- Planning for Off-Campus Study Program
- Proposing Off-Campus Study
- Eligibility Guidelines
- Balancing Participation
- Financing Off-Campus Study
- Academic Regulations for Off-Campus Study
- Disciplinary Policy
- Educational Enrichment Leave of Absence
- Health Insurance Coverage
- Health Advisories, Travel Advisories, and Travel Warnings
Learning through global experiences is integral to a Denison education. We provide individualized mentoring to help students craft their off-campus experience and take advantage of learning opportunities that foster global competencies essential in today’s workforce. With more than 180 Denison-accepted off-campus study programs to choose from, students have many opportunities to realize the full potential of their education, hone a language, develop workplace skills, and maximize multicultural understanding.
In addition to semester, or year-long study abroad, shorter term opportunities are also possible. Denison Seminars, semester-long credit bearing courses with an off-campus travel component, are another way students can develop global competencies. Students can also participate in summer, short-term faculty-led credit bearing seminars.
There are many other opportunities for students to apply and extend their off-campus learning. These include independent research, internships, and lectures that connect students to international educators and peers around the world. Off-Campus Study works closely with the Knowlton Center and Lisska Center to share information about the many global learning opportunities and resources available to Denison students.
Planning for Off-Campus Study Program
The first step in planning for off-campus study is to attend a Study Abroad 101 session led by student returnees. Next, students schedule an appointment with an OCS advisor. Working with OCS and their academic advisors, students articulate learning goals for an off-campus study experience, explore a range of options among the Denison-accepted programs, and carefully consider the timing of participation and integration with degree requirements.
Denison maintains a list of accepted off-campus programs that meet the pedagogical and academic standards associated with a Denison liberal arts education. The current list can be found at <globaltools.denison.edu>. Students who withdraw from the university to attend a program that is not on Denison’s list of approved programs are not eligible to receive transfer credit.
Proposing Off-Campus Study
Students normally seek approval for one semester and/or a summer of off-campus study during their Denison career, though approval for an academic year of off-campus study is also possible. (Note that institutional financial aid may be applied to a maximum of one semester of study – see Financing Off-Campus Study.)
To pursue off-campus study for academic credit, students must first propose a plan and obtain Denison approval for such study. Once approved by OCS, the student is then responsible for completing an application with the program provider. OCS staff assists and advises students with both steps in the process.
Please note that eligibility guidelines for Off-Campus Study are reviewed annually and subject to change.
Denison approval is granted only if the student is adequately prepared for the proposed off-campus program. The Denison evaluation criteria are as follows:
The proposed off-campus study program represents a well-defined continuation of the curricular and pedagogical goals of a Denison liberal arts education and the individual student’s academic program.
The student’s academic record demonstrates clear evidence of curricular preparation and academic achievement appropriate to the proposed off-campus study program and the specific learning goals associated with the student’s proposal.
The student has completed a minimum of forty-eight credits prior to participation on an off-campus program. Transfer students must complete one year of study at Denison prior to participation on an off-campus program. These residency requirements do not apply to summer study.
The student is enrolled at Denison the semester preceding off-campus study participation. A student who applies institutional aid to a program must also enroll at Denison the semester following the program. Failure to do so will result in the student charged for the institutional aid that was awarded for off-campus study.
The student must be in good academic standing the semester preceding participation on a program. However, Denison also reserves the right to withdraw approval if there is a problematic shift in a student’s academic performance before the start of a program, even if a student is technically in good standing.
A student whose disciplinary probation ends during the first two weeks of classes at Denison for the semester during which she/he will be studying off-campus is eligible to pursue off-campus study. A student whose disciplinary probation extends beyond that date is not eligible to pursue off-campus study until the following semester. A student with two or more adjudicated offenses on her/his disciplinary record is not eligible to pursue off-campus study. Denison also reserves the right to withhold approval for any student who has a documented history of behavioral issues deemed inappropriate for off-campus study regardless of the number of adjudicated offenses on her/his disciplinary record.
A student whose proposal is evaluated and approved while she/he is on disciplinary probation must address two special requirements. In such cases, the student is required to provide a statement addressed to the program provider that explains the nature of the infraction and how it should bear on the provider’s admission deliberations. The student must also grant the program provider access to the information contained in the Denison disciplinary records. If a student receives conditional approval and an additional disciplinary offense is adjudicated before participation on the off-campus study program, the approval will be withdrawn.
Denison strives to accommodate the off-campus study proposals of all qualified students. There are, however, two related points that impact this policy. First, Off-Campus Study establishes limits on the number of participants in some programs in order to facilitate optimal integration into the range of experiential learning contexts and communities. Second, to facilitate the sustainable management of Denison's on-campus housing resources, slots for off-campus study in the fall semester are awarded on a first come, first served basis based on the date of the student’s required OCS appointment and the completion of the required forms for Step One of the OCS Proposal Process. There are four exceptions to this policy:
the student is proposing a program that is only offered during the fall semester;
the student will be studying abroad during the senior year;
the student has a conflict with a specific course offering in her/his major program, as documented by the Academic Planning Form and confirmed by the appropriate department chair;
the student is on the team roster for a spring semester sport, as confirmed by the appropriate coach.
If studying off-campus in the fall semester is not covered by one of these exceptions, the student should schedule the required advising appointment to start the OCS Proposal process in April or at the very beginning of fall semester, and then work diligently to complete the planning meetings and forms required for that appointment.
Financing Off-Campus Study
To determine whether a given program is affordable, students should make certain to consider out-of-pocket expenses as well as the invoiced program fees. A comprehensive cost estimate for any given program on the Denison accepted list is available from the program provider.
To promote off-campus study, Denison does not require students to pay its tuition or room/board fees during their term off-campus. An administrative fee of $280 for a summer program, $895 for a semester program, and $995 for an academic year of study with a single program or provider is charged to cover the administrative support associated with off-campus study.
It is important to note that institutional aid, except for the Great Opportunity (GO) program, and the OCS Grant program do not apply to summer study. In general, there are fewer financial aid resources for summer study, so students with financial need are urged to consider semester study whenever possible.
Denison students may pursue one semester of off-campus study with institutional aid eligibility if they submit their Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) by March 1 and provide the required verification of tax data to the Denison Financial Aid Office by April 1. Estimated Financial Aid Awards are made available to students by May 15 (for fall study), and June 15 (for spring study). While Denison does not provide institutional merit-based aid for off-campus study, institutional need-based aid is available for eligible students.
A student’s eligibility is based on the estimated cost of participation for the proposed off-campus study program and the estimated family contribution from the FAFSA. Federal grants, State grants, and Federal loans, as well as any other external sources of aid, are the initial sources for meeting financial need for eligible students. If a student’s need is not fully met by those funding sources, Denison grant funding is available to assist in meeting a portion of remaining need. For students with unmet need after the Denison financial packaging process, OCS works with program providers to award additional grants to help bridge this gap.
Academic Regulations for Off-Campus Study
Denison requires that students participate fully and responsibly in all academic aspects of the proposed off-campus study program, including required language and area studies courses. Failure to do so will result in a grade of U (Unsatisfactory) for the off-campus study placeholder course listed on the Denison academic record for the term abroad.
Students are enrolled for a holding place registration of 12 credits for each term of off-campus study in order to report full-time study to the Federal Clearinghouse to facilitate the portability of financial aid and/or to use of 529 college funds. Students are therefore required to enroll for at least 12 transferable U.S. semester credits for each semester of off-campus study, but may choose to enroll for up to 20 U.S. semester credits per semester. Students are limited to one course on an S/U grade base per semester. The arrangements for such a choice must be made with the program provider at the time of final registration.
To receive transfer credit for an off-campus study experience, students must work with the Registrar’s Office and academic advisors to obtain pre-approval for their courses through the OCS course approval process. The University is under no obligation to transfer coursework or apply transferred coursework toward specific degree requirements unless that coursework has been approved in advance.
Students wishing to apply a course toward a major, minor, or concentration requirements must receive approval directly from the relevant department/program. Other coursework will be evaluated for its relevance to the Denison curriculum through the combined efforts of the Registrar, OCS, and, as necessary, specific departments/programs.
All courses reported on the program provider’s transcript are posted to the Denison academic record with course titles, credits, and grades. This includes any course for which a student receives a failing grade, even though credit will not be awarded. While the grades for off-campus study coursework are not factored into the Denison cumulative grade point average, it is important to note that they could be factored into a composite grade point average should a student pursue graduate or professional school after graduating from Denison.
Recognizing the role of students as ambassadors of Denison, the special privilege of participating in off-campus programs, and the level of maturity required for students to be successful negotiating the challenges and potential risks associated with study away, the Office of Off-Campus Study routinely consults with the Office of Community Values and Conflict Resolution to assess students’ disciplinary history as part of the approval process for off-campus study. Frequency, severity, community impact of violations, and student’s disciplinary status (e.g., Disciplinary Probation) are the disciplinary variables that may impact eligibility. Students on disciplinary probation or suspension are not eligible to participate in off-campus study during the semester of probation or suspension. Students must be on campus and cleared of any disciplinary sanctions during the semester prior to study away.
Violations that occur after a student has been approved for study abroad, but before their departure for off-campus study may also influence a student’s eligibility to participate. Denison reserves the right to withhold or rescind approval for any student based on their disciplinary history or violations, regardless of the number of incidents on the student’s record.
The program provider may request information from the student about their disciplinary record as part of the admission process. In these cases, the student will be asked to sign a waiver allowing Denison to provide this information to the program. If you have concerns about how your disciplinary history may affect your eligibility for study away, please convey these during the advising process in the office of Off-Campus Study.
Educational Enrichment Leave of Absence
Students may apply for an Educational Enrichment Leave of Absence (EEL) to pursue experiential learning opportunities that are not credit bearing or structured educational opportunities whose coursework is not applicable to a Denison Baccalaureate degree. Examples of structured educational opportunities whose coursework is not applicable include the National Outdoor Leadership School (NOLS), Outward Bound, Semester at Sea, specialized technical or training programs, religious education, or culinary institutes.
Students wishing to pursue an EEL are required to meet with and an advisor in OCS, as well as their academic advisor, and then to submit a written rationale to OCS. The rationale must articulate a clear connection between the student’s broader educational goals and the proposed enrichment program. A student may opt to pursue study at a local institution as an adjunct activity as part of an EEL. However, this coursework may not exceed eight credits and must be approved in advance through the normal transfer credit evaluation process. The written rationale should address the plan to obtain credit elsewhere.
During an EEL, the student retains her/his Denison enrollment deposit and information systems privileges. However, the student is considered withdrawn from Denison during her/his period of leave for the purposes of financial aid and loan deferment. EEL’s are usually for one semester, but may extend to an academic year. See the Student Handbook for specific details regarding the processes for registration, housing, and financial aid following a leave. If a student does not enroll at Denison following the EEL, the leave reverts to a Withdrawal and the enrollment deposit is forfeited.
Health Insurance Coverage
Denison carries EIIA Insurance for all members of our community. Students participating on an international off-campus program are covered for emergency medical, evacuation, and repatriation insurance according to the stipulations of our policies (available upon request). For ongoing and chronic problems or standard (non-emergency) health care, students should rely on their domestic health insurance coverage. Many program providers include the purchase of either regular or emergency coverage in the program fee, but it is important to make certain that this is the case and, if so, that it is adequate to a student’s particular healthcare needs. Denison also recommends that at least one parent/guardian obtain a passport so that travel will not be unduly delayed in the case of a student medical or personal emergency abroad.
Health Advisories, Travel Advisories, and Travel Warnings
Denison strongly recommends that all students avail themselves of the travel information available at the U.S. State Department (http://travel.state.gov/), Centers for Disease Control (http://wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel/), and World Health Organization (http://www.who.int/en/) web sites. In particular, students should carefully consider the safety information included in State Department travel advisories for the country(ies) in which they are pursuing off-campus study and/or for any other country to which they are planning to travel during their time abroad.
Denison reserves the right to withdraw its approval for study on an off-campus program if a State Department travel warning or a CDC or WHO travel advisory is in place for the program location at the start of the program. Withdrawal of approval for an off-campus study program bars a student from receiving Denison credit for the program and from applying financial aid to the program costs. To make certain that a student may make an informed decision regarding participation on a program, the issue of potential loss of Denison approval for an accepted program will be brought to the student’s attention as far in advance of the program start date as is feasible.
In the case of a State Department travel warning or a CDC or WHO travel advisory arising after a program has started, Denison will work closely with the educational partner and other informed parties to determine an appropriate course of action. In the case of requiring that a student return home, Denison will pursue reasonable steps with the program provider to mitigate the financial and academic impact of such an action.
Katy Crossley-Frolick, Director
Sandy Spence, Assistant Director
Andrea Lourie, Off-Campus Study Advisor
Courtney Johnson Fowler, Program Assistant