FRIBOURG: University of Fribourg – American College Program

Fribourg, Switzerland

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  • Fall Semester - Early September - Late December
  • Spring Semester - Early February - Mid June

Application Deadline

  • Fall Semester - March 15
  • Spring Semester - October 1


Study Abroad Coordinator: Mike Miller (

The American College Program (ACP) is a study abroad program at the University of Fribourg, Switzerland. The tradition of American students coming to Fribourg dates back more than 80 years. The ACP is one of the oldest study abroad programs available to American students and, since its inception, has hosted over 5000 participants.


  • As the University of Fribourg is the only bi-lingual French/German institution in Europe, courses are taught in either French or German
  • Perhaps the greatest advantage of the American College Program is that students directly enroll at a Swiss University. What this means is that they follow courses and take exams with their Swiss and international counterparts, allowing for true cultural integration. For most students this represents a significant linguistic challenge, especially at the beginning of the academic year. The integration allows for faster and more intense assimilation of French and/or German, and simultaneously aids the students in cultural integration and understanding.
  • In addition to regular University classes, the American College Program offers special supplemental courses to aid the students with language acquisition. The precise course offerings change each semester and sometimes depend on the linguistic needs of the group. All supplemental courses are taught at the University of Fribourg, at the university's Language Centre.
  • Occasionally, special courses will be offered by visiting professors and lecturers. Typically, students on the program take some supplemental language courses to help them increase their language skills and/or to satisfy academic requirements at home. There are courses taught at the Language Centre of the University of Fribourg.
  • Students also take a variety of University courses appropriate to their major or other academic requirements.

View Evaluated Courses

If you are interested in enrolling in a course not in our database, please send this course for evaluation.

Policies and Process for Evaluations

Host University

Georges Python founded the Universite de Fribourg / Universitaet Freiburg (Alma Mater Friburgensis) in the year 1889. It is a public cantonal university and is financed by the Canton of Fribourg, the Swiss Confederation and other non-university cantons. The Rector and the Vice-Rectors run the University. The current rector is Professor Urs Altermatt from the Faculty of Arts (Letters). Other administrative organs of the University include the Senate, the University Assembly and the Commission de recours. The University is divided into 5 Faculties (Theology, Law, Economics and Social Sciences, Letters, Science) as well as 7 interdisciplinary institutes. The various Faculties are spread among the different campuses and buildings.

Eligibility Requirements

Generally, the program admits college juniors who have a solid degree of proficiency in French or German. This is demonstrated by having completed at least two years of college-level courses in the appropriate language. Sophomores, seniors and post-graduates are also welcome to apply, if they otherwise meet admissions criteria:

  • 2 completed terms at NU, one of which may be a summer term
  • GPA of at least 2.5
  • Transfer students and spring admits, please contact OISP for eligibility

Candidates should be studying French or German during the semester immediately preceding participation in the American College Program; this is to ensure maintenance of proficiency before the start of the program.

Application Procedure

    • Online OISP application

      Please submit the following directly to OISP:

    • ACP application forms
    • Photocopy of Passport ID Page
    • Official transcript
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Fall 2015 or Spring 2016: $22,660

Includes: Northeastern University (NU) tuition for 16 NU credits ($22,310), and International Security and Emergency Support ($350). Students are responsible for all other expenses, including housing and other non-academic costs for which they will be billed directly by the program provider or host institution. Students are also responsible for arranging and purchasing their own flights.


Before departure students receive a housing questionnaire to fill out indicating the most important factors in their lodging. Students are requested to state preferences in housing and the American College Program administration will try to accommodate individual desires but sometimes can only fulfill part of a request. The student must express what is most important to him/her when completing the housing questionnaire - the kitchen, independence, contact, being in the country, the city, etc. The ACP tries to satisfy as many of the individual desires as possible; however, student flexibility is essential. In the past few years, most ACP students have chosen to live in the Cite St-Justin which is located across the street from the main university building and features communal kitchens, refrigerator access, individual rooms and laundry facilities.


Founded in 1157 by the Duke of Zaehringen ,the city of Fribourg is well known for its old city and its medieval fortifications. Fribourg is located where the Germanic and Romanesque cultures meet, thus the city is bilingual, with French and German being the official languages. The city is comprised of just over 35,000 inhabitants with approximately double that number if one includes the immediate surrounding suburbs. Fribourg has few truly (if any) "urban problems", yet has some of the conveniences such as efficient public transportation and cultural offerings. The city experienced a kind of economic and cultural boom in the late 1960's and early 1970's when it was joined to the major cities of Europe by means of a new highway. Of course, the centerpiece and one of the most remarkable landmarks in Fribourg is the Cathedral of St. Nicholas. Other attractions include the Pont de Berne, one of the oldest covered wooden bridges of Switzerland, the Gorges du Gotteron, a small and idyllic valley extending from the magnificent vielle-ville/Altstadt, and its great number of houses dating back to the middle-ages. Fribourg also has different museums (Museum of Art and History, Museum of Natural History, Swiss Museum of the Beer and Swiss Museum of the Sewing Machine), theatres (Marionettes Theatre of Fribourg, Theatre of the City, etc.) and public and private art galleries (Art and Tradition, Gallery of the Cathedral, etc.). Fribourg is conveniently located on the Intercity train line and therefore has express service to the major cities in Switzerland. Bern:20 min., Lausanne: 45 min., Geneva: 75 min.