May Term Travel Course Proposal Process for Faculty

Faculty can propose to teach a travel course during May Term. This process begins during the academic year prior  to the planned May Term because of curricular development timelines and the needs to establish and review relationships with partners. Applications are due March 31st the year prior to the May Term travel course.

Links to the May Term Travel Course Proposal Applications can be found here:

International May Term Travel Course Application

Domestic May Term Travel Course Application

Please note the application process and timeline to teach a May Term travel course in Salzburg is a different. The application to teach a May Term travel course in Salzburg can be found here; applications for Salzburg May Term 2026 (2 spots) are due April 1, 2024.

What Are May Term Travel Courses?

Students at Redlands benefit from a Faculty that is deeply committed to off-campus education and study. A clear manifestation of this is the Faculty’s activity in leading travel courses during the university’s May Term period each year. Approximately 15 credit-granting courses are offered each May Term session, some of which may require pre-requisites. The majority of these courses take place outside of the United States though there are commonly multiple domestic options in a variety of academic areas.

Experiential in practice, these courses are frequently interdisciplinary in design and offer distinct opportunities for exploratory and creative course content. The mixture of travel, experiential learning and interdisciplinary design allows for a series of study options that are unique in composition and provide educational opportunities that are not possible during regular semesters. Typically, many of these courses also satisfy Liberal Arts Inquiry requirements.

May Term Travel Courses either fully take place away from the university or offer a split model where courses are divided between a period of on-campus study, with a minimum of 10-14 days off-campus. The average class-size is 14-15 students per course.

Through May Term Travel Courses, students benefit from short term, international and off-campus curricular options that expand their scope of learning while broadening their sense of self and providing global spaces for reflection on difference and diversity.  

Who Is Eligible to Lead a May Term Travel Course?

Only tenured, tenure-track and term-track CAS faculty are eligible to teach a May Term Travel Course. Staff interested in leading a May Term travel course should contact the CAS Study Away Office at 

Resources for Developing a May Term Travel Course

The following resources have been created to help faculty in the development of a May Term travel course proposal:

Developing a May Term Travel Course Workshop slides 

Step by Step Instructions on how to start a May Term travel course application

List of Current May Term travel course offerings

Sample travel course budget template

If you are developing a May Term travel course that includes an on-campus component before the travel portion of your course begins, you need to keep in mind the following information:

  • Students who reside in on-campus May Term housing during the on-campus portion of your travel course, will be charged prorated room and board costs for the days they remain in on-campus housing. Those costs will be charged directly to the student's account and are not included in the overall course fee. Faculty should include those costs in the estimated out-of-pocket costs.
  • The Office of Global Education must know what students will need on-campus housing (and the dates of the on-campus portion of your course) by late October and will report those to Residence Life and Housing.
  • When students depart their on-campus housing placement for the travel portion of their May Term travel courses, they must be completely moved out of their on-campus housing at that time.
  • Estimated May Term room costs can be found here and May Term board costs can be found here. These costs would be prorated based on the number of days on-campus.

What is the Process for Submitting an Application to Teach a May Term Travel Course?

Application Process

The application process for submitting May Term travel course proposals has recently been updated; there are now separate applications for domestic and international proposals:

International Travel Course Proposals: Application can be found here. You will need your U of R credentials to log into the application system.

Application consist of four sections:

  • Faculty and Travel Course Details
  • International Travel Preparation
  • Travel Course Budget
  • U of R Faculty Leader Responsibilities

Domestic Travel Course Proposals: Application can be found here. You will need your U of R credentials to log into the application system.

Application consists of three sections:

  • Faculty and Travel Course Details
  • Travel Course Budget
  • U of R Faculty Leader Responsibilities

Step by step instructions on how to start a May Term travel course application can be found here.

To successfully submit an application, you will need the following information:

  • Detailed course description
  • Proposed excursion information
  • Proposed housing information
  • Local transportation information
  • Projected course fee
  • Tentative course budget
  • Information who you are collaborating with on-site
  • For international travel course proposals, you will need to provide information about travel advisory levels, CDC risk factors, immunizations, etc.

*Please note that applications to lead May Term Travel Courses to Salzburg follow a different application process and timeline.

When is the May Term Travel Course Application Deadline? And When Will Applicants be Notified of Their Proposal Status?

Application Deadline

Applications are due March 31st the year prior to the May Term travel course (for example, applications for May Term 2025 are due March 31, 2024).  Applications  close automatically at 11:59 p.m. PST on March 31st. No late applications will be  accepted.

Proposal Notification

All complete applications will be reviewed by the International Travel and Activities Advisory Committee and also require the CAS Dean’s final approval. Applicants will receive notification about the status of their applications by the end of May Term  2024.



Teaching Considerations

Proposed course should be included in your department’s AY24-25 course schedule.  Any requests for teaching an MTT course with compensated overload will not be approved.

  • An MTT course should be designed to give priority to the benefits of the location, the integration of intercultural components into the course and program, and to leveraging local knowledge and resources.
  • Faculty should seek to develop courses and programs in conjunction with partner organizations and universities (partner educational organizations and universities section to the right).
  • In developing MTT courses for May 2025, faculty should consider whether and how to integrate LAI designations in their courses.
  • If the MTT travel course does not meet the minimum number of students by a registration deadline set by the Office of Global Education, the course will be canceled by the CAS Dean. If this happens, you must replace the course with a Spring 2025 or May Term 2025 on-campus course.
  • For a MTT course to count toward your teaching load, a minimum of 10 students must enroll.
  • For a travel course NOT counting toward your teaching load, a minimum number less than 10 students is possible with the approval of the CAS Dean.
  • The role of a faculty leader for a May Term Travel Course differs greatly from the role of teaching a course on campus. For a detailed description of the role of a faculty leader for May Term Travel Courses, please review the role of faculty leaders section on this webpage. Faculty are also required to have a course assistant for their course; their roles and responsibilities can also be found on this webpage.

Role of Faculty Leader

The role of the faculty leader of a travel course significantly differs from their responsibilities and requirements of teaching a course on campus.  Responsibilities will vary based on a number of factors including course location, housing, focus, activities, and excursions but all will include, but not necessarily be limited to, those listed below:

  • Communicate and collaborate with the Office of Global Education through course and program development and the meeting of all established deadlines.
  • Attend 2 to 3 mandatory training sessions hosted by the Office of Global Education in conjunction with the division of Student Life, Academic Success and Accessibility and Business Office. Topics covered include risk management, student accommodations and budget management.
  • Identify a qualified coursre assistant who can provide on the ground support as well as leadership in the event that the faculty leader needs to attend to emergencies or difficult circumstances or is unable to respond to or support students due to illness, injury, or other unforeseen circumstances.  Incorporate program assistant in budget planning process. Possible course assistant roles and responsibilities can be found on this page.
  • Designate a local person who is familiar with the area, especially if traveling to a site that is relatively unfamiliar, to whom students can turn to if you should become incapacitated.
  • Thoughtfully and thoroughly prepare students by holding a minimum of two pre-departure sessions during the spring semester (term before May Term session).  Orientations provide necessary information, support the setting of a positive and cohesive group dynamic as well as serve to maximize student learning and experience via intercultural, academic and site-specific learning and preparation. It also allows for expectations for course participation to be outlined to students. Faculty leaders should also follow up with students regarding any possible needed accommodations and/or other information disclosed on student medical questionnaires to help the student prepare for the course, set realistic expectations and have the needed resources in place for a successful learning experience on the May Term travel course. Diversity Guides for study abroad are also great resources to share with students. Risk management will be a component of the faculty leader position.
  • Monitor the State Department, CDC as well as other relevant website resources. Utilize the health and safety information resources available at the U.S. State Department’s Study Abroad website.
  • For international course locations, enroll course participants, if they are US citizens, in the federal governments Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP). Non US citizen participants should enroll in a similar program through their home country.
  • Ensure that students know when and where they are to meet upon arrival and throughout the course. Establish specific course start and end dates, times and locations. Include a formal sign out sheet at the end of the course.
  • Develop a system to monitor all independent study travel outside of program activities.
  • Keep the U.S. Embassy or closest Consulate contact information with you at all times and be sure students have this information, for international course locations.
  • Keep the Emergency Contact List, Office of Global Education number, and Public Safety number with you at all times.
  • Be the contact person for students, for U of R staff, and for parents.
  • Carry a charged and turned-on cell phone at all times and for the duration of the course and provide a detailed itinerary and list of how and when you can be reached at all times. Ensure all students have phones that function and are on 24/7 during the duration of the course.
  • Provide leadership in times of crisis.
  • Mentor students outside of the classroom and academic context.
  • Provide academic advising as needed.
  • Manage student behavior and health issues.
  • Take disciplinary action as needed, including in conjunction with the Office of Global Education and Student Life in the event of more severe violations and when there is a code of conduct violation.
  • Fully understand reporting requirements for any Title IX or Cleary Act incidents as well as how to manage any such incidents.
  • For international courses, be familiar with the insurance policy students are enrolled in, whether it is iNext insurance (if enrolled in insurance by Redlands) or the policy used by the partner educational organization assisting with your course. Understand how to file claims or utilize the policy for any related purpose, in the event it is necessary. For domestic courses, keep each student's insurance information on hand, in case of an emergency and the information is needed.
  • Confirm that all students are registered for the course and have made full payment by the established deadline.
  • Fully meet the responsibilities of a faculty leader while on a travel course. Any family or other non-participant visitors will not participate in course or program activities and cannot distract faculty leaders from their full-time responsibilities from course start to finish.
  • Make and keep accurate records of any problems or incidents such as conduct issues, illnesses, robberies/thefts.
  • Coordinate all required payments to US and non-US contracted partners.
  • Develop program contracts with educational organization or university partners in conjunction with Office of Global Education.
  • Keep original receipts and create a log of expenditures to reconcile account to $0 by an established date in June, after program completion.
  • If a student is withdrawing from the course, notify the Office of Global Education. Faculty leaders are responsible for calculating any unrecoverable costs at the time of the student's withdrawal from the course and communicating those costs to the Office of Global Education. The Office of Global Education will then work with the Registrar's Office to withdraw the student and Student Financial Services to get any unrecoverable costs charged to the student's account.

Role of Course Assistant

  • Assist Faculty leader in recruiting program participants.
  • Attend any training sessions by the Study Away Office (risk management, budget, etc.).
  • Attend and assist with student pre-departure orientation sessions.
  • Depending on course arrangements, program assistants may be required to travel with the group to the host destination. Others may be required to meet the group at the airport as they arrive. This varies by course.
  • Assist with logistics and academic components of course.
  • Assist students with basic tasks of settling in, including any housing issues, laundry, grocery shopping and local transportation details.
  • Participate in all scheduled activities.
  • Be available as a resource to student participants for duration of course.
  • Work with Faculty Leader to address student apprehensions regarding cultural differences and home-sickness, academic challenges and any behavioral issues that arise.
  • Serve as emergency backup during program. This could entail:
    • Handling student emergency situation while Faculty Leader continues with leading the course.
    • Administering course content and leading program, if Faculty Leader is unable to continue to do so due to illness, injury, etc.
  • Maintain access to students’ insurance, medical and emergency contact information.
  • Additionally, there may be course specific responsibilities that are not outlined above that will be discussed between the Faculty Leader and Course Assistant.
  • Assist with any post-course meetings
  • Assist with any items to close out the course (evaluations, budget, etc.)

Partner Educational Organizations and Universities

The Office of Study Away and CAS Dean ask faculty seeking to lead and facilitate a May Term Travel course to consider using a program provider organization. Program providers work with faculty leaders to craft and customize a course with all academic, co-curricular and logistical elements in mind. Top program organizations who we work with are leading non-profit educational organizations and not pre-packaged travel or tour operators. These partners offer academic and support networks and services around the global. Like any leading study abroad organization, while their first consideration is the health and safety of students and faculty, they also endeavor to ensure that courses and programs run smoothly through comprehensive logistical support while at the same time providing for the academic quality and integrity of the course intent and vision.

Provider Partners Services

  • Program Manager dedicated to the individual faculty program
  • Support and suggestions for the curricular and non-curricular elements of course development
  • Academic and professional scholars, practitioners, and speakers
  • Pre-departure materials, processes and support
  • Airport transfers and general transportation
  • Student accommodations: homestays, dormitories, apartments
  • Faculty accommodations
  • International Health Insurance
  • On-site orientation led by local staff
  • Co-curricular and social activities in the city or area guided by staff
  • Day or overnight excursions
  • Organize group meals to welcome and wrap-up program
  • Provide facilities including classroom space, access to study space, computer use/printers, wi-fi etc.
  • Access to study center offices as needed.
  • 24 hour support staff
  • Facilitate emergency services and insurance response upon critical incidents as needed.

Core University of Redlands Program Partners

  1. IES Abroad: England, Ireland, Germany, France, Spain, Italy, Netherlands, Morocco, China, Japan, Ecuador, Chile, Argentina, South Africa, Australia, New Zealand
  2. SIT Abroad: Theme based programs in Africa, South America, Asia, MENA, Europe
  3. CIEE: Argentina, Australia, Botswana, Canada, China, Costa Rica, Czech Republic, Denmark, Dominican Republic, England, France, Germany, Ghana, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Jordan, Mexico, Morocco, Netherlands, Portugal, Russia, Singapore, South Africa, South Korea, Spain
  4. DIS: Copenhagen, Denmark; Stockholm, Sweden
  5. Other Programs: AIFSAMIDEASTCETWorldStrides and API  as well as select university partners.

Date Parameters for May Term Travel Courses

  1. May term travel courses cannot exceed more than one week past the end of date of May term on campus.
  2. May term courses cannot overlap with summer term.
  3. Travel component of May term travel course must be a minimum of two weeks.

May Term travel courses must also be submitted to and approved by the Curriculum Committee. Course requests must be submitted in Curriculog, where it will be routed for committee review. The Curriculog link and procedure guides are housed in MyRedlands under CAPS & Curriculum Forms.