Academic Information

For the most up-to-date information on courses offered, please visit the World Partner’s website as well as checking with the Syracuse Abroad approved course list for your program (available on each program’s brochure page on the Syracuse Abroad website). You should note that not all courses on the list are guaranteed to be offered every semester. You should also review the World Partner Academic policies document available in OrangeAbroad upon your acceptance to the program.

Enrollment Policy

World Partner students must maintain full time student status while abroad. Undergraduates are considered full time at 12 credits and graduate students are considered full-time with 9 credits. Credit is determined by contact hours per week not by the units listed by the foreign university. Undergrads may not enroll in more than 19 credits except by special permission received prior to your departure. Please refer to your World Partner’s website for additional enrollment requirements.

Note for International Students: International Students must maintain full-time status or they will lose their active immigration status and will have to re-apply for both SEVIS and their visa.  International students should make sure to meet with the Center for International Services as part of their preparations for studying abroad.

Course Add/Drop/Withdraw: After your initial registration is complete, any changes in your course schedule must be made in consultation with your World Partner program, Syracuse Abroad, and your academic advisor/s. Students must follow the World Partner’s policy for dropping or withdrawing from classes.

Course Selection, Advising and Registration Process

After acceptance to a program, you must complete a World Partner Student Advising Form listing your intended courses as well as alternate selections. You can download the form from OrangeAbroad. This form will help you determine how courses you plan to take abroad will fit into your academic plan and keep you on track for graduation. You should have this form reviewed and signed by your home college advisor/s so you know whether and how the courses will count in your degree program. It must be returned to Syracuse Abroad with original signatures.

This form does not guarantee enrollment. You will register directly with the World Partner according to their instructions, and your Syracuse registration will be posted once the Syracuse course numbers are assigned by Syracuse academic departments for all of your courses. You will finalize your course registration after arrival on site. You must confirm with Syracuse Abroad immediately after finalizing your courses so that we can register your courses in MySlice. If you have any further changes in your class registration (including adds and drops) please be sure to inform Syracuse Abroad of these changes, and forward the syllabus for each newly added course. Be sure to consult with your academic advisor/s as well. See more below for how new courses are approved.

To help students choose courses, Syracuse Abroad maintains a list of pre-approved courses for each program (available on each World Partner brochure page). You will use this list and other information provided by the World Partner to select your courses for your semester abroad. However, it is important to keep in mind that not all courses on the Syracuse Abroad approved list are not guaranteed to be offered every semester, and some World Partner course offerings might not be confirmed until shortly before you arrive on site.

Every course not included on Syracuse Abroad’s list of approved courses must be approved by the appropriate academic department and assigned a course number (e.g., history courses must be approved by the History Department). Syracuse Abroad facilitates this process, but course approval decisions are made by Syracuse University faculty, usually the department chair. A full syllabus is required for final course approval. Please keep in mind that this process can take time, as Syracuse Abroad has to wait for faculty to respond to our request for a course to be approved.

To fulfill requirements in your major/minor, you MUST meet with the designated academic advisor for course review and approval. For electives, your home college advisor can review and advise if your choices will satisfy your general or core requirements. Syracuse Abroad cannot determine what courses will fulfill your academic requirements. In some cases, you may need to petition a course to fulfill a specific requirement. Please note: if your academic advisor approves a course to fulfill a requirement it does not mean they are approved for SU credit. If courses are not listed on the WP brochure page they are not approved for SU credit.

It is your responsibility to select courses that do not repeat prior study (even if the course is taught in another language or has a different title or course number). If you do not follow this advice, you run the risk of not earning credit for such a course. If you have any questions about whether a course covers the same or similar material to one already on your transcript, have your advisor review the new course syllabus.

Students enrolling in a language course should take care  to register for the appropriate level. Students who have received credit for prior college-level study, including AP or other transfer credit, should register for the next level course. Students without this prior study should register for the level determined by a placement exam. You should not register for a language course either less or more advanced than the appropriate level without first consulting with your academic advisor.

Grades and Transcripts

Grades: The grading systems at World Partners (especially those with courses taught at foreign universities) may differ from the American grading scale. If so, grades are converted to the A-F system as determined in accordance with established equivalencies.

You may find that the grades you receive at the foreign institution are lower than those you typically receive at Syracuse. In many countries, the grade of “A” is awarded with far less frequency than in the US and the grade of “C” is considered quite respectable. You might earn a lower GPA than you have earned at Syracuse.

All work for registered classes must be completed on or before the degree certification date. Graduating seniors should seek advice from their home college regarding their degree certification date.

Pass/Fail: You must receive a letter grade for each course that you take at the foreign institution. Undergraduate students abroad are allowed to request only ONE course to appear as pass/fail on the SU transcript. Your home college must approve your Pass/Fail request, received at the Syracuse Abroad office no later than two weeks after the start of your classes.

Do not assume that your request for a pass/fail grade will be approved. Late requests will not be honored. Courses graded on a Pass/Fail basis at SU cannot be used to meet any degree requirement and some Schools/Colleges have additional restrictions. These are published in the SU Academic Rules and Regulations.

Due to the time required for Syracuse Abroad to receive and submit forms on students’ behalf, students requesting Pass/Fail grading for any course are strongly encouraged to discuss in advance with their academic advisor whether such a request is likely to be approved.

Graduate students cannot convert a letter graded course to a pass/fail.

Transcripts: We must receive a transcript from your World Partner program upon completion of your semester abroad. Transcripts sent to any other office on campus, including the registrar, will not be forwarded. In some cases, your program may not automatically send a transcript and it is your responsibility to make that request. Please send to:

Syracuse University Abroad
Attention: World Partner Programs
106 Walnut Place, Syracuse, NY  13244-2650

E-transcripts should be sent to

Transcripts from World Partner programs can take 6-12 weeks to arrive after the semester has ended. This may delay certification reviews or official graduation.

Keep copies of all work that you submit abroad and bring them back to campus along with any work that was returned to you, as well as a course syllabus or list of textbooks and/or other resources used in your courses. These documents could prove critical in the event of a grade dispute or if an instructor claims an assignment is missing. If you save your work on a computer, be sure to make a second copy (on a flash drive) or keep a paper copy.

You are receiving Syracuse University credit. ALL courses are directly registered to your SU academic record. Your grades from the foreign university will be posted to your student record (including grades of C- and D, where applicable) and will be calculated into your cumulative GPA.

You will be registered using the “-80”, SU selected topics designation for courses taken at a foreign institution at an appropriate lower-division (180 or 280) or upper-division level (380 or 480). These courses will appear on your SU academic transcript under the sub-heading Program Abroad, followed by the name of your host institution and the country in which it is located.

Syracuse University Library Resources

Syracuse University’s Bird Library has extensive online journals, databases, and other resources available to you 24 hours a day while you’re studying abroad. Please visit the Syracuse University Libraries website for more information.

Independent Study/Research

An Independent Study course is usually approved only when necessary to meet a degree requirement that cannot be fulfilled by a course abroad or upon your return to campus. Also, an appropriate faculty sponsor and research materials must be available abroad. Students participating in World Partner programs that require independent projects are exempt from this policy. 

Most independent research projects are registered at the 300- or 400-level. Independent Study Proposals must be completed and signed by you, your academic advisor, Department Chair, and your home college/school. If Syracuse University approves, your faculty sponsor may be faculty at the World Partner program or a Syracuse Faculty sponsor. Please determine this with your academic advisor before you depart.

Once all signatures have been obtained, please return your proposal to If you are completing the forms when you are abroad, Syracuse Abroad can help you obtain the required signatures.


Internships are available through some World Partner programs. If you intend for an internship to meet a degree requirement, you should discuss this with your home college or major advisor and Syracuse Abroad staff before you go abroad. Syracuse University Newhouse students in communications internships must arrange for a main campus Newhouse faculty sponsor before going abroad; they will then need to petition for approval once the internship is confirmed. Because Internships abroad do not fulfill SU Whitman students’ internship degree requirement, students must discuss any internship plan with Whitman advising staff.

In all cases, students should get preliminary approval for internships or research experiences by their home college advisor prior to departure in order to fully understand their college’s expectations.

Note that approval for internship credit is based on the proposal you submit once your internship is finalized abroad. This form is subject to review by the appropriate academic department and your home school or college.

Online Courses

You are required to take the minimum number of credits required by your World Partner program. As you plan your courses, we encourage you to take advantage of your study abroad location and first consider the in-person courses offered. Some World Partners may also offer online courses as well. If you also need to take an online class offered by Syracuse University to stay on track for graduation, please consider these factors: 

  • Potential differences in academic calendars 
  • Time difference for a synchronous course 
  • Internet access abroad (including during the travel portion of the Signature Seminar, if applicable) 
  • Availability of required and supplemental texts or other resources 

You should register for any Syracuse online courses during your regular Main Campus registration appointment. Please note that Syracuse Abroad cannot assist with your registration for an online course.

Program Dates

Program dates are provided by the World Partner program. Students should not make any personal travel plans until they receive more information regarding the program dates from their World Partner program. Academic requirements cannot be waived or changed to accommodate personal travel or activities. Failure to attend a required class or activity due to personal travel, even if made prior to departure, will be treated as an unexcused absence, which may affect your final grade.

Some programs may not have a semester break and many have different breaks, exam periods, and program start and end dates from main campus.