With careful planning, students can make full academic progress by studying abroad. It is important that you take your course planning seriously prior to departure as making changes at a later date involves a more challenging process and course equivalency may not be determined until after you are well into your study abroad semester. Note that study abroad courses and credits are treated by MU as transfer credits/courses (they follow the same policy as transferring credits/courses from another U.S institution.
Per MU transfer policy, to receive an MU degree, there is no limit to the number of overall transfer credits accepted as long as a minimum of 30 credits and 50% of the major / 50% of the minor / 50% of the option are completed in residence at MU (University Governance Manual). Please discuss this policy with your academic advisor(s) during your preparations to study abroad. Individual academic departments and Non-MU Programs may have their own policies regarding maximum transfer credits allowed – you will need to check with these individuals regarding their policies.
Minimum/Maximum Study Abroad Credits: Semester/Year
Minimum Credits: Students studying abroad are required to be full time students while abroad, meaning students must be registered for a minimum of 12 academic credits per semester. (Special permission is required to be part time.) Failure to maintain and complete the study abroad minimum of 12 credits can affect other areas of your academic study such as financial aid, visa requirements, and medical insurance policies.
MU Programs: (maximum credits) Each MU Program is assigned a maximum number of credits per semester, 12 or 15. This is the maximum number of credits a student may take and it is also the number of credits a student pays for, according to MU tuition rates, regardless of the number of credits a student earns. Registering For MU Courses: Participants may register for additional MU courses (example: honors theses, online classes, independent studies, etc.) in addition to courses he/she is taking abroad. Students are required to pay MU tuition and fees for all MU courses registered for in addition to the tuition & fees specific to your MU partner program’s maximum credit allotment.
Affiliated & Non-MU Programs: (maximum credits) You pay your Non-MU and Affiliated program directly for tuition and fees. The maximum number of credits you can earn is determined by your program.
Minimum/Maximum Study Abroad Credits: Summer/Winter Study There is no minimum/maximum MU credit requirement.
Registering For MU Credits: Students participating in summer and winter study abroad programs (MU, Affiliated, or Non-MU) pay tuition and other fees directly to their program (rather than to MU). If registering for MU credits (example: honors thesis, online course, etc.) in addition to classes you are taking abroad, you will need to pay MU tuition and fees for these MU credits.
For graduate students: A grade equivalent to a B or higher is required in order for your credits to transfer into your graduate degree program. In addition, graduate students that have earned a C+ or lower in a class at Millersville may not retake that class abroad.
Transfer credits are not used in computing Millersville GPAs. In other words, grades associated with transfer credits are not factored into your major/minor and cumulative GPA. However, this policy does not apply for students going through another PASSHE university’s program, as students should apply for Visiting Student Status. With Visiting Student Status, all credits and grades transferred from other PASSHE universities are treated as MU credits and grades. Therefore, grades associated with these transfer credits will be factored into your major/minor and cumulative GPA.
Millersville University cannot accept credit for classes that are evaluated on a Pass/Fail basis. It is the responsibility of the student to ensure that their study abroad institution grants Letter/Number evaluations, in order for the student’s completed coursework to be transferred. All MU study abroad programs issue letter grades, however Non-MU programs must be verified by the student.
How Courses Transfer Back to MU: Undergraduate students complete a Study Abroad Transfer of Credits Form during the Pre-Departure phase of the study abroad process.This form is to be used for academic planning purposes. This form is also used to ensure pre-approval has been given for courses listed on the student’s academic transcript from abroad. Note: the form is NOT used for registering for classes at the student’s host institution.
In order to receive academic credit for graduate level study abroad, students are required to complete the regular transfer credit process through the Graduate Studies Office, while completing your study abroad application.
STEP 1: Students meet with their academic advisor(s) with the Study Abroad Transfer of Credit Form, a copy of their degree audit report, and course descriptions for the courses they are planning to take while abroad.The advisor assists the student with selecting study abroad courses and reviews the descriptions to determine suitable MU equivalents (such as department and course codes) and to ensure academic progress is made. Always pay close attention that courses taken abroad will fit into your major(s), minor(s), option(s) or General Education requirements.
If you require MU equivalents for courses offered outside of your home department, you may be requested by your advisor to seek further approval from the specific department to which the course belongs before the Transfer of Credits form is officially completed (Example: You are a History major taking a Psychology course abroad. History may require you to get the course equivalent from the Psychology Department).
STEP 2: When reviewing a course description, advisors, and students first determine if there is a similar course here at MU. If so, it is considered a “direct equivalent” and the MU course number/title is what is written on the Transfer of Credit Form. If there is no equivalent course here at MU, the course is an “XX” course. See below for details.
Example of Direct Course Equivalents: If you take International Law abroad, it would transfer back to Millersville as GOVT 351: International Law. GOVT 351 is not a G3, so you would not be able to count it as a G3. If a direct equivalent is listed as a General Education course, General Education credit will be issued.
Example of “XX” Course Equivalents: If a course description does not match any courses offered at MU, the course is an “XX” course. The adviser determines what department the course falls under, the level of the course, and if it meets any General Education requirements. Example: A Study of Australian Aboriginal Culture course could be assigned as “ANTH 2XX: A Study of Australian Aboriginal Culture as a G3, D”. The advisor and academic department of the student can determine if the course can be a General Education course. If the course is out of the advisors department, they should consult the department where the course would be housed.
STEP 3: If you take any courses while studying abroad that were not listed on your Transfer of Credits Form, meaning it was not approved by your advisor, nor do you have a course equivalent to know how it will transfer back to MU, you must notify your academic advisor and Global Education immediately, to determine how your academic progress will be impacted and so that your Transfer of Credits Form can be revise/updated.
Note: Language majors/minors should be aware that if a student's language placement test abroad places them into a level already completed at MU, or is the same as one that as previously transferred into MU, then these courses will not transfer. Be sure to talk to your language advisor about your placement level.
Cultural Diversity and community courses align with the University’s mission to foster in students an appreciation for cultural diversity. Here, ‘cultural diversity’ refers to the differences among people in terms of beliefs, customs, values, politics, and experiences. In essence, culture is a worldview; it is both learned and evolved. The following factors are seen as underlying these differences: age, economics, education, gender, geography, language, nationality, occupation, physical ability, race and ethnicity, religious affiliation, and/or sexual orientation among others. A Cultural Diversity and Community course is more than a mere survey or exposure of the students to different cultures; rather it teaches students to think critically about the basis for intercultural differences. Millersville University's Diversity Policy Students who completed an academic fall or spring semester abroad as part of a baccalaureate degree will be considered to have fulfilled the Diversity requirement. International students studying at Millersville will also be considered to have fulfilled the Diversity requirement. In addition, those students who complete professional experiences abroad such as internships, student teaching field placements, or social work field placements that meet the departmental baccalaureate requirements will also be considered to have fulfilled the Diversity requirement regardless of whether those experiences occur in fall, spring, or summer. For all other study abroad experiences, a student may request to fulfill the Diversity requirement by successfully completing an outcomes paper. The outcomes paper will be evaluated through the Office of International Programs & Services. This Diversity waiver does not cover credit hours. A student employing this waiver will be required to satisfy three credit hours of general education courses in lieu of the waived three credit Diversity course. This is in addition to any other Open Elective requirements of the student.
Guidelines to Request a Diversity Waiver
DEADLINE: December 15th, following your summer study abroad experience. Please submit your essay by emailing it to your Program Coordinator.
Complete a six-page double-spaced (Times New Roman 12) paper. It should demonstrate:
- Awareness of your own cultural rules and biases;
- Understanding of the complexity of cultural elements through various lenses such as history, values, politics, communication styles, gender, economy, or beliefs and practices;
- An ability to interpret events and/or actions in a manner that recognizes the worldview of oneself and other cultural groups.
Once reviewed, you will receive notification from the Office of International Programs & Services. Allow a minimum of two weeks for feedback to be provided and/or for a decision to be made.