Study Abroad for Economics Majors

The Department of Economics strongly encourages students to complete some portion of their undergraduate study through the Education Abroad Program. The program allows students to enhance their knowledge of economics while experiencing another culture and way of life. With careful planning, students may spend up to one year abroad without any loss of progress towards graduation. Students gain valuable international experience that will benefit future career goals and/or graduate school opportunities. Economics majors who are fluent in another language will have special advantages in the business world!

What classes should I take?

All EAP students automatically earn UC credit. Some Economics students choose to fulfill their GE requirements abroad while others take classes in the major. Please note that while business, management, and marketing courses taken on EAP transfer to UCSB, they cannot be applied towards any of the majors in the Economics Department. Students interested in these fields should still consider taking them abroad for overall units since they complement the economics background and similar fields are not offered at UCSB. ECON 10a and PSTAT 109 must be taken at UCSB.

Students who are interested in sitting for the CPA exam should avoid taking accounting courses abroad as the rules and regulations differ among countries. Therefore, economics and accounting students wishing to take economics courses through EAP, should take courses in Areas A- E but take the accounting courses (Areas F-I) at UCSB.

Hundreds of previously-approved Econ courses at many popular EAP programs may be found on the links below. Four new programs just added. All updated January 2017!

You are not limited to these previously-approved programs or courses. If available, you may take any appropriate Economics course on any EAP program and seek to get it pre-approved. See Next Steps below.

Remember: You still must petition the Econ department for course approval when you return!

Keep in mind that at least 20 units of upper-division major coursework must be completed in residence at UCSB along with other residence requirements. Consult an advisor in the College of Letters & Science for more information.

All EAP students automatically earn UC credit for the work they complete abroad. However, the application of credit to major requirements is subject to the discretion of the Economics Department and approval of the college.

Why study abroad?

EAP provides unparalleled opportunities to obtain the broader perspectives, knowledge, and skills necessary to be effective professionally in a rapidly changing global economy. From the challenges facing the European Union, to the balancing of economic growth and reducing corruption in Asia, to the quickening economic pulse coursing through Africa, students can experience first-hand realities and responses to an increasingly complex and interrelated economic world.

EAP offers a variety of short-term and year-long programs taught in English or in a foreign language that complement and enrich economics degrees. Students can fulfill major and GE requirements, get a comparative perspective on their field of study, and grow personally and intellectually through study abroad. Participating in EAP provides further advantages when it comes to the challenges of graduate and professional study. Students who study abroad have a competitive edge in the job market and are well prepared for careers in the international global economy. Furthermore, some EAP programs offer internship and research opportunities.

Economics majors find that a term, or better yet, a year in a foreign university, not only enhances their critical and quantitative skills, but that the experience of adapting to another academic and cultural world expands their self-understanding and gives them a keen sense of the political, social, and economic differences in today’s world. Also, students who go abroad have the opportunity to take courses that are not offered at UCSB.

Where should I study abroad?

Students can participate in full-year, semester, and summer programs in over 30 different countries. Students have the option of studying in English or in a foreign language. 

While courses in business and economics are available at most EAP host universities, particularly strong English language programs can be found at Warwick University in England and the University of Glasgow, and the University of St. Andrews in Scotland. Check out the summer programs at the London School of Economics, England and the Global Business in Asia program in Hong Kong and Shanghai.

Economics students should also consider programs such as Fudan University, China. The courses are taught in English with a focus on Chinese economic development and business. Students with a year of Japanese language can enroll at the renowned Keio University in Japan. And Spanish speakers should consider studying at one of our partners in Chile.

There are three specialized business and economics programs in Europe, all with coursework in English: Pompeu Fabra University in Barcelona, Spain  the University of Commerce Luigi Bocconi in Milan, Italy, and Maastricht University in the Netherlands.

For more opportunities in economics, go to the Program Search page on the EAP web site and insert "economics" and “business administration” into the subject area.

When should I study abroad?

A summer abroad is possible as early as after your freshman year. Students wishing to go abroad during the regular academic year should successfully complete the pre-major courses and petition for admission to the full major before leaving for EAP. Completion of the core intermediate economics courses is also highly recommended as some courses abroad require these as foundation.


You may be interested in building your resume or gaining work experience through an internship. Many EAP programs incorporate internships into the academic program or operate in locations where exciting volunteer internship opportunities exist. See the EAP web site for further information.

Next Steps

  • Identify your goals for study abroad and then consult the EAP web pages ( to identify appropriate EAP programs. For programs offering economics, go to the Program Search page on the EAP web site and insert "economics" and “business administration” into the subject area. Navigate to host universities’ web sites on the available links to learn more about the schools and their departments. 
  • When applying to your EAP program you will need to fill out the Academic Planning Form as part of your application. For department advice on this planning form, go to After you have been accepted to your program, the Economics department highly recommends that you seek pre-approval for any courses you wish to apply to your major by following the procedures explained here

Come by the EAP office at 2431 South Hall. Peer advisors who have recently returned from studying abroad as well as staff advisors are eager to answer your questions. Meet with your department advisors.

Department of Economics - Undergraduate Office
2121 North Hall
University of California, Santa Barbara
Santa Barbara, CA 93106-9210
Phone: (805) 893-2981

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