Below are tentative dates and deadlines for Fall, Spring, and Summer. Dates are subject to change; so please confirm final dates with program staff.

Key Dates and Deadlines

April 15
Final summer application deadline
May 1
Deposit Deadline (also the housing & meal plan deadline)
May 8
Consent & Pre-Registration Form submission deadline
May 15
Final application deadline for university housing & meal plan
June 2-3
Move into university housing
Students will be able to cancel or change their AU meal plan until 7 days after they have checked into university housing for a refund excluding any used meal swipes or EagleBuck$.
June 4
WSSIP Orientation
Mandtory for all students
June 5
Last day to withdraw from the program for 100% tuition refund
June 6
Last day to withdraw from the program for 50% refund
June 7
All students must begin their internships by this date
June 8
Experiential Learning Form submission deadline
June 20
Professional Development Day
Mandatory for all students
July 4
Independence Day
No classes or internship; AU offices will be closed
July 27
Last day of internships
All students must intern until this date
August 5
All students must move out of university housing by 12:00 p.m. (noon)
No refunds will be granted to students who move out before the date listed on their housing application
March 1, 2018
Priority Deadline for U.S. Applicants
May 1, 2018
Deadline for International Applicants Who Require J-1 Visa Support
May 31, 2018
Final Application Deadline for U.S. Applicants
June 15, 2018
Fall Deposit Deadline

Preliminary Dates for Fall 2018

August 20-25
Students move into university housing and Washington Semester Program Orientation activities (specific dates/times/ Fall 2018 program information will be provided in April 2018)
August 27
Fall classes begin
Internship Fair
September 3
Labor Day
No classes; university offices closed
September 10
Last day to add/drop a course with 100% refund Courses dropped after this date will be recorded with a 'W' on the AU transcript
September 12
Last day to begin an internship
September 17
Last day to drop a fall course for a 50% refund
September 24
Last day to drop a fall course for a 25% refund (no refunds after this date)
October 12
Fall Break Day
No classes; university offices open
October 19-21
All-American Weekend
Family & alumni are invited
November 2
Last day to drop a class or change a grade option (end of the 10th week)
November 4
Daylight Savings Time ends
Turn clocks back 1 hour
November 20
Tuesday classes cancelled; Friday classes meet
November 21-25
Thanksgiving Break
No classes; university offices closed Thursday & Friday
December 7
Fall classes & internships end
December 8-9
Study Days
December 10-15
Final examinations
Professors will provide exam schedule information
October 1
Priority application deadline 
International candidates who require J-1 visa support should apply by the October 1 priority deadline to allow enough time for visa processing
November 1
Priority application deadline for students from US home schools
Final deposit deadline for students from international home schools
November 15
Final application deadline for students from US home schools
November 19
Deadline to submit the Consent & Pre-Registration Form
Deadline to submit the university housing application
January 4
Deadline to submit Immunization Form to AU's Student Health Center
January 7-8
Students from schools outside the U.S. move into university housing
January 9
Students from U.S. schools move into university housing
International Student Orientation
Mandatory for all students from international schools
January 10-11
WSP Orientation
Mandatory for all WSP students
January 14
Spring classes begin
Internship Fair
January 21
Martin Luther King Day
No classes; university offices closed
January 23
Last day for students living off-campus to cancel or reduce on-campus meal plan
January 30
Last day to begin an internship
February 4
Last day to drop a course for a 50% refund
February 11
Last day to drop a course for a 25% refund
March 10
Daylight Savings Time begins
Turn clocks forward 1 hour
March 10-17
AU Spring Break
No classes; university offices open Mon-Fri
March 22
Last day to drop a class or change a grade option
April 29
Spring classes & internships end
April 30
Study Day
End-of-Semester Celebration
Date subject to change
May 1-7
Final examinations
Professors will provide exam schedule information
May 8
All students must move out of university housing by 12:00PM (noon)

Frequently Asked Questions

The Washington Semester Program (WSP) requires applicants to have completed at least two semesters of college course work with a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.5 on a 4.0 point scale. In some cases, we consider students who do not meet the requirement with approval from the student's home institution.

Partial scholarships are available for students in credit-bearing programs. If you’ve been admitted to the Washington Semester Program and are seeking scholarship funds, visit the Scholarships page for more information on how to obtain a scholarship. Students admitted to the Washington Semester Summer Internship Program will automatically be evaluated for scholarship eligibility; partial scholarships may be available for summer students enrolled in 3-6 AU credits.

After an applicant is admitted and submits a deposit for the program, they will work with the Director of Experiential Education, who will offer guidance on resumes, cover letters, and the internship search process.

Fall and spring students will additionally have access to our internship database, which has over 5,000 unique, current internship postings.

The trademark of our program is the opportunity for students to gain lifelong professional development skills (resume, cover letter, interview advice, writing samples, etc.) via a series of professional development seminars and activities in which students engage during our program orientation, as well as throughout the semester. These skill-building activities enhance the students' ability to connect with internship opportunities and make networking connections that extend beyond the boundaries of participation with our program.

Internships are not guaranteed. However, we have, historically, achieved a nearly 100 percent hire rate for our students, with nearly every student receiving an internship, if they placed their deposit before the priority deadline. As such, it is very important to submit your application, and place your deposit early to ensure that you can apply for multiple internships.

Unfortunately, we cannot guarantee an internship with any organization. We would be happy to help students apply for a position with any agency, but whether or not a student receives an internship depends on the agency's requirements and their intern hiring needs.

The majority of the internships in Washington, DC, are unpaid. However, since Washington Semester Program is an academic internship program, students in the credit-bearing program will receive 4 American University units of academic credit for the internship hours worked and internship class in the fall or spring. Students in the Washington Semester Summer Internship Program will receive 1-3 American University units of academic credit for the internship hours worked and internship class.

There are a few paid internships in DC, but they are extremely competitive, and it is recommended to apply as early as possible.

To see what housing options are available, visit the Step by Step Guide and look under " Find Housing & Choose Meal Plans."

There are two parking options. At one of our residences, The Berkshire Apartments, parking passes are free to all residents. Or, you can park nearby at the campus Katzen Art Center, Bender Arena, or SIS Parking lot with the purchase of an AU parking permit. This cost will be approximately $506 for the semester.

In the fall and spring semesters, Washington Semester Program students are enrolled in two seminar courses and one internship course. The seminar courses are each held one day per week and feature lecture and discussion from an American University professor, as well as frequent guest speakers and site visits with experts in seminar topic. For example, students in the Foreign Policy concentration will be likely to visit the US State Department, area think tanks, and other sites relevant to both the field of study and current issues.

In the internship course, a Washington Semester faculty member provides professional development instruction in order to enhance the internship experience and to assist students in preparing for a career in the field. Students will spend 20-24 hours per week at the internship.

Washington Semester Summer Internship Program students are required to enroll in a 1-credit or 3-credit colloquium, which meets one afternoon per week. For more information about the summer colloquia, please visit this page.

Washington Semester Program is an academic internship program, with courses offered through American University. Students can transfer their AU courses and credits back to their home schools; however, it is very important that students talk with their home school advisor and registrar regarding their school's transfer credit policies.

All fall and spring semester credit-bearing Washington Semester Program students are required to enroll in two 4-credit seminar courses and one 4-credit internship course in their program of study for a minimum of 12 AU credit hours. Students can also take an elective course for 3 AU credits or a 4-credit Washington Semester Program research course, in which they complete an intensive independent research project under the guidance from a Washington Semester faculty member. The Washington Semester Program tuition covers a maximum of 17 AU credits; however, we recommend students enroll in 12-16 AU credits.

All fall and spring semester non-credit International Certificate Program students will receive an American University transcript listing the courses completed and grades earned; however, the transcript will note that the courses were non-credit. It will be up to their home school to review the course content and syllabi to process the credit to the home school mark sheet or transcript.

Students in the summer internship program will earn 1-6 AU academic credit(s). View a breakdown of your credit options.

Yes. International students attending a Washington Semester Program partner institution are welcome to apply to and enroll in the fall and/or spring credit program or fall and/or spring non-credit program. If you are not sure whether you attend a partner institution, email washsem@american.edu or call +1 202-895-4900.

Our Admissions team will help international students throughout the application and visa process and will assist with questions regarding about program selection.

International students attending college in the US are also welcome to apply to the Washington Semester Program credit option, as we will consider you a domestic student for most processes at American University.

There is limited flexibility surrounding the start and end dates, provided you are willing to make up time and assignments that you missed with your class. Our housing options may also allow extended stays, for an additional cost, and when available. Please submit a request to start late or leave early to any Washington Semester Program staff member well in advance of the start term.

You may submit all supplemental items either electronically (upload with your application) or via mail:

Mail Via United States Postal Service (USPS):

School of Professional & Extended Studies
Office of Enrollment
4400 Massachusetts Ave., NW
Washington, DC 20016-8124

Mail Via Courier Service (UPS, FedEx, DHL):

Office of Enrollment
4801 Massachusetts Avenue, NW
Suite 218
Washington, DC 20016-8001