Study Abroad

National Student Exchange (NSE) Program

All Terms: Application Deadline: February 1st*
(Fall, Spring, Academic Year, and Summer)
*RA Exchange Applications are due November 30th for all terms!

UW-L has joined with the National Student Exchange (NSE) program as an affiliate institution to expand our study abroad/study away opportunities for students.

NSE is a program for undergraduate exchange within the United States with opportunities for exchange in Canada as well.  Instead of crossing oceans, NSE students cross state, regional, provincial, and cultural borders.  The changes seen in attitudes, understanding of other people in other settings, maturity, risk-taking, and decision-making are similar to experiences of students who study internationally.  Please check the National Student Exchange website for the list of host institutions available.


The Department of Modern Languages requires

SPA 303 and SPA 304

be taken at UW-L prior to studying abroad.

A student pursuing a major or a minor in Spanish at University of Wisconsin-La Crosse may earn up to 66% of the credit hours for the major/minor requirement in a foreign country.  Thirty-four percent (34%) of the credit hours must be earned at UW-L.  The student is required to take at least one three-credit course in Spanish at UW-L after returning from the country of study. 


Please contact the Modern Languages Advisor(s) identified for your program.

The course equivalencies spreadsheets have been compiled from past approved Academic Plan forms.  They show when the course was last approved and how it transferred back to La Crosse.  You may notice that some classes satisfied several UWL options.

This list is not comprehensive nor does it take the place of meeting with your advisor for final approval!  They are meant to be a guide of what courses may be appropriate for your studies abroad.

The Resident Assistant Exchange encourages a student who has served as an RA on their home campus to serve in a similar capacity while on exchange to a participating host campus.  This program sponsored by the National Student Exchange and supported by the Association of College & University Housing Officers-International (ACUHO-I).


  • 2.5 cumulative GPA at the time of application and at the completion of the term prior to exchange

  • Be a full-time student at the time of application and in the term prior to exchange

  • Be in good standing (academic, financial, and social/behavioral) as defined by the home campus

  • Meet any additional requirements of the home or host institution

  • Be currently serving as an RA at the time of application and in the term immediately preceding exchange

  • Have a positive letter of reference from the supervising residence life hall director on the home campus

  • Have written permission from the home campus residence life program to participate

  • Identify up to three institutions, in priority order, for exchange

  • Complete the RA Exchange Application Form and submit it to the home campus NSE coordinator by November 30

  • Complete the OIE application procedure and be approved by the NSE coordinator for participation in the exchange program by November 30

If you choose to live on campus at your host university, you will pay the costs for room and meals directly to the host campus, not to your home university. Housing options and meal plans vary greatly from campus to campus.  The side bar area, next to the campus narratives in the NSE Directory, identifies current room and meal costs for room arrangements and meal plans most commonly selected by exchange students.  Options you might choose could be higher or lower than the costs listed.  Consult NSE's website for Campus Catalogs and campus web home pages for descriptions and costs of specific room and meal plan options.

Room and meal costs increase each year by 5-8 percent.  Costs for the coming fall will not be available until spring or summer.  Consult NSE's  Campus Budgets for up-dated costs.  Note the submission date for the campus of interest to ascertain whether or not the information is timely and up-to-date.  Costs are subject to change without notice.

NSE does not require and does not provide health insurance for exchange students.  It is your responsibility, therefore, to ensure that you are adequately covered by health insurance and other insurance for the period and place of your exchange including travel between your home and host institutions.  Some NSE member campuses will require proof that you have adequate health insurance, and a few will require that you purchase their health insurance regardless of whatever policy of your own may be in effect.

If your program is outside the U.S. (i.e., Canada), you will be required to purchase CISI insurance.  This enrollment will be done in by the OIE staff and the charge will be posted to your student account.

Before you travel abroad (Canada, Guam, or Puerto Rico); you may need to obtain a passport, which will serve as proof of your U.S. citizenship. A passport may allow you to gain entry to (and exit from) other countries. Depending on the country to which you're traveling, a visa may be required as well. Entry requirements vary from one country to another. The U.S. State Department issues travel warnings specific to certain countries, and offers tips and publications relevant to travel abroad generally. Well in advance of your departure, you should also familiarize yourself with international travel health issues, and health recommendations specific to your destination.

Dates will vary by campus.  Please refer to the NSE website for accurate information.

Exchange participation is a privilege, not a right. Listed below are the minimum requirements for NSE participation:

  • Full-time enrollment at the home campus prior to exchange
  • Cumulative 2.5 GPA (4.0 scale) or better
  • Good standing (academic, personal, and financial)
  • Not open to students from other universities

Length of Exchange
You may participate in NSE for a single term or a full academic year. Some campuses can accommodate summer exchange. The maximum cumulative total for exchange participation may not exceed one calendar year.

Complete the OIE application materials. The guidelines, application and forms are available as Word files.

Study the NSE Directory and consider at which region or school you would like to study. Review member campus catalogs and course descriptions at

Determine if financial resources are sufficient for your exchange and talk to your financial aid counselor (Refer to the NSE budget page to help plan your finances).

If applicable, apply for a passport. If you have a passport, be sure to check its validity. All passports must be valid for six months beyond your return date to the United States.

Placements are confirmed by signing a Placement Acceptance Form.

  • Once you have secured your placement you will select courses from that university with your program director/advisor. Your director/advisor must sign your transfer of credits form.

After Placement
Upon receipt of the form, the host NSE coordinator will forward enrollment materials which usually include a housing application, an institutional admissions form, and registration information. All materials must be completed and returned by stated deadlines. At the end of the term preceding exchange you must have maintained all eligibility requirements applicable at the time of your application or your exchange will be cancelled.

You pay your normal tuition and fees to UW-La Crosse. Additionally, fees which are assessed as a condition of enrollment are paid to your host campus (e.g., laboratory courses, general service, computer, technology, art and photography supplies).

Room and meals are always paid to your host campus. You are responsible for transportation, personal expenses, and sightseeing opportunities while on exchange.

The program fee includes the following:

  • Tuition (12 credits) and Administrative Fees
  • Study Abroad Health Insurance (if applicable)

The UW-L Administrative Fee includes the following:

  • Preparation of Financial Aid budgets
  • Orientation to Study Abroad Class
  • Registration while away in a holding class (INS 300) to maintain your registration at UW-L
  • Transfer of Credit Processing
  • Study Abroad Graduation Sash

Airfare is not included in the program price.
The program fee does not include housing, a meal plan or meal stipend of any kind.

Financial Aid is applicable to program fees.

Refer to Program Fees for the most current program fee.

National Student Exchange Program
Directory for Exchange Opportunities
RA Exchange
Campus Budgets for Financial Aid
Campus Details
Multicultural Opportunities
Students with Special Needs
Tips and Advice from Program Alumni


Back  ● Apply!   ● Fees  Dates  Alumni Comments

Study Abroad Homepage  OIE Homepage


Office of International Education
1209 Centennial Hall
University of Wisconsin-La Crosse
1725 State Street
La Crosse, WI 54601 USA

Telephone: 608-785-8016 Fax: 608-785-8923 E-Mail: