Off-Campus Study Advising Resources for Faculty

Advising Advice and Resources by Time Period

  • Prior to Off-Campus Study
  • While Away
  • Returning and Returned

Advising Students Prior to Off-Campus Study

Registration Process and Deadline
Each February, Bates students complete an online registration in order to gain approval to study off-campus during the following year. This once-a-year deadline is for the following Fall, Winter, and Academic Year. There are a number of steps that students complete as part of this process, these include:

  • Declaring a major
  • Researching and picking a top choice program and term away
  • Meeting with a member of the off-campus study advising team in the CGE
  • Completing two phases in their Global Bobcats online portal

Academic Approval Form
The Academic Approval Form is available in a fillable PDF and Word document. The expectation is that students will bring this form to you to discuss their plans for the major. This will hopefully include a discussion of their interests, course planning and transfer, and ensuring their ability to complete their requirements. We ask for a ‘signature’ from the chair or designate in order to verify that the student has discussed their plans with the department/program.

Review for Pre-Approval / Tentative Approval of Courses
Throughout this process students may seek pre-approval or tentative approval for their courses taken during off-campus study. For many students, they need to be flexible as they won’t know the true course offerings of their school or program until closer to the program start. It is up to each department/program to determine how they want to deal with these requests. 

Approved Programs Database
The off-campus study advising team will work with students to determine appropriate approved programs that meet their academic and personal interests but students do much of this research on their own. The primary means of finding approved programs is through the Program Discovery search and/or the Advanced Search of the approved programs database. These are publicly available and may be helpful to review.

Financial Matters
It’s important that students understand that there is financial support for students who are eligible for financial aid. We know that off-campus study can be considered an extra expense but given the generous financial aid model at Bates, most students find the financial support to make their study away goals a reality. The process of financial aid is outlined on our website here and we partner closely with Student Financial Services. We also advise students on additional outside scholarships. Should you meet with a student who is concerned about the financial aspect of off-campus study, please send them our way.

While Students are Away

Student outreach in an emergency
During Normal Business Hours
If you hear from a Bates student in distress while studying off-campus please be in touch with Darren Gallant or Jennifer Hyde in the Center for Global Education. One of them will advise on the situation and take next steps which may mean reaching out to the student or the student’s school/program.

Outside of Normal Business Hours
If you are concerned about a student and there is an immediate need for contact to be made. Please contact Campus Safety and ask to speak with the Dean On-Call. That individual will assist in determining next steps and may reach out to Darren Gallant or Jennifer Hyde if needed. They can also reach out to the student and the program/school should that be in the best interest of the student.

Issues with academics while off-campus
While studying off-campus academics can be difficult and different. Some students struggle with the adjustment to a different academic environment. Should you hear from a student in this or a related scenario, please be in touch with Darren Gallant or Jennifer Hyde. You may direct the student to them directly or contact us directly. They’ll follow up with the student and share resources and help them strategize for their success. This may include Bates resources or resources available on-site. If students have questions about credit requirements or credit transfer, you can direct them to the appropriate web links.

Course Registration for the following semester
Students studying off-campus will reach out to their advisors when it is time to register for courses for the following semester. This may be a challenging moment as students will be in varying time zones and have varying access to the internet. Should students not be able to register for courses as normal, they can reach out to the Registrar’s Office for assistance.

Advising Students Returning/Returned to Bates

Procedure for Credit Transfer
The procedure for the transfer of credit from off-campus study is fully explained on our website at this link. The process happens after the period of off-campus study and requires an official transcript and that the student has completed their evaluation of the program.

Credit Transfer v. Course/Requirement Transfer
A common misconception for students and faculty is that a course off-campus is equivalent to a credit. Most academic systems and institutions utilize a different credit system than Bates and the CGE has outlined the requirements to earn a full semester (4 credits) of credit for each program at this webpage.

On each program, students are required to take a full course load which is different from the minimum course load. This course load equates to 15 or 16 US credits; which would then transfer as 4 credits at Bates. To get to this course load, students may take 3 courses or up to 7 courses. While 4 and 5 courses is the most common, it is not the case for each program.

Within the CGE we review for credit transfer and course appropriateness to the liberal arts and sciences. We do not review courses for their suitability for a department or program. 

Major, Minor, GEC Course Approval Forms
In order for students to have some of their requirements completed using off-campus study courses, they utilize course approval forms which are available on our website and in their online portal. They are available at this webpage and once completed by the student and the chair (or designate) of a department or program; they are sent to the Registrar’s Office.

Modes of Inquiry from off-campus study
It is possible for students to complete a Mode of Inquiry requirement from off-campus study. While not common, it does happen and is further outlined on this webpage. The key is chair approval of the appropriate department/program and a direct equivalency.