The Graduate Learning Overseas (GLO) project is a three-year initiative focused on U.S. graduate student mobility. The GLO survey was carried out in 2018 as a one-time, comprehensive survey of graduate students' various educational activities overseas. The GLO initiative is supported by funding from the U.S. Department of Education, Office of International and Foreign Language Education.

Any questions not answered below may be directed to IIE's Research, Evaluation & Learning (REL) team at


No. This is a one-time survey and aims to collect information distinct from Open Doors. Data collected from the GLO survey will not be integrated with Open Doors data. The annual Open Doors surveys will follow their regular schedule.


The GLO Survey focuses solely on the U.S. graduate student population. It expands data collection on student learning overseas to include: U.S. and international graduate students in all parts of the survey, as well as for-credit and non-credit educational activities in all parts of the survey.


A total of 205 U.S. higher education institutions and schools responded to the survey. A list of those who participated and agreed to be publicly recognized can be found here.

While most respondents were staff members in study abroad offices, many reported working with academic departments and deans, risk management offices, and institutional research departments to collect the requested GLO data. The office where this data ‘lives’ on any given campus differs from institution to institution, therefore the survey was designed to accommodate responses from a variety of different campus offices and entities. Respondents were able to enter data for their entire institution or for a specific school within an institution.


Survey respondents provided data on students enrolled in a graduate degree program at their institution who participated in educational activities overseas, whether through their institution, through another institution/organization, or on their own. To avoid double counting, survey respondents did not report students from other institutions who participated in their overseas programs. The survey also includes both U.S. (citizens and permanent residents) and international students (non-immigrant international students on temporary visas) enrolled at the graduate level.


All information reported in the GLO survey is based on the 2016/17 academic year (fall 2016 through summer 2017), including intersessions or school breaks during the academic year.


There was no minimum amount of time.


The GLO survey included all graduate students’ educational activities overseas, such as coursework, research or field work, internships, co-ops or work experience, volunteering or service learning, travel seminars or study tours, and language study. It also includes overseas experiences for both academic credit and non-credit educational activities overseas. It does not include conference participation or overseas trips or activities that are for personal leisure. 


The last phase of the GLO project focuses on disseminating findings from the survey and building resources for the field. Please check out our resources page for updates, as well as IIE’s interactive newsletter for GLO announcements.