All ESF students who wish to study off-campus including abroad locations as part of their academic program must obtain ESF approval prior to applying for acceptance to an off-campus program.
A students who does not meet one of the eligibility requirements, may seek to have the requirement waived by submitting a Petition to the Faculty (available at the Registrar’s Office). The student must provide an adequate justification for the request and submit any appropriate supporting documentation. The Petition Form must be signed by the student’s Academic Advisor and Curriculum Coordinator and then submitted to the Office of Instruction and Graduate Studies (227 Bray Hall) in order for the Associate Provost of Instruction to make a determination.
If the Petition is approved by the Associate Provost of Instruction, the student may continue with the ESF off-campus study approval process. A copy of the approved Petition must be submitted with the Off-Campus Study Request Form.
ESF students may choose to pursue off-campus study opportunities during the summer or winter/J-term. Since these are not required academic semester, there are no ESF eligibility requirements other than to complete the ESF off-campus study approval process including submitting an Off-Campus Study Request Form, Petition to the Faculty (available at the Registrar's Office), and attaching the course description of the courses you will take off-campus to ensure that credits taken abroad meet the curriculum requirements for a student's program of study and eligibility for transfer to ESF after completing the off-campus program (must obtain a "C" or better in a course in order for the credits to transfer). Individual off-campus study programs, however, will likely have minimum eligibility requirements detailed in their application process that students will have to meet in order to obtain admission to the particular program.
ESF students who meet the general eligibility requirements or who obtain a waiver via an approved Petition to the Faculty, must complete the Off-Campus Study Request Form, a Petition to the Faculty listing courses to be taken off-campus (the Petition Form is available at the Registrar's Office), and attach a copy of the course descriptions for the courses you intend to take off-campus. All Off-Campus Study Request materials must be submitted to the Office of International Education (302 Bray Hall); if the Office of International Education is closed, you may submit materials to the Office of Instruction and Graduate Studies (227 Bray Hall).
As part of your request, you will have to select the courses you intend to take off-campus and consult with your academic advisor to determine how they fit into your ESF academic program. You must enter the courses you will take abroad into the Academic Plan section of the Off-Campus Study Request Form (page 2), complete a Petition to the Faculty to pre-petition the transfer of credits (be sure to list the courses you will take, what ESF program requirements they satisfy, and attach the course descriptions) and then obtain the authorization of your academic advisor, curriculum coordinator, and finally the Associate Provost for Instruction (227 Bray Hall) on both the Petition and Request Forms. If a student receives all three signatures on both forms, the off-campus academic plan would then be considered acceptable according to ESF’s academic standards. Upon the Associate Provost's review of the completed Off-Campus Study Request Form and Petition, students will receive an email notifying them of the outcome. If a student's off-campus study request is approved, s/he may proceed with applying to the desired off-campus program. The Coordinator of International Education would at this time be able to sign any application forms requiring a study abroad advisor's signature.
Approved students will receive an additional form in the approval notification email, the Approved Off-Campus Study Data Form. This form will require students to meet with the Financial Aid and the Bursar in order to discuss how their off-campus study will impact their ESF student status, financial aid package, and Bursar's bill for the semester(s) off-campus. Please note that students who are approved to attend an off-campus program ARE NOT automatically eligible for financial aid to pay for this. The Financial Aid requirements vary and you must meet with the ESF Financial Aid office to discuss your approved program to determine if it can be funded or if additional funds are available.
The completed Approved Off-Campus Study Data Form must be submitted to the Office of International Education with a copy of your letter of acceptance to the off-campus program, information regarding billing procedures for the program, and flight information prior to the off-campus experience. Additional information for students who have been approved by ESF to study off-campus is available online.
When you return from studying off-campus, you will have to submit your official transcript from the off-campus program to the Registrar’s Office. The credits for courses in which you achieve a C or higher will then be transferred in (not the grades). The off-campus study experience will appear on your transcript as "Advanced Standing Credit" and the University who the credit was earned through and the number of credits earned will be noted.
As you go about selecting a study abroad location and preparing to study abroad, you may find it helpful to review the Online Guide to Educational Systems Around the World.
Q: When should I start panning for my off-campus or study abroad experience?
A: You should start planning a year before you intend to study abroad/off-campus. This gives you ample time to find a program that meets your academic needs and personal interests, to meet with your advisor to discuss your course selection, to complete the ESF off-campus study approval process, to submit your application to the program administrator, and to determine how you will finance the experience. You may find it helpful to review the The Study Abroad Handbook in order to help plan for and select a program that meets your academic and personal interests.
Q: When is the best time to study off-campus for a semester?
A: Undergraduate students typically study off-campus during their sophomore or junior year.
Q: How will I pay for it?
A: Off-campus study and study abroad may be funded partially or completely through scholarship, grants, and other such programs. Please review the funding resources above and check with the program administrator to see if any additional opportunities exist. Further, you may be able to include your off-campus study/study abroad experience in your financial aid plan. Please consult the ESF Office of Financial Aid & Scholarship for additional information about how studying off-campus may impact your financial aid package.
Q: How will it impact my program of study at ESF?
A: As part of the ESF off-campus study approval process, you are required to meet with your academic advisor to discuss the courses you intend to take in the program and how they fit into your academic program at ESF. Together, you will complete a Petition of the Faculty and the Academic Plan section of the Off-Campus Study Request Form in which you identify the courses you will take and the credits in your ESF program you would like them to fulfill upon transfer to ESF after completion of the program. Your advisor and the Curriculum Coordinator must sign off on your Petition and academic plan. The completed Petition and Off-Campus Study Request Form is reviewed by the Associate Provost for Instruction and forwarded to the General Education Committee for review if necessary. Your approved Petition and Off-Campus Study Request Form from acts a pre-approval for the transfer of credits from your off-campus study experience for each course you pass with a grade of “C” or better . Please note that if you are participating in a program other than a Syracuse University Overseas Center program and SUNY-ESF program, only the credits will transfer back (not the grade).
Q: Does it have to be directly related to my major?
A: The program you select would be directly-related to course requirements you have not yet fulfilled in your ESF program of study. Some students choose to take science-based courses related to their major ; others save their electives courses and take more liberal arts courses while they are off-campus. The most important things to consider are how the courses taken off-campus will fit into your ESF program of study and if they will meet your graduation course requirements. These items should be discussed with your academic advisor.
Q: What other things should I be thinking about?
A: Passport and visa acquisition, health and travel insurance, finances, immunizations, safety, leisure are just a few of the things you should think about as you begin to plan your study abroad experience. Additional information about these topics is available on the "approved students" webpage.
If you do not have comprehensive health insurance with medical evacuation and repatriation, you may purchase the SUNY plan serviced by Haylor, Freyer & Coon at the Cashier's Office for $91/ month.