Montana State University

Frequently Asked Questions

International Programs

Are scholarships available for international students?

International undergraduate students are automatically considered for new student scholarships from International Programs when they apply. They can also apply for departmental (academic) scholarships. Graduate students can apply for teaching or research assistantships and graduate stipends.

How can I get information about the Global Studies Minor?

While the Global Studies Minor program has not yet officially begun, interested students should contact Yvonne Rudman at 994-4032 for preliminary information about program requirements. The Minor is anticipated to begin Spring Semester 2003.

I’m an international student. How do I apply to MSU?

Several categories of international students exist and application procedures vary accordingly. Exchange students coming to MSU for a semester or year from one of our partner institutions work with the international office at their home institution to apply. Degree-seeking undergraduate students and graduate students apply directly to MSU and will need to complete application forms and supply required documents. At you can find links that give you the options and information that you need to request an application, download an application, or apply on-line.

How can I get information about MSU’s Arabic Language program?

The Arabic program website at will tell you about the course and its related study abroad opportunity in Morocco. If you'd like more information, please contact Yvonne Rudman at 994-4032. For Fall Semester 2002/Spring 2003, the class is scheduled for 2-3pm MTWTh.

What help do you offer as I apply to study abroad?

The Office of International Programs provides full advising services from start to finish for students participating in study abroad programs. This includes academic advising, applications, pre-departure orientation, support while abroad and credit transfer upon return.

Where is the Office of International Programs located? What are your hours?

We are on the 4th floor of Culbertson Hall, above the MSU Post Office and straight down the hill from Montana Hall. Hours are 8:00am to 5:00pm with only the International Opportunities Resource Room open over the noon hour. Appointments can be made by calling 994-4031 or e-mailing to

What kind of information on study abroad can I get from the Office of International Programs?

International Programs holds weekly general information sessions during the semester. Students should call or come by 400 Culbertson Hall to sign up. The resource room is available to students from 8 - 5 daily and has information on all MSU programs as well as work abroad, insurance, internships, scholarships, and student travel. We also have travel guides and country information for students' use.

I’m Canadian. Am I considered to be an international student?

Yes, however Canadian citizens or permanent residents use the standard MSU application for admission, not the international application form. Canadians study in the U.S. on student visas with the same regulations as other international students.

Will I be at MSU longer if I study abroad?

Students will receive credit for all work completed on an MSU program. In most cases students do not need to delay their graduation in order to participate.

What services does International Programs offer to international students?

OIP serves as a “homebase” for all international students. We offer pre-arrival information, airport pick-up and a new student orientation program. We offer advising on immigration issues, academic and general advising, and a variety of programs for international students including the Bozeman Friends of International Students and the International Student Organization groups. OIP hosts the annual International Street Food Bazaar and other cultural events.

Can I study English as a Second Language at MSU?

Yes. MSU has an on-campus Language Institute in partnership with the American Cultural Exchange. They offer five-week sessions all year to intermediate and advanced English students. See for more information.

Do I need to know a foreign language to study abroad?

No. MSU has many English-speaking programs - including some in non-English-speaking countries - as well as programs designed to help you learn a foreign language at any level.

What test scores do international students need for admission?

All international students who are non-native speakers of English must prove English proficiency, normally with the TOEFL exam. Undergraduates who wish to apply for departmental scholarships are encouraged to take the SAT, but it is optional. Graduate students must take the GRE exam. Graduate students in accountancy may take either the GRE or the GMAT.

Will my foreign credits transfer to MSU?

Credits earned at a recognized institution of higher education are generally accepted by MSU. A detailed evaluation of transfer credits is completed when the student first joins MSU to determine exactly how these credits may apply toward a bachelor’s degree. Students should bring course syllabi along with them to MSU in order to facilitate the awarding of transfer credit for specific courses.

What are the deadlines for international applicants?

Students should begin to apply for admission approximately at least six months before the beginning of the term that they wish to join MSU. Applications should be completed by May for fall semester admission, and by October for spring semester admission. Students who wish to be considered for scholarships or graduate assistantships should plan to apply four months earlier than these dates.

Can international students work on campus?

Students who maintain proper and legal status under a F-1 or J-1 visa are permitted to work part-time on campus during the academic year and full-time in the summer and during periods of vacation. Employment paperwork is completed in the International Office.

What scholarships or financial aid is available to study abroad?

Financial aid and most scholarships are applicable to all MSU approved study abroad programs. There may be additional scholarships available to qualified students. For more information, visit our website at:

How much does it cost to study abroad?

Cost depends on program, however, MSU strives to provide students with affordable international opportunities. The cost of a semester or year abroad need not be much more expensive than staying at MSU and in some cases your living costs may even be lower. The majority of our programs are based on MSU tuition and fees.

When is the best time to study abroad?

Students must complete their freshman year, but it is never too early to start planning. Most students study abroad during their sophomore or junior years depending on their major. Students who are planning on studying abroad at some time during their undergraduate career should consult with their academic advisor for more information from their departments.

How many study abroad options are offered by OIP?

MSU currently has over 220 different study abroad options in 50 countries. See a full listing of current programs on our website at:

How do I apply for a Fulbright scholarship? NSEP scholarship?

International Programs offers advising services for MSU students applying for these scholarships. Call our office at 994-4031 for more information or to make an appointment.

What if I want to study abroad only for a short time?

MSU offers short-term study programs led by faculty during the summer. Options and study sites change each year. Stop by the resource room for information on these programs or for information on programs offered by universities around the world.

How can I get involved with international students and international visitors?

There are many possibilities. The International Student Organization welcomes students from all countries, including the U.S.A. “Conversation Partners” is a one-on-one program for helping students at our on-campus language institute practice their English. Bozeman Friends of International Students (BFIS) matches international students with people who have similar interests with the intent to create international friendships. Call 994-4031 for further information.

How do I get a student visa?

When you are admitted to MSU, either a form I-20 or IAP-66 will be issued and sent to you. This form, your passport, financial records and proof of ties to your home country must be presented to the U.S. Embassy or Consulate in your country along with a visa application form. Checking the specific requirements for the consular office nearest you is suggested. This information is available from consular websites and can be found at