Study Abroad

""UD Offices for Support

There are several UD offices with staff who can help you consider aspects of your identity and how these may be perceived and treated at your potential destinations.

""Identity Specific Information


Diversity Abroad

Commitment to Inclusive Study Abroad Programs


UD is committed to fostering  knowledge and awareness of the economic, environmental, political, cultural, and social issues that face the world—and the skills to address them. UD’s Study Abroad programs are open to all students from diverse backgrounds and it is the responsibility of every study abroad participant to foster a respectful and inclusive environment. Hear from UD students and faculty through the “Voices of Our Community” video series.


Civility & Respect

Civility is a simple idea that can make a big impact. Civility means consistently treating others with respect and valuing their ideas and contributions.


Civility and respect towards your colleagues is always important, but especially critical to promoting a positive study abroad experience for all participants. Studying abroad is different from studying on campus because you are in closer proximity to your fellow students. During many programs, students will be rooming together, eating together, and traveling together. It is also a time of heightened vulnerability and sometimes difficult adjustments. Treating everyone with respect and kindness helps your program run smoothly and will improve your study abroad experience.


Tips for Promoting Respect during Study Abroad

  • Express disagreement in a healthy, non-judgmental way and try to understand the perspective of others. If you are unable to resolve a conflict on your own, your faculty director or on-site local staff can serve as a mediator.
  • Be mindful of your level of participation during classroom discussions. Are you dominating the discussion so much that others are unable to speak? Avoid interrupting a speaker; allow them to finish their thought before responding.
  • Remember that your experiences are not universal. Understand that every student comes from a unique background that shapes their perspectives.
  • Be mindful of the privileges associated with your own background and how these may impact your interactions with other students and people from your host country.
  • Speak up and intervene when you witness others being disrespectful. If you are not comfortable intervening, report incidents to your faculty director or on-site local staff.


Your Identity and Diversity Abroad


Interpretation of one’s identity is subjective and culturally relative, but it is fundamental in much of our social interactions. Aspects of identity in our current U.S. society (gender identity, sexual orientation, disability, religion, race, ethnicity, etc.) may not be recognized or, more importantly, protected in other cultures around the world. Though there may be a commitment to diversity and freedom in the United States and at the University of Delaware, this may not be the case in the country where you will be living and studying.


As you explore the possibility of study abroad options, we encourage you to recognize that you are likely to encounter a range of attitudes regarding your identity while outside of the U.S. Understanding the cultural implications of your identity and the diversity of perspectives can lead to a better understanding of yourself and the new culture in which you will be living. We encourage you to do some research into your potential host country’s social norms, cultural mores, and local practices when choosing a study abroad program. There are some specific questions and issues you may want to consider, pertaining to your identity and the host country, which are detailed on subsequent pages by major identity group. 


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