First-Year Study Abroad Experience (FYSAE)

FYSAE students in London

Begin your Arcadia Education in Europe

Freshman study abroad is a defining experience at Arcadia University, where we make the world our classroom and enjoy a campus community that brings the world to Arcadia. A semester studying at a university in Europe with fellow Arcadia freshmen is an exciting way to begin college. Arcadia’s unique First-Year Study Abroad Experience (FYSAE) is offered in two locations: London, England and Stirling, Scotland.

Brittany Malinowski '13During the semester, London students use the city as their campus, taking Arcadia-taught courses as well as courses at City University London. Stirling students are enrolled directly at the University of Stirling and experience traditional campus life.

Extensive support is provided by in-country staff and U.S.-based Arcadia faculty and staff who prepare students before departure and visit them while overseas. Student mentors engage the new students throughout the experience and stay connected with them when they return. Individualized advising helps students make the most of their study abroad experience. Many FYSAE students also study abroad again during their undergraduate time at Arcadia.

A Special Opportunity for Academically Talented Students

Arcadia invites a select group of freshmen to apply to the First-Year Study Abroad Experience (FYSAE). Invitations are based on the academic strength of a student’s application for admission to the University. Many of the students who attend FYSAE also are part of Arcadia’s Honors Program.

Make the World Your Classroom

Taking Classes Abroad

Students in most majors and pre-professional programs can begin their college careers in London or Stirling. FYSAE students earn a full semester of credit toward their Arcadia University degrees. Students enroll in a total of 17 to 18 credits, including a Global Connections Reflection course and additional courses in the arts, humanities, social sciences or their major areas. Students get a rigorous educational experience in a different academic structure and are introduced to many aspects and nuances of the culture in which they are immersed. This is a unique preparation for their lives and for their professional careers. They function as independent, mature learners and make choices as adults in their daily lives.

Andrew Hurchick '13The Global Connections Experience

The Global Connections Experience and Reflection provide all Arcadia students with opportunities to explore new places and cultures. In a sustained cross-cultural experience, students meet people and learn about a society different from that in which they have lived previously. During the Global Connections Experience, students participate in a supervised Reflection course—typically by compiling an electronic portfolio—in which they document and analyze their experiences.

Returning to Campus

Fall FYSAE students return to the Glenside campus and re-connect with their peer mentors for a seminar program and debriefing. In most cases, fall students enroll in a First-Year Seminar when they return to campus in the spring. This facilitates the transition back to the Glenside campus and the American style of higher education. Spring FYSAE students also stay in touch with their peer mentors throughout their semester abroad and reconnect informally when they return for the start of their second year at Arcadia University.

Take your scholarships with you!

Students study abroad through Arcadia programs for the same tuition and housing costs as a semester on the U.S. campus in Glenside, Pa. All financial aid and merit scholarships, with the exception of work study money, easily transfer to any of Arcadia’s College of Global Studies programs, including FYSAE.

In addition, Arcadia University covers the cost of round-trip air transportation between Glenside and the United Kingdom for FYSAE participants. Arcadia University also covers the cost of a local transportation pass for the duration of the London-based program.

Immerse Yourself in a New Culture

Cultural Immersion

Discussing perspectives on recent global events while cooking dinner with students from around the globe is just one way that FYSAE students can experience another culture, another country, and another people. A wide range of academic and co-curricular options provides a different lens through which to view cultures and societies.

Getting Oriented

Fall FYSAE students get to know Arcadia’s Glenside campus when they attend a summer orientation and the traditional New Student Orientation before departing for England or Scotland. Spring FYSAE students get to know Arcadia’s campus during their first semester of college and attend FYSAE Orientation meetings throughout the fall.

When students arrive in the United Kingdom, they are accompanied by Arcadia staff and take part in an “in-country” orientation that includes an introduction to their host city. Arcadia staff members based in England and Scotland are in regular contact with all FYSAE students to monitor academic progress, facilitate cultural adjustment, and ensure an ongoing personal connection. In addition, faculty and staff from the Glenside, Pa., campus visit students during the semester overseas.


Selected students who have been admitted to Arcadia University are invited to apply. The Office of Enrollment Management will send information to qualified applicants. Haven't heard from us and are interested in applying? Click the "Are You Eligible" button above.

For more information, please call the Office of Enrollment Management toll-free at 1-877-ARCADIA (1-877-272-2342) or e-mail


Read because Arcadia Study Abroad Blog

Arcadia Magazine FYSAE Issue

Contact Us

First-Year Study
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