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  • Locations: Freiburg, Germany; Melsungen, Germany; Munich, Germany; Rothenburg ob der Taube, Germany; Wurzburg, Germany
  • Program Terms: Summer-Embedded
  • Host Program Website: Visit host website for more information
  • Restrictions: PSU applicants only
Program Description:

Program Overview     

The International Field Experience course will encourage students primarily in the Education program to consider the purpose and foundations of education in the U.S. and their role as global citizens in the profession of education. This is accomplished through guiding questions, journaling, daily debriefing meetings, and written reflections (please see syllabus). Students will compare the U.S. education system with the German education system through guiding questions that invite students to reflect on education, culture, and instruction. Special attention is given to diversity in education given that undergraduate education students at Penn State are required to gain an understanding of special education and instructional modifications for special needs students (e.g., students with disabilities and also students from culturally diverse backgrounds) before being certified to teach. This experience offers an opportunity for students to explore their own beliefs regarding inclusion and diversity in the context of an international classroom as they engage in discussions with their international peers, and German children, educators, and administrators. Given that Germany has only recently been mandated to practice inclusion, methods of inclusion and the reasoning behind it will be called into question through discussions with peers at the Freiburg University of Education. Students will explore cultural beliefs regarding education as they vary between the two countries and gain a deeper understanding of the historical nature of inclusion. They will be asked to relate the importance of the Civil rights movement in the U.S. when comparing Germany's cultural perspectives on education. Students have an opportunity to develop a deeper perspective of their role as global citizens in the profession of education.
Students will visit Kindergarten and elementary classrooms, participate in all classroom activities, evaluate instructional methods, and build a deeper understanding of how education in the United States differs from (and is similar to) that of Germany. The itinerary for the course will include visits to two schools in two different cities in the country.

Program Quicklinks     

Housing and Meals
Program Costs
Financial Aid & Scholarships
More Information
How to Apply
Other Useful Links



Any pre-requisite courses are established by the faculty leader or department hosting the course.  The following have been listed as pre-requisites for consideration to enroll in this course and travel on the embedded education abroad program:
  • Pre-requisite: Successful completion of the spring course is mandated before travel (EDUC 497), EdPsy 014, and EdThP 115.
  • This course is open to students of all majors and/or all colleges.
  • Admission in the course and permission to travel with the group are at the discretion of the faculty leader and/or academic department hosting the course.  Academic standing and disciplinary or conduct issues may impact eligibility.

Housing and Meals

During the embedded travel component, housing will consist of hotel stays.

Program Costs

Students pay regular Penn State tuition (either in-state or out-of-state) for the credits associated with the embedded course.  Travel costs, lodging, meals, excursions, and other fees are determined by the program budget which is set by the program leader.  Please consult the program leader for additional information.

Financial Aid & Scholarships

Global Programs administers a scholarship that is specifically designated to support students studying abroad on embedded courses.  The scholarship is competitive, and the deadlines to apply are strictly enforced.  Please review the Embedded Programs Scholarship eligibility, deadlines, and application process.

For More Information

For more information about this course, please contact the program leader: Jayne Leh by emailing

How to Apply

 The process for enrolling in an embedded course varies according to the instructor and/or department.  The program leader has indicated that in order to enroll in the course and travel component, students must be aware that this process occurs at the close of the fall semester preceding the summer trip (e.g., Dec 2017 for the May 2018 course). Students must submit an application (found on line on the site indicated above), one letter of recommendation, 2 references, an essay describing their desire to travel, and a 3.0 GPA, or permission of instructor. 

Studying Abroad with a Disability

Many students with disabilities successfully study abroad each year. Please note that other cultures may have different attitudes and available accommodations regarding disabilities. While we cannot guarantee the accessibility of all program sites and locations, specific accommodations may be arranged in consultation with our office, the Student Disability Resources office, and our partners abroad. To prepare for success, students are strongly encouraged to research the country and program location to consider if and how they will manage their disabilities abroad in advance of selecting a program. Students with disabilities and other diverse backgrounds can begin their research on our Diversity Awareness Abroad page.




Dates / Deadlines:
Term Year App Deadline Decision Date Start Date End Date
Summer-Embedded 2019 08/21/2018
Rolling Admission TBA TBA

** Indicates rolling admission application process. Students will be immediately notified of acceptance into this program and be able to complete post-decision materials prior to the term's application deadline.

Indicates that deadline has passed