Study abroad programs provide a wonderful opportunity to enhance a Columbia education, especially given the numerous programs either sponsored or approved by Columbia in foreign countries around the world. All study abroad programs, including Columbia-sponsored study abroad programs, must be approved by the GS Study Abroad Advisor. Students may be approved for a total of two semesters plus one summer session of study abroad; however, students will need to have good academic reasons for studying abroad for multiple or extended programs.
GS students who have a minimum GPA of 3.0 and are in good standing are eligible for study abroad. Prior to going abroad on an approved program, students are expected to have begun language study and taken at least one course, other than a language, related to the region of the world in which they plan to study. Before departing on an approved study abroad program, GS students should have completed at least two semesters and 18 credits at GS; have a minimum of 56 credits earned toward the degree; and have declared a major. Exceptions to some of these requirements are granted for students applying to Columbia-sponsored programs.
Students applying to one of Columbia's study abroad programs must complete the application forms and meet the deadlines specified by those individual programs as well as complete the GS study abroad clearance and registration forms for each program to which they are applying (including Columbia-sponsored programs). Students who wish to study abroad in programs other than those run by Columbia University may petition to do so only if the program is one approved by the Columbia Undergraduate Study Abroad Committee (see Columbia-Approved Study Abroad Programs).
Study abroad approval may be automatically rescinded if a student’s grade point average falls below 3.0, if a student fails to meet good academic and/or disciplinary standing, or if a student has an Incomplete in coursework the term prior to departure. Other conditions as imposed by the Committee on Academic Standing may apply.
Students interested in studying abroad on any program other than the SEE-U programs must start a profile on the Office of Global Programs website to obtain the required Clearance, Course Approval, and Registration forms. Please go to http://ogp.columbia.edu to find your program of choice and start your application. Please note, the application must be initiated several weeks prior to the clearance dates above to ensure that you will be able to obtain clearance on time. If you encounter any difficulty in finding your program or logging into the system, please email email@example.com for assistance. As soon as students have begun their online profiles, they are expected to bring their completed GS study abroad clearance forms to a meeting with the GS study abroad advisor in order to obtain official clearance to study abroad. The deadlines for these meetings are October 15 for spring-term study and March 15 for summer or fall-term study. As soon as they have obtained official clearance, students are also expected to meet with the regional advisor in the Office of Global Programs to continue with their specific program applications and complete the remaining application forms by the appropriate deadlines.
Limit on and Approval of Transfer Credits
Credits from non-Columbia programs may be counted toward the GS degree; however, a student's total number of transfer credits may not exceed 60. Students should meet with their GS academic advisors to discuss their eligibility and plans to study abroad before meeting with the GS Study Abroad Advisor to obtain clearance to study abroad.
If a student wishes to have courses from a particular study abroad program count toward major requirements in a department, the student must consult the relevant academic departments separately for that approval. Courses that are not approved by GS for transfer credit cannot be counted by a department toward major or concentration requirements.
Studying Abroad in Your Last Semester at GS
Seniors who elect to study abroad while completing their last semester of coursework for the degree must meet with their GS advisors to apply for graduation prior to going abroad. This option is only open for students attending Columbia-sponsored study abroad programs. Each student should note that his/her degree conferral date may depend on the actual completion date of the study abroad program, especially for those programs wherein the academic calendar ends later than the Columbia University Arts & Sciences Calendar.
Study Abroad Fee
Students studying abroad on non-Columbia-sponsored programs are charged an administrative fee of $750 per semester. (Summer study counts as one semester.)