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How Long Are Summer Programs?


For some college students, summer can be about meandering and trying not to think about time much at all. But if your academic year schedule is a little hectic and you’re looking to squeeze in an overseas experience during your summer break, naturally, you’re wondering, “How long are summer study abroad programs anyway?”

The truth is… it depends! Summer programs can vary in length, anywhere from a few weeks to the entire summer break.

Here’s a quick breakdown on how long summer study abroad programs are:

May Term

These are programs that are offered during, well, May! If you’re enjoying your spring semester and can’t wait to continue studying — but in a different country — this is the option for you. May Term study abroad programs are generally a few weeks long, and there are many benefits. First of all, it’s often more affordable than a full semester. In most locations, the weather will be at its best. Also, May Term study abroad programs tend to have smaller group sizes, allowing for a more intimate experience. Ultimately, the best part about May Term is that it allows you the opportunity to study abroad while also keeping your other summer commitments, whether that’s an internship or family obligation.

AIFS Abroad participants in Lisbon, Portugal


Short-term programs have varying start dates throughout the summer depending on your school or study abroad provider. These are also a few weeks long. Just like May Term programs, short-term study abroad programs are perfect for students who have a jam-packed course schedule during the school year, allowing you keep your educational and career commitments while also enjoying adventures in a new country.

Full Summer 

For students who want to completely immerse themselves in the summertime vibes of their study abroad destination, there are also programs that span the entire summer break. This program option allows you to maximize your time adventuring in a far-off land without feeling FOMO for campus life during the regular school semesters. In addition to having more time to study, a full summer session also allows for more excursions and activities abroad. You’ll really get to know your host city and the surrounding area!

No matter which type of summer study abroad program you choose, you know you’re going to be able to fit in an amazing new experience into your already amazing academic career.

Want to get away for the summer? We’ve got you covered! AIFS Abroad offers a number of exciting study abroad and international internship programs around the world!

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