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What is an IEEE?

Study Tours are short term, international experiences for students.  These one to three week excursions are generally associated with a particular course.  The course material leads up to the tour itself, with the tour emphasizing various aspects of the course.  Occasionally, a student agricultural organization/club plans a study tour independent of a course but with a clear set of objectives.

Examples of study tours:

Students who completed FD SC/STS 197H, Bread, took a 15 day study tour to Germany, France and Italy.   They visited old fashioned, family run bakeries, a baking factory, a bread museum (8000 years of bread history), an ag museum, took in historical sites and visited the Institut Superieur Agricole de Beauvais.

Students in Soils 497:  Soils and Civilizations, study the interconnections between soils, civilizations and societies with a focus on ancient and modern agrarian societies in a course meeting twice weekly.   For three weeks in May, students travel to Jordan to explore problems related to soil use in differing landscapes, culture and ecological domains and while there also trace ag development and management from its earliest roots to modern times.

Students in INTAG 496: Comparing US/French Agricultural Systems meet for two hours once a week during the spring semester to investigate how the U.S. agricultural policies and systems work.   For two weeks in May, they travel to France to compare how the French system works via lectures and on-site visits covering GMO’s, Import/Export agreements, Organic and Sustainable Policies, Ag Education systems, etc.

Why do a Study Tour?

A well planned study tour enables students to do a variety of things:

  • See what they have studied in action
  • Observe how another culture applies what the student learned during the course
  • Enables students to actually practice what they have studied (ie. INTAG 481: Problem Solving in Tropical Ag)
  • Experience another culture(s)

Why do we encourage Study Tours?

The College of Agricultural Sciences is committed to preparing students who are globally aware.  Not all students are able to work a semester abroad into their programs.  Thus this provides a greater number of students the opportunity to study abroad. Other students are hesitant to study abroad, but after having a short term experience are ready for an entire semester.

Who does the planning for the Study Tour?

The faculty member is, of course, responsible for the course/academic content and setting the objectives of the study tour.  Often faculty have international contacts that are invaluable in making arrangements.  In the Bread Tour mentioned above, students actually made the arrangements as part of the course.  However, the staff of the International Programs office can help you with many of the logistics (promotion, passports, visas, transportation, setting up a budget, risk management paperwork and student orientation prior to the trip).

A Study Tour interests you, now what?

Look over the list of questions on the next page – these are the things that will need to be addressed to make the study tour a reality. Make an appointment with Ketja Lingenfelter, Study Abroad Coordinator for the College of Ag Sciences, to discuss your Study Tour ideas and resources: ketja@psu.edu.