Study Abroad Advising
When a student plans to go abroad, you as her advisor will play a pivotal role in making sure her study abroad experience meets her/our academic expectations. In order to make the most of her academic opportunities abroad, as well as make sure she stays on target with her curriculum here, it is important that you help advise in the following ways:
BE AWARE OF HER 4-YEAR PLAN
- Knowing when certain major, minor or LBA requirements, as well as their prerequisites, are offered at Stephens College plays a big role in determining (a) when the student chooses to study abroad, and (b) what classes she takes while abroad. Studying abroad should not prevent “on-time” graduation. Your role in working with your student is to make sure she doesn’t “miss” an all-important class. If her academic program is “too full,” you might encourage her to take advantage of summer or interim study abroad programs, including faculty-led programs.
KNOW PROCEDURES FOR REQUIRED COURSEWORK TAKEN ABROAD
- If while abroad, a student decides to take classes for her major, minor or liberal arts requirement, it is important that she jumps through the necessary hoops at home. Working with your advisee, you will need to fill out a Transfer Approval Form (available on the Study Abroad website), which will include the course description, syllabus, and departmental approval for the abroad class. Most of our affiliates provide access to course descriptions and syllabi on the website. For further assistance, you can contact the Study Abroad Coordinator or the host institution, itself.
ENCOURAGE ELECTIVES ABROAD
- Studying abroad is a great time for new experiences in and out of the classroom. Encourage your student to take classes in the local language or about local history, politics or economics. It will help her gain a fuller understanding of her host country. Elective courses taken abroad will transfer in as any non-Stephens elective credit would, and will not need to go through the same rigor that classes replacing a required course would.
HAVE A PLAN B
- While you might have worked tirelessly with your advisee to find the perfect schedule while abroad, the reality is course offerings might change. If a course is not offered or changed when your student arrives at her destination, it is important you work with your student to find an appropriate substitute.
UNDERSTAND AFFILIATE VS. NON-AFFILIATE PROGRAMS
- All universities and programs listed on our Study Abroad Programs page are affiliate programs. This means any classes a student takes while attending the host institution will be counted as Stephens’ credit: her grades will be on her transcript, and they will affect her GPA. Students choosing to study with a non-affiliate program will transfer in credits. While they must receive at least a C- for the credit to transfer, they will not affect her GPA.
BE AWARE OF IMPORTANT DEADLINES
- Deadlines are an important part of the study abroad process. Your student will have two sets of deadlines:
- Deadlines set by the host institutions, which vary by institution (some of these are outlined on our Programs page).
- Deadlines set by Stephens College (see below).
The deadlines for the Stephens College application for the 2011-2012 academic year are:
I plan to study abroad: Application Due:
|Fall Semester||March 1, 2012|
|Winter Break||September 19, 2011|
|Spring Semester||October 3, 2011|
|Summer & Yearlong Study Abroad||March 1, 2012|
Not only are your students forms due this date, but so is the part of the application you are required to fill out.
FILL OUT THE ACADEMIC DEPARTMENT STUDY ABROAD RECOMMENDATION
- The Study Abroad Program Committee asks that you fill out a form that shows what classes the student plans to take abroad, how many hours she will be taking, and what the Stephens equivalent would be. It is recommended you do this part with your student. However, we also ask if you would recommend this student for a study abroad experience. Please be forthright: if you have any reservations about your student going abroad, let us know. Once completed, put the form in a sealed envelope and return it to the Study Abroad Coordinator.
PROVIDE LETTERS OF RECOMMENDATION
- If your student asks you for a letter of recommendation for our process, please be honest in your appraisal of the opportunities and possible drawbacks that could be part of your student’s time abroad.
MAKE SURE YOUR STUDENT IS ELIGIBLE
- The Study Abroad Program Committee requires that all students applying to study abroad must not be on academic probation, have at least a cumulative GPA of 2.5, have completed their Freshmen year, and they must not have committed any major judicial offenses while at Stephens.
KNOW DEPARTMENTAL PREREQUISITES
- While the Study Abroad Program Committee has set minimum requirements for study abroad, please be aware that each department might have higher standards for students studying with them. Please check with the appropriate department head to see what standards (GPA, language requirements, class standing, year, prerequisites, etc), if any, are necessary for a student in your department to study abroad.