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Education Abroad

Course Equivalencies

When completing the KSU study abroad application process students are asked to work with their Advisor or Department to complete an Academic Approval Form.  This form is required for any education abroad student who wishes to transfer credit from a university abroad back to K-State and have the "Study Abroad" designation listed on their transcript. It is a form used to assist students in planning courses to take while abroad, facilitate credit transfer, and prove course enrollment for Federal Financial Aid eligibility.

Completion of the Academic Approval Form requires that a student meet with their Academic Advisor, or a designated representative from their Academic Department or College, to determine how each class will count toward their program of study.  This may be as a specific course equivalency, fulfillment of a K-State 8 requirement, or as general credits toward their degree.

The Education Abroad staff asks students to review the list of courses at their host institution of study, and print off course descriptions or syllabi of the classes they are interested in taking before meeting with their Academic Advisor.  Therefore, when meeting with an Academic Advisor or designated department representative, a student should be prepared to discuss the courses they are interested in taking, not just beginning to look through the course options.  If a student does meet with an Academic Advisor and does not yet have courses selected, Advisors can refer to our webpage regarding course lists at partner universities for more information on how to find course listings and specific course descriptions. The student's Education Abroad advisor can also assist the student in locating where to research courses and how to obtain course syllabi. 

How to Complete the Academic Approval Form

It is important that students and their advisors, or designated department representatives, complete the Academic Approval Form correctly. The information provided on the form indicates how courses from abroad will be applied to a student's DARS. Course from abroad may be used to fulfill major requirements, minor requirements, or general degree requirements. Additionally, if needed, students may take courses abroad that are not applied to their degree requirements. 

Section to be completed by student:

On page two of the form, the left hand column should be completed by the student.  Since it is often difficult to predict exactly which courses a student will be able to enroll in while studying abroad, students are encouraged to list more courses on the Academic Approval Form than they actually plan on taking.  That way, if a course is closed when they enroll, they will have alternative pre-approved course options to choose from. Students should include the Course Title and, if available, the Course # and Number of Host University Credits. Students are encouraged to provide syllabi or course descriptions to assist the designated representative or advisor in determining KSU equivalencies. 

Some courses from abroad have previously been evaluated with KSU equivalencies. You can reference the Transfer Equivalency database to see if this information is available: http://www.k-state.edu/undergradadmit/transferequivalency.html

Section to be completed by academic advisor or designated department/college representative:

On page two of the form, the right hand side should be completed by the advisor or designated department/college representative. They will indicate the KSU equivalencies for the courses listed on the left hand side, or how the courses from abroad will be applied to the student's degree requirements. 

Acceptable responses include: the specific KSU equivalency along with the course number; applicability toward the student's degree requirements, such as "Humanities elective" or "Unrestricted elective"; or "Course not required for degree requirements". "Determined upon return to KSU" should not be used. 

For courses that have specific KSU equivalencies, the advisor or designated representative can also indicate the following:

  • If the course is approved just for this individual student, circle "1" on the form.
  • If the course is approved for this student and all future students, circle "0" on the form. The course will then be added as a rule to KSU's Transfer Equivalency database: http://www.k-state.edu/undergradadmit/transferequivalency.html
  • If the course has been previously validated and listed in the Transfer Equivalency Database, circle "EQ" on the form.

While the Student is Abroad

Students may change the classes they take abroad once they arrive, or after the first week of classes.  If the student adds new courses, which are not listed on the Academic Approval Form, we encourage the student to contact their Education Abroad advisor and their academic advisor, or a designated representative from their Academic Department or College, to revise their existing Academic Approval Form while the student is still abroad. The Education Abroad advisor can revise the Academic Approval Form so that is accurately reflects the courses the student enrolls in abroad. 

The Credit Transfer Process

The Academic Approval Form acts as a record to assist in processing transfer credit from the institution abroad where a student has studied.

If a student has taken courses abroad that are listed on their Academic Approval Form, the Education Abroad Office will process the course and credit equivalency, send it through to the Registrar's Office, and the equivalency will show up on the student's DARS report.

If a student has taken courses abroad that are not listed on their Academic Approval Form, the student must, upon their return, work with their Academic Advisor, or a designated representative from their Academic Department or College, to determine the equivalencies of courses they took while abroad. This can be done by submitting a new or revised Academic Approval Form.

Modern Language Courses

Students taking language courses abroad often cannot get these courses pre-approved the same way as non-language courses, because they often have to take a language placement test upon arrival at their host university abroad. Students must still complete the Academic Approval Form to be eligible for Federal Financial Aid, and to provide proof of their enrollment abroad.  Students simply check the corresponding box at the top of the form that says "Check if you are planning to take language classes abroad for Department of Modern Language credit (language equivalencies are determined upon return to K-State and do not need pre-approval)". 

Upon their return to K-State and after their transcript from abroad has been received, Education Abroad will forward the Academic Approval Form and transcript from abroad to the Department of Modern Languages. Modern Languagese will then determine the KSU equivalencies for these courses.