Course Approvals and Equivalencies

Making your Courses Count

UAlbany Students

If you want courses taken abroad to be assigned UAlbany course equivalencies, bring a Course Equivalency Approval Form to each academic department for which you are seeking an equivalency. Available once you begin a program application, the form is used to assign upper division UAlbany equivalencies to courses you took abroad, as well as to apply courses to your major or minor. There is no deadline for submitting this form. You can have your courses evaluated for UAlbany equivalencies prior to your departure, while abroad, or upon return. It is your responsibility to submit a full course description and/or syllabus to the respective academic department(s) for each course.

Please note: depending upon their content and level, the courses you have taken overseas may be included in your major, or may satisfy other general education requirements. Courses taken overseas do not have to have exact equivalents at UAlbany to count: they may be listed as HIS 030 (a 300 level history course) or ARH 010 (a 100 level art history course), etc. and they will still count toward your overall degree.

Non-UAlbany students should check with their home campus for policies regarding overseas credits, course equivalents, and grades.

Non-SUNY Students

If you are not a Non-SUNY student, you should check with your home campus for policies regarding overseas credits, course equivalents, and grades. The courses you take overseas will appear on the UAlbany transcript with the title (and number, if any) used at the host institution. Each course will be assigned the equivalent number of SUNY credits and a grade, but the courses will not be converted into equivalent courses at UAlbany. Your home institution must determine any specific course equivalents. With this in mind, keep all course descriptions and syllabi from courses you take overseas. These will be very valuable to your advisor when determining equivalents at your home campus.

International Perspectives or Foreign Language General Education Requirement

You do not need specific approval to receive credit for the International Perspectives or Foreign Language General Education Requirements at UAlbany, if you earn appropriate credits in those areas overseas. Any other courses that you wish to have considered as possibly satisfying UAlbany’s other General Education Requirements must be reviewed and approved by the Dean of Undergraduate Education. Your major adviser cannot make these determinations and neither can our office. General Education credits will be updated at the time your grades from abroad are posted to your degree audit.

Overseas Enrollment Form

The Overseas Enrollment Form lists the actual coursework you have taken overseas. This form is available in your online application account after your acceptance to a program. Follow the instructions on the form and attach proof of your registration or have your enrollment verified by on-site staff.

Credits from an overseas course will not always be the same number of credits as the equivalent course at UAlbany. UAlbany (or the administering SUNY campus) will determine the number of credits each overseas course will carry based on conversion rules that apply to your specific program. Be sure that you understand the credit conversion rules so that you do not drop below the equivalent of 12 SUNY credits or the mandatory minimum credit load for your program.  Doing so could affect your financial aid, as well as your full-time student status. When your grades are processed your degree audit will show the number of SUNY credits assigned to each course.

Overseas Coursework and your Audit

For UAlbany students, in addition to your Transcript Supplement, another document will be sent to the Registrar’s Office to establish course equivalents for the work you have taken overseas. This document is prepared only for UAlbany degree-seeking students. Students attending other schools should check with the Education Abroad office at their home campus for similar paperwork. Ultimately, it will be your fully completed Overseas Enrollment Report Form, subject to revision with the consent of the applicable academic department and UAlbany’s Education Abroad office, which determines how your overseas coursework will count towards your major or minor.

Please note, unlike the way courses show on your degree audit when you advance register for classes at UAlbany, courses taken overseas will only appear once the grades from overseas are posted.

EARNING GRADUATE CREDIT

In general, most SUNY education abroad programs are designed for undergraduate students and all students who go on a program earn undergraduate credit. However, on some programs, you may be able to enroll in graduate courses, and these courses will show up on your Transcript Supplement with graduate-level course numbers. A notable exception is a graduate level short-term course lead by a UAlbany faculty member within the department. If you are registered for graduate credit, then you will earn graduate credit for these courses.

Please note, all college graduates are not automatically graduate students! You are not a graduate student unless you have been admitted by a university for study towards a graduate degree. Therefore, unless you have actually enrolled in an overseas program as a graduate student and taken graduate courses overseas, you will still only get undergraduate credit for any graduate-level coursework you take overseas.

To earn graduate credit for graduate courses, you have to be enrolled in an accredited UAlbany graduate education program, be approved to take graduate-level coursework overseas, and be registered at UAlbany for graduate credit. To have graduate courses taken overseas count toward a graduate degree, you must also have permission from your department to have these courses count. It is hard to transfer graduate credits from one school to another, so even if UAlbany enrolls you in graduate courses, you must still get permission from your home campus to count them toward your degree.

Keep in mind that when you abroad you are not enrolling at the host university for a degree. Therefore, even if you take many graduate classes overseas, you will not be earning a degree from the host university.

GRADUATE CREDIT FOR UNIVERSITY AT ALBANY STUDENTS

If you are enrolled in a graduate degree program at UAlbany, you may enroll in graduate coursework overseas and get credits toward your degree if your department approves the courses for inclusion in your degree program.  Alternatively, you may, with the permission of your department, audit coursework at the host university and use what you have learned as an auditor to complete a directed course of study with your home department. In that case, you would register for a certain number of credits within your department, but you would have to pay all of the costs that other students on the program would pay, even though you were not receiving credit the same way.

All arrangements for graduate credit that will become part of your degree program must be made with the approval of your department and the Education Abroad office at UAlbany before the start of the program.

GRADUATE CREDITS FOR NON-UALBANY STUDENTS

If you have a bachelor’s degree and want to take graduate-level courses overseas, you may do so provided the overseas university will allow you to enroll in the courses. You must first apply to UAlbany for admission as a non-degree graduate student.  Follow the instructions for admission at the Graduate Admissions website. Once you are admitted, we can register you for graduate overseas study. If you cannot find suitable graduate courses overseas on a UAlbany program, you may still participate by taking undergraduate courses and earning non-degree undergraduate credits at UAlbany. If you are enrolled as a graduate student anywhere but at UAlbany and you do register at UAlbany for graduate courses overseas, remember that only your home university can approve coursework for inclusion in your degree program.

EARNING GRADUATE CREDIT

In general, most SUNY education abroad programs are designed for undergraduate students and all students who go on a program earn undergraduate credit. However, on some programs, you may be able to enroll in graduate courses, and these courses will show up on your Transcript Supplement with graduate-level course numbers. A notable exception is a graduate level short-term course lead by a UAlbany faculty member within the department. If you are registered for graduate credit, then you will earn graduate credit for these courses.

Please note, all college graduates are not automatically graduate students! You are not a graduate student unless you have been admitted by a university for study towards a graduate degree. Therefore, unless you have actually enrolled in an overseas program as a graduate student and taken graduate courses overseas, you will still only get undergraduate credit for any graduate-level coursework you take overseas.

To earn graduate credit for graduate courses, you have to be enrolled in an accredited UAlbany graduate education program, be approved to take graduate-level coursework overseas, and be registered at UAlbany for graduate credit. To have graduate courses taken overseas count toward a graduate degree, you must also have permission from your department to have these courses count. It is hard to transfer graduate credits from one school to another, so even if UAlbany enrolls you in graduate courses, you must still get permission from your home campus to count them toward your degree.

Keep in mind that when you abroad you are not enrolling at the host university for a degree. Therefore, even if you take many graduate classes overseas, you will not be earning a degree from the host university.

GRADUATE CREDIT FOR UNIVERSITY AT ALBANY STUDENTS

If you are enrolled in a graduate degree program at UAlbany, you may enroll in graduate coursework overseas and get credits toward your degree if your department approves the courses for inclusion in your degree program.  Alternatively, you may, with the permission of your department, audit coursework at the host university and use what you have learned as an auditor to complete a directed course of study with your home department. In that case, you would register for a certain number of credits within your department, but you would have to pay all of the costs that other students on the program would pay, even though you were not receiving credit the same way.

All arrangements for graduate credit that will become part of your degree program must be made with the approval of your department and the Education Abroad office at UAlbany before the start of the program.

GRADUATE CREDITS FOR NON-UALBANY STUDENTS

If you have a bachelor’s degree and want to take graduate-level courses overseas, you may do so provided the overseas university will allow you to enroll in the courses. You must first apply to UAlbany for admission as a non-degree graduate student.  Follow the instructions for admission at the Graduate Admissions website. Once you are admitted, we can register you for graduate overseas study. If you cannot find suitable graduate courses overseas on a UAlbany program, you may still participate by taking undergraduate courses and earning non-degree undergraduate credits at UAlbany. If you are enrolled as a graduate student anywhere but at UAlbany and you do register at UAlbany for graduate courses overseas, remember that only your home university can approve coursework for inclusion in your degree program.