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Session Break Policy



Longer term students studying at all EC centres are welcome to take a session break to enjoy some free time traveling or returning home for a short visit. It should be noted that session break rules will vary by location and are based on local visa regulations. Students returning from their session break cannot expect to return to the same class, teacher or accommodation. No credit is given for accommodation during session breaks. Students requiring a visa for study must ensure that their visa is issued for the correct dates to include any session breaks.

Session break policies by location can be found below. For further questions please speak with your EC Contact.

Students studying at EC Malta on a Tourist Visa and staying for 90 days:

  • Students must be booked for an 8 week course or longer to qualify for a session break.
  • Students booking a 8 - 23 week course are allowed a maximum of 2 week session break.

Students studying at EC UK, EC Canada, EC Malta (non-tourist visa) & EC South Africa:

  • Students must be booked for at least a 12 week course in order to qualify for a session break.
  • Students who booked a 12 - 23 week course can have a maximum of 2 week session break.
  • Students who booked 24 weeks + can have a maximum of 4 week session break.
  • Students who have attendance of 80% and lower cannot apply for session break.
  • Students can use the session break weeks separately or at once.
  • Students can use the session break period anytime except during exam preparation.
  • Students must give a 2 week period of notice.
  • Students are solely responsible for ensuring their visa is issued for the correct dates to include any session break.
  • Study weeks are postponed, not lost provided that 2 weeks’ notice is given (in case of Accommodation, EC’s cancellation policy is followed especially for those in student residences. No credit is given for accommodation).
  • Number of study weeks required in-between vacations is 4 weeks.

Students studying at EC Dublin:

  • Students studying a 1 - 15 week course are not allowed to have any session break during their course.
  • Students studying a 16 - 23 week course may take a 2 week session break.
  • Students studying 24 weeks or more are eligible for a 4 week session break.
  • No breaks may be taken during exam preparation.
  • Students must study for at least 4 weeks after any session break.
  • Students who are eligible for a session break must book it at the time of booking their course.

Students studying at EC US centres on an F-1 Student Visa:

  • Students must be booked for a 12 week course or longer in order to qualify for a session break.
  • Students are allowed to take one 2 week session break after they have completed 12 weeks of studies. Breaks cannot be combined and should a student choose to only take one of the two weeks available, the second week will be lost. Students must have at least 4 weeks of courses booked and paid for upon returning from their break.
  • Students must have overall attendance of 80% or higher to qualify for a session break.
  • Students cannot use the session break period during exam preparations.
  • If a student is transferring from one EC Centre in the US to another, a session break may be taken between courses only if the student has completed 12 weeks of study at the first location and meets attendance qualifications.
  • Students must give a 2 week period of notice before taking a session break.
  • Students who are planning to leave the country during their break, will require the signature of the school DSO to travel.
  • Students who are planning to leave the country, and have less than 80% attendance are permitted to depart, as long as we terminate current I-20, and issue an I-20 for their return. Attendance calculation will start over once they re-enter on the new I-20.

Students studying at EC On-Campus:

  • Students must be booked for 16 weeks or longer to qualify for a 2 week session break.
  • Students must have 80% attendance or higher to qualify for a session break.
  • Students must be booked for at least 4 weeks after their break and paid in full in order to qualify.
  • No session break may exceed 2 weeks and the weeks cannot be divided up. Unused weeks will be forfeited.
  • Students in US based centres will require the DSO signature for travel outside the US during their break.
  • Students who are planning to leave the country, and have less than 80% attendance are permitted to depart, as long as we terminate current I-20, and issue an I-20 for their return. Attendance calculation will start over once they re-enter on the new I-20.

US Students on Extended Leave:

  • Students who have a family emergency or need to return home for medical reasons may take a leave of absence for up to 5 months and remain on their currently issued I-20. Leaves of absence are determined on a case by case basis and require approval of the centre DSO.