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Program Description:


Study in Vienna

Austria-Illinois Exchange Program

Vienna is the historic capital of the multinational Habsburg Empire, a melting pot of language and cultures and the crossroads between East and West. Salzburg, Prague, Budapest, and Munich are only a few hours away; Venice and Paris are within a day's train ride -- via the Orient Express.

The Department of Germanic Languages and Literatures at the University of Illinois invites students to spend a semester or year in this exciting city as part of the Austria-Illinois Exchange program. Founded in 1971, this program immerses students in German language and Austrian culture so that they may explore international business, science, politics, and the arts.

The program is open to all students in all majors and from other universities/colleges. For University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign students in the College of Business and College of Agricultural, Consumer, and Environmental Sciences, there is an option with no language requirement.  For Political Science students in LAS, there is a program option entitled Vienna Diplomatic Program.

German Language Program

What You Will Study
The Austria-Illinois Exchange Program (AIEP) offers a unique combination of core courses and electives so that students will continue to make progress toward graduation while taking advantage of academic opportunities available only in Vienna. The core courses taught by the program's staff focus on modern Austrian/German literature, Austrian/German history and culture, and select topics in Austrian/German studies, such as German unification and the role of the German-speaking world in the European Union. The staff also teaches courses in Intermediate German and Advanced Composition and Conversation. Additional German language courses are available at the University of Vienna (UW). Business German is offered at the Vienna University of Economics and Business (WU).

Elective courses are offered at several affiliated Austrian universities and cover fields ranging from accounting to zoology. For academic advising related to course work in Vienna, please see Director of Undergraduate Studies, Robert Jenkins, in the Department of Germanic Languages and Literatures.

The Austria-Illinois Exchange Program permits a course load of 34 credit hours per year (up to 17 per semester). Students must register for a minimum of 12 hours per semester (15 hours if you are receiving financial aid from UIUC). All core courses are taught in German, and the program strives for immersion in the German language and culture of Austria.

German credit completed through AIEP may count as resident departmental advanced hours if evaluated as upper division course work. Such credit may be applied toward a minor, major, or double major in German or may count as supporting coursework in other disciplines. Courses taken in this program are considered academic resident courses; however, students must still fulfill residency requirements on the Illinois campus to obtain a University of Illinois degree. Those students who may have transferred to Illinois in their junior year to complete their undergraduate degree, should check with their student advising office for the residency policies that apply to them.

Affiliated Institutions
Participating universities are the University of Vienna (UW), the Vienna University of Economics and Business (WU), the Vienna University of Technology (TU), and the University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences Vienna (BOKU). Students may also enroll in classes at the University of Music and Performing Arts Vienna and University of Applied Arts Vienna.

On-Site Assistance
The Austria-Illinois Exchange Program (AIEP) is suspervised on-site by a University of Illinois Resident Director and a graduate administrative assistant. In addition to teaching the program's core courses the Resident Director and assistant organize activities, provide liaison to Austrian institutions, and generally assist students during their time abroad.

Applicants must be in good health and have the kind of flexibility and sensitivity to others that will allow for successful adjustment to an unfamiliar cultural setting. An essay and two letters of recommendation are required. At leaset one of the two recommendations must speak to the applicant's language skills in German.

The Program is designed for students of sophomore and junior standing. Other qualified students are welcome, but they must have completed two semesters on campus before studying abroad.  Applicants should have an overall grade point average of 2.75 and 3.0 in German (A=4).

Students, who participate for the fall term only, may arrange to take their exams early and be back on their home campus to start the spring semester. The date shown for the fall term ending is the date for U of I students.

All German language program students can be housed with Austrians in dormitories or apartments that are secured with the help of the Resident Director. Rooms are double or single.

Health Insurance
Participants in the program receive the same excellent health benefits available to Austrian students; i.e., medical, optical, dental, and prescription drug expenses. Medical care is readily available. Insurance covers both on- and off-campus activities. Program fees include this mandatory insurance which begins with the start of classes in October and March. Students are also automatically enrolled in the University's international insurance.

Each year several participants obtain internships in Austria during the year or in the summer following the program. Among the more than 21 organizations that have hosted interns are such diverse institutions as the Deutsche Bank, BMW, UNO City (United Nations headquarters), U.S. Embassy, GlaxoSmithKline, Austrian Broadcasting, and Greenpeace.

Field Trips
At regular intervals, the program arranges excursions to Austria's historic and scenic sites, such as museums, exhibitions, archaeological excavations, monasteries, castles, and vineyards.

Theater and Music
Vienna is justly famous for its Opera, the Spanish Riding School, and the Boys Choir. But Vienna also offers avant-garde theater and jazz. Students attend plays at the famous Burgtheater and the Volkstheater, as well as concerts at the Musikverein and Konzerthaus.

Located at the edge of the Vienna Woods in the eastern foothills of the Alps and the Danube river, Vienna offers excellent opportunities to hike and bike in beautiful landscapes. Students may also register for sports courses or other activities at the University of Vienna or join one of the local sports clubs offering a variety of organized athletic activities. Students have participated in 10-K runs and have played on volleyball and soccer teams, etc. while abroad.

Financial Aid : Students may apply for financial aid through the Office of Financial Aid. Non-Illinois students should check with their individual financial aid offices. 

Costs:  See Budgets Sheets on Tab above.

Application: The application includes an official transcript, two letters of recommendation (online recommended), an essay, two passport style pictures and some on-line questionnaires.

Application Information

All materials must be submitted to the Study Abroad Office.
Application Process


Apply online


 Please click “Apply now” above to apply.

  • All applications include, at the minimum:
  • Official transcript (for Illinois students, unofficial transcript accepted)
  • 2 letters of recommendation (at least one of which comes from GLL) 
  • Personal essay
  • On-line questionnaires
  • Some programs will require more materials.

For program logistics, contact:
Nicole Lamers, LAS International Programs, 
University of Illinois

Elizabeth Hanauer, LAS International Programs, University of Illinois

For academic information see and/or contact:
Professor Robert Jenkins, Director of Undergraduate Studies
University of Illinois
Department of Germanic Languages & Literatures MC 178
3127 Foreign Language Building
707 South Mathews
Urbana, IL 61801
(217) 244-0605

You must have a valid passport to participate on this program. If you do not already have a passport, or if it needs to be renewed, you must begin that process now, even before program acceptance. You may also be required to get a visa for your program. More information will be provided upon acceptance to the program.

Dates / Deadlines:
Dates / Deadlines:
Term Year App Deadline Decision Date Start Date End Date
Academic Year 2018-2019 02/15/2018
02/15/2018 09/01/2018 06/30/2019
Fall Semester 2018 02/15/2018
02/15/2018 09/01/2018 01/18/2019
Calendar Year(SP/FA) 2019 09/15/2018
09/16/2018 TBA TBA
Academic Year 2019-2020 02/15/2019 02/16/2019 TBA TBA
Fall Semester 2019 02/15/2019 02/16/2019 TBA TBA

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