Frequently Asked Questions

  • A garden at the Indian Institute of Science

    Flowers blooming in front of the J.N.Tata Statue at the Indian Institute of Science

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    Why study abroad in Bangalore? What is India like?

    Bangalore is the third largest city in India and is a technology and scientific research hub. Located in southern India, Bangalore is home to a rich culture, delicious food and great people. India is an incredible country with as amazing opportunities for travel and experiencing an exciting culture and way of life.

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    What are the academic courses like at the Indian Institute of Science (IISc)?

    Courses at IISc are academically rigorous but provide opportunity for independent study. With a focus on outside reading and research, lectures are meant as a supplement to textbook information. Self-motivated students have the flexibility to learn a wide range of topics amongst a cohort of enthusiastic and dedicated peers.

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    As I science major with little flexibility, when should I start to think about the program?

    As a science major, it is best to plan classes accordingly to make studying abroad a possibility. As early as your first year, you can begin to think which courses you will need as prerequisites to higher level courses and which you need before studying abroad. Classes at the IISc can be transferred for credit in most science majors, so meeting with the study abroad liaison in the science department can help students decide which courses to take abroad for their major.

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    What are the differences between this program and other Brandeis-Led Study Abroad Programs?

    This program is intended for highly-motivated students pursuing a major in the sciences. In the past, students have come from physics, biology, neuroscience, computer science, chemistry, and environmental studies backgrounds. If you are a science or pre-health student looking to get science credit while abroad, this program can fulfill these demands while providing a life changing global experience.

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    What is the living and meal situation like? Will I get sick?

    Students are housed in residence halls on campus. All the rooms are singles (some with a separate balcony) and the buildings are open-air style with courtyards and lots of sunlight. There are a few options for eating on campus including dining halls serving traditional Indian fare (always meat and vegetarian options available) and multiple restaurants that offer a multi-ethnic menu. All the water served in dining halls and restaurants on campus is filtered, but there is always an option to buy bottled water throughout campus. Bottled water is recommended when off-campus and while traveling, but this is a very accessible and cheap commodity.

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    How does the cost of going to India for a semester compare to staying in the US?

    India is less expensive in nearly all areas of living. With typically meals in the on-campus restaurant costing about $2, students are able to spend money more widely on traveling and experiences. Flights around India can cost as low as $40 and many transportation opportunities such as bus, train and rickshaw make getting around inexpensive and simple.

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    Do my grades factor back into my GPA back at Brandeis?

    No. All classes transfer back for credit as long as you earn a C- or better. Courses do not figure into your GPA and do not appear on your transcript. Learn more.

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    Do I only have to take science classes while I'm there?

    IISc is a science-focused institution so the focus is on science disciplines. However, there are opportunities for students to take Humanities courses focused on Indian culture and traditions at the Institute.

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    I am interested in doing research while on the program, what are my next steps?

    Faculty at IISc are happy to accept undergraduate students into their labs for the semester. The IISc website lists all of its labs, divided by specific research topic, including contact information for the professors. There are opportunities for all students to find a lab that deals with their research interests and goals. After acceptance into the program you will be instructed about this process.