Learn to lead international education programs without leaving your job.

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Become an effective policy advocate and skilled program administrator through a carefully designed combination of faculty instruction, individual practice, analysis, and experience. Our low-residency format allows you to complete most of your coursework online so you can stay in your job and community.

Through an experiential learning model, you’ll develop expertise in advising, exchange management, community education, and volunteer program management. Keep up with trends in international curricula, program design, and transnational regulations and examine the effects of globalism, internationalization efforts, changing technology, and education policy on international programs as you master skills and strategies in program design and development.

By the end of the program, you’ll be prepared to run a program anywhere from a traditional school to a nonprofit organization to a refugee camp or homeless shelter, in the US or abroad.

There’s no better time than now.

Study abroad experiences have changed the lives and opened the minds of countless students. Today, international exchange and intercultural understanding are more important than ever. Whether you’re coordinating a semester abroad for a domestic student, helping international students get acclimated to their new community, or advising a university as part of a government team, you’ll be making a difference in the lives of students and in the communities that host them abroad.

Degree Sequence

On-campus coursework, two sessions in June (1–2 weeks each session)

  • Year one: First two weeks in June
  • Year two: Second week in June

Online coursework and reflective practice (the remainder of the year)

  • 10 to 15 hours of online coursework per week, plus reflective practice related to your professional experience

Capstone paper and presentation

  • Final paper and presentation on campus

With SIT’s experiential curriculum, you’ll learn how to put theory into practice. In addition to core courses, a broad range of elective choices let you focus on courses that will help you meet your career goals.

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The program comprises primarily online coursework with limited residential coursework, reflective practice of your ongoing professional work, and a final capstone paper and presentation, for a total of 36 credits. While you must fulfill a number of degree requirements, you have opportunities to customize your learning according to your interests.

  • Core Coursework (18 credits)
    You are required to complete between 10 and 15 hours of work each week. Assignments typically include readings, electronic group work, electronic postings, papers, and projects. Through the coursework component, you’ll acquire critical theoretical knowledge and new professional competencies. The following courses are required:
    • Foundations in Intercultural Service, Leadership, and Management – 4 credits
    • Practitioner Inquiry – 2 credits
    • Theory, Practice, and Policy of International Education – 3 credits
    • International Education Program Planning and Design – 3 credits
    • Advanced Concepts in International Education – 6 credits
  • Electives (2 credits minimum)
    You can satisfy the program’s elective requirement in a number of ways, including by selecting offered SIT courses, pursuing independent study, or taking a course at a local institution and transfering the credit to SIT. Please note that in the last situation, the course must be at the graduate level and the institution must be accredited.

  • Reflective Practice (15 credits)
    Reflective practice is a structured approach for you to apply learning from your coursework to ongoing professional activity. You’ll receive course credit for documenting the integration of your knowledge and skills in a professional context while remaining engaged with faculty and other students.

  • Capstone Paper and Seminar (1 credit)
    You’ll demonstrate, assess, and synthesize your learning through preparation of a capstone project and participation in a one-week capstone seminar held multiple times each year on SIT’s campus in Vermont. Researching and writing the capstone paper takes you deeply into the experiential learning cycle, where you’ll explore the meaning of your reflective practice experience, integrate theory and practice in a written and oral presentation, and make a contribution to the field of international education. Review past International Education capstone papers.

Degree Requirements
You have five years from the time you enter the program to complete all degree requirements. If you do not complete all degree requirements (including the language and culture proficiency requirement) within five years of your entry date, you will be withdrawn from the program. If you have extenuating circumstances, you must apply to the dean of the program for an extension.

You must fulfill a Language and Culture Proficiency Requirement before you are eligible to graduate.

View the current academic calendar.

Reflective Practice

A cornerstone of this program is the reflective practice. This allows you to apply learning from your SIT courses in the real-world setting of your job, enriching your learning experience.

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Put your developing skills to use during faculty-guided, reflective practice at your current job or a practicum placement.

During the online coursework phase, you’ll conduct reflective practice while engaged in professional work in the field of international education. During this period, you’ll remain engaged with faculty and other students and receive course credit for documenting the integration of your knowledge and skills.

Alumni Careers

Students at SIT Graduate Institute

Students in this program go on to work in the field in a variety of areas including study abroad offices, NGOs, nonprofits, and government agencies. Find out some of the career paths that may be open to you.

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The program prepares professionals to:

  • Advise international students
  • Design and lead cross-cultural programs
  • Coordinate and manage projects, resources, and staff
  • Develop courses and training modules on topics related to international education

Students of SIT’s low-residency MA in International Education program gain the skills they need to advance in their career. Graduates are prepared for positions as directors of study abroad or international student services, language program coordinators, trainers, community education specialists, program designers, international student coordinators, or international student recruiters. Graduates work in study abroad offices, NGOs, nonprofits, and government agencies as well as in other venues.

SIT has been a leader in the field of international education for more than 80 years.
Through SIT’s low-residency MA in International Education program, students have access World Learning’s network of international education and exchange programs and practitioners.
Positions held by alumni of the international education program include:

  • Associate Dean, International Education, University of Richmond, Virginia, US
  • Alumni Outreach Coordinator, US Embassy, Baku, Azerbaijan
  • International Student and Scholar Advisor, University of California at Berkeley, California, US
  • International Recruitment Officer, Delft University of Technology, Delft, Netherlands
  • Director of English as a Second Language, Northfield Mount Hermon School, Massachusetts, US

SIT’s faculty are practitioners in their fields. Our diverse, multicultural faculty have worked across the world as leaders, trainers, and developers in the business, nonprofit, education, and public sectors.

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Core Faculty

Sora Friedman
Sora Friedman

Professor and Co-Chair
International Education (low residency)


PhD, George Mason University
Distance Education Certificate, University of West Georgia
MIA, School for International Training
BA, University of Maryland

Sora Friedman has worked in the field of international education (IE) for over 30 years, focusing on the preparation of new professionals in the field, IE management training, high school exchanges, the administration of adult exchanges in public diplomacy, and international policy advocacy. She joined the SIT Graduate Institute faculty in 2005 and was an adjunct faculty member for three years before that.

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Linda Drake Gobbo
Linda Drake Gobbo

International Education (low residency)


MBA, University of Massachusetts
MEd, Springfield College
BA, Hartwick College

A former dean of SIT Graduate Institute and member of the faculty since 1984, Linda Drake Gobbo teaches courses and advises students in international education and management in both the online and face-to-face programs. She has travelled as faculty with SIT Graduate Institute programs, and has also provided administrative support from the home campus to various SIT Study Abroad programs in such areas as crisis management, health, student development, and professional staff support.

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Alla Korzh
Alla Korzh

Assistant Professor
International Education (low residency)


EdD, International Educational Development, Columbia University, USA
MEd, Instructional Leadership, University of Illinois at Chicago, USA
BA with Honors, Teaching English as a Second Language, Nizhyn State Pedagogical University, Ukraine

Dr. Alla Korzh is an educator, researcher, and practitioner in the field of international education with a regional focus on Eastern Europe. She holds a doctorate in international educational development from Teachers College, Columbia University.

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Karla Giuliano Sarr
Karla Giuliano Sarr

Assistant Professor and Co-Chair
International Education (low residency)


EdD University of Massachusetts
MEd University of Massachusetts
BS Georgetown University

Karla Giuliano Sarr is an international education practitioner and scholar. Karla's interests include basic education, multilingual education, cultural relevancy, community-school relationships, literacy, girls' education, training, and curriculum development.

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Ray Young
Ray Young

Assistant Professor
International Education (low residency)


EdD, University of Massachusetts Amherst
MEd, University of Massachusetts Amherst
BA, University of Colorado Boulder

Ray received his doctorate in teacher education and curriculum studies and his master’s degree in international education from UMass Amherst.

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Adjunct Faculty and Guests

Lynée Connelly
Lynée Connelly

Adjunct Faculty
International Education (low residency)


MA, SIT Graduate Institute
BA, University of New Hampshire

Lynée Connelly holds a BA in linguistics and Italian and an MA in international education. She is currently a PhD student at the California Institute for Integral Studies. Her dissertation focuses on the influence and impact of international education during the five-year post-reentry period.

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Aleksandra Nesic
Aleksandra Nesic

Adjunct Faculty
International Education (low residency)


PhD, Nova Southeastern University
MA, SIT Graduate Institute
BA, University of Florida

Dr. Aleksandra Nesic currently lectures at Florida State University’s International Affairs Department and serves as an intercultural education specialist at FSU’s Center for Global Engagement. Dr. Nesic works with international students, scholars, and faculty from over 100 countries and implements intercultural, interfaith, and conflict transformation programs and learning assessment projects.

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Admissions Criteria

SIT Graduate Institute campus

We strive to create a diverse and experienced student body to enhance the learning experience both inside and outside the classroom. To be considered for admission to this program, you must meet the following criteria:

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To be considered for admission to the low-residency MA in International Education program, an applicant must have the following:

  • US bachelor's degree or an equivalent that demonstrates academic ability
  • Demonstrated English language ability (see details below)
  • Intercultural and professional experience
  • Demonstrated ability to use experience as a source of learning
  • Experience and familiarity with instructional technology, distance learning, and/or independent learning
  • Demonstrated capacity for self-directed learning
  • Current experience in the field of international education is expected, but previous or anticipated experience may be considered

English Language Ability
Applicants whose first language is not English and who did not graduate from an English-speaking institution in a country whose official language is English submit test scores for the TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language), the IELTS (International English Language Testing System), or the PTE (Pearson Test of English). (Applicants can access free TOEFL and IELTS  practice tests online.)

  • Applicants taking the TOEFL must receive a minimum score of
    • 600 on the paper-based test (PBT)
    • 250 on the computer-based test (CBT), or
    • 100 on the internet-based iBT.
  • Applicants taking the IELTS must receive a score of Band 7.0 or higher.
  • Applicants taking the PTE must receive a minimum score of 68.

These scores are considered the minimum proficiency needed to undertake graduate-level work. Scores must be dated within two years of the start date of your academic program at SIT.

Our admissions staff works one-on-one with every applicant to facilitate a highly informed and multidimensional admissions experience: applicants are encouraged to attend a campus visit, talk with SIT faculty and staff, and hear from current students and alumni. As applicants become familiar with the attributes of an SIT education — grounded in the experiential learning model and focused on social justice and leadership skills in intercultural environments — they determine for themselves in what ways SIT can help them meet their educational and career objectives.

SIT welcomes students from all economic backgrounds. Students commonly fund their SIT degree through a variety of sources, including federal and private loans, SIT grants and scholarships, scholarships from other sources, and personal and family funds. SIT Graduate Institute’s Financial Aid Office provides information on all aspects of funding an SIT degree.

SIT is able to process federal loans and graduate PLUS loans for students in the low-residency MA in International Education program. We recommend that you begin the process of applying for financial aid as soon as possible, even before you are accepted for admission. Click here for more information on financial aid.


See a breakdown of the costs for this program.

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Direct Costs

Tuition and Fees

Year 1 Tuition: $20,295
Year 1 Fees: $1,455

Year 2 Tuition: $20,295
Year 2 Fees: $1,455

MA degree total tuition and fees (all terms combined): $43,500

Year 1 On-Campus Room and Board: $700

Year 2 Estimated On-Campus Room and Board: $700

Indirect Costs

SIT estimates the costs to students for books, personal expenses, transportation. Individual expenses may vary.

Year 1 Books: $1,200
Year 1 Personal Expenses: $1,500
Year 1 Transportation Costs: $500

Year 2 Books: $1,200
Year 2 Personal Expenses: $1,500
Year 2 Transportation Costs: $500

Additional Costs

Field Study Courses in year 1: Costs range from $2,200 to $5,450. See details on the locations, schedule, and costs of individual field courses.

Estimated Student Loan Fees:

Year 1: $225

Year 2: $225

Estimated fees are based on the average amount borrowed by SIT Graduate Institute students. See details on student loan options.


Direct costs and on-campus room and board are billed by SIT Graduate Institute. Indirect, off-campus housing costs, transportation expenses, and additional costs are not billed by SIT, but represent educational expenses associated with being an enrolled student.