Depending on where your study abroad takes place, your citizenship, and length of your stay, you may need a visa before your departure. Make sure to review all destination(s) Entry & Exit Requirements within the Country Specific Information.
Also consider any additional travel you may want to do beyond your study abroad program. Do NOT book or make plans for a scheduled departure date before discussing your additional travel plans with your Study Abroad Advisor. Extending your stay prior to or after your study abroad program may have visa implications.
Obtaining a visa requires many steps and is a time sensitive process. Every country's visa process and regulations are different. Always start your planning early as some require in-person appointments to consulates in Miami, FL or Washington, D.C., some are available online or through the mail, and others are multi-step processes that could take months to process.
The best resource is to consult either the embassy or consulate's website to find out their requirements. Your Study Abroad Advisor can also help guide you with visa instructions based on the information you provide them ahead of time.
It is ultimately the students' responsibility to receive and obtain all necessary documents prior to departure.