Lebanese American University

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Incoming Students

Attending LAU for 1 semester or 1 year 

Visiting students/Study abroad

If there is no exchange agreement between your home university and LAU and you are interested in attending LAU for 1 semester/1 year, then you will have to follow the below instructions:

Documents required:

  • Official transcripts from your home university
  • 2 recent passport-size photos (taken within the past six months)
  • A clear photocopy of your identity card or passport
  • Certified copies of all official certificates or diplomas
  • English requirements

Exchange/Erasmus students

If you are coming to LAU through one of our partner universities or Erasmus projects then you need to follow the below instructions:

How to apply:

  • Fill out an application
    Please make sure to specify the correct type of application when you create your account: “Exchange Application”

Documents required:

  • Copy of your transcripts from your home university
  • 2 recent passport-size photos (taken within the past six months)
  • A clear photocopy of your identity card or passport
  • Certified copies of all official certificates or diploma

Once the application is complete, we will process the acceptance letter and send it to you on your mailing address.

Learning agreement

Kindly check the updated course offerings for the semester you will be attending LAU

.Update your learning agreement accordingly and send it to us. Please note that Campus 1 stands for Beirut Campus and Campus 2 stands for Byblos Campus

Course Load:

The MAXIMUM number of credits that you can register:

  • 18 credits for undergraduate students
  • 9 credits for graduate students

SINARC Program in Beirut campus is a full program of 14 credits; you can register in it as a replacement of regular courses.

Academic Calendar for dates and deadlines, kindly find the following link of the academic calendar:    

Advising

You have to meet with your advisor to get the approval on your courses:

Registration

  • If you are an exchange student, you cannot register your courses online
  • You will need to pass by the Office of International Services on your campus, fill in a Registration Form according to your signed Learning Agreement that you had already submitted. 
  • You have to get the approval of your advisor on the courses you want to register and complete your Learning agreement
  • Always check your final schedule under Registration > Student Detail Schedule, to make sure your courses are indeed on your record. Also do this if you come back later to make a change. Print your detailed schedule for future reference. Use the “Exit” link at the top-right of the screen, to protect your privacy

Tuition fees

The payment of tuition fees at LAU for exchange students is usually organized by the agreement between LAU and the other international institution. Given that the courses’ tuition fees is waived based on the agreement, still exchange students might be charged other fees like: Medical Insurance/ NSSF/Personal accidents on campus/ Student association fund.
To settle your other fees, you need to follow the steps on the Student Portal in “My finances” tab  , or else your courses will be automatically deleted.

Degree-seeking students

Pre-arrival

Health

Mandatory:

  • Complete the following Enrollment Health Record and sign it from your personal doctor
  • You can substitute the immunization reports by a photocopy of your vaccination record booklet

Submit the above mentioned documents to the Health Office on your campus upon arrival.

  • You have to have a health insurance policy that covers your stay at LAU. If you have one, please pass by the Dean of Students Office at LAU upon your arrival and provide a proof of your insurance plan in order to waive the LAU insurance fees
  • As for the Social Security, only French students are required to bring a copy of their Social Security card in order to waive the NSSF fee off their statements. Students with other nationalities will not be charged this fee
  • For further info regarding medical coverage charges, please refer to student insurance plan

General Tips:

  • Yellow fever vaccination certificates are required if one arrives from an infected area
  • Hepatitis A and typhoid vaccinations are recommended if one intends to travel to rural areas
  • Hepatitis A & Meningococcal Vaccines and  tuberculin skin test are mandatory for all those who desire to reside at LAU Residence Halls
  • Modern medical facilities are widely available in Lebanon, although some of the hospitals can be expensive, so one must take out a comprehensive travel insurance policy
  • Students who have chronic medical cases are advised to bring their medications with them for their entire stay in Lebanon since medication prices can be somewhat high in Lebanon, and the LAU student insurance does not cover medicine cost

For more assistance, contact our Health offices.

Housing

Airport arrival

Rafiq Hariri International Airport is the only international airport in Lebanon-Beirut:

  • Entry Visa is granted based on student nationality. You can find the list of countries that have right to Entry VISA on the following General Security link.
  • The Lebanese Ministry of Tourism provides an estimation of taxi rates from the airport to all Lebanese regions on the following link: Taxi Rates: You can negotiate a taxi upon arrival to the airport or you can reserve a taxi online for your pick up.

For assistance, please check the recommended companies below:

Residency papers

To get your residency papers sorted out you will need:

  • A valid passport with an expiration date of at least one year.
  • Three copies of your passport.
  • Three (3.5 cm*4.3 cm) new color personal photos with a white background.
  • Enrollment Letter issued by the Office of International Services at LAU for exchange students only. Other students should, after collection of statement of fees period, request an enrollment letter from Registrar on their Banner account:
    • This enrollment letter must be certified by the Ministry of Higher Education (located in Beirut, in Palace Habib Abi Chahla besides UNESCO Palace-Ministry, Tel: 01-789611). Approximate cost LBP 2,000.
    • This enrollment letter should also be certified by your respective embassy.
    • Students living outside Beirut can send the letter for certification by Libanpost
  • Proof of your tuition payment (Scholarship Contract or Statement of Fees).
  • Commitment not to work in Lebanon from a Notary/Writer of Justice:
    • Recommended Notary around Beirut campus: Hamra, Leon Street next to Lebanon and Gulf Bank: Jihan Saab; Phone Number: 01-752450
    • Recommended Notary in Byblos, near Bank Libano-Francais: Vera Daoud; Phone Number: 09-945471
  • Document showing the source of your living expenses. 
  • Housing attestation from “Mokhtar” 
  • After preparing all these documents, pass by the General Security and apply for your Residency Permit. Please note that you will need to submit a detailed address, so make sure you know your address and have it with you when you go:
    • If residing in central Beirut: General Security office facing Sodeco ; phone number: 01-429060/1
    • If residing in Byblos: General Security, Byblos branch, Saraya, facing Bank Byblos main street; phone number: 09-945868

For any inquiries about Residency issues please contact the General Security Hotline 1717, they are very helpful or check their website.

Please note that whether you are planning to stay in Lebanon for 4 months, 6 months or even a year, you will apply for a 1 year residency and the cost is LBP 250,000 which must be paid in Lebanese Currency at the General Security.​

Living in Lebanon

Safety/Security

  • Once you arrive to Lebanon, complete the Attestation Form and submit it to the Office of the International Services on your campus
  • Connect with your embassy to let them know you are here. View the Embassies directory
  • LAU is committed to making its campuses safe and secure, providing students with an optimum environment for learning, pursuing interests, and socializing
  •  Emergency numbers: Students can call the Protection Department on ext. 1100 (Beirut) and 2146 (Byblos) at any time
  • There is a high feeling of security in Lebanon because of the various security stops and armed guards in most areas
  • In Beirut, as in other towns and villages, streets are particularly safe day and night; random violence is seldom experienced by both locals and visitors
  • Consult the Office of International Services if you intend to visit peripheral areas of Lebanon
  • It is preferable to move around in groups
  • Watch our for theft in busy touristic areas
  • It is recommended that you do not discuss your political views with strangers
  • When visiting any religious place, one must dress modestly

University Emergency Numbers

  • Medical Assistance Emergency during work hours: 1040 (Beirut) and 2040 (Byblos)
    o Winter (September-May) 8:00 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.
    o Summer (June-August) 7:30 a.m. - 2:30 p.m.
  • Medical Assistance Emergency outside work hours: 1500 (Beirut) and 2500 (Byblos)
  • Facilities Emergency (to report fire, water flood or leakage, electricity problems, etc.): 1010 (Beirut) and 2020 (Byblos)
  • Students can call the Protection department on ext. 1500 (Beirut) and 2500 (Byblos) at any time.
Lebanon Emergency Numbers 
  • Police:112
  • Fire: 175
  • Red Cross: 140

For more information and contact details, refer to this page. 

Cost of living

Being the capital of Lebanon, Beirut is the most expensive city in the country. Nevertheless, compared to Europe, living in Beirut is more or less affordable.

Accommodation Within Beirut $600-1000/month
Outside Beirut $400-600/month
Food $400
Leisure $150

Transportation

  • Buses

    • Beirut has frequent bus connections to other cities in Lebanon.
    • The Lebanese Commuting Company is one of a handful brand of public transportations.
    • The publicly owned buses are managed by the Railway and Public Transportation Authority.
    • Buses for northern destinations leave from Charles Helou station.
    • Buses are popular and inexpensive and can be stopped anywhere by hailing.
    • Never take the bus without verifying the destination with the driver.
    •  The fair is for LBP 1,000.
    • There are public buses and private buses.
  • Taxis and Service (Ser-Veece)

    • People are served by taxis or service.
    • A service is a lot cheaper than a taxi because it is a “shared taxi” but the price must be bargained before setting off.
    • Service-taxis are the most popular means of transportation in Lebanon.
    • They are recognizable by their red plate and most of them are old Mercedes.
    • You can take a taxi by hailing.
    • Specify if you want it as a taxi or a service.

Telecommunication in Lebanon:

Lebanon Country code is +961. It’s suitable for you to buy a local SIM card since you are staying more than one month. The cost of a SIM card is around $30 which is charged monthly for about $26; Touch and Alfa are the only providers.

Buddy Program 

The Buddy Program is an opportunity to promote cultural exchange and international understanding on LAU campuses and to facilitate the integration of international students in Lebanon and at LAU. The idea is to match international students with local students in groups at the beginning of the semester, and encourage them to meet, interact, and learn from each other.

Local students are encouraged to help the international students with any questions before their arrival and during their stay in Lebanon. They provide the friendly face, helping hand, and first Lebanese friendship that can make a world of difference for new arrivals. Buddies can also offer linguistic support, cultural guidance and information about life at LAU and in Lebanon.

The Program also allows students returning from an international experience to support fellow students in their preparations for their semester abroad.

At the start of every semester the OIS hosts a Buddy Meeting for the participants of the program.

“Buddy” activities would include:

  • Campus tours
  • Locating nearby banks, grocery stores, bookstores, etc.
  • Support in local housing
  • Fun outings to familiarize students with the country
  • Meetings with selected outgoing students to provide tips on how to prepare and what to expect abroad
  • Be part of orientation meeting and pre-departure orientation
  • Excursions/hikes/touring trips around Lebanon
  • Gatherings in hometown/villages/homes for familiarity and immersion in culture.

To connect with your LAU-Buddy, please send an email to international.services@lau.edu.lb

Checklist 

Before you travel

  • Complete the LAU online application
  • Make sure to submit all required documents as instructed by OIS or Admissions
  • Complete the Enrollment Health Record and sign it from your personal doctor
  • Go through a general checkup and get a medical report in case you have any specific medical case
  • Prepare an emergency medical kit that can be useful in case of emergency while you are here
  • Make sure you have a medical insurance for your stay in Lebanon or else you will be charged the LAU Medical insurance fees. View LAU’s medical insurance fees and requirements .
  • Bring with you 6 new colored personal photos (3.5 cm*4.3 cm) with a white background.
  • Send OIS your arrival and departure dates
  • Complete your learning agreement and send it to OIS

When you arrive to your destination country

  • Attend orientation and any other events organized by LAU
  • Get to know your surroundings. Make sure to take safety measures, meaning, do not use large money notes at street kiosks but at the same time don’t get paranoid!
  • Contact your embassy in Lebanon and provide them with your contact info
  • Complete the Attestation Form and submit it to the Office of the International Services on your campus
  • If there are any changes in your contact information in Lebanon during your stay at LAU, it is your responsibility to notify the OIS a.s.a.p.
  • Submit the Enrollment Health Record to the Health office on your campus
  • Update your learning agreement and submit it to OIS before registration dates at LAU
  • Embrace the difference because this is why you are here.

Before your leave Lebanon

  • Confirm your departure date with OIS
  • Meet with OIS staff to assess you experience at LAU
  • Complete the online assessment form you will receive in order to guarantee smooth processing of all paper work
  • Pass by the business office at LAU to make sure no outstanding fees are on your records. Any outstanding fees will result in a hold on your account and official transcripts cannot be issued.

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