Study Abroad Advising
Sacred Heart University study abroad programs include the following types of programs abroad, each of which involves a different degree of faculty involvement:
Direct Enroll/Exchange in Overseas Partner Universities
In these programs, typically one or two semesters in length, SHU students enroll as non-matriculated students in an overseas university, with which a formal affiliation agreement has been established. The partner university’s faculty teaches outbound SHU students. Depending on the university, classes are conducted either in English or in the language of the host country. If the affiliation agreement entails reciprocal exchange, Sacred Heart will also receive students from the partner university. The role SHU faculty play in overseeing this type of program—monitoring and mentoring students—is advisory.
Although many of SHU’s study abroad semester programs are of the Direct Enroll/Exchange type, some are offered by arrangement through reputable third-party providers (e.g., CIEE) who provide the institutional articulation with a host university, and relevant administrative infrastructure for our students. The role SHU faculty play in overseeing this type of program is again advisory, as described above.
Sacred Heart Faculty Led Programs
Typically offered in the summer as short (two to six weeks) programs, these courses are directed and taught by a member or members of SHU academic departments. Administratively, these programs are managed through the Office of Global Affairs, which assists the faculty leaders in addressing key operational issues. These “in-house,” faculty-led programs offer faculty the most intensive teaching involvement in Study Abroad.
Non-Affiliated Study Abroad Programs
Finally, students are authorized, with the permission of their academic deans, to opt for suitable non-Affiliated programs. The Office of Global Affairs does not routinely advise on these programs, but instead leaves this to individual faculty or undergraduate program directors.
Study Abroad and the SHU Curriculum
All courses taken abroad through a SHU or SHU-Affiliated study abroad program will count towards a student’s general graduation total. These courses also factor into the cumulative Grade Point Average (courses are not available for Pass/Fail). The student is responsible for ensuring that a course taken abroad can be applied towards a major/minor/general education requirement. Major/Minor courses must be approved by the department head and general education requirements must be approved by a dean. The Office of Study Abroad is working to develop a course equivalency database to facilitate this process.
Each academic department and program has assigned a faculty member to serve as the Study Abroad Liaison. The faculty liaison is in close contact with the Office of Global Affairs and is apprised of the current study abroad programs portfolio. The Liaison assists students in understanding how a study abroad program will fit into the specific major or minor and sometimes with with students' academic course selections for their time abroad. The faculty liaison also acts as an information bridge between the academic department and the Office of Global Affairs. The list of department liaisons is available .
The Office of Global Affairs overseas more than 100 programs in over 30 countries around the globe. Participants in our programs earn SHU credits and grades for their studies, and continue to fulfill their major and minor requirements while abroad without lengthening the degree process. Academic advisors play a very important role in helping our students achieve success in their study abroad experience.
If you would like to learn more about our office, programs and/or procedures for studying abroad, feel free to schedule a “Study Abroad 101 for Advisors” session for your school or department. This is an informational meeting to familiarize the Sacred Heart community with study abroad opportunities.
We are always happy to help you identify programs that are particularly suited to your students’ needs. Please email your request to firstname.lastname@example.org and we will follow up with you as soon as possible.
For more information, please review the links below:
SHU and non-SHU students are allowed to participate on our programs. Most programs are for undergraduates, but some programs are also offered at the graduate level. All programs require students to be in good academic and disciplinary standing:
- The suggested minimum G.P.A. is 2.7, but some programs have higher or lower G.P.A. requirements
- Some programs require competency in a foreign language
- Summer programs are generally open to students beginning the summer semester after their freshman year
- Semester programs are generally open to students beginning the 2nd semester of their sophomore year. Our semester in Dingle is open to freshmen.
*Please check the individual program pages for specific eligibility requirements, as they vary by program.
Once students have accepted the admissions offer from the Office of Global Affairs and have been fully admitted into the program - i.e. successfully completed the second phase of the admission process – The Office of Global Affairs will register them for the study abroad program. This process is automatic; there is nothing students need to do. In order to register them, we use a “placeholder” course. The placeholder course will say “Study Abroad in ______, ___ credits.” For programs held during the fall, spring, and academic year, the number of placeholder credits will be 12. For summer programs, the number of credits students are registered for will depend on the summer program they are attending. Students attending faculty-led programs are registered for the specific course number and credit amount. Summer students, who are applying for summer financial aid, should check carefully that they will be registered as full-time for the summer.
It is important for students to know that once we have registered them for study abroad, all other courses for which they might be registered for that term will be deleted. Thus, if they have been accepted into the Office of Global Affairs but do not wish to participate, it is vital that they let us know in writing immediately. If they do not, there is a good chance that we will register them for study abroad and delete all of their other courses for that term. Please remember, it is the student's responsibility to ensure that his or her status with us is clear. We cannot fix any problems that occur with courses if students to alert us as soon as possible that they do not wish to participate in the study abroad program.
Many students ask how to register for courses for the semester when they return to their home institutions. The process and registration dates/ times are the same - as if they were still on campus. Students should take care to note the difference in time zones when trying to access WebAdvisor.
All courses taken abroad through a SHU or SHU Affiliated study abroad program will count towards a student’s general graduation total. These courses also factor into the cumulative Grade Point Average (courses are not available for Pass/Fail). The student is responsible for ensuring that a course taken abroad can be applied towards a major/minor/general education requirement. Major/Minor courses must be approved by the department head and general education requirements must be approved by a dean. The Office of Global Affairs is working to develop a course equivalency database to facilitate this process.
While we are used to having our grades and updated transcripts here in the U.S. almost immediately after taking final exams, this is not the case for study abroad. In most of our program locations. Students' grades will not arrive at the Office Global Affairs for up to 8 weeks after the program end date. Once students' study abroad grades are received, it can take 5 to 7 business days for the grades to be submitted to the Registrar’s Office and entered. When students have completed their programs and once the study abroad grades have been received, we will submit the actual courses, credits, and grades to the Registrar’s Office.
Some study abroad programs require applying students applying to submit letter(s) of academic recommendation. For programs in which the student is studying in a language other than English, one of the recommendations must be from a language professor.
Recommendations are submitted electronically. If a student requests a recommendation, you will receive an email notification prompting you to log into our website to complete the request. If you require log in assistance please contact the Office of Global Affairs at 203-396-8028.
The Office of Global Affairs is pleased to offer presentations and round table discussions about study abroad opportunities to departments, classes, and student organizations upon request. We can tailor talks to suit specific needs or the particular interests of an audience. Presentations can last from five minutes to one hour, depending on your needs and the needs of the students.
Consider inviting us to speak at your department meeting, in your classroom, or at an event.
When requesting a visit, please include the following information:
- Department name – or – Course number/title – or – Organization name
- Campus and room location
- Date and time of presentation
- Length of presentation
- Number of participants (list by faculty, staff, and student)
- Availability of audiovisual equipment/enhanced classroom
- Contact/instructor’s name
- Contact email/phone
Please email email@example.com to schedule a meeting or presentation.