Frequently Asked Questions
It is the opportunity to earn credits towards a degree by studying in another country while living in a different culture and experiencing different attitudes and ways of doing things. Stonehill College is committed to educating its students about the world outside the USA and the best way to learn is experience. An international experience will further academic knowledge and provide new skills that extend beyond the classroom. Students are strongly encouraged to add this experience to their academic plan.
Study abroad is undoubtedly a life-changing experience, which can affect the future course of both your life and your career. It can be of benefit to all students who are interested in and open to experiencing another culture and way of life. There are numerous well-founded reasons for studying abroad. Below are just some of the reasons to consider: Challenge yourself intellectually. Greatly increase your level of fluency in a specific foreign language. Become intimately acquainted with another culture and way of life. Attain a new worldview. See your home country with a different set of eyes. Make friends from different cultural backgrounds, which will last a lifetime. Increase your marketability after graduation (a definite “resume-builder”). Remember, you will get out of a study abroad experience as much as you yourself put into it. You should clearly have some goals in mind when considering studying abroad. Look beyond simply travel as a reason for leaving the country. You will certainly do that and have fun as well. The real key, however, is to profit from your experience in a more profound manner, which will be beneficial to you, intellectually and/or personally, for the rest of your life. (top)
Study Abroad programs are available to second semester sophomores, juniors, and first semester seniors, provided the following requirements have been met: Endorsement by the student’s major department; Minimum cumulative grade point average of 2.8 by the end of the semester prior to application for study abroad; Above average professionalism, motivation, reliability, and communication skills; Approval of the Director of International Programs after review of on-campus code of conduct. (top)
If a student's cumulative grade point average is slightly below the minimum requirement for approval he or she may submit a letter of explanation to the Director of International Programs requesting that an exception to the eligibility requirement be made. Students must also provide a letter of support from a faculty member outside of their major and from their major Department Chair. The Director and the International Programs Advisory Committee will consider such requests on a case-by-case basis. (top)
One of the fundamental issues that you must decide is where you would like to study. In some cases, your decision may be influenced by factors such as the foreign language you have been studying or your particular major. Students should be aware that not all foreign universities follow the American academic calendar. Programs in Australia are generally held from early July to late November for the fall semester and early February to mid-June for the spring semester. Some programs in the UK (England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland) are held from mid-September to mid-December for the fall semester and early January to mid-June for the spring semester. Also, many universities in England and Ireland require a minimum GPA of 3.0 for enrollment. In any event, you should choose one particular destination and program and complete the on-line application. The Office of International Programs has resource materials to assist you in finding a suitable program. Stonehill College has an approved program list of more than 100 worldwide study abroad locations. Consult the Approved Program list. (top)
Q. How do I identify my study abroad goals?
Deciding where to study abroad is a tricky question and can only be answered after you have done some serious thinking about your goals for study abroad. Ask yourself the following questions in order to formulate some objectives for study abroad: Why do you want to study abroad? What are your academic interests and career goals and what can you do abroad to support these interests? What do you want to do in addition to studying while you are abroad? Travel? Do a service project? Independent research? Learn a language? What do you want to do abroad in terms of language and cultural studies? How deeply do you want to be immersed in the culture? Do you want to attend classes with students from the host country, or mainly with other Americans or foreign students? Do you want the classes to be on the American model, or on another model that may involve more independent work? Where do you want to live? If you are considering going abroad, do you want to live with a family, in a dorm with students from the host country, or with other Americans? Where would you like to go? Do you prefer cities or small towns? Large universities or small programs? Is foreign language proficiency necessary to study in the country you are considering? If so, do you have the necessary proficiency, or do you have plans to gain it before you go? Will studying abroad alter your graduation plans?
All students must complete an on-line application to be approved by the College to study abroad. Please login to myHill, click on the "myPlans" tab, and then click on "International Program Application." Students are encouraged to apply early even if they are uncertain of their interest or qualifications. Generally, if you are going abroad in the fall semester, you must submit an on-line application prior to mid-March. If you are going abroad in the spring semester, you submit an on-line application prior to mid-October. Students should be aware of Stonehill's application deadline and that of their particular study abroad program. (top)
Since you will remain a Stonehill student while abroad, your charges equal those assessed for any Stonehill student. You will receive a bill from Stonehill, including your financial, and you must pay the balance due to Stonehill as you normally would.
- If your abroad program fee includes tuition and room and board, the bill will reflect current Stonehill tuition, abroad fee (waived for fall semester), and room and board.
- If your abroad program fee includes tuition and room, the bill will reflect current Stonehill tuition, abroad fee (waived for fall semester), and room and board less the declining balance for Meal Plan C. You will be responsible for paying food costs directly to your study abroad provider or purchase food at local vendors as appropriate for your program. Note: This option is the most common for students.
- If your abroad program fee includes tuition but not room and board, the bill will reflect current Stonehill tuition and abroad fee (waived for fall semester).
An abroad fee of $750 will be charged to students who choose to study away in nearly all non-Stonehill programs. The abroad fee is waived for students who study abroad during the fall semester only. If your study abroad program provider charges Stonehill a fee greater than the amount that Stonehill would charge you for the same academic period, you will be responsible for paying the difference. (top)
In nearly all instances your financial aid remain the same, just as if you were living on campus. There are a few exceptions to the transfer of aid policy and students are strongly encouraged to contact the office of Student Financial Services. (top)
Yes! Approval by Stonehill does not imply approval by your chosen study abroad program. While the International Programs office has an excellent track record of students being accepted by the programs for which they are approved, some students may be rejected from study abroad programs, most often due to the early filling of the program. In the event that you are not accepted by the program for which you were approved but you are still interested in studying abroad and have an alternative program which you want permission to attend, it is your responsibility to contact the International Programs office and the staff will then assist you with the procedure for gaining permission to study on this new program. (top)
Upon acceptance into a program, the College will submit the required deposit to your provider or host institution. Submit the completed “Study Abroad non-refundable deposit” and a copy of your acceptance letter from the provider to the Office of International Programs. The deposit, paid by the College, will become part of the regular tuition charged to your account for your semester away. If you do not attend the abroad program after the deposit has been paid by the College on your behalf, your Stonehill student account will retain this charge for which you will remain responsible, over and above normal tuition charges. (top)
Most credits from academic courses taken while you are studying abroad will transfer to Stonehill College. You must have the course pre-approved and earn a grade of "C" or higher to transfer the credits to Stonehill. Students studying abroad must register for the equivalent of at least 12 American credits to remain in full-time status. (top)
Q. What should I do if any of the courses I was pre-approved to take in my major(s) or minor are not being offered when I get to my foreign university?
Don’t panic! If you believe an alternate course will meet Major or Minor requirements or electives, e-mail a course descriptions to the appropriate department chair at Stonehill College. Please be sure to have the department chair designate the Stonehill course equivalency (e.g. HS 101). Also, be sure to copy the e-mail to the Office of International Programs.
Q. What should I do if any of the courses I was pre-approved to take to fulfill general studies requirements/electives are not being offered when I get abroad?
Contact the Office of International Programsvia e-mail or phone (508-565-1645) and send the course description(s) for approval.
Q. Do I receive grades for the courses taken abroad?
Students studying at a foreign university earn transfer credit for courses pre-approved by the Department Chairs and the Office of International Programs and passed with a grade equivalent to or higher than the Stonehill grade of “C”. Transfer credit is recorded on the student’s transcript, but is not included in the cumulative grade point average. (top)
Q. Where should my transcript from abroad be sent?
Request that your official transcript be sent to the Registrar's Office, Stonehill College, 320 Washington Street Easton, MA 02357 (top)
Q. Do I select courses for next semester?
If you are certain that your plans for next semester include a study abroad experience, you do not need to pre-register during the normal pre-registration period. Conversely, if your plans are still tentative, you should pre-register for next semester. Once your plans are finalized, contact the Registrar’s office so that your courses can be dropped. (top)
Q. How do I select courses for the following semester while I am abroad?
The Registrar’s office will contact you via e-mail with explicit instructions on the course selection process while you are abroad. The instructions from the Registrar will come in October for Spring semester and in March for Fall semester. All students select courses on-line using their HillNet account. (top)
The Office of International Programs holds two general informational sessions each academic year (September, and January). These sessions are considered to be critical in assisting you in your decision to participate in the program. You should attend one of these sessions. The second meeting a "Getting Started" session and will discuss more in-depth procedures. Students should also schedule an individual meeting with either the Director of International Programs or the Assistant Director of International Programs. This one-on-one meeting is helpful in determining the study abroad program that best suits your major and interests. It also constitutes the last step in the screening process for admission into the program. The final meeting is held near the end of the semester (and before final exam week) prior to your departure. At the mandatory pre-departure meeting instructions are given to all students studying abroad and members of the International Programs office answers any last minute questions. (top)
Several Peer Advisors are employed by the Office of International Programs and are available to answer a wide spectrum of questions about studying and living in an international setting. Peer Advisors have recently studied abroad and are willing to meet with interested students in the Office of International Programs, Duffy Academic Center, Room 131. (top)