Tufts Global Education welcomes international exchange students from several of our existing partner universities around the world to study at Tufts for a semester or academic year (options vary by partner university). Interested students must be nominated by their home university before applying for exchange at Tufts.

Tufts University currently has exchange partnerships with the following universities:

Hong Kong 

If you are a student at one of these universities and would like to study at Tufts, you must first consult with the international office at your home institution. Students who have been nominated by their home institution can apply for exchange at Tufts according to the application instructions below. Only students who have been nominated for exchange by their home institution will be considered.

If you are a partner wishing to explore potential collaborations, please email us at GlobalEducation@tufts.edu.

Program Overview

Tufts Global Education welcomes international exchange students from several of our partner universities around the world to study at Tufts University for a semester or academic year, depending on the agreement with your home institution. Tufts University offers 150+ academic majors and minors to undergraduate students. Exchange students have the opportunity to take classes across much of the Tufts curriculum, including the School of Arts and Sciences and School of Engineering. You can find more information about Tufts history, programs, and facilities in the Tufts University Fact Book.

Eligibility Requirements

  • Students must be in good academic and disciplinary standing at their home institution.
  • Students must be nominated by their home institution before applying to the Tufts Global Exchange Program and should not submit an exchange student application unless their nomination has been acknowledged by Tufts University.
  • Please contact the global exchange office at your home institution for specific requirements as they vary by institution.

Proof of English Proficiency: All courses at Tufts, except for foreign language courses, are taught in English. Please refer to the Tufts University Admissions website for English proficiency requirements. Note that these are the minimum requirements and exceptions for lower scores cannot be made.


Your Academic Status at Tufts

As an international exchange student at Tufts, you will be registered as a full-time, non-degree student in the Tufts University College. You will have access to undergraduate- and postgraduate-level courses under the School of Arts and Sciences and the School of Engineering. Exchange students will not receive a degree from Tufts University.

Courses and Credits

Most courses at Tufts have been assigned 3 semester-hour units (SHUs). Please consult with your home institution to confirm how Tufts credits will convert to your home institution’s credit system. 

As an exchange student, you must maintain full-time status at Tufts.

  • Undergraduate students: You must register for a minimum of 12 SHUs per semester. Students in the School of Arts and Sciences cannot enroll in more than 18 SHUs per semester and students in the School of Engineering cannot enroll in more than 21 SHUs per semester.
  • Graduate students: You must register for a minimum of 9 SHUs per semester. 

A list of course offerings is available on Tufts Student Information System (SIS). To browse for specific courses:

  1. Click Search for Classes at the top of the page.
  2. Fill in the relevant search criteria.
    1. Course Career: Select Arts, Sciences & Engineering from the drop-down menu.
    2. Term: Select the term you plan to attend (e.g., Fall 2022). It is important that you select the correct term, as not all courses are offered in every semester.
    3. Course Subject: Choose any subject from the drop-down menu.
    4. You may leave the other fields blank.
  3. Click Search at the bottom of the page to yield a list of courses available in the department you selected. The list will include course descriptions and indicate which courses are currently open for registration.

Program Dates

  • Fall semester runs from early September to late December.
  • Spring semester runs from mid-January to mid-May.

Refer to the Tufts Academic Calendar for specific dates. Please note that there will be a mandatory, in-person orientation 2-3 days prior to the start of classes each semester. Arrival and orientation dates will be provided after acceptance to the program, and they should be followed closely; we are not able to accommodate students who arrive to campus early and it is not permissible to arrive late or miss orientation.

Cost and Financial Considerations

Cost and financial considerations will depend on the details of our exchange agreement with your home institution. Please contact your home institution’s global exchange office for more information.


Exchange Student Application

To apply to the Global Exchange Program at Tufts University, you must first be nominated by your home institution. Each university has its own nomination process, so it is important that you contact your home institution’s global exchange office to learn about their process and requirements. The academic program you undertake may be credited towards your degree in accordance with the terms of the formal agreement between Tufts and your home institution.

Once nominated, all exchange student applicants must complete the Global Exchange Program application and submit the following supporting documents:

  • Photocopy of passport information page. Your passport must be valid throughout your entire exchange program at Tufts.
  • Proof of English proficiency: Please refer to the Tufts University Admissions website for English proficiency requirements. Note that these are the minimum requirements and exceptions for lower scores cannot be made.

In addition to the above required documents, any exchange students who do not have U.S. citizenship must also apply for a J-1 visa. Tufts International Center (I-Center) will provide immigration support for applying for the J-1 visa. More information follows in the Admitted Students section below.

Exchange Nomination Schedule

Nomination Deadline Full Year or Fall Semester                March 15 

Nomination Deadline Spring Semester                                May 15

Acceptance Process

If you are accepted as an exchange student at Tufts, you will be notified via email.. You will also receive acceptance materials – including information about Tufts course registration, housing, health insurance, and orientation – via email in the weeks following your acceptance. Please check your email regularly, including your spam folder.

If you are not a U.S. citizen, you will need to apply for a J-1 visa.

Information for Admitted Students

Visa Sponsorship

Exchange students must apply for a J-1 (Exchange Visitor) visa under the sponsorship of Tufts University. The J-1 visa will be valid for the academic year and no extension of Tufts University's visa sponsorship will be available after completion of the academic year.

Information for Non-U.S. Citizens: Obtaining a Visa

If you are not a U.S. citizen, Tufts Global Education will submit the relevant information and documents from your application to Tufts International Center (I-Center) for processing. Once processed, the I-Center will issue your Form DS-2019 by mail to you or your home university. Please familiarize yourself with the J-1 student visa application process outlined on the I-Center website.

Information for U.S. Citizens and Legal Residents

Exchange students who are also U.S. citizens or legal U.S. residents do not require a visa to study at Tufts University. Any student who has a U.S. passport must enter the U.S. using that passport; you must not obtain a visa and/or enter on a non-U.S. passport.

Additional Information

According to the terms of the visa, you are required to be a full-time student. Exchange students classified as undergraduate students must be enrolled in at least 12 Semester Hour Units (SHUs) per semester. Exchange students classified as graduate students must be enrolled in at least 9 Semester Hour Units (SHUs) per semester.         

Falling below full-time enrollment will be grounds for the revocation of visa sponsorship. Students must maintain good academic and disciplinary standing while taking courses and follow the attendance policies laid forth in the syllabus.

Housing and Campus Life

As an exchange student on a program administered by Tufts Global Education, you will have accommodations through Tufts University housing during orientation and while classes and exams are in session. Refer to the Tufts academic calendar for dates.

Exchange students studying at Tufts for the full academic year should make alternative plans and budget for housing and/or travel during the winter term. We are often able to petition for special on-campus housing if you cannot find any other arrangements.

We have scheduled the fall arrival of exchange students for August 31, 2022, with a required orientation on September 1. Please note you may not arrive prior to or later than August 31. Residential Life cannot accommodate early arrivals. Do not purchase airfare until you have received your visa and housing information with additional details about the arrival date and move-in times.

Please also note the following:

  • All exchange applicants will be assigned on-campus housing and are not eligible to live off campus; however, you may or may not be placed in the same house or dormitory with other students from the same country or university, according to availability of rooms.
  • Most students live in a single or double room with shared bathroom facilities in a dormitory-style residence on-campus.
  • There are no accommodations available for spouses or children.
  • Pets are not allowed.
  • There are various dining options available on-campus for all students and exchange students are required to purchase a meal plan.
  • All students have access to Tufts Health Service, athletic facilities and art spaces.

Exchange students are subject to the Residential Life and Learning policies and housing rates (unless housing is included in the terms of the exchange agreement). Residential Life will send more detailed information once you have been assigned housing.

Health Insurance

Exchange students are required to be covered by the Tufts University Student Accident and Sickness plan and are expected to pay for this plan from personal funds.

It is a law of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts that all students enrolled in colleges and universities in the state must be covered by a U.S.-based sickness and accident insurance plan. You will be automatically billed for the insurance.

Student Life Policies

As a student at Tufts University, you are responsible for knowing and following the policies of the University—including the Student Code of Conduct, Academic Integrity Policy, Community Standards, and all other policies detailed on the Student Life website. An exchange student who fails to follow the policies of the University or the laws of the United States and the Commonwealth of Massachusetts (or the applicable local laws) may be disciplined and asked to leave the University.