sense of your academic goals, if you have additional questions, you may also email question and/or schedule an appointment with the Assistant Director of Global Education, Heather Powell Browne.

Colorado College regularly offers seven different semester or half-semester programs, each with its own academic focus.  Several of the 4-block full semesters also allow for an option in which students enroll in half of the semester for a 2-block experience, while others may choose the full 4-block program.  These include options in Fall, Spring, or the final two blocks of Spring.

BLOCKS 1-4 (Fall)

TREE Semester (Teaching & Research in Environmental Education):  A 4-block program in the mountains of Colorado offered each fall.  No 2-block option exists for this program. 
CC in Latin America: A Spanish & Portuguese language immersion program with 2 blocks in Brazil and 2 in Mexico, offered each fall.  Students may opt for Blocks 1-4 or a 2-block sequence in Blocks 1-2 (Brazil) or 3-4 (Mexico) only.  Destination countries can change year to year so it is important to research by academic year. 
CC in Berlin: A German language immersion program in partnership with the Humboldt-Institut in Berlin, offered each fall.  Students may opt for Blocks 1-4 or a 2-block sequence in Blocks 1-2 or 3-4.

BLOCKS 5-8 (Spring)

CC in France: A French language immersion program in partnership with the Institute Touraine in Tours, France, offered each Spring.  Students may opt for Blocks 5-8 or a 2-block sequence in Blocks 5-6 or 7-8. 

BLOCKS 7-8 (Late Spring Half-Semester)

CC Chinese in Asia: A half-semester 2-block program in Chinese Language & Culture.  Locations can vary each year, with study possible in China, Taiwan, Hong Kong, or Singapore.  Offered each spring.  Students enroll for Blocks 7-8. 
CC Russian in Bishkek: A half-semester 2-block program in Russian Language & Eurasian Cultures, in partnership with the American University of Central Asia, in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan.  Offered each spring.  Students enroll for Blocks 7-8. 
CC in Italy: A half-semester program offering either language immersion (IT203-204) or Italian History, Art & Culture (HY200 + IT320).  Program includes study in Florence, Rome, Arezzo, and Sorrento.  Offered each spring.  Students enroll for Blocks 7-8. 


In addition to the CC Faculty-led semester programs, the Global Education team maintains a pre-approved list of 150+ partner-sponsored semester and year away programs, all preaproved to align with Colorado College's goals for a high quality liberal arts education in the global context. These come in various forms, to meet many different student goals and needs. 


Students fully immerse themselves into a new campus, such as our exchanges in Canada, France, Finland, and Germany, or university programs such as our year abroad at the London School of Economics or semester programs at Kansai Gandai (Japan) or Hebrew University (Israel). 


There are also a range of topic-specific programs tailored to focus primarily on one discipline, for example the Budapest Semester in Mathematics program, the ISDSI International Sustainability & Development Studies Institute in Thailand, or the School for International Training (SIT) whose thematic semesters each focus on a specific Critical Global Issue. 


Finally, there are many programs designed specifically for the enrollment of students from U.S. colleges. These programs often offer courses across many disciplines, opportunities to study with a mix of U.S.-based and local faculty, and customized excursion and field opportunities. Courses may be taught at a program center, at a local partner univerity, or a hybrid of both. Examples of this final type of semester away include the programs offered by the Institute for Study Abroad (IFSA), IES Abroad, College Year in Athens, DIS, or the School for Field Studies. 

Whatever the model, wherever the location, these programs are thoroughly vetted by Colorado College for academic rigor and quality of student care.  Courses are pre-approved via our internal Summit application system for study abroad for transfer back to Colorado College, so that students know that their coursework from studying away will move them towards their degree from CC.  

As with all semester programs, students work with the Global Education staff and their campus academic advisors to ensure that they are prepared for departure, that the courses selected are good choices for their academic goals, and that the timing of their experience does not disrupt their 4-year graduation plan.  We are happy to assist students with their interest in any of the semester and year away programs. 

Finally, if a student feels that a program not in our pre-approved pool is the best option for them, Global Education has a petition process which allows students to request access for them to participate in a different program, and for that program to be treated just as we would one of the programs in our pool, financially, for aid, and for credit transfer.  


Please see the most recent updates on "Returning to Study Abroad" on our COVID-19 Updates page, and check with your program provider about any cancellations and modifications due to COVID. Also, check CC's institutional policies on COVID-19.

We continue to regularly monitor and communicate with each of our partner programs and CC faculty on the plans to offer and support semester and year-long study abroad program options, in conjunction with U.S. State Department and CDC travel restrictions and guidance. Students may apply to study abroad, agreeing to work closely with us as current global health conditions change. It is beneficial to apply early, as we will be in close communication with all study abroad applicants as we have more information, on a program-by-program basis. Any questions about study abroad semester planning and COVID-19 contingencies or deferrals can be directed to Heather Powell Browne.


October 15:  Applications for all 2024 spring semesters are due. 
Complete the CC Internal Application or Application to the CC in France program by this date to receive consideration for approval.  Late applications are not accepted. 


December 1: Applications for Block 7-8 half-semester programs due.

Complete the Summit applications for Block 7-8 programs (CC in China, CC in Bishkek, CC France Blocks 7-8, and CC Italian 203-204 in Italy) by this date to receive consideration for approval.


December 1: Deadline to Confirm Spring Semester Away Participation

All students who have been approved for a spring semester away program (CC-led or Partner-led) must complete the Summit documents and confirmation process by December 1st. 


March 15: Applications for all 2024 fall semesters and 2024-2025 Academic years away due.

Complete the CC Internal Application (or the application for TREE Semester, CC in Berlin, or CC in Latin America) by this date to receive consideration for approval.  Late applications are not accepted. 


May 1: Deadline to Confirm Fall Semester or Academic Year Away Participation

All students who have been approved for a fall semester or full year away program (CC-led or Partner-led) must complete the Summit documents and confirmation process by May 1st. 



Wednesday, September 6 from 12:00pm-2:00pm
Worner Center Lobby
Thinking about a semester or a full year away?  Explore your options for over 130 different semester away programs, some CC-led, some through partner universities and organizations.  


Thursday, February 1 from 12:00pm-2:00pm
Worner Center Lobby
The biggest Study Away Fair of the year, with faculty representing all of the 2024-2025 Blocks Away, faculty-led semester and half-semester programs, and representatives of 120+ semester away options.  There is no better event all year to explore options for study away in the next year.  

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Report an issue - Last updated: 09/26/2023