Study Abroad Credit Approval Process

All coursework taken abroad counts toward a student's GPA. It can transfer back to Fredonia as general elective credit, or it can be approved for other degree requirements. If students want study abroad coursework to fulfill any specific degree requirements or credits, they must go through the approval process with the appropriate departments on campus.  To begin this process, students should use the Overseas Course Approval Form after being accepted to their study abroad program.

Beginning the Credit Approval Process - Overview

  1. Explore coursework at the institution abroad to see if you can find courses that are equivalent to those that you must take at Fredonia.
  2. Gather specific course information from the institution abroad, such as a syllabus or course description, which you will need to bring to meetings with Department Chairs.
  3. Make appointments with the department chairs for course approvals. (Search here to find out who is a department chair.) If you are taking courses from different disciplines, the chair of each area will need to approve the course transfer. When you make these appointments, let them know you are planning to study abroad and that you want to talk about approval of a course in their department. You might also send the information about the course prior to your meeting. You will bring the approval form to the appointment as well as the information you gathered about the course. If the course is equivalent to a Fredonia course and is also a Fredonia Foundations course, also make an appointment for approval from the Associate Provost for Curriculum, Assessment, and Academic Support.
  4. If you want to take a course that does not have a Fredonia equivalent and you want Fredonia Foundations credit, submit the Request for Waiver, Substitution form to the Associate Provost for Curriculum, Assessment, and Academic Support.
  5. Return all forms to the Office of International Education to be held with your study abroad file. When you return, your transcript will come to our office, and we will work with your forms, the transcript, and the registrar's office to post the approved credit.

Getting Approval for Major/Minor Courses 

If you are seeking approval for coursework that pertains for your major(s) or minor(s), you must work directly with the appropriate department chair(s).  Bring as much information about the courses you intend to take abroad to the department chair (syllabus, course description) so that they can make an informed decision about equivalency.  Department chairs have sole discretion to determine if coursework abroad can be applied to the student's degree.  

Getting Approval for Fredonia Foundations Courses

If you are seeking approval for a Fredonia Foundations coursework, you should consult the Fredonia Foundations courses to see if there are any equivalencies. If you believe that you find a course abroad that is equivalent to a Fredonia Foundations course, you should meet with the department chair where the course is offered.  For example, if you find a Spanish language course at your institution abroad that you believe is equivalent to SPAN 110, you must meet with the department chair for World Languages & Cultures for approval.

What If My Courses Change While Abroad?

If your course schedule at your university abroad changes, it is up to you to pursue and obtain approvals for new courses you may take.  Because you are abroad, you may email the department chair where the major/minor or Fredonia Foundations course is offered, but you must include the Office of International Education on these approval emails.  Remember, it is still important that you enroll in coursework that is equivalent to requirements at Fredonia so that you have the best chance of the course being approved.

After receiving approval from the department chair, the Office of International Education will update your Overseas Course Approval form and send it to department chairs and the Associate Provost for signatures.  It will then be kept in your file until you return from your time abroad.

When You Return from Study Abroad

The Office of International Education keeps your Course Approval form in your study abroad file until your study abroad transcript is received.  Please be aware that some transcripts can take weeks or months to arrive.  Upon receipt of your transcript, OIE will send your transcript and course approval form to the Registrar, and both are kept in your advising folder.  Your advisor will be able to see what coursework was taken abroad, what grades were received, and what coursework counts toward your degree.

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