You are required to complete college-wide requirements prior to the start of your senior year. These include:
___ 1 unit of College Seminar
___ 1 unit of Quantitative Skills
___ Foreign Language Requirement
___ 2 units of Division I: Social Sciences
___ 2 units of Division II: Natural Sciences and Mathematics (including a lab course)
___ 2 units of Division III: Humanities
___ 8 credits in Physical Education (including the swim test)
You should have completed a minimum of 4 PE credits by the time of the application. It is not realistic to expect to satisfy the Q or Division II requirements while abroad or, in most cases, to study a language other than the native language of the country for which you apply.
If you are planning to study abroad for the full academic year, normally you will have completed all your requirements, including PE, by the end of the sophomore year. With prior approval from the Director of Athletics and Physical Education and appropriate documentation, it is possible to earn a maximum of 2 PE credits while abroad. If you are planning to study abroad for one semester, you should have made good progress towards completing these requirements by the end of the sophomore year and present a viable plan to complete them all by the end of the junior year.
Students failing to meet these standards or failing to present a viable plan will receive lower priority in the Foreign Studies Committee approval process.
If a student plans to study in a non-English speaking country, she should take courses in the relevant foreign language every semester at Bryn Mawr prior to study abroad. If the student is applying to a program in which the primary language of instruction is not English, she needs to go to the language department and ask the Major Advisor to make sure that she has adequate preparation. Most non-English speaking programs expect students to complete at least intermediate language courses before matriculation, and some require more advanced preparation. Even after a student has met Bryn Mawr’s foreign language requirement through proficiency testing or advance placement credit, she should continue building her foreign language skills in upper-level courses
If you are interested in studying abroad in your junior year, you must declare your major (s) well before submitting your study abroad application. For students proposing independent majors, exceptions to this deadline will be considered on a case-by-case basis. Viable candidates will have already made good progress in their majors and will be maintaining a major grade point average of at least 3.0.
Most students may study abroad for one semester only during their academic career. The committee will consider requests for exceptions to this rule from students majoring in a foreign language and those accepted to. Cambridge, Oxford or the London School of Economics, which are yearlong programs for which one semester is not an option.
Each applicant for study abroad is expected to be on campus during the semester preceding study abroad in order to participate in orientation program and to consult with her dean and major adviser about credit arrangements. For exceptions, see “Leave of Absence and Study Abroad” under the section “Study Abroad Policies”
Study Abroad Information Session: Attend mandatory Study Abroad general information session for sophomores
A student is required to carry a full-time course load while studying abroad. Each Bryn Mawr course (one unit) carries an equivalent of four semester hours or six quarter hours at other institutions. Because of differences in the academic calendar or course weighting, the number of courses that constitute a full-time load at an overseas institution may be different from the number of courses that constitute a full-time load at Bryn Mawr. The maximum number of Bryn Mawr-equivalent credits that may be awarded for a semester of study abroad is five units, and for a full academic year, the maximum number is ten units.
To earn a semester of credit—four Bryn Mawr units—you will need to complete 15 or 16 semester-hours or between 22 and 24 quarter-hours during your study abroad. For example, if each course offered by a study abroad program carries three semester hours, you will need to take five courses to receive a full semester of Bryn Mawr credit. A student taking a full load for only one term of a three-term year will receive three Bryn Mawr units; a full load for two terms will receive five units; and a full load for three terms will receive eight units. Students should not take courses graded as pass/fail while abroad.
It is the student’s responsibility to know the required number of courses she must take overseas before leaving Bryn Mawr and how many Bryn Mawr equivalent credits will be awarded upon her return. She should discuss any question she may have with the Director of International Programs, her dean, or her Major Advisor. In cases where a full-time course load for a term abroad is the equivalent of only three Bryn Mawr course units, a student will still be charged regular Bryn Mawr tuition.
Courses used to fulfill requirements in a student’s major
All courses taken abroad to fulfill major requirements must be approved by the student’s Major Advisor. You should list all the courses you plan to take while abroad on the Major Work Plan. Be sure to work out a tentative plan of courses to take upon returning to Bryn Mawr. Courses in subjects or departments not offered at Bryn Mawr may need approval from a related Bryn Mawr department to assure their eligibility for credit. For example, Geography courses might be approved by Growth and Structure of Cities, Geology, or Political Science.
Foreign Language Study While Abroad
To enhance cross-cultural understanding, a student is expected to enroll in the language course offered by the study abroad program unless she receives a waiver. If you attend a program where the instruction is in English but the local language is not English, you must study the local language. For example, if a student participates in the DIS program in Denmark, she is required to register for Danish.
Transferring Credits from Abroad
In order to transfer credits to Bryn Mawr, you must earn a “C” grade of 2.0 or above. “C-“(minus) grades are not acceptable for transfer credits. Courses that lie outside the liberal arts will not be transferable (e.g., Business, Communications, Fashion Design, etc.).
Grades Earned Abroad and Bryn Mawr GPA
Grades earned abroad, which are judged by individual instructors according to local practice, are not included in a student’s Bryn Mawr Grade Point Average. Only the number of transferred credits is recorded on the Bryn Mawr transcript. Nonetheless, you may be asked to submit your study abroad transcript when you apply to graduate or professional schools, which will certainly take the study abroad grades into consideration when evaluating your application.
The health and security of our students are two of the College's primary concerns. We work collaboratively with overseas programs and institutions, study abroad colleagues around the country, and contacts in the U.S. Department of State and other government and non-governmental agencies to ensure that all students and their families receive adequate and up-to-date information regarding preparation and participation in study abroad.
As a study abroad student, we expect you to:
The U.S. Department of State Web site at http://travel.state.gov/ offers consular information sheets for every country of the world. These sheets list such information as the location of the U.S. embassy or consulate in the subject country, entry requirements, health and safety issues, road conditions and other useful information for travelers. The Department of State also issues travel warnings, which advise travelers to avoid a country or specific area of a country. The College does not send students to countries or regions that appear in the Department of State’s Travel Warnings.
In study abroad, as in other settings, parents can play an important role in the health and safety of students by helping them make decisions and by influencing their behavior overseas. We recommend that parents: