The GSEP Program Concept

The GSEP curriculum is based on custom-designed 4.5 to 5-year academic plans that carefully integrate studies towards the student's core science and engineering degree combined with language learning. The custom sequence of language courses provide solid language proficiency as well as extensive knowledge in culture and customs for science and engineering professionals.  The mission of GSEP is to prepare international leaders in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) disciplines with the skills to effectively communicate across borders and cultures and creatively address the complex issues of the future.

Program Structure

Program Structure

The GSEP program structure is as follows, occurring in three stages:

Year 1 - 3: students study their STEM and language courses on NAU campus, participating in GSEP monthly meetings, enrichment activities, and potentially a short term international trip.

Year 4: students go abroad to a country that speaks the language they are studying. The first semester is spent studying at a partner academic institution. Students can take courses in language learning, their discipline, electives or liberal arts, but at least two courses must be taken in the foreign language. The second semester is spent doing an internship or research experience in the students’ interest area, conducted entirely in the foreign language (French, German, Spanish) or in English with exposure to the foreign language (Japanese, Chinese).

Year 5: students return to NAU campus and complete their final coursework and STEM capstone, present their research, and participate with the incoming GSEP students.

Double Major

Language learning and cultural preparation is the cornerstone of the GSEP program; it is what sets GSEP scholars apart from other science and engineering students. Ideally, students begin taking language coursework in their first semester freshman year. Students with prior experience in language can take placement tests to begin in advanced language courses, which will be helpful as students’ prepare for an immersion experience.

Students studying French, German or Spanish declare a BA in Modern Languages, emphasis Global Science and Engineering. Students studying Chinese or Japanese declare a BA in Comparative Cultural Studies, emphasis Asian Studies. Customized progression plans for each STEM major and both second majors can be found here.


GSEP includes a variety of features to create a strong sense of identity and community among GSEP scholars, including professional development, outings, and group activities. GSEP scholars are strongly encouraged to join the iHouse beginning in their Sophomore year, a residence hall, which provides a space for a GSEP learning and living community with exposure to international students from your destination country; a great way to practice your language skills. The strong sense of community provides a strong network of mutual support and shared experiences. GSEP scholars will make friendships that will last a lifetime.

For specific program information and advising, contact

To receive an information packet, including brochures on the program and applications forms, fill out a request.