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If you’re studying abroad in Japan right now, you may have heard talk of transitioning the current academic calendar (April – September) to fit with typical western calendars where semesters go from September – May. Japan recognizes the need to become more internationally competitive and one benefit of the new schedule would make it easier for international students to study in Japan, thus boosting Japanese university enrollments.
For now though, if you’re thinking of studying abroad in Japan, Australia, Israel and parts of South America, you’ll have to adjust to a different schedule. Make sure you speak to your study abroad advisor about how the differing schedules may affect your individual coursework.
Semester dates around the world:
Australia: Since the Australian seasons are opposite from those in the U.S., their semesters differ as the Australian summer is in December/January. The year is typically divided into 2 semesters: the 1st beginning in February/March and ending in June. The 2nd beginning in August and ending in November/December. Some universities also offer summer programs in December/January. (Seems like a pretty good time to leave the cold U.S. winters and hightail it to Australia!)
Want to read more about studying in Australia? Check out Mia’s blog, our global ambassador in Sydney!
Israel: Their academic year is as if someone took the U.S. calendar and just pushed it a little. The start of the fall semester begins in October (after the Sukkot holiday) and ends in late January. The spring semester begins in March and goes until late June.
Chile: Since the southern hemisphere has it’s seasons reversed, Chile enjoys a summer break in December/January. The fall semester starts in February/March and lasts until June. The spring semester typically begins in August and finishes in December. Note: The schedules can vary from country-to country in South America so do your research on each country’s academic calendars. (Another cool aspect of Chile is that it’s included on the Top 10 list of inexpensive cities!)
Wondering where else in the world has a funky academic schedule? This Wikipedia page tells all.