Global Experience

Explore opportunities to gain experience in other countries and/or with other cultures to better prepare yourself to professionally practice in an increasingly global society.

Student interested in gaining experiences abroad should review the menu below as well as the PreMed and PreHealth Advising Program’s Global Experiences Handout.¬†

Health graduate programs commonly require or prefer that all prerequisite course credits are earned in the US/Canada system.

Coursework taken abroad at foreign institutions abroad may not be evaluated by a program and therefore not contribute to an applicant’s satisfaction of course requirements.

American Colleges Overseas, such as the American College of Thessaloniki, are US-accredited institutions and do not pose any issue with credits taken abroad. For a more comprehensive list of these institutions, please check listings from AACOMAS (Osteopathic Medicine application) and AMCAS (Allopathic Medicine application, page 17).

If a student does take prerequisite coursework at a foreign institution, the most common remedy is to complete additional credits in that subject area during their undergraduate career (i.e. taking general chemistry abroad, then taking an additional upper-level chemistry course at NU). Students should ideally create a preliminary list of schools to understand exactly what credits would be necessary to satisfy outstanding prerequisites absent foreign credits.

While uncommon, some programs may wish to review foreign transcripts. If needed, applicants are encouraged to use a recommended foreign evaluation vendor like World Education Services (WES) to facilitate this process.

Academic Programs Abroad

NUin: In recent years, roughly 14% of applicants to medical and dental schools had participated in NUin, and saw a consistent level of success with the overall applicant group.

NU Bound: Students participating in NU Bound should be aware that New College of the Humanities London is a foreign institution and prerequisite courses taken there would fall into the foreign coursework category. As this would be a two-semester program, taking a traditional PreHealth course path could ultimately mean a greater number of additional US credits would be needed to compensate for graduate health program prerequisites. Students can freely take prerequisite courses if attending Mills College.

Global Quest: Similarly, students participating in Global Quest should feel free to take prerequisite coursework if studying in Greece, but should be cognizant of prerequisite courses taken at NCH London.

Dialogues of Civilization: Not only are DOC’s wonderful global experiences for PreHealth students, but the courses are fully NU credits as well! Many students have participated in service or clinical observation while on a dialogue.

Semester Abroad: Students opting to travel abroad during any given academic semester of their undergraduate career should be aware of the information above when selecting a destination, and that by not taking prerequisite courses for a semester, they may extend their timeline or necessitate summer credits to stay on track with their original plan. Students should meet with their PreHealth Advisor to discuss their academic plan and application timeline prior to a semester abroad to ensure an understanding of requirements.

Participating in experiential learning abroad is a unique way to explore personal interests, develop cultural competency, enhance your professional skillset, and demonstrate service orientation.

Clinical Experiences Abroad: Experiences within the field of healthcare are an important way to demonstrate ongoing interest in the profession and gain exposure to a diverse array of specialties. Experiences should include direct interaction with practitioner sand patients, but need not be at an advanced level. Examples may include shadowing or clinical co-op positions. While clinical exposure abroad provides a valuable perspective to a PreHealth student’s portfolio, ethical standards must remain consistent with those in the US. Students may refer to guidelines published the Association of American Medical Colleges prior to engaging in clinical experience abroad. Additionally, clinical experience abroad should be supplemented with experience in the US to ensure that health graduate programs are confident in an applicant’s familiarity with the system. Students are also encouraged to attend the Global Ambassadors for Patient Safety¬†free online workshop before participating in a health related experience abroad.

Research Abroad: PreHealth students may wish to participate in a research-focused opportunity abroad through co-op. Research can be done globally without fear of complication on a future application. PreVeterinary students have participated in the ThreeSeas program, while PreMed students have worked with well-known companies and organizations around the world on a variety of projects.

Service Abroad: Many PreHealth students develop an interest in global health, joining organizations like Global Medical Brigades, Global Dental Brigades, GlobeMed, or Alternative Spring Break to travel abroad and assist in providing care to a population in need. As these activities are university-sponsored and under the supervision of US practitioners/organizations, these activities are safe to participate in.

Entrance exams vary by pathway and require 2-6 months of preparation. Applicants should be aware of the following options. Testing should be completed prior to applying to your health professional program.

Testing Abroad/Remotely:

MCAT (Physician, Podiatrist)

GRE (Veterinarian, PA)


Testing in US/Canada Only:

DAT (Dentist)

OAT (Optometrist)

Most health graduate program application timelines span a full calendar year or more and consist of several phases where being present in the country is beneficial or necessary.

Professional Path x
Application Phase
Submission (year
prior to matriculation)
Applicants require consistent Internet access prior to/during submission
While interviews were virtual during COVID-19, it is expected that in-person
interviews will return as the default option. Applicants should be prepared to travel during this period
Program Start Dates
Applicants should ensure that any commitments they have will end by orientation dates
Medical/DentalJune (Primary), July-
August (Secondary)
August-Late Spring of following yearJuly/August of following year
Physician AssistantApril/MayMid-summer-Spring of following yearMay-August of following year
VeterinaryJune-SeptemberFall-Early Spring of following yearAugust of following year
OptometryJuly-SeptemberLate Fall-Late Spring of following yearJuly/August of following year