Study Abroad Course Approval Procedures

  1. Study abroad and the Washington, DC course approval forms are available on approved student’s study abroad applications. They can also download a copy here.
  2. Completed course approval forms must be submitted to the Study Abroad Advisor within a month of the student’s respective Elizabethtown College study abroad application deadline. Therefore, they’re due by November 15, for spring and winter students, and April 15, for summer and fall students, the semester prior to departure. The form must be signed by the student, the student’s academic advisor(s), and the appropriate department chair governing any courses that will be transferring for a major or minor program. Students must attach copies of current course descriptions for all listed courses. Completed forms should be submitted to the Study Abroad Advisor who will forward them onto the Registrar for final approval.
  3. After final approval, the Registrar will email the student, the student’s academic advisor(s), and the Study Abroad Advisor a copy of the final course approval form. Students should retain this form and take it overseas.
  4. Historical information indicating the way in which courses have transferred in the past will be invalid if institutions have revised these course of if Elizabethtown College course expectation have changed. Thus, historical data may be used as a guide when completing the application form, but should not be regards as a guarantee of how a course will transfer.
  5. Once students are abroad and need to change or update any of the information on the course approval form, they should contact the Study Abroad Advisor and Registrar. This is an important step to ensure that courses transfer appropriately upon return to Elizabethtown College.

Transcripts and Transfer

Upon complete of courses, international transcripts may take at least four months to arrive at Elizabethtown College. All offices, including the Financial Aid Office and the Business Office, are aware of this time lapse. Everything possible is done to help expedite the receipt of transcript process.

Receipt of the transcript may be further delayed, if the student has an outstanding balance or has not completed exit interview procedures with their study abroad provider or host institution. Providers and institutions will likely not release transcripts until all invoices are paid in full.

For complete explanation of the College’s transfer credit policy, refer to the Academic Policies chapter of the Elizabethtown College Catalog.

Credits Earned Overseas

Credits, not grades, transfer back to Elizabethtown College; therefore, GPAs are not affected.

Countries calculate grades and credits differently. Grades and credit hours are converted to meet US standards.

The Elizabethtown College Transfer Credit policy allows a 3-credit transfer course to satisfy a 4-credit Elizabethtown College program requirement, although the number of credits transferring in remains 3.

Creative Expression Core must be satisfied with the completion of one 3- or 4-credit course, two 2-credit offerings, or four 1-credit courses. Depending on the courses offered at the foreign institution, this is not always a core that can be completed abroad. To fulfill a core requirement, students need to doing something hands-on, such creating art, photography, music or creative writing.

Students must complete two Natural and Physical Science (NPS) Core requirements. At least one must be a lab science. Coursework for NPS must be completed in two different disciplines.

The Guided Writing and Research (GWR) Core requirement requires submitting a course syllabus for evaluation after your program concludes, so be sure to save all syllabi from your study abroad experience. Courses satisfying GWR must include instruction and evaluation in the writing process and not only writing products.

If the course is intended for a major/minor requirement, you should obtain the preapproval/signature of the governing department Chair(s) prior to submitting the course approval from to the Study Abroad Advisor.

Credits earned through any Elizabethtown College affiliated program or approved non-affiliate program will count toward graduation credit residency requirements. See your department chair to determine major and minor residency requirements.

Grade Requirements and Class Standing

Minimum grade requirements for transfer: C- or above

Credits are not calculated into your class standing until the transcript is received, processed, and posted to your academic record. Therefore, some difficulty with the Financial Aid Office, Residence Life lottery numbers, class standing, and Registration may arise until your study abroad transcript is received.

Class standings: Sophomore, 30-59 credits; Junior, 60-89 credits; Senior, 90 or more credits.

Transcripts for Post-Secondary or Employment Applications

Federal law prohibits schools from copying and releasing another school’s transcript, so the transcript sent to Elizabethtown College, after your study abroad experience, cannot be copied by us and sent to graduate schools or employers. All transcripts received in the Office of Registration and Records belong to Elizabethtown College. Students are responsible for contacting the credit granting institution (host institution) for a copy of their official transcripts for advanced studies or employment requirements.

It is recommended that you request additional official transcripts for personal use while still abroad. We encourage you to have them sent to your home address for use when applying to graduate school and/or employment. Transcripts are only considered official if they are in an unopened sealed envelope. Therefore, if you are going to be applying to a post-secondary institution, we recommend that you do not open the inner envelope upon receipt of the official transcripts from abroad.


Students studying abroad their final semester should plan on graduating from Elizabethtown College at least one semester beyond their normal graduation date, due to the length of time it takes to receive most international transcripts. This would mean an August or January graduation for students who study abroad in the spring term of their senior year. The time lapse will also likely affect student’s eligibility to “walk” or be an early participant in the May graduation ceremony. Please refer to the College Catalog for a full explanation of graduation requirements.

Course Registration - Study Abroad Pre-Registration

While preliminary course requests should be made in writing on campus through the Study Abroad Course Approval Form, students may not register for their courses abroad until they arrive on the host institution campus. Normally, the on-site resident director assists with academic advising and course selection and an add-drop period is available at most schools.

Elizabethtown College Course Registration

Pre-Departure: Students should register for classes as though they will be on campus the following semester. Toward the end of the semester, Registration and Records will automatically withdraw you from these courses, if you’re still intending to study abroad the following semester.

*The equivalent of a minimum of 12 U.S. credits (contact hours per semester) must be pursued while studying abroad.

Register for the Next Semester while Abroad

While abroad, students are required to regularly check their Elizabethtown College email account. Web registration instructions and notifications will be provided to students via email by Registration and Records several weeks prior to open registration. Students should regularly check their Elizabethtown College email and JayWeb accounts for notifications from Registration and Records as well as announcements related to advising, registration and graduation in Campus News.

Students studying abroad are governed by the same registration polices as our domestic students.

  • The Online Preliminary Registration (check-in) process must be completed even though you are studying abroad.
  • Students must be in communication with the instructor of any RBI course offerings to get on the class list.
  • Students must satisfy all prerequisites and co-requisites for each course offering.
  • Students must contact the instructor of a course that is classified as a “permission of instructor” course offering.
  • Time conflicts must be resolved between both instructors and the student. A Time Conflict Resolution Form can be sent to Registration and Records upon approval.
  • Students are responsible for using their JayWeb account to verify that all HOLDs against their registration have been lifted. If a hold exists, please contact the office that has implemented the hold. No pre-enrollments, core verifications, overloads, etc. will be processed while a hold exists on a student’s account.
  • Verification of Need to Enroll in Core Courses form for seniors and rising seniors (72 or more completed credits) must be submitted prior to open registration. Students should be in touch with their advisors concerning this requirement and the advisor can submit the form on the student’s behalf.
  • Overload petitions must be submitted if students intend to take more than 18 credits.
  • Registration times are based on completed credits and the times indicate when you may begin the registration process. The time slot does not limit you to registering during this time; registration will remain open until the fit day of the beginning of each semester.
  • There is no priority scheduling for students on campus or studying abroad.

Important Contacts:


Beverly Schmalhofer
Office of Registration and Records | 717-361-1422


Study Abroad Advisor

Megan Bell
Study Abroad Office | 717-361-1347