Academic Regulations


Students studying abroad under the auspices of Fries Center for Global Studies automatically receive credit toward their Wesleyan degree for all liberal arts courses taken abroad in fields taught at Wesleyan.

Students must enroll in the equivalent of four Wesleyan credits for each semester abroad. Permission for a fifth credit may be granted by the resident director of a Wesleyan-administered program, and by the Associate Director of Study Abroad for any other program.


The Office of Study Abroad does not determine whether courses taken abroad count for completion of any specific major. All such decisions are made by the academic departments, colleges, or programs. In order for a course to count toward the major, students must obtain approval from either their advisor or another member of the department prior to their departure from Wesleyan, as indicated on the online application. Permission to count a course toward the major cannot be granted retroactively.

Students may understandably need to modify their selection during the on-site registration period abroad. They are therefore expected to seek their advisor’s guidance and approval by email and must notify the Office of Study Abroad ( of any changes. Failure to do so may result in the student making inadequate progress toward the completion of the major.

In determining whether to count a course toward completion of the major, advisors may choose to make final approval contingent upon specific conditions. These conditions may include a minimum grade or portfolio review, that is, submission of the syllabus, course description and written work, upon returning to campus.

Some majors require, expect or encourage their students to study abroad. Note that Wesleyan students are not automatically granted permission to study abroad and they are not automatically accepted into a program merely on the basis of departmental requirements. Advance planning, beginning during the Freshman year, is crucial in order for these students to meet the language requirements that will qualify them for admission into the program of their choice.

Click here for a detailed list of department policies and requirements regarding courses taken abroad that might count toward the major.


Courses taken abroad must correspond to a department that exists at Wesleyan. The Office of Study Abroad records these courses in the student's academic history. Students wishing to take courses in fields not taught at Wesleyan, such as communication or education, must secure departmental approval in order to have these courses count toward graduation. Students are encouraged to speak to the Office of Study Abroad prior to contacting any department to verify if departmental approval is necessary. 

Effective January 2020, business courses taken abroad will not be approved for credit by the Economics department. To repeat, business classes taken abroad are not eligible to recieve Wesleyan credit. This includes but is not limited to courses in marketing, financial management, and business administration. 

Additionally, all students wishing to take courses in Studio Art or Film Production, regardless of whether they intend to count this credit toward the major, must secure prior approval by the Studio Art program or Film Studies departmentPlease note that pre-approval for such credits, when required, is not guaranteed. Without departmental approval, the student will not receive Wesleyan credit for the course. Advance planning (pre-approval) is crucial. 


Grades for study abroad are reported on the Wesleyan transcript and they are factored into the student's overall GPA. All courses must be taken in the graded mode (A-F) unless this option is unavailable. For some foreign universities, a conversion scale is used. The grades appearing on the foreign university's transcript may not necessarily correspond to the grade entered on the Wesleyan transcript.

All courses posted to the study abroad transcript must be posted to the Wesleyan transcript, unless the student is ineligible to receive Wesleyan credit for the course. The program or host university's add/drop deadlines and policies therefore apply, not Wesleyan's. Be aware that these deadlines and policies may differ significantly from Wesleyan's. Wesleyan is not able to drop a course from a study abroad transcript.


Many American institutions and programs use the “semester hour” system. Four (4.0) semester hours of coursework taken in this system are equivalent to one (1.0) credit in the Wesleyan system. Wesleyan students enrolled under the semester-hour system must therefore enroll in 15-16 semester hours of instruction in order to meet the required 4 Wesleyan credits (full load) of instruction abroad. This sometimes means taking five or more courses to equal four Wesleyan credits.


Students enrolling directly at a university abroad should be aware that there is considerable variation in the weighting of courses, not only from institution to institution but sometimes between schools or colleges within a single institution. In such cases, questions regarding equivalencies will be addressed on an individual basis. It should be noted that, for programs which include a language course, full weight is always given to that course. To the extent possible, we try to give full credit for courses that will earn major credit as well.


See our Summer Study Abroad page for more information.


Requests to satisfy general education expectations with courses abroad must be submitted in writing, along with the relevant course description and syllabus, to the Office of Study Abroad, either pre-departure or post-return, no later than mid-term of the semester in which they return to the Wesleyan Campus or when the transcript is received, whichever is later.  The OSA will review and approve the GenEd designations upon receipt of the request.  The OSA will attach documentation of this approval to the transcript from abroad, once it is received.  The Registrar's Office staff will post the course and GenEd designation upon receipt of the transcript and supporting documents.


Study on a program abroad does not satisfy Wesleyan’s residency requirement. The residency requirements for Wesleyan students are as follows:

      • Six semesters for first-year entrants
      • Five semesters for first-semester sophomore transfers
      • Four semesters for second-semester sophomore transfers


Extracurricular internships

An extracurricular internship abroad can offer a meaningful tool for cultural immersion.   Such internships are customarily administered through the on-site program staff.  Students interested in this experience should contact the office abroad.

Internships for credit

Wesleyan students have two options for transfering credit for an internship abroad:

      1. If the department from which a student wishes to receive credit for the internship offers an Education in the Field course, students may request approval for an appropriate level of credit from the department. See Wesleyan's course catalog for more information.
      2. Alternatively, students can earn .25 for an internship that entails at least 40 hours total (not per week), and they can count credit from up to two internships (maximum) toward graduation. This type of internship is graded CR/U and receives CSPL credit. Internships must be pre-approved by the Office of Study Abroad (, contain an academic component such as a paper or group project, and appear on the transcript provided by the program or institution.

Please note that when an internship is part of a study abroad program and appears on the study abroad transcript from the program or host institution, the student does not need to enroll in the internship course at Wesleyan. (The credit will transfer automatically.) A department or advisor may need to review the student's work, papers or other evidence for final approval.