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Programs and Host Institutions : Brochure

This page is the brochure for the university or program that you clicked on. Students cannot apply directly to universities participating in the Global E³ Program.

Go to "How to Apply" for information on the application process.
  • Locations: Urbana, IL, United States;
  • Program Terms: Fall / Academic Year, Spring
  • The online application is currently closed. Please see the announcements for information on when the next application cycle will open.
Fact Sheet:
Disciplines Available (engineering or related field):
Aerospace, Agricultural, Bioengineering, Biological, Civil, Computer, Computer Science, Electrical, Enterprise Systems, Environmental, Industrial, Materials, Materials Science, Nuclear, Radiological
Graduate Students Accepted?:
Program Description:

University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign
Urbana, IL

University Info   |   College of Engineering Info

Office Responsible for International Exchange Students

International Programs in Engineering


The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign is a national and global leader in education and research, attracting the best students from across the country and around the world. You will select from 150 undergraduate majors and more than 4,000 courses. You'll learn with a world-class faculty who have won the world's top honors for their research and discoveries. The university takes pride in ensuring students make the most of their time here at Illinois, both in and out of the classroom.

Also integral to the University's mission is a commitment to public engagement. Each year about 65,000 Illinois residents participate in scores of conferences, institutes, courses, and workshops presented statewide. Research and class projects take students and professors off campus to share expertise and technical support with Illinois farmers, manufacturing firms, and businesses. In a typical year, student volunteers log more than 60,000 volunteer hours.


Study Level

  • Undergraduate Students : Accepted
  • Graduate Students : Accepted (If taking coursework only)
  • Computer Science Majors : Accepted, though space is very limited.

Note: All students are accepted as non-degree exchange students


Fall, Spring, or Academic Year

NOTE: Students applying to Global E3 at the October 1 deadline have a very small window of time for placement for the Spring (January-May) semester. Those who list University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign (UIUC) as a 2nd or lower choice have nearly no chance of placement for the Spring semester.

This means, if a student has a very strong desire to attend UIUC for the Spring term, that student should list UIUC as the first university preference.


English Proficiency

TOEFL or IELTS scores are required for incoming international Global E³ students.

Minimum TOEFL scores:

  • Paper-based - 610
  • Computer-based - 253
  • Internet-based - 100
Minimum IELTS score: 6.5

Disciplines Available:

  • Aerospace Engineering
  • Agricultural and Biological Engineering
  • Bioengineering
  • Civil and Environmental Engineering
  • Computer Science
  • Electrical and Computer Engineering
  • Industrial & Enterprise Systems Engineering
  • Materials Science and Engineering
  • Nuclear, Plasma, and Radiological Engineering
  • Theoretics and Applied Mechanics
Please note that Global E3 students cannot register for courses in the College of Business.

UIUC is unable to accept Mechanical or Chemical Engineering majors through Global E3.

There are limited spots for Computer Science majors or those students wishing to take Computer Science courses.

Additional application materials?

In addition to the Global E³ Application, incoming students are required to complete a University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign on-line application form. Please read the GE3 Guidelines. The link and access code will be provided directly to you upon acceptance to UIUC.

When will students receive their acceptance package?

Students will receive their application packet within six weeks of receiving "complete" UIUC application material and supporting documents.


Semester Dates

  • Fall : late August to mid December
  • Spring : late January to mid-May

Academic Calendar

Course Contents

Course descriptions   |   Schedule of classes

Students must check term of enrollment (class schedule) to determine class availability

Students may pre-register for classes that have no restrictions up to one-month prior to the start date of courses if they have received their acceptance packet.

Workload per semester

As part of your J1 visa requirements, you need to remain a full-time student throughout your term(s) as a J1 visa holder. All international students are required to enroll in at least 12 credit hours to maintain full-time status.

Most courses are 3 credits each. Courses with substantial lab or studio time are usually worth 4-5 credits.

Maximum course load is 18 credit hours. This is not recommended if you plan to travel or participate in other forms of social activities. Sticking to 12-16 credits per semester is recommended. If you intend to travel during the weekends or pursue extensive extra-curricular activities, keep to the 12-credit minimum.

Grading System

Grade Meaning Grade Points
A+ Excellent 4.00
A Excellent 4.00
A- Excellent 3.67
B+ Good 3.33
B Good 3.00
B- Good 2.67
C+ Fair 2.33
C Fair 2.00
C- Fair 1.67
D+ Poor 1.33
D Poor 1.00
D- Poor 0.67
F Failure 0.00

Academic Transcripts


Is on-campus accommodation available to exchange students?

Upon acceptance, students may apply for a room in a university or private dormitory (meal plans may also be purchased) on the University Housing website or seek a private apartment. Students whose applications are received after the application deadline may have difficulty obtaining housing in the university residence halls.

Undergraduate students may choose to live in Global Crossroads. This residence hall community includes U.S. and international students who are interested in increasing their understanding of how cultures other than their own perceive the world. This community is an excellent place for international students to have exposure to contemporary U.S. culture.

Graduate student interested in living in a room in one of the University graduate residence halls should visit the housing website. Single graduate students may also live in university apartments.

For information on off-campus housing, please visit the private certified housing website.

When can exchange students move in to the Hall of Residence?

Housing contracts begin at official move-in date typically 1-3 days before classes begin. However, temporary housing is available at a reduced per night rate. Students can move in up to two weeks prior to the start of class. For more information, contact the housing office at the website indicated above.


Entry Visa

All international students are required to obtain a visa before entering the United States of America. As an exchange student, you will be issued with a Notice of Admission and a DS-2019 in your admission packet. These documents will allow you to obtain a J1 visa for the duration of your stay.

Before applying for your J1 visa, you will need to pay the Student and Exchange Visitor Information System (SEVIS) fee. The fee for J1 holders is US$180 per person. The University of Illinois does not subsidize or pay for the SEVIS fee. Instructions for making payment are available on the Homeland Security website.

Once you have paid the SEVIS fee, you will need to schedule an appointment at the nearest designated U.S. consulate or embassy to apply for your visa. Applicants will be required to undergo an interview. For more information on applying for a visa, please consult the U.S. Department of State website.

Health Insurance & Immunizations

The University requires that all students secure an insurance policy payable in the United States that provides adequate coverage for such emergencies. Students who have not shown that they are otherwise covered will be automatically assessed a fee for the Student Insurance Policy. In addition, all J-1 students and their dependents are required to have adequate health insurance while in the U.S. It is a good idea to read an insurance policy carefully before it is purchased so that the terms and amount of coverage are clearly understood. More information on the student insurance policy can be found at the Office of Student Insurance.

It is highly recommended that you complete your Medical History Form and Immunization Information Sheet before you leave your home country. These forms will be sent to you by Office of Admissions and Records, but you can also access them online on the McKinley Health Center website. To complete the forms, you should visit your physician to obtain your medical records and update necessary immunizations. You will be charged a fee for any immunizations that you receive at McKinley Health Center at UIUC. However, since all new international students are required to receive a screening test for tuberculosis (TB) upon arrival, this test should not be done in your home country.


When should I arrive?

The earliest you may arrive to the United States is 30 days prior to the program beginning date noted on your I-20 or DS-2019. It is in your best interest to arrive with enough time to register for classes, settle into your new accommodation, and become familiar with campus.

Exchange/International students are required to arrive during the "reporting week" and prior to Thursday in that week one week prior to the start of classes. Engineering provides a mandatory incoming student orientation during this week to all engineering exchange students.

Is airport reception available?

By airplane: 

  • O’Hare Airport, Chicago, IL.  Airport reception/pick-up is available but students must pay and register for that.  Information will be sent prior to arrival to accepted students.
  • The University of Illinois Willard Airport (Airport Code: CMI) serves the Champaign-Urbana area.  No airport reception available.  See info below.

By train: AMTRAK has service between downtown Chicago and Champaign.

By bus: Illini Shuttle: provides service between Chicago and Champaign. Mega-Bus: (Note: this option is best suited for the confident traveler. A connecting train will be required from the airport to Union Station downtown Chicago. Only one pieced of luggage per passenger.) Greyhound Bus Lines has daily service between downtown Chicago and Champaign.

Transportation from Illinois Willard Airport, Bus or Train Station to Campus: Use the following public transportation to arrive on campus from the above stations-- the MTD Airbus from the Illinois Willard Airport (airbus schedules) -- or a taxi. The average cost for a taxi is $15. You can find a list of taxicabs in the Champaign yellow pages by entering taxicabs in the search engine.

Is there any bank on campus?

There are several banks within the campus area that students can choose from. An "elective" orientation regarding finance/banking, in addition to other orientations, is provided by the International Student and Scholars Services Office for international students. It is highly recommended that students attend as they will provided important information for new students.

There will also be a mandatory engineering orientation for students during the week prior to the beginning of class. Date/time will be provided with your admissions documents.


Estimated cost of attendance



Local transportation

You will pay a one time fee each semester that allows you access to the metro (bus) system with your i.d. Students can also purchase bicycles when they arrive.

Academic expenses (e.g., books, stationery, lab fees) - Depends on what type of courses you take. Can range from $300-$600 per semester.

Personal expenses - $600/month

Other administrative fees

While tuition is waived, you will be required to pay other required fees on campus. This will range from $350 - $550 – depending on whether you have insurance or not.


Office Responsible for International Exchange Students

International Programs in Engineering



Part of what makes Illinois a great place to learn is its location in a great place to live. The campus straddles the border between the twin cities of Champaign and Urbana. With a combined population of 105,000, Champaign-Urbana is large enough to support cultural and entertainment opportunities usually associated with major metropolitan areas, yet small enough to maintain its identity as a friendly, Midwestern community.

Both Champaign and Urbana are actively involved in preserving their neighborhoods, and both cities can boast of award-winning park facilities and programs. The Champaign park system includes a terrific children's petting zoo and one park in Urbana includes a sculpture garden spread over 130 acres.

Named one of the world's "10 Hot New Tech Cities" by Newsweek magazine, Champaign-Urbana is still small enough that newcomers joke that "rush hour" lasts about seven minutes (and only then if you happen to be in the right spots). Most Champaign-Urbana residents' commutes to work lasts only a few minutes.

Champaign-Urbana sunset. Leisure choices abound. Days can be spent going to museums or playing golf. Malls or neighborhood shops off a variety of shopping experiences. Arts-lovers can choose between community theater productions, nationally renowned acts, and a vibrant local music scene. A culturally diverse city, Champaign-Urbana offers a myriad of diverse restaurants and diverse grocery shops. Weekend getaways to Chicago, St. Louis and Indianapolis are within a three-hour interstate drive of Champaign-Urbana.

Central Illinois Weather

Plan your wardrobe accordingly! Central Illinois experiences all seasons – fall, winter, spring and summer – in that order.

  • Fall (Sept-mid-November):
    • Average temp- 50°-75°F Dress: pants, lightweight shirts/jackets
  • Winter (mid-November – early March):
    • Average temp- 25°-50°F Dress: pants, long-sleeve shirts, heavy jackets, gloves, scarves, hats, snow boots
  • Spring (early March – early June):
    • Average temp- 50°-70°F Dress: pants (some lightweight), lightweight shirts/jackets
  • Summer (early June-end-August):
    • Average temp- 75°-95°F Dress: lightweight shorts, shirts, sandals or lightweight shoes

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The online application is currently closed. Please see the announcements for information on when the next application cycle will open.