Academic Policies

These special academic rules and regulations apply to our programs abroad and are here for your review. Please also review academic information in Preparing to Go.

Academic Probation

Students must be in good academic standing in order to participate in Syracuse Abroad programs. You may not apply for admission if you are on academic probation*. If you are placed on academic probation after acceptance to our program or prior to departure, you may be withdrawn from the program. The final decision regarding your participation will be made in consultation with your home school/college or home institution if you are a visiting student. You should notify your International Program Advisor at Syracuse Abroad if you are placed on academic probation. You may also be subject to a financial penalty for a late withdrawal in alignment with our refund policy.

*Academic probation should not be confused with academic integrity probation. If you are on academic integrity probation you may apply for and participate in our programs.

Student Status

Full-time status: If you participate in a semester or academic-year undergraduate program, you are required to enroll as a full-time student, registering for at least 12 credits of Syracuse Abroad courses, excluding credits earned for any Signature Seminar. Due to local immigration requirements, in our Florence, London, and Madrid programs, you may not drop below 12 credits (not counting Signature Seminar credits).

You may register for a maximum of 19 credits each semester, including credits for a Signature Seminar. You may not enroll in more than 19 credits except by special permission. If you receive approval to take more than the maximum credit load, you will be charged an additional per-credit tuition fee for each credit over 19, unless you are an SU student who is eligible and approved for an overload rate exception. Information on overload rate exceptioeligibility can be found in the Syracuse University Tuition, Fees, and Related Policies.

Part-time status: Under exceptional circumstances, you may be allowed to enroll in an undergraduate semester program on a part-time basis. Special permission is required. Part-time students are not eligible for study abroad grants or most forms of financial aid.

Summer: Summer students typically enroll in 3 to 9 credits. Six credits is considered full-time.

Foreign Language Study

Because language study is integral to understanding a new culture, all students are required to enroll in foreign language courses while they are participating in a fall or spring semester Syracuse Abroad center-based program (except London). Some World Partner programs also require students to enroll in a foreign language course. The number of credits required varies by program.

Course Add/Drop/Withdraw

After registration, you may change your schedule by adding or dropping courses after consulting with your home school/college academic advisor. Courses may not be added after the date announced in the program academic calendar. Courses – other than required Signature Seminars – may be dropped at any time up to the drop deadline announced in the program academic calendar. Courses dropped by this date are not recorded on your transcript. After this date, and by the withdrawal deadline announced in the program academic calendar, you may withdraw from a course by completing the Class Withdrawal Petition and will receive a WD on your transcript.

Signature Seminar courses are required for participants in the Madrid, Santiago, and Central Europe programs and may not be dropped. (However, students who are continuing for a second semester at the same center may opt not to take a second Signature Seminar.)

Undergraduate students requesting to drop below 12 credits must first consult a home college academic advisor and financial aid counselor to ensure this would not have adverse academic or financial consequences. Note that dropping below 12 credits is not possible at all centers due to immigration or program requirements.

NOTE: London program students must maintain a registration of at least 12 credits of courses taught in London throughout the semester in order to comply with UK immigration requirements. Also due to local immigration requirements, Madrid and Florence students must maintain a registration of 12 credits and may not drop below 12 (not counting Signature Seminar credits) at any point during the semester.

Audit Requests for Semester & Full-Year Students

Undergraduate students enrolled in graded courses totaling at least 12 semester credits and graduate students enrolled in graded courses totaling at least 9 credits may request to take one additional Syracuse Abroad center course on an audit basis, subject to the approval and restrictions of the instructor and program director. You must submit the Grading Option Audit form by the published deadline and cannot rescind the selection after the deadline. Audited courses are non-credit, do not meet any degree requirements, and aren’t counted toward enrollment status. Instructors may record a grading symbol of NA instead of AU if you never attend class. Some courses may not be audited including Signature Seminars, courses offered at a local university, studio courses, applied music and ensemble courses, independent research, experience credit courses or internships, and courses required by the program (exceptions may be made for students enrolled in a graduate degree program). Auditors are only allowed in a class with open seats after all students taking the course for credit have been given an opportunity to register. For this reason, audit requests are considered on site, not during online registration.

Academic Integrity Policy

The Syracuse University Academic Integrity Policy is available online.

Pass/Fail Requests for Semester & Full-Year Students

Syracuse Abroad students are limited to one Pass/Fail graded course each semester abroad. Pass/Fail requests are made online via MySlice and must be submitted by the Pass/Fail deadline announced in the program academic calendar. Pass/fail deadlines are strictly enforced. You may not rescind the option after the pass/fail deadline.

  • Visiting Students: Visiting students should find out prior to departure whether or not their home college will transfer credits taken Pass/Fail. At Syracuse, “Pass” represents a grade of D or better. Pass/Fail requests are only accepted with written confirmation of your home school’s approval.
  • Syracuse University Students: The pass/fail option may not be applied to courses for your major, minor, area of concentration, professional option, or specific college requirements. Your home school may have additional restrictions and must approve any request for a Pass/Fail grade (see P/F (Pass/Fail) heading under section 8.4.1 of “Academic Rules” online). Students wishing to major in, or change their major to, a field in which they have previously taken a course under the Pass/Fail option must consult the department concerned, which will determine whether the course can be used to satisfy departmental requirements. Because the deadline is strict and occurs early in the semester, SU students requesting Pass/Fail grading for any course are strongly encouraged to discuss in advance with their home school/college academic advisor(s) whether such a request is likely to be approved.

Independent Research

You may propose an independent study project prior to departure if you need to satisfy a degree requirement that cannot be met by any course offered by our program and to stay on track for graduation. Summer students do not always have this option. You must obtain approval for an independent study project in advance by submitting a Proposal for Independent Study Course to Syracuse Abroad by May 15 (fall semester) or November 15 (spring semester) or April 15 (summer programs). Proposal forms are available on the SU Registrar’s website. Proposals should include your rationale for undertaking independent research during your semester abroad, a description of the project, and the number of credits per semester (generally limited to three credits). Independent projects require the support and endorsement of Syracuse Abroad, the academic department, and your home college.

Independent Research Designed Overseas

Under some circumstances, you may be able to design an independent study project upon arrival overseas, provided the project is approved by the center director, the supervising faculty member, and the appropriate SU department chair and college dean. Such possibilities are limited by the availability of our resources abroad, and cannot be guaranteed.

Online Courses Taught at Main Campus and College of Professional Studies

You are required to take a minimum of 12-13 credits of courses offered by your program abroad; Florence, London, Madrid and Strasbourg students in a Signature Seminar must take at least 15-16 credits of courses offered by these programs. As you plan your full course load, we encourage you to take advantage of your study abroad location and first consider the in-person courses offered abroad. Some Centers also offer online courses which may include onsite study tours so you can view or experience what you are studying.

If you also want to take an online class offered by the main campus or College of Professional Studies, 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 main campus or College of Professional Studies online course during your regular Main Campus registration appointment. Please note that Syracuse Abroad cannot assist with your registration for a main campus or College for Professional Studies online course.