Academic Advising Resources
With proper planning, every student at Fairfield University has the opportunity to study abroad. Global Fairfield offers programs to satisfy many student goals. Although we encourage all students to incorporate a global experience into their 4 years at Fairfield, we want to make sure students are selecting locations that work best for their course of study at Fairfield University. All students are encouraged to attend programs that fit their major in order to make sure they have the best academic experience and can graduate on time. Undeclared students should select a program that aligns with their interests and intended major. Select programs require students to have a confirmed major at time of application. Students studying on Fairfield’s Center programs and customized programs will earn Fairfield credit and grade. All other programs are transfer credit. More details can be found on the program brochure pages. This is a handy resource that lists information for all Schools.
Below are some resources for students, faculty, and staff to assist in academic planning for study abroad.
Database of Approved CoursesEvery program approved by Global Fairfield has a program brochure page that provides an overview of the program. Global Fairfield has created a robust academic section on each brochure page which outlines the academic requirements and expectations of each program. One of the resources under the academic section of each brochure page is a Database of Approved Courses. This database is a list of all courses approved by Fairfield University department chairs by location which students must select from. To better understand the Database of Approved Courses, please see a video resource here.
Students studying abroad on newer programs, such as our AIFS programs where we do not yet have courses in our Database of Approved courses, should complete a customize AIFS Global Study Plan. Please see the instructions
Global Study PlanDuring semester programs abroad, students are expected to enroll in no less than 15 credits at an appropriate level of instruction for at least 4 days per week. According to University policy, students are expected to enroll in 1-2 Core courses; 1-2 Major or Minor courses, and 1-2 Elective course for each term abroad.
With this in mind, as part of the application process, students are required to submit a completed Global Study Plan. This form is a planning tool to assist students in identifying programs that align with their academic goals and confirms that their program of interest is also a program that will satisfy their academics. Students will use this form to demonstrate that the remaining courses they need to take (Core, Major/Minor, Elective) from their Degree Evaluation are available abroad. Using the program’s Database of Approved Courses the student will select curricular offerings that meet Fairfield University requirements for degree completion. Students are encouraged to review this completed plan when meeting with their Academic Advisor for Spring Registration PIN and advising. If the desired program abroad does not offer courses that fulfill an appropriate amount of course requirements for the student’s Degree Evaluation, they should consider an alternative program. We encourage students to review the preferred programs by School/College/Major.
Please see the Global Study Plan here: Global Study Plan
Global Study Plan for Semester and Summer AIFS Programs
The AIFS Global Study Plan is specific to AIFS programs where students earn Transfer Credit will be key to academic planning for your program. On this worksheet, you will indicate the attributes of the academic requirements you wish to fulfill on this program under "academic expectations". If there are specific courses you are interested in taking while abroad and would like those courses to be considered for academic review, please list them under "courses of interest" on your form. Please note, courses will be considered for review, however, approval is not guaranteed. Students who participate on these non Center programs will earn transfer credits.
Please see the AIFS Global Study Plan here: AIFS Global Study Plan
Academic AdvisingStudents who need guidance identifying their remaining degree requirements or need assistance with academic planning are encouraged to include this discussion when meeting with their Academic Advisor for Spring registration. In preparation for that meeting, below are a few items to consider.
- Review and print your degree evaluation and come prepared with questions
- Bring a completed draft of your Global Study Plan for your preferred program to discuss academic compatibility
- What is a completed draft? A completed Global Study Plan compares what you have left to complete on a degree evaluation and courses abroad that would be suitable to satisfy those requirements, and includes backup courses in case the desired course is not offered.
- For example, a Philosophy Major with no minor wanting to study abroad for a semester will have a completed Global Study Plan including Philosophy courses (1-2 desired courses and 1-2 backups), History courses (1 Core course and 1 backup), Science courses (1 Core and 1 backup), and Elective courses (1 desired course and 1 backup) for a total of 10 course selections.
- Students can discuss alternatives that best fit with their Major and may consider various alternatives. For example, a program may only offer 1 History Core course, so the student lists 2 Core courses – 1 History [preferred] and 1 Visual & Performing Arts as a backup, because this student has both remaining Core course requirements on their degree evaluation.
Note: Academic Advisors can advise on the Fairfield University course equivalency listed in the Database of Approved Courses. For example, your advisor may not be able to tell you if a "Travel Writing" course abroad will fulfill your Literature Core requirement, but the Database will list its approved equivalencies.
Degree Evaluation Calculator ToolAn overall GPA of 2.8 is required to study abroad for all programs at the time of application and program start date. Certain programs have their own criteria and may require higher GPAs. The program brochure pages will provide students with the GPA requirement for the respective program.
If at the time of application a student's GPA does not meet the program's GPA requirement, we encourage students to utilize the GPA calculator tool in Degree Evaluation to assess the likelihood of eligibility for a given program. For students who may fall short of their program's GPA requirement, we encourage students to connect with Global Fairfield to discuss possible program options.
For assistance with the Degree Evaluation Calculator Tool, please view the resource below. Begin review on page 11.