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Off-Campus Study

ISEP at Universidad del Salvador

Located in downtown Buenos Aires, the Universidad del Salvador is a private institution of Jesuit heritage. It was the first university in Argentina to engage in international student mobility. Today, USAL has over 200 cooperation and exchange agreements worldwide and receives about 500 international exchange students per year. More than 30,000 study at USAL, in undergraduate and graduate degree programs.


USAL offers strong programs in Medicine and Health-related disciplines, Law, Social Communication, International Relations and Political Science, Literature, History, and Business.

This program would be suitable for students that are ready to be abroad, but would still like some of the academic services that a U.S. college provides.  It is a good choice for someone that is a world traveler OR has never left their hometown.

Learn More about Universidad del Salvador, click here! Read the ISEP Country Handbook to learn more about visa requirements, educational system, and culture.

Program Type

Exchange or Direct-Enroll

Locations

Buenos Aires, Argentina

Languages of Instruction

Spanish - minimum of 5 semesters of university-level Spanish

Program Dates

Semester 2 (Fall 2018): Early September to late December

Semester 1 (Spring 2019): Early January to Early May

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

Please note that this site observes the Southern Hemisphere academic calendar. Lake Forest Spring Semester is referred to as Semester 1. Lake Forest Fall Semester is referred to as Semester 2.

 

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 2.75.  
  • Language Requirement: A High Intermediate level of Spanish (B2) equivalent to a minimum of 5 semesters of university-level Spanish, preferably including a Literature class.
  • The student must submit ISEP language proficiency report in the application, even if native speaker.

Pre-session: A 4-week pre-session, intensive Spanish language course is offered before both semesters for an additional fee for Intermediate and High Intermediate level students, to help them prepare for the semester work.

 

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 (see a financial section for more information).

 

ISEP Exchange chance of placement for US students is generally Good. ISEP Direct chance of placement is Excellent.

Location

Buenos Aires, the capital of Argentina, is a sophisticated metropolis, with one of the largest concentrations of Spanish-speaking people in the world. Situated on the Rio de la Plata, 100 miles from the Atlantic Ocean, it is a major port and the center of all activity in Argentina.

Academics

Located in downtown Buenos Aires, the Universidad del Salvador is a private institution of Jesuit heritage. It was the first university in Argentina to engage in international student mobility. Today, USAL has over 200 cooperation and exchange agreements worldwide and receives about 500 international exchange students per year. More than 30,000 study at USAL, in undergraduate and graduate degree programs.

Lecturing is the principal method of instruction in Latin American Universities, with one final exam or paper counting as the only grade in the class. Still, some professors will also give midterm exams or papers.  Professors tend to be more formal than in the United States, and class sizes are often larger.

Please review the country’s handbook for more information on the education system.

In most Latin American countries, the grading philosophy is that the student starts at 0 (has no knowledge of the subject) and needs to work hard to obtain a good grade. The student’s grade rises as he proves his gain of knowledge throughout the semester. As such, Latin American universities tend to be severe in their grading and a grade of sobresaliente (10 - the highest grade possible in Argentina) is rarely awarded. In most classes, the majority of students will receive either aprobadoor muy bueno (from 4 to 6)

The university features excellent offers a wide variety of programs. Strong fields include Medicine and Health-related disciplines, Law, Social Communication, International Relations and Political Science, Literature, History, and Business. Research opportunities are available in Environmental Studies, Social Sciences, Psychology, and Sociology, among others. The university offers a wide variety of graduate programs; acceptance to these programs depends on each graduate department. Students should contact the ISEP Coordinator for more information. 

ISEP students must maintain full-time status, which is a minimum of five subjects per semester for visiting international students. This is approximately equivalent to 4 Lake Forest credits; students should check before registering.

Language Courses: Non-intensive Spanish language courses are offered in addition to regular classes during the academic year or semester for High Intermediate and Advanced levels. 

HINTS FOR RESEARCHING COURSES

1. Go to the Course Offering page for a list of the different types of courses students can enroll in and for useful information, such as a list of suggested courses.
2. For a list of the academic programs offered at USAL, click on Descripcion de cursos en USAL. Under each Facultad, click on the carreras (majors) to see its general description, syllabus, professors, courses, among other useful information.
3. On the next page, click on the “Plan de Estudios” tab to see courses offered. 
4. USAL also offers some courses for international students. Click on Cursos especiales para alumnos internacionales and Cursos de español durante el cuatrimestre page for more information.
5. If you are studying March-July, only the classes listed in the “Primer Cuatrimestre” will be available to you. If you are studying July-November, only the classes listed in the “Segundo Cuatrimestre” will be available to you. The annual courses are year-long courses instructed during the Southern Hemisphere academic full year (March – November)

Note: The courses may not be available each semester. Some courses are full-year only (March-November) and these are known as annual. The student will be asked to fill out a form with tentative courses prior to arrival. Official registration will be complete during the orientation period at USAL 

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

Experiential Opportunities

 

Student Life

Universidad del Salvador is one of Argentina’s most highly regarded institutions. Facilities include classroom and administration buildings, computer labs, bookstores and libraries. The university also has a campus at Pilar (40 km from central Buenos Aires) where students may take some classes and enjoy a suburban atmosphere. Total enrollment: 20,000 (including 500 exchange students per year).

ORIENTATION

Students receive a 1-2 day orientation course that covers academic advice, immigration requirements, housing, health, emergencies, safety and general information. Interviews with the academic advisor follow the orientation session.

ARRIVAL DETAILS 

Students arriving on the Official Arrival Date will be met at the Ezeiza Airport by USAL.

 

STUDENT ACTIVITIES

All international students have access to USAL’s facilities and activities. International students also benefit from specially designed activities such as walking tours and the host student program.

Housing and Meals

Students are housed in private student residences or in homestays. A stipend is provided for meals according to the accommodation assigned. The host family will provide breakfast and dinner every day and students will receive a monthly stipend to cover lunches. The private student residence will provide breakfast from Monday to Friday and students will receive a stipend for the rest of the meals. No married student housing is available. 

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 includes orientation, ISEP coordinator, college fees, housing, and the equivalent of 19/meals per week.  These meals include both those served by the host family as well as a stipend to purchase other food on your own.

ISEP costs for Exchange are usually the most cost-effective, as it is intended to promote mobility of students around the world.  Direct options are available for those students that prefer to attend a school with limited availability for Exchange, though costs may be different as they are set by the host school. For students that participate in ISEP Direct to Salvador, the program fee includes all of the above plus insurance.  However, the program fee may be different than that of Exchange.

Here is an estimated budget for the Fall 2017/Spring 2018 programs:

Budget Item

EXCHANGE

Amount

DIRECT

Amount

Lake Forest College Tuition

$22,412

$22,412

Program fee (estimated)

Note: Spring may have added cost

 $5,100

$5,540

College Deposit (credit)

($250)

($250)

Total Expected Billed by Lake Forest College

 $27,512

$27,952

ISEP Fee due on Stage 2 Application

 $325

$325

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

 $250

$250

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

Note: Some countries require national insurance. Check ISEP

 $360

(included)

Additional Meals

 $500

$500

Estimated Airfare

 $1,200

$1,200

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

 $5,600

$5,600

Total Out-of-Pocket Expenses

 $8,235

$7,875

Total

$35,747

$35,827

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.

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

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

Experiences of Former Students

WHAT PAST STUDENTS HAVE TO SAY

“I had very little understanding of Spanish and even less comfortable speaking it when I arrived in Buenos Aires, and the PIC program helped me a great deal on both counts. The grammar course does a great deal to speed the process of acquiring fluency…, especially when one considers how patient the professors are and how open to whatever questions the student may present as to deepen their understanding of the rich culture that surrounds him or her. The PIC program not only makes the process of learning the language progress more rapidly and smoothly, it makes the process more interesting and fulfilling.” - John Hathaway, University of Iowa, studied on the Programa de Inmersión Cultural (PIC) during February-July 2011 and is continued attending courses the following semester with local students and professors at USAL
Got questions? Contact an ISEP Student Ambassador who studied in this region.