Thank you for your interest in studying at Georgia Tech!

Georgia Tech is one of the top research universities in the United States, distinguished by its commitment to improving the human condition through advanced science and technology. If you are interested in becoming an exchange student here, please contact your university’s international office or send inquiries to: incomingexchange@oie.gatech.edu. Due to high demand, we are only able to admit exchange students from institutions that have an active exchange agreement with Georgia Tech.

Each semester exchange students arrive from all corners of the globe to study on our campus and we are proud of our strong commitment to student exchange. For detailed information about exchange study at Georgia Tech, we have created a brochure to introduce you to Georgia Tech and provide you with some insights into being a student on our campus.

Copies of the brochure are available in the international offices of our bilateral exchange partner universities and here in PDF format.

 

Procedures for Managing Student Exchange Programs with International Universities

September 2020

 

This policy was first implemented in 1996 by the Study Abroad Coordinator in consultation with the Controller, the Bursar, and the Provost. The policy was subsequently updated in 2015 to reflect changes that had taken place on campus and with the administration of the programs over many years. Now, in 2020, the policy is being updated to keep the programs sustainable and compliant with the USG Business Policies Manual updates released in February 2019. The changes described below to the charges for participation by outbound students will take effect beginning with Spring Semester 2021 programs. While the core principles remain the same, some of the mechanics have changed, so this document is updated to reflect current procedures.

 

For the purpose of managing student exchange programs, the following definitions apply:

Exchange Program = Result of a formal agreement signed by the appropriate GT signatory that allows for one-for-one exchanges of students between Georgia Tech and an international institution of higher education.

Outbound = Georgia Tech student who goes abroad to study x

Inbound = International student who comes to Georgia Tech

Exchange Balance = The ratio of inbound semesters of study to outbound semesters of study. A positive balance (written as +1, +2, etc.) denotes more outbound than inbound semesters of study A negative balance (written as -1, -2, etc.) denotes more inbound than outbound semesters of study. __________________________________________________________________________________

OVERVIEW

This policy provides guidelines for the operation of an exchange program with an international university. Faculty-led study abroad programs are discussed in a separate policy. Any questions involving cross registration with metro universities should be directed to the Registrar’s Office.

Purpose: To allow one-for-one student exchanges between Georgia Tech and international institutions of higher education.

Function: Georgia Tech students will pay normal, full-time tuition plus mandatory student fees before departure. “Normal” means whatever tuition they would pay to study for the same semester in Atlanta. These funds will be used to cover administrative costs of the program and the tuition of the in-bound exchange student. The international partner university will provide tuition funding for the outbound Georgia Tech student.

Administration: The Office of International Education (OIE) is responsible for administration of these student exchange programs.

Accounting: An Agency Fund Account was established by General Accounting in 1995, and a second account was established in 2003.  In 2019, the Agency Fund Account in use was converted to a Departmental Sales and Services (DSS) account that functions in a hybrid format because balances are carried forward each year. The Office of International Education and the Provost’s Finance team assigned to the Vice Provost of International Initiatives manage the DSS account used for managing these student exchange programs. 

 

PROCEDURES

a) Approval

A faculty member who wishes to develop a student exchange agreement with an international university should contact the Office of International Education, which can provide template agreements and which will liaise with GT Legal Affairs and others as needed for the proposed agreement.

b) Exchange Balances

Exchange balances are tracked by OIE to ensure that the balance with for each agreement is at a level that can be “made up” the following academic year, and to ensure that the overall Georgia Tech balance is not greater than can be funded by the hybrid DSS Exchange Account.

c) Verification of Funds

The partner university requests that GT host exchange students, and OIE verifies that funds in one of the Exchange Accounts will be sufficient to cover tuition and fees for any inbound student. This approval for the number of students a partner university can send happens prior to the student applying for GT admission.

d) Out-bound Students

Out-bound students pay tuition and mandatory fees at the in-state rate + insurance costs + program participation charge of $500. Tuition, mandatory fees, and insurance will be charged per semester. The $500 charge will be loaded to the student’s account once per program (program may be more than one semester, but program charge will be once per program).

If the exchange participation balance is such that we have more students than places at a partner university, and if the partner university allows for it, students may participate on a fee-paying basis. In this case, students will be charged insurance costs + participation charge of $500 at Tech and they will pay the tuition and fees at the host university.

Students apply using the application available from OIE. Students’ Campus in Banner will be changed from “A” (Atlanta) to “Campus 8” (Exchange), which gives them access to the “Foreign Studies” course appropriate for their level. Students will then be responsible for registering for the appropriate course (FS 4000 = undergraduate; FS 6000 = graduate) each semester of participation. Students must take the equivalent of at least 12 credit hours per semester while participating in an exchange program. This system will allow students to remain Georgia Tech students, keeping them in the computer system and negating the need to apply for readmission to Georgia Tech at the conclusion of their studies in the international institution.

For out-bound students who are eligible for loans or scholarships awarded by the Financial Aid Office, OIE will complete a form showing the costs of program participation, and the dates of the program.

OIE is responsible for providing pre-departure orientation and for working with faculty members and the Registrar to establish credit transfer equivalencies. Any arrangements for transfer of credit must be in accordance with standard Georgia Tech guidelines unless special arrangements have been approved by the Registrar.

The out-bound student is responsible for all costs (such as housing, visas, airfare, etc.) not included in the exchange agreement.

Students in special, part-year programs may be subject to additional tuition and fees based upon the length of their program.

Refunds of tuition and fees are subject to standard policies of the GT Bursar’s Office. Insurance is refunded to the extent that OIE is able to obtain a refund from the insurance company. The $500 participation charge, due at the time of application, is non-refundable.

All tuition and fees are paid to the Bursar’s Office, and then transferred to the Exchange DSS Fund that is managed by OIE.

 

e) In-bound Students

Funds on deposit in the Exchange Account will be used to pay in-state tuition and fees for students coming from abroad. The In-bound Exchange Advisors will coordinate with Financial Aid to send a list of in-bound exchange students one month prior to the start of each semester. After processing by Financial Aid, funds from the Exchange Account are transferred to the appropriate student accounts to cover the in-state tuition of these students.

Out-of-state tuition for in-bound bilateral exchange students who come to Georgia Tech as part of a formal exchange program will be waived. The Office of International Education will apply the Exchange Waiver to the account of each in-bound bilateral exchange student each semester.

In-bound graduate students will either pay a special graduate fee, covering the difference in undergraduate and graduate tuition, or be counted as 1.7 per semester in the exchange balance. If the in-bound graduate student will pay the special graduate fee, the In-bound Exchange Advisor will request the fee to be placed on the student’s account by the VPII Financial Manager. In cases in which GT sends and receives graduate students, there is no special fee/no counting as 1.7. It is the majority of cases in which GT has sent undergraduate students out on exchange and is hosting a graduate student in exchange for an undergraduate when the special graduate fee/counting as 1.7 is necessary. The ratio of 1:1.7 is based on the difference between undergraduate and graduate standard tuition rates. OIE will alter the ratio as needed to maintain equity and sustainability in these programs.

Fee payment and tuition waiver procedures can be found in the Incoming Exchange Student Policies and Procedures folder (\ISSS\J-1\Incoming Exchanges\J-1 Exchange P&P).

In-bound student nominations are sent to the In-bound Exchange Advisors after confirming space is available based on exchange balance between the international exchange partner and GT. In-bound exchange advisors then provide program details, application instructions, deadlines and approximate costs to nominated students. Applications for in-bound students (including the GT Application for Undergraduate Admission, the Special Student/Transient Student Permission Form, the Financial Statement, official school transcripts and additional supporting documentation) should be received by the In-bound Exchange Advisors by the Exchange application deadline. Applications will then be forwarded to the Office of Graduate or Undergraduate Admissions. In-bound students are subject to the normal Admissions requirements of GT. The DS-2019 that inbound students need to obtain a J visa will be created and shipped with the acceptance letter after admission has been confirmed.

The In-bound Exchange Advisors will coordinate the reimbursement of the Undergraduate application fee with the VPII Financial Manager after Phase II registration closes. In-bound bilateral exchange students who apply at the graduate level are not reimbursed for the application fee.

The Office of International Education is responsible for insuring that all in-bound students receive orientation (in collaboration with FASET). In addition, the Office of International Education provides programming opportunities to in-bound students to enhance the cultural-exchange value of their exchange experience, in compliance with USDOS J-1 Regulations.

Any arrangements for transfer of academic records must be in accordance with existing Georgia Tech guidelines unless special arrangements have been approved by the Registrar. At present, guidelines require a student’s permission for release of a transcript to the home institution.

The In-bound Exchange Advisors and academic department must properly advise in-bound students of special arrangements that must be made in order to participate in the program. The in-bound student is responsible for registration and for payment of all costs (such as housing, visas, airfare, etc.) not covered by the exchange agreement.