• <div style="background-image:url(/live/image/gid/60/width/1600/height/300/crop/1/29122_10401981_1004028349629458_8008107117841765376_n.rev.1446045049.jpg)"/>
  • <div style="background-image:url(/live/image/gid/60/width/1600/height/300/crop/1/29997_13537953983_5cff365fc4_o.rev.1450805192.jpg)"/>
  • <div style="background-image:url(/live/image/gid/60/width/1600/height/300/crop/1/29999_6856950268_ed6442d1ca_o.rev.1450805264.jpg)"/>
  • <div style="background-image:url(/live/image/gid/60/width/1600/height/300/crop/1/29998_8071086937_683d5a422f_o.rev.1450805230.jpg)"/>

Off-Campus Study

ISEP at Universität Zürich - Regular University Courses in English

Wilkommen and Bonjour in Switzerland!

Snow-covered Alpine peaks, geopolitical neutrality, high-tech watches, gourmet chocolate, yodeling mountaineers, and sophisticated banking are the Switzerland you know. However, ISEP’s Swiss institutions offer exciting academic and extracurricular opportunities to immerse yourself in the dynamic, youthful, and high-tech Switzerland that you have yet to discover. 

Zurich is the largest city in Switzerland, sitting directly on Lake Zurich, and with busy and efficient public transportation systems to get you wherever you need to go. Along with Bern, Zurich is a leading global city and among the worlds largest financial centers, with a very high quality of life. Stroll down the famous Bahnhofstrasse, visit the Zurich Museum of Art, the Chinese Garden, or any number of Zurichs festivals and parades year-round. Study in one of the worlds most prestigious institutions in fields such as economics, humanities, law and the sciences. Picture yourself in Zurich!

This program is best for a student that is independent.  A student must be comfortable with advocating for themselves on campus and comfortable with the local language to thrive in this location. Please be aware that there may not be the same access to internet or amenities to which you may be accustomed.  Student services and especially class registration may not be at all similar to what is done at the College and may be difficult for some students to adjust.

Learn more about the Universität Zurich here! Read the ISEP Country Handbook to learn more about visa requirements, educational system, and culture.

Program Type

Exchange

Locations

Zurich, Switzerland

Languages of Instruction

English

Program Dates

Fall 2018: mid-September to End of December 

Spring 2019:  mid-February to End of May

All dates are tentative and may change.  ISEP will alert all accepted students of final dates.

 

Early departure for fall term may be possible. Please contact the ISEP coordinator of the host country for more information.

Eligibility

To be eligible to participate in this program, students must meet the following requirements:

  • Good academic and judicial standing during time of application AND time of participation in program
  • Undergraduates must have completed at least two semesters of study at Lake Forest College AND have junior status or higher before participation. 
  • At least 18 years of age by the program’s departure date. 
  • Be able to stay at the host program for the duration of the semester, including through the exam and travel periods
  • Minimum GPA of 3.0 
  • Students must submit ISEP language proficiency report in application, even if native speaker

 

Students applying to ISEP must apply for an Exchange option (in any country) as a first choice but may apply to a Direct option as a back-up.  Direct options may have an additional cost.


ISEP Exchange chance of placement for US students is generally Limited.

Location

The city of Zurich lies in the German speaking part of Switzerland. With its almost 367,000 inhabitants Zurich combines the advantage of a comfortably sized town with the diversity of a cosmopolitan city. Thanks to its attractive location on the banks of the Lake of Zurich and the Limmat River and its proximity to recreation areas like the Uetliberg and the Swiss Alps, Zurich offers a very high quality of life. Zurich is not only the economic but also cultural center of Switzerland. The diversity of the city comes from the tolerant, cosmopolitan, and multicultural population and from its renowned cultural facilities and various alternative and smaller-scale cultural events. Zurich also stands out with its excellent public transportation system both locally and within the national system, and it is easily reached internationally by train or plane.

Academics

The University of Zurich was founded in 1833, though its origins stretch back as far as 1525 and the days of Protestant reformer Ulrich Zwingli. Today the University of Zurich is the largest university in Switzerland and plays a leading role in Swiss higher education. To its 25,000 students, it offers a great diversity of studies, with more than 100 different degree programs and over 3,000 combinations of disciplines in seven faculties. Two thousand lecturers in 140 institutes provide the broadest range of subjects and courses available at any Swiss institution of higher education.

Nine museums and collections, covering subjects from anthropology to zoology, constitute yet another valuable academic resource.

Undergraduate students may take bachelor courses. Advanced undergraduate students (juniors +) enrolled at the following fields may take up to two master courses: Law, Business Administration and all the fields offered by the Faculty of Science.

Program Website

Course Description

Researching courses in English on a Swiss university homepage can sometimes be difficult and confusing. You can use the ISEP Guide to Course Selection to find information about navigating a university website, finding courses in both English and German and some translations of common words and major fields of study. 

Fields of study which can be pursued without or with little knowledge of German include law, political science, English language and literature, business administration, economics, banking and finance, biology, biochemistry, chemistry, earth sciences, geography, mathematics, and physics. 

Website for Course Availability

 

ACADEMICS

NOTE: Undergrad students have taken courses at the grade level in English. Typically, if the courses are requested, the department will review the application/transcript and make sure the level isn’t too beyond the ability of the student.

About two-thirds of courses and ECTS credits must be taken in the faculty where the ISEP participant would like to be enrolled. Programs in human medicine and veterinary medicine are closed to ISEP participants.

 

Undergraduate/Graduate Fields of Study

  • Biology
  • Business
  • Communication
  • Computer and Information Sciences
  • English Language and Literature
  • International/Global Studies
  • Law/Criminal Justice
  • Liberal Arts and Sciences
  • Mathematics
  • Psychology (Undergraduate)

 

Studying at a Swiss University

Significant differences exist between European universities and their U.S. counterparts; In European universities, the structures of programs and majors vary considerably. Foreign students are placed differently than natives; thus, although ISEP students are able to take courses with regular Swiss students, their programs of study may be slightly different than those of their Swiss friends.

To complement lectures, professors sometimes prepare a bibliography of suggested readings on the lecture topics; it is a good idea to talk with the professors early to find out whether they might have these reading lists. Specific assigned readings or homework, as U.S. students know them, are uncommon; keeping up with general reading is your responsibility. It is advisable to tell your professors that you are a U.S. ISEP student and are not totally familiar with the Swiss educational system; most professors will be willing to advise and guide you in the first few weeks of adjustment.

 

Academic Environment and Teaching Style

Please understand that the academic system is quite different. Classes are usually lecture-based, instead of discussion or group work. Classes are often much larger than those found at Lake Forest College. Grades are based heavily, at times almost entirely, on one end-of-term exam, though some courses will also offer a midterm.  Professors are often more formal than those in the United States.

All courses/modules may have prerequisites.  Some departments may have limitations on numbers of courses that can be taken within or outside it.  Be aware of these limitations.

Can review the country handbooks for ISEP here as well:

http://www.isep.org/students/Placed/country_handbooks.asp

 

ISEP Placement info: http://www.isep.org/Coordinators/us_placement_notes_english.asp

 

Please review country handbook for more information on the education system, grades, class hours, and classroom etiquette.

 

Courses

Transfer of Credit

Students will be able to earn ECTS credits for courses. ECTS credits ensure that the program will be reasonable in terms of workload during the period of study abroad.  Students must earn 30 ECTS credits to earn 4 Lake Forest credits.

Credits will only be given for a course if the student has passed the evaluation. A written or oral exam will usually be administered at the end of the semester.

 

Course Approvals

Check to see if your department has pre-approved courses here. If not, don’t worry. You can work with your advisor.

 

Student Life

The University of Zurich was founded in 1833, though its origins stretch back as far as 1525 and the days of Protestant reformer Ulrich Zwingli. Today the University of Zurich is the largest university in Switzerland and plays a leading role in Swiss higher education. To its 25,000 students, it offers a great diversity of studies, with more than 100 different degree programs and over 3,000 combinations of disciplines in seven faculties. Two thousand lecturers in 140 institutes provide the broadest range of subjects and courses available at any Swiss institution of higher education.

Nine museums and collections, covering subjects from anthropology to zoology, constitute yet another valuable academic resource.

 

ORIENTATION

Students are advised to arrive in Zurich during regular business hours on September 1st or February 1st respectively. 

Orientation is held shortly before the lecture period begins.

STUDENT ACTIVITIES

The Academic Athletics Association of Zurich (ASVZ) offers classes in over 70 different types of sports, recreation, and wellness, as well as various drop-in facilities such as solariums, saunas, and weight rooms. Most of the offers are included in ISEP benefits.
The Erasmus Student Network ESN organizes various excursions (for example city tours within Switzerland, ski and trekking weekends, etc.) and runs a buddy system.
For a complete list of student organizations, see: www.uzh.ch/studies/studentlife/organizations/various_en.html

Housing and Meals

Students are housed in student hostels and receive a stipend to cover room and board. In case students wish to search for their accommodation on their own they find useful information on www.uzh.ch/studies/studentlife/accomodation_en.html. Students should note that finding housing near the university in Zurich can be quite limited and expensive, so it is recommended by ISEP to opt for arranged housing by the university; in this case, students would still receive a stipend to pay for their room and board expenses.

Financial Information

For all approved programs for guaranteed financial aid transferability, students pay their Lake Forest College tuition plus a program fee. The program fee for a semester with the ISEP Exchange program includes orientation, on-site director, college fees, housing and a stipend to cover the equivalent of 19/meals per week.

Here is an estimated budget for the Fall 2018/Spring 2019 semester:

Budget Item

Amount

Lake Forest College Tuition

$22,412

Program fee (estimated)

Note: Spring may have added cost

$5,100

College Deposit (credit)

($250)

Total Expected Billed by Lake Forest College

$27,512

ISEP Fee due on Stage 2 Application

 $325

College Deposit due on Acceptance (non-refundable, but shows as credit on bill for off-campus term)

 $250

ISEP-required health and repatriation insurance ($90/mo estimated)

Note: Some countries require national insurance. Check ISEP

 $360

Additional Meals

 $600

Estimated Airfare

 $1,200

Estimated Personal Expenses (passport, visas, immunizations, textbooks, supplies, personal expenses, additional national insurance, if required, travel insurance, additional travel etc.)

 $2,600

Total Out-of-Pocket Expenses

 $5,335

Total

$32,847 

Tuition rates and program fees are subject to change each year, but this information was up-to-date as of February 2017.  We will notify applicants, and update this page if the program fee or other estimates change.

Keep in mind that you may spend more or less in certain areas like personal expenses, travel, meals, or airfare, depending on exchange rates and your own spending habits. Classroom or lab fees are not included in this estimate and will depend on your course registration choices.  

Don’t forget to apply for scholarships! A great listing can be found here.  

Do check your student account on My.Lakeforest for your aid awards, as much of this will go with you. If you want to compare your program to the cost of being on campus, those numbers can be found here: https://www.lakeforest.edu/admissions/tuition/fees.php

You can discuss with Financial Aid your specific aid package and your expected family contribution.

Experiences of Former Students

WHAT PAST STUDENTS HAVE TO SAY

“I love Zurich, because it is a small city with all the amenities of a big city, totally cosmopolitan. You can hear any language of the world in the street and on the trains and trams. The quality of life that you can breathe is one of the best in the world, the transport system is first rate, efficient, punctual and clean, and you can travel easily to any point. I just want to say, I love Switzerland!” -Francesco Garcia, ISEP Exchange student to Zurich