The frequently answered questions are organized around the five topics below. If you would like to read a question related to a certain topic, please click on the appropriate link.
- Application process (deadlines, transcript, letters of recommendation, personal statement, application fees)
- Financial aid
- Courses (schedule, placement tests, etc.)
- Housing and travel to Madison
- After SEASSI Ends
How much does SEASSI cost?
SEASSI courses follow the UW-Madison tuition schedule; however all admitted students receive a scholarship to reduce the final tuition cost to no more than $4,300. There is also a one-time document fee of $130 for students who have not previously attended UW-Madison, which covers all future transcript requests.
Eeek! I just received my bill from UW and it doesn’t reflect the program fee of $4300. Instead it says I owe nearly $8,500! What should I do?
Don’t worry! SEASSI hasn’t provided the UW office of student accounts the list of SEASSI 2022 students yet, so you are being billed the usual UW summer session tuition. Within a few weeks, you should be able to view your revised tuition bill by logging into MyUW. If you don’t see a change in your bill by the end of May, please let us know as soon as possible so we can fix the problem.
Are the deadlines listed according to the postmark or the date application is received?
The deadlines are according to the postmark.
Can I send my transcripts and letters of recommendation separately?
Yes. However, please be sure that all materials have been sent and postmarked by the appropriate deadline.
Can my recommender send a letter of recommendation via email to email@example.com?
Yes. Once we receive your financial aid application, we will contact your recommenders with more information about submitting their letters. We request that recommenders follow up with a signed copy of the recommendation letter via email attachment, or hard copy in the mail.
I am a non-UW student and last year I had to fill out a Special Student Form. Am I required to fill it out again this year?
Yes. Every SEASSI applicant who does not currently attend the University of Wisconsin-Madison needs to fill out the special student application form to be formally admitted to the university for the summer. The special student status is needed to enable you to register for the language courses during SEASSI, as well as to have access to other campus facilities such as libraries, computer labs, and recreational facilities. Once we have received all your application materials and you have been admitted into the SEASSI program, we will send you information on how to fill out the online Special Student form.
I am a UW-Madison student, do I also need to fill out the UW Special Student form?
No. Only applicants who are not current UW-Madison students need to submit the Special Student form.
I was a SEASSI applicant last year. Do I still need to re-send all the transcripts and letters of recommendation or can I only send the most recent ones?
You don’t need to resend all the transcripts, but please send us the updated ones. Also, please specify which transcripts you would like us to transfer from your previous SEASSI application. We do not recommend reusing letters of recommendation from previous applications.
What should I write in my personal statement?
Your personal statement should be about your career goals and the reasons why you want to learn the particular language you’re interested in. Describe other ways in which you have been preparing for your career and/or research goals. Describe how your work will contribute to your field or benefit others. There is no minimum or maximum length for the statement of purpose, but most are about two pages long.
Are there letter of recommendation forms that we have to submit?
There are no special forms for the recommendation letter, but your recommender can expect an email from SEASSI with more information about submitting their recommendation letter once we have received your SEASSI application form. Please ask your recommender to write the recommendation on letterhead stationary.
Financial Aid and Fellowship Questions
Can anyone apply for a SEASSI Tuition Scholarship?
Yes, all applicants to SEASSI are eligible to apply for a SEASSI Tuition Scholarship regardless of their citizenship. The majority of these scholarships are awarded to graduate students, but interested undergraduates and professionals are also encouraged to apply.
What does the SEASSI Tuition Scholarship cover?
Most SEASSI Tuition Scholarships awarded are partial scholarships to cover part of the SEASSI tuition cost, up to 50%.
I already have a Ph.D. Can I apply for the FLAS Fellowship?
No, FLAS awards cannot be made to post-docs or persons who have already completed a Ph.D. Current graduate students are eligible to apply for FLAS fellowships.
I am not a U.S. citizen. Can I apply for a FLAS Fellowship?
No, the FLAS Fellowship competition is open only to U.S. citizens and permanent residents. Applicants who are not U.S. citizens or permanent residents are encouraged to apply for the SEASSI Tuition Scholarship award.
Am I eligible to apply for a FLAS fellowship?
FLAS fellowships can only be awarded to current graduate students, as well as to undergraduate students studying a language at the second-year level or above. FLAS fellowships are also awarded to people who are applying to graduate programs but who have not yet been admitted. If you are a permanent resident, please submit a copy of proofs of residency.
How many FLAS fellowships are awarded to SEASSI students each year?
We have not yet received final information on the total funding for the FLAS fellowships, so we cannot tell exactly how many FLAS fellowships will be awarded for SEASSI. However, we are expecting approximately 20 FLAS fellowships to be awarded this year and possibly more.
Is there a separate form to use for applying for the FLAS Fellowship or the SEASSI Tuition Scholarship?
There is no separate application form for the FLAS fellowship or SEASSI Tuition Scholarship. Fill out the main application form for the SEASSI program and be sure to “x” the boxes indicating which award(s) you are applying to.
Is it going to harm my chances to get a FLAS Fellowship this year if I was a FLAS recipient last year?
Receiving a FLAS award one summer will neither harm nor help your chances in subsequent summer FLAS competitions.
Questions on SEASSI Courses
How many contact hours is each SEASSI course, and what is the teaching methodology?
Each SEASSI language course has a total of 160 contact hours over the 8-week course. SEASSI courses are taught using the communicative approach with an emphasis on integrated language skills.
Can SEASSI offer instruction in other Southeast Asian languages?
We often receive inquiries from persons seeking instruction in other languages of Southeast Asia, such as Malay, Javanese, Balinese, etc. SEASSI can offer instruction in these languages if there are at least four students enrolled in the class, and if we can find a qualified teacher. If you are interested in enrolling in such a class, it is critical that you contact us as early as possible, and no later than February 1st.
Do you offer any special language instruction for heritage students?
In addition to the regular classes, SEASSI also offers specialized courses in Hmong, Khmer, Lao, and Vietnamese for Southeast Asian American students. For more information about SEASSI heritage language programs, please contact us.
Can I take more than one language?
Since all language courses are scheduled at the same time, it is NOT possible to pursue more than one language during SEASSI.
How do the teachers determine our language level?
On the first day of class (occasionally earlier), we will hold assessments for enrollment guidance to make a final determination regarding which language levels the students belong to. In the application form, please indicate your formal language study and informal language exposure. The information will help the teachers to make preliminary placement decisions. As much as possible we try to modularize instruction so that students can make optimal progress. You may be in one level for your reading/writing placement and a different level for your speaking/listening placement.
What days and times are the classes?
The classes will run Monday through Fridays from 8:00am – 12:30pm with a break mid-morning as determined by the teachers.
Should I work/study for prelims/etc. during SEASSI?
We encourage students to budget approximately 8 hours per day for their language studies, including four hours per day of class time and approximately four hours per day of external review and work. Given this, it can be difficult to maintain the same commitment to external obligations (such as doctoral research, part-time or full-time jobs, etc.) as possible during a normal academic year. Many of our students elect to devote all their time to their language studies. For some, this is not a possibility. If you fall into this category, note there are challenges, but with strong time management skills and support from the SEASSI Staff, it is possible to succeed in our summer program.
May I take off a few days from SEASSI to attend a wedding/conference/special event?
Due to the intensive nature of the language courses, we ask all SEASSI students to make every effort to attend the full length of the institute. If you anticipate missing class, you must let the SEASSI staff and your teachers know in advance. You will need to ask permission from your teachers. Students who miss class are responsible for catching up to the rest of the class and cannot expect teachers to give them individual “catch-up” tutorials. Your course grades may be affected significantly by the missing of class as well, especially in the case of unexcused absences.
Can I come late to SEASSI?
We realize that the finals and academic calendars of other schools conflict with the University of Wisconsin summer sessions schedule. However, due to the intensive nature of the language courses, we ask all SEASSI students to make every effort to attend the full length of the institute. If you anticipate a schedule conflict, please let us know as soon as possible so that we can work with you and your professors on possible solutions. Students who arrive at SEASSI after the institute has begun are responsible for catching up to the rest of the class and cannot expect teachers to give them individual “catch-up” tutorials. Your course grades may be affected significantly by the missing of class as well.
Can I leave early from SEASSI?
Technically yes. However, we will NOT give final exams in advance, therefore leaving early will result in your receiving a lower grade. If you are planning to leave early from SEASSI it is advisable to not register for the second session in order for you to avoid getting lower grades. If you anticipate that you will need to leave early, it is extremely important for you to inform us in advance.
Can I only attend the first half of SEASSI?
Yes you can, but you will not receive full year academic credit and you are still required to pay the full tuition amount for the whole program.
Housing and Travel Information
Where can I find a sublet for the summer?
If you visit the Housing Options in Madison page, you will find a list of housing options in Madison including links to websites to look for sublet ads. Additionally, please feel free to contact us for additional summer housing resources.
What’s the nearest airport for me to fly into Madison?
Madison’s local airport, Dane County Airport (code: MSN) is the nearest airport to fly into. The airport is just a 15 minute taxi ride from downtown Madison. Some students also choose to fly into Milwaukee’s airport (MKE) or Chicago O’Hare airport (ORD). However, if you choose to fly into O’hare or Milwaukee, keep in mind that you will need to take a 3-hour bus from Chicago’s O’Hare Airport or a 2-hour bus from Milwaukee to get to Madison. For details on your travel options to Madison, please see the Travel and Parking page.
Is it possible to find someone to carpool with to Madison?
Once you have been admitted to SEASSI, you can be added to a Facebook group for your SEASSI cohort. There, you will be able to communicate with fellow SEASSI students to coordinate rideshares and sublets with each other.
After SEASSI Ends
For how long can I keep my UW-Madison email account after SEASSI ends?
All SEASSI participants who are not UW-Madison students during the academic year will lose access to their UW-Madison email account early in the fall semester that follows SEASSI. If you wish to keep in touch with SEASSI classmates after the summer is over, we recommend that you provide a more permanent email address for us to include in the SEASSI student directory.
If I am not a student at UW-Madison during the academic year, how can I access my SEASSI grades and print out an unofficial transcript after I lose the UW-Madison email account?
You will always have access to your grades and unofficial transcript online even after you are no longer enrolled at UW-Madison. To view your grades, go to my.wisc.edu and login using your NetID and Password. Then, launch your Student Center, select “Self-Service” at the top of the window, followed by “Academic Records” then “Request My Student Record.” Official UW-Madison transcripts containing your SEASSI grades can also be obtained through the “Academic Records” section of your Student Record.