Opportunities for Study Abroad and Domestic Off-Campus Study

Rhodes encourages its students to study off-campus through the programs it administers or through programs administered through other institutions. Off-campus study, whether domestic or international in scope, requires substantial prior planning. Students interested in pursuing such a course of study should formulate and clarify their plans well in advance.

Off-campus study opportunities are coordinated by the Buckman Center for International Education. The staff in the Buckman Center can assist students in researching off-campus study programs and can facilitate completion of the program’s application process. Students are responsible for meeting with their academic advisors to discuss program choices and for course selections. Students applying for a Rhodes program must have a minimum grade point average of 2.0 unless otherwise specified and must be in good social and academic standing.

Off-Campus Study Application Process

Each student who intends to pursue off-campus study must complete the Off-Campus Study Application available on the Buckman Center website. This Application, when signed by all appropriate officials, grants approval for the program of study and, subject to general college policies regarding transfer credit, assigns appropriate credit for the academic work successfully completed. The above mentioned website contains instructions, checklists, deadlines, application materials, and policies.

Off-Campus Study Program Transfer Credit Policies

  1. For all transfer credit, it is the student’s responsibility to do the following:
    1. Verify that the off-campus study program/university is on the List of Recognized Programs/Providers or has been successfully petitioned. **
    2. Verify that courses intended to be taken for major or minor credit have been approved by the appropriate department or program chair in consultation with the faculty adviser. Such approval is granted only through the signature of the department or program chair on the student’s Off-Campus Study Application.
    3. Request an official transcript with final grades from the program attended be sent to: 

      Office of the Registrar
      Rhodes College
      2000 N. Parkway
      Memphis, TN 38112
  2. At the relevant academic department’s discretion, transfer courses taken abroad can be used to satisfy major and minor requirements. Courses for transfer credit must be passed with a minimum of “C-” to be eligible for transfer credit.
  3. Credit should be approved prior to enrollment in courses. However, in some cases it may be necessary to postpone approval until course descriptions, syllabi, papers, and tests are examined.
  4. Should a student’s course selection change for any reason after submission of the application, substituted courses are not transferrable unless approved by an appropriate department or program chair. Such approval must be sought immediately (i.e., email); copies of any such correspondence should also be directed to the Director of International Programs and to the Registrar.
  5. Students are strongly encouraged to contact the Director of International Programs prior to final course registration at the host institution in order to confirm course credit approvals. Retroactive approval may be sought but is not guaranteed and must be obtained before the conclusion of the first semester of the student’s return to Rhodes.
  6. To be accepted for credit, each course, whether for major/minor credit or elective credit, must be judged comparable in terms of content and quality to a course in the curriculum at Rhodes or it must be judged to be consistent with the liberal arts and sciences curriculum and of a quality comparable to that expected of courses at Rhodes. Courses intended to be taken for major or minor credit must be approved by the appropriate department or program chair in consultation with the faculty adviser. Such approval is granted only through the signature of the department or program chair on the student’s Off Campus Study Application. Elective credit will be reviewed by the appropriate academic officer acting on behalf of the Foundations Curriculum Committee.
  7. Students who study abroad on a Recognized Program/Provider will normally satisfy the F11 requirement.** In addition, students may, through appropriate course work, satisfy up to two additional Foundation requirements while abroad on a semester-long program or up to three additional Foundation requirements for a year-long program. The Director of International Programs will recommend to the Foundations Curriculum Committee, in consultation with the Registrar and other relevant faculty members as necessary, the appropriateness of the course(s) taken abroad for Foundational credit.
  8. Programs vary greatly in their academic structure. At some universities abroad, three courses is considered a full load, while at others a full load may be as many as 8-9 courses. Rhodes College students must maintain what is considered a full-time course load at the institution abroad. Normally, a student cannot earn more credit while on a semester study program than could have been earned in a regular semester at Rhodes. Failure to satisfactorily complete coursework needed to maintain satisfactory academic progress for financial aid purposes may result in the loss of financial aid renewal eligibility.
  9. No strict correlation exists between contact hours in courses taken off-campus and credits awarded by Rhodes. Many European institutions utilize the ECTS crediting system in which one ECTS credit is comparable to one-half credit at Rhodes. For example, a course worth 8 ECTS credits will normally transfer to Rhodes as 4 credits. If the host program’s transcript does not translate easily to “American” credit (e.g., credits, quarter hours, semester hours, units) or does not provide a conversion scale, or if the host institution’s academic calendar differs significantly from the Rhodes semester calendar, the following statement can act as general principle:
    A student pursuing a fully approved, full-time program of coursework on study abroad for a period roughly equivalent to Rhodes’ fall or spring semester will usually receive 16 transfer credits from Rhodes upon the successful completion of all coursework. Successful completion is defined as earning a grade equivalent to “C-” or better in each course.
  10. All courses should be taken for graded credit.

** Please refer to the List or Recognized Programs/Providers on the Buckman Center Website.

Rhodes Study Abroad Programs

Rhodes College’s commitment to international and cross-cultural study is most powerfully expressed in its programs abroad. The College offers a semester-long program, European Studies, in conjunction with the University of the South. Rhodes also offers a variety of other spring/summer programs which vary year to year.  Please inquire with the Buckman Center for a current listing of summer program offerings. Credit earned in all these programs is Rhodes credit. Rhodes does not provide financial aid for summer study; however, a limited amount of scholarship assistance is available. Please see the Director of International Programs for more information.

European Studies

European Studies is a seventeen-week program offered jointly by Rhodes and The University of the South (Sewanee) that takes place from mid-summer through early fall. It is a full semester of study abroad and offers the unique experience of studying in a variety of locations in Europe in a special and quite different learning environment. The program begins in July with four weeks of study at Rhodes College with Rhodes and Sewanee faculty. The students then travel to England where there is a ten day practicum conducted by British tutors at the Universities of York and Durham, followed by six weeks with British instructors at Lincoln College, Oxford. The program closes with five weeks of travel in Western Europe, accompanied by British tutors in Art History.

Rhodes Exchange Programs

Rhodes College has formal bilateral exchange agreements with The University of Antwerp, Belgium; The University of Poitiers, France; Nebrissensis University, Madrid, Spain; The University of Tübingen, Germany; The University of Koblenz-Landau, Germany; The University of Aberdeen, Scotland; The University of Lima, Peru; Rhodes University, Grahamstown, South Africa; and The Iberoamericana University in Puebla, Mexico. Students participating in one of these exchanges pay tuition and, in some programs, room and board, to Rhodes, receiving financial aid as if they were at Rhodes. The payments to Rhodes meet the expenses of the exchange students from abroad during their stay at Rhodes, while Rhodes students receive tuition, or tuition, room and board overseas. Credit earned at the institution abroad is treated as transfer credit. The number of students who can participate in these exchanges with other institutions is limited.

Rhodes is also a member of ISEP (The International Student Exchange Program), an organization of more than 200 colleges and universities located throughout the United States and in Africa, Asia, Australia, Canada, Europe and Latin America. Through ISEP-Exchange, Rhodes students can participate on international exchange by paying room, board, and tuition to Rhodes, utilizing any institutional and federal aid granted to them. Exchanges can occur in any discipline and can range in length from one academic term to one year. In most cases, ISEP-Exchange participants are matriculated directly into the host institution and pursue courses with native students. Credit earned in these exchanges is treated as transfer credit.

Other Programs Abroad

In addition to exchange programs and Rhodes programs, there are numerous programs offered by other colleges and universities and international agencies. Information on many of these programs can be found in the Buckman Center for International Education. Credit earned in these other programs is treated as transfer credit. Normally a student cannot earn more credit while on a semester study abroad program than could have been earned in a regular semester at Rhodes. Rhodes College financial aid is not available for these other programs; however, certain types of federal financial aid may be applied to these programs. Rhodes’ Buckman Fellowships for Study Abroad are available for any approved semester or year-long program abroad.