Exchange + travel study program

ACAD students can study for a semester in the UK, continental Europe, Australia, or elsewhere in North America.

How does it work?

ACAD partners with post-secondary institutions worldwide to offer cross-cultural experiences for students. The program is designed to allow ACAD students to continue their academic progress while attending the host institution. Eligible students complete their full-time complement (15 credits) of 300-level major courses and electives for one semester at the host institution and return to ACAD for the following fall semester to maintain their spot in their selected major. The exchange and travel study program is for one, full-time semester of study in which students earn transferable credits toward their ACAD program. Exception to one semester of study may apply to students who earn extra credits that can not be applied directly to their program of study.

Who is eligible?

At the time of travel study, students must have completed a minimum of 60 credits applicable to their ACAD degree requirements, have no First Year Studies deficiencies, have a cumulative Grade Point Average (GPA) of 3.0 or higher at the time of application and before departure, and have officially declared a major. You can make educated projections about your GPA status by using the ACAD GPA calculator tool.

There is only one annual intake of applications to participate in this program. Students must apply to participate by January 2 (or the next business day) prior the next academic year fall or winter semester. In other words, applications to participate in the Exchange & Travel Study program is due on completion of a student's first term of 200-level required coursework, and Exchange study will occur the following academic year when the student is completing 300-level courses.) Students who transfer to ACAD in their third year of study are not eligible for the Exchange & Travel Study program.

Are there any special criteria?

Students may be required to have a basic knowledge of the language of instruction of the host institution.

Where can I go?

With over 40 participating institutions around the globe, the hardest choice will be where to go! Check out the schools and make a shortlist of priorities.

What is the deadline for application?

  • JANUARY 2 (or the next business day) is the application deadline for ACAD students applying to participate in the Exchange & Travel Study program (there is one annual intake of applications). Successful applicants will be notified whether they will nominated to participate and will then receive approval to prepare an application for the host institution.
  • Incoming students from partner institutions who wish to study at ACAD must apply by May 1 (fall semester) or November 1 (winter/spring semester). Please scroll to the bottom of the page and click on the button "How to study at ACAD as an Incoming Exchange Student" for incoming applicants.

How do I apply?

1. Research the host institution that you wish to attend and be ready to answer why it is your first choice.  Also, have an alternate school in the event that there is limited space for your first choice school.

2. Complete and submit one PDF Application to Participate in the Exchange & Travel Study Program by email to no later than January 2 (or the next business day). Your PDF must include the following elements:

  • Cover Page that includes YOUR NAME, ACAD ID#, MAJOR, Exchange Institution of Choice, Semester and year of Exchange
  • Personal Statement / Letter of Intent (500 words max.) that describes your research interest and how the Exchange program will help you fulfill your academic goals
  • A scanned copy of the photograph page of your valid passport. Your passport needs to be valid for six months following your return from the Exchange + Travel Study program.
  • Resume / Curriculum Vitae (The College Art Association has an excellent guideline for creating your CV) 
  • 3 images of work with dimensions and titles (use still images for sound or video pieces and links to web file)
  • Provide research of the course titles and descriptions of courses at the host institution(s) that you would propose to enroll in provided there is availability. Please note: While on exchange you will be enrolled as a full-time student and will be required to complete 15 credit equivalents; ie. five courses or 24 instructional hours, such as two 300-level studios plus three 200-300-400 level studios; or two 300-level studios in combination with Studio and Liberal Studies electives.
  • When your PDF application is submitted to a $102 non-refundable application fee (plus an additional $51 if you wish to submit a separate application for a second institution) will be added to your account. Payment will be due by the January tuition fees deadline.

3. Your PDF Application to Participate in the Exchange & Travel Study program will be reviewed by committee. Successful applicants will use the elements in their participation application for a follow up host institution application. Do not contact the host institution until you are nominated by the ACAD Exchange & Travel Study Committee and have met with your Exchange Coordinator/Academic Advisor to discuss next steps.

What happens after I apply?

The Exchange + Travel Study Coordinator/Student Academic Advisor will:

  • Ensure that all Applications to Participate in the Exchange & Travel Study Program are forwarded to the Exchange and Travel Study Committee.
  • Notify all applicants of the committee results by the end of January
  • Send a Letter of Nomination and Official Transcript to host institution(s) on behalf of those students selected to participate in Exchange + Travel Study program
  • Meet with participating students to review academic plan and to provide instructions for preparing their host institution application(s)

ACAD Students who are nominated to participate in the Exchange + Travel Study Program are required to:

  • Meet with the Exchange + Travel Study Coordinator/Student Academic Advisor (set up an appointment to follow up on completion of your application to the host institution. This will occur AFTER you receive an official notice of approval to participate in the Exchange + Travel Study program.
  • Refrain from contacting the prospective host institutions directly.
  • Contact to arrange health & dental coverage, obtain study visas (when required), make travel and accommodation arrangements.
  • Copy all documents sent to host institution to ACAD's Exchange + Travel Study Coordinator/Student Academic Advisor.
  • Follow up on transfer credit procedures* upon completion of the program.


Independent Off Campus Study: ACAD students may be eligible to earn transfer credits toward their ACAD degree by completing courses independently at other institutions as a visiting student. You will need to research courses at other degree granting institutions to find a course or courses that fulfill at least 80% of the learning outcome requirements for ACAD course equivalents. Submit a request for a Letter of Permission (for Independent Off Campus Study) to Then proceed with registering at the host institution as a visiting student.

Program requirements

Participating institutions

Check out the list of participating Exchange + Travel Study Program schools around the globe and go where the spirit takes you!

Travel funding

Apply for awards and scholarships to help fund your study and travel program.

Student travel stories

Our Exchange + Travel Study Program students have travelled far and wide to pursue their craft. Read their inspiring and interesting stories and then plan your dream educational trip!

How to study at ACAD as an incoming exchange student

Looking to study at ACAD for a semester? We welcome applicants from across North America and from international schools around the world.

Independent off-campus study

Alternative travel study option.