Academic Bridge FAQs

Am I required to participate?

The Academic Bridge Program is optional. International students are not required to participate and may continue to take online Illinois courses from home or travel to campus as they had originally planned.

Who should I contact if I have questions about the Academic Bridge Orogram?

Please contact (Engineering students should contact

When does the program start and end?

Students should be prepared to arrive at the ZJU campus one week before the start of classes. For Illinois start and end dates, refer to the Illinois academic calendar.

How do I apply?

The application for the Academic Bridge Program is now available. The administering study abroad unit will notify students of their program and application status as soon as possible.


Who can apply?

  • Current, admitted, or transfer Illinois international undergraduate, graduate, or professional studies degree-seeking student in good academic standing as defined by their college or school.
  • Have citizenship, established residency, or other status that permits student to study in an Academic Bridge Program country.
  • Student should already be in their home country or a Bridge country (if student can come to Champaign-Urbana in person, you are encouraged to do so).
  • Undergraduate students must enroll in a minimum of 12 Illinois online credits.

Can I study in a neighboring country?

No. Students are required to have citizenship, residency, or other status that permits you to study in an Academic Bridge Program country.

Why is this beneficial for me?

This program will be able to provide you with a residential experience in your home country while continuing with your intended plan of study by taking Illinois courses online. Participation in the program will provide you with a cohort of Illinois peers who find themselves in a similar situation. ZJU offers on-campus tutoring, facilities and services that would be beneficial to support your studies and personal life. Acceptance into the Academic Bridge program is not guaranteed and space is limited. Priority will be given to first-year, first semester students and transfer students however, we will try to accommodate as many students as possible, but cannot guarantee that we can fulfill all requests.

When will I find out if I have been accepted to the Academic Bridge Program?

Students will be notified and asked to confirm their spot in the program by mid-July. The administering study abroad unit will notify students of their program and application status as soon as possible.

What courses would I take?

You will be required to enroll in a minimum of 12 Illinois online credits, and in some cases, you may have the option to enroll in one or more courses offered at ZJU. In the interim, we would encourage you to stay in your current schedule, while ensuring that you are enrolled in the online sections of your course options.

What if I want to only take classes at a local university?

If you are an incoming undergraduate student, you can enroll at another university and then apply to our university as a transfer student for a future term. Please contact your home college for further information on this option.

How long would I be at the host institution?

We anticipate that this opportunity will last for the Fall 2021 semester and you would start in-person classes on the Urbana-Champaign campus in Spring 2022.

What is the cost?

Cost has not yet been finalized for the Fall 2021 Academic Bridge at ZJU. Once the cost is updated, you will have the option to withdraw your application at no cost to you.

How will tuition and other fees be charged?

Tuition and fees will be charged through your University of Illinois student account, not by the host institution. Housing may be charged directly from the host institution.