Study Abroad Issues


Study Abroad Issues Guidelines

THE FOLLOWING GUIDELINES APPLY TO THE STUDY ABROAD ISSUES OPTION:

Earn six or more credit abroad:

  • You must take two three-credit courses at the host institution to fulfill your General Education Issues requirement. Both courses may be from the same discipline/course prefix. Most three-credit courses will count. You may not use independent study, independent research, or independent readings.
  • You must submit a written reflection paper with the corresponding form to the General Education office within 60 days after the end of the study abroad program in order to request credit for the Issues requirement. 
  • Courses cannot count for both Issues and Foundations credit.
  • One of the courses completed abroad will also automatically fulfill the Global Perspectives requirement.

Earn three credits abroad:

  • Take one three-credit course abroad. You may not use independent study, independent research, and independent readings.
  • You must submit a written reflection paper with the corresponding form to the General Education office within 60 days after the end of the study abroad program in order to request credit for the Issues requirement.
  • Take one three-credit Issues course at GVSU from a different discipline/course prefix.
  • Courses cannot count for both Issues and Foundations credit.
  • The course completed abroad will also automatically fulfill the Global Perspectives requirement.

Faculty-led Program:

  • If you are participating in a GVSU faculty-led program you must take two three-credit courses from two different disciplines/course prefixes to receive Issues credit. You may not use independent study, independent research, and independent readings.
  • If the faculty-led program offers two or more courses from the same discipline/course prefix, you can use only one of the study abroad courses towards the Issues requirement. The second Issues course must be taken at GVSU and be from a different discipline/course prefix.
  • You must submit a written reflection paper with the corresponding form to the General Education office within 60 days after the end of the study abroad program in order to receive credit for the Issues requirement. 
  • Courses cannot count for both Issues and Foundations credit.
  • One of the courses completed abroad will also automatically fulfill the Global Perspectives requirement.

General Education Study Abroad Issues FAQs

Am I required to secure the departmental approval for each study abroad course before submitting my Study Abroad Issues form to the General Education office? 
Yes. You must secure the departmental approval for each course you take abroad prior to submitting your General Education (GE) Issues Study Abroad Course Approval form.


Can I submit my Study Abroad Issues form prior to departure?
No. Your GE Issues Study Abroad Course Approval form requires that a written reflection essay be attached when you are requesting approval to earn credit for the Issues requirement. If you submit the form prior to departure, it will not be complete. The General Education director will not review the information until you submit the written reflection upon your return from study abroad.


Can I get credit for Issues and my major with the same course?
Yes. If the course you complete abroad meets major or minor requirements, it can also be used to meet the General Education Issues requirement.


Is it possible for me to earn credit for Global Perspectives, Issues, and my major with one course abroad?
Yes. With the appropriate approvals, you can earn credit for all three requirements with one course.


I am not on the Allendale Campus. Can I submit my Study Abroad Issues form electronically?
Yes. You can scan a completed form and send it by email to gened@gvsu.edu. The General Education office only accepts electronic copies sent via email.


I am taking a course abroad that has been approved to fulfill a Foundations requirement. Can I use the course to fulfill a Foundations and an Issues requirement?
No. Students will not receive approval for a course to count as a General Education Foundations requirement and a General Education Issues requirement. You will have to choose which requirement you would like to have met once you have completed the course.


Can I use a language course to fulfill the Study Abroad Issues requirement?
Yes. The criteria for receiving approval for the Study Abroad Issues requirement are outlined on the Study Abroad Issues form.

  • The course you complete abroad must be approved as a three-credit course at GVSU.
  • The course cannot fulfill a General Education Foundations requirement nor can the course be an independent study, independent readings, or research.
  • If you are participating in a faculty-led program or are taking less than six credits abroad, your two Issues courses must be from two different academic disciplines/course prefixes.
  • If a course is cross-listed in two disciplines/course prefixes, your second course must be taken from a third discipline/course prefix. 


Can I use courses such as photography, dance, painting, internship, etc. to fulfill the Study Abroad Issues requirement?
Yes. See criteria under #7.


Where can I find the forms I need to submit?
Forms and further instructions can be found by going to gvsu.edu/studyabroad/. Click on Academics and select General Education from the drop-down menu.



Page last modified March 19, 2020