How will credits taken abroad transfer back to SMCM?
- Only grades of C- or above are accepted for transfer.
- In order to receive credit for study abroad/exchange courses, the student must receive a numeric or letter grade from the institution. (Note: Pass/Fail might be accepted if it is the only grading option for this course and it is documented in writing by the institution that the student earned a grade equivalent of C- or better.) If a course is only offered pass/fail, it is important to discuss this with the Registrar’s Office before you register for the course.
- Although transfer credits are not included in the SMCM GPA computation, the course grades and credits will appear on your official SMCM transcript.
- Courses that have not been pre-approved may not transfer.
- Courses taken C/NC cannot be used to fulfill major, minor or Core requirements.
- For non-SMCM programs, only courses taken on programs approved by the IE Office and the IE Faculty Advisory Committee can be submitted for transfer.
The Pre-Approval Process
The pre-approval of coursework process is designed so that the student will know before he/she registers how each course will transfer to SMCM upon successful completion and receipt of the official transcript.
The pre-approval is done by the Registrar’s Office in consultation with the appropriate department chair. However, to be sure that the International Education office is kept current on each student’s progress, please initiate all course work inquiries/additions/up-dates/etc. through the International Education (IE) office. The IE office will forward this information to the Registrar’s Office.
Please note that it is the Registrar’s Office in consultation with the department chair, and not the student’s advisor and/or an instructor that determines the official SMCM course equivalency.
SMCM Course Equivalencies
As part of the pre-approval process, you are asked to complete the Pre-approval of Transfer Credit form. Among other questions, this form asks for a list of courses you plan to take, course descriptions, and the SMCM equivalency you are requesting. The SMCM equivalency can be as broad as requesting general college credit or as narrow as requesting a specific SMCM equivalent course.
For example, one student taking INT/II Renaissance to Enlightenment at the Centre for Medieval & Renaissance Studies (CMRS), a SMCM program in Oxford England, might request HIST upper division credits, another might just need upper division credits, and still another may need a more specific equivalency, e.g. ENGL380.
We understand that in some instances, you may not know which courses are offered until you actually arrive at the institution. If this is the case, please list some representative courses for pre-approval. (Please see Change of Courses below.)
It is important to understand that it is the course equivalency that is pre-approved, not the number of credits received. The number of credits awarded will be determined by the information on your final official transcript.
Upper Division/Lower Division Courses
Change of Courses
Internships and Independent Study
Foreign Language Courses
Transcripts from your study abroad institution or program provider are not automatically sent to St. Mary’s. You need to specifically make these arrangements with that institution or provider and follow their procedures. You are the only one who can request transcripts—we cannot do it for you. It is very important that you make all the arrangements to have official transcripts (or official documents if the school does not have transcripts) sent to St. Mary’s while you are there. Many students have found it difficult and time consuming to try to get this information once they have returned.
Have transcripts sent to:
St. Mary’s College of Maryland
Office of the Registrar
47645 College Drive
St. Mary’s City, MD, 20686-3001
We need OFFICIAL transcripts. These are transcripts that are officially sealed and are usually sent directly to St. Mary’s from the study abroad institution or program provider. If you happen to receive a sealed envelope from your study abroad institution or program provider, please do not open it. First check with the Registrar’s Office to see if we have received an official transcript. It may be that the institution has sent the official transcript directly to you. If you open the transcript, it is no longer official and we cannot use it to transfer your credits and grades.
For more information, contact the Office of the Registrar.
GPA or Credit-hour Policy Appeal
Students must maintain full-time status and have a minimum GPA of 2.5* at the time of application to be considered for study abroad. Additionally, students currently on academic probation will not be considered eligible for a study abroad program until the probation has been lifted.
Students who do not meet the minimum GPA of 2.5 may request consideration by submitting a Letter of Appeal to the Academic Policy Committee. Letters of Appeal should be submitted to the Office of the Registrar early in the semester, well in advance of the study abroad application deadline. The Committee ordinarily meets every other Thursday; the deadline for submission is 5:00 p.m. on the Tuesday before the APC meeting.
*NOTE: Some study-abroad programs require a higher GPA, in which case students must meet the minimum GPA for their program of choice.
Current and/or previous academic or disciplinary sanctions may affect the ability to study abroad. Likewise, sanctions imposed at any time after acceptance into a study-abroad program may result in withdrawal from the program, and any non-recoverable costs incurred will be the responsibility of the student.
Previous disciplinary sanctions are considered on a case-by-case basis by the Office of International Education in conjunction with the Dean of Students’ Office. Students with two or more conduct violations will be required to meet with the Office of International Education prior to acceptance to the study abroad program of choice, and students with certain types of conduct violations (including, but not limited to, E, K, N, O, or P classes) will be required to participate in an in-person interview with the OIE and a Dean of Students’ officer. Students whose disciplinary probation period extends into their intended time abroad will not be considered for study-abroad until the probation period has ceased.
While abroad, students are representing not only themselves and their home country, but the College itself. As its representatives, the College has a vested interest in ensuring student conduct abroad reflects its values and standards. In light of the above, the following guidelines apply:
- Student misconduct communicated to SMCM by the program provider or host institution is subject to disciplinary action upon a student’s return to campus.
- Student misconduct may result in the withdrawal of study abroad approval issued by the Office of International Education, despite the student’s arrival on-site. The student will be responsible for any financial obligations and non-recoverable costs assessed by the host institution or program provider as a result of this approval revocation.
- In the rare instance that a program provider permits a student to remain enrolled in the program but SMCM has revoked program approval, the student will be held responsible for settling of financial obligations directly with the program provider.
- The program provider or host institution has the authority to terminate a student’s participation in the program at any time as a result of misconduct. SMCM cannot intervene on behalf of the student should their behavior initiate such a termination.
- Students participating in a study abroad program are subject to the full SMCM Student Code of Conduct throughout the duration of their program, as well as the Code of Conduct of their program provider or host institution. That code of conduct which is most stringent or exacting will supercede the other.
If you would like to discuss any concerns regarding the appeal process or sanctions appearing on your record, please make an appointment to speak confidentially with either the student conduct officer or an advisor in the International Education Office.