Studying Abroad with Disabilities

Many Western students elect to study abroad during their college career. Students with disabilities who will need accommodations for a study abroad program should contact their DRS counselor to begin exploring options.

International Programs and Exchanges

International Programs and Exchanges (IPE) is an excellent resource for Western students exploring study abroad. Your DRS counselor can work with you and IPE staff to identify study abroad programs that will meet your interests and needs.

Quick Tips for Students with Disabilities Going Abroad

  • Disclose your disability needs to program staff early, so appropriate arrangements and reasonable accommodations can be made in advance. Your DRS counselor can offer you support and assistance during the disclosure process.
  • Remember that other cultures may provide disability access in a different way—learn about what types of accommodation are typically provided in your host country, and be flexible and open to different ways of accommodating your disability.
  • Before you go, find out as much as you can about your host culture and how they view disability by reading, talking to other students, and attending pre-departure orientation sessions. The more you know, the better prepared you will be for the interaction between your disability and the new environment. IPE staff are here to help you locate resources that can assist you in preparing for your time abroad.
  • Think about how you will answer questions about your disability in the language of your host country—look up key vocabulary words ahead of time.

Adopted from Access Abroad


Page Updated 11.22.2017