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Academic Requirements

Types of Credit
EAP 599: EA Course
Course Approval & Transfer Credits

Education Abroad programs are designed to complement the academic, graduate or professional goals of every student. Depending on the education abroad program selected, students can enroll in courses that fulfill major or minor, elective, foreign language, or UK Core requirements. Participating in Education Abroad will not delay graduation as long as students plan early and carefully. In some cases, studying abroad can help a student get ahead or catch up on his or her degree.


There are two ways to earn academic credit while abroad. The type of credit earned is determined by the type of program that a student selects.

UK Credit

Students who participate on UK Sponsored and some UK Consortia: CCSA programs will be taught by UK faculty members. Therefore, students will be enrolled in courses at UK as if they were taking classes here on campus. The grades earned on these programs will be factored into a student's GPA. Because students will be enrolled in EAP 599 during their time abroad, students participating on UK Sponsored and UK Consortia: CCSA programs will not be charged regular tuition for the associated UK courses. Please see EAP 599: Study Abroad Course for more details.

Transfer Credit

Students who participate on a UK Exchange, UK Consortia: KIIS, UK Direct, or UK Partner Program will be enrolled in courses at a university or institution other than UK. A transcript will be generated by the host institution and the credits earned will be transferred back to UK. Transferred course credit can still be applied to degree requirements at UK. Grades earned through transfer credit will not be factored into a student's UK GPA and will not be visible on a student's UK transcript. Only the title of the course and number of hours earned via transfer credit will be visible on the UK transcript.

It is important to understand that selective admissions programs, majors, colleges and scholarships at UK may still use the transfer grades earned abroad when determining eligibility. Additionally, graduate or professional schools may require the submission of all original transcripts (i.e. the foreign transcript) in the application process for their programs. Therefore, students must still make every attempt to be academically successful while abroad even if the grade earned will not impact their UK GPA. Students may not elect to take a course on a pass/fail basis as those credits will not be applicable to a UK degree requirement. If a course is only offered pass/fail, the credit may be applied to a UK degree requirement.

All participants of approved, credit-bearing UK Education Abroad programs are enrolled in EAP 599 at UK for one credit hour. This pass/fail course keeps students classified as full-time and thus allows a student to utilize federal financial aid and most institutional aid for his/her education abroad program. Students are charged tuition at the standard tuition rate for one credit hour. Additionally, this required course serves to provide each student with the necessary information, preparation, and support to successfully navigate the Education Abroad process through various orientation sessions on-campus and via virtual learning. More specifically, this EAP 599 course seeks to:

  • Holistically prepare students for their education abroad experience (i.e. academically, culturally, administratively, etc.)
  • Link the Pre-Departure, While Abroad, and Re-Entry processes in order to cultivate intellectual and intercultural learning.
  • Assist students in connecting the international experience to their academic, professional, and/or personal endeavors.

In completing the requirements of EAP 599, students will be able to:

  • Adequately and appropriately prepare for the Education Abroad experience.
  • Articulate how the Education Abroad experience enhances their academic, professional, and/or personal life.
  • Identify opportunities to maximize their international engagement in the campus and local community.

To receive a P (passing grade) in this course, students are required to complete all components as outlined in the EAP 599 syllabus. To learn more about the EAP 599 course, please view the EAP 599 syllabus.

Pre-Departure Orientation

Students participating on Education Abroad programs must attend one Pre-Departure Orientation Session as required by EAP 599. To learn more about EAP 599 requirements and course expectations please review the syllabus. If there is a class conflict with attendance at the mandatory orientation, please contact the appropriate Education Abroad Advisor.

Students who are participating in a Summer 2017, Fall 2017 or Academic Year 2017-2018 must attend a mandatory Pre-Departure Orientation Session. Dates, times and location will be announced.

Re-Entry Sessions (Welcome Back)

UK Education Abroad Re-Entry (Welcome Back) sessions have been scheduled for the following dates and time:

Re-entry Session #1
Monday, August 28th
4:00 PM – 6:00 PM

Whitehall Classroom Building Room 118

Re-entry Session #2
Tuesday, August 29th

5:00 PM – 7:00 PM

Whitehall Classroom Building Room 118

Re-entry Session #3
Wednesday, August 30th

6:00 PM – 8:00 PM

Whitehall Classroom Building Room 118

Re-entry Session #4
Thursday, August 31st

3:00 PM – 5:00 PM

Whitehall Classroom Building Room 106

Re-entry Session #5
Friday, September 1st

12:30 PM – 2:00 PM

Whitehall Classroom Building Room 118

Please note students who participated on an Academic Year 2016/2017, Spring 2017 or Summer 2017 program are required to attend one of the following sessions.

Please remember, attendance is mandatory. Not attending a Re-Entry Session will result in failure of EAP 599.

If the student is graduating immediately after the program ends, please contact the appropriate Education Abroad Advisor to let them know. If the student is a graduate student, they are not required to complete these items based on an agreement with the University.
COST students will not be required to attend one of the above Re-Entry (Welcome Back) sessions as they will have their own via the COST program and will be contacted at a later date.

For questions, please contact the appropriate Education Abroad Advisor.


Academic Course Approval
There are two important elements to consider when deciding which courses to take abroad: course equivalency and applicability.

Course equivalency is the evaluation of the content of a course to determine its equivalent course number at UK. Course equivalencies can be exact, such as "PS 210." This means the content of the course abroad is delivered at a similar depth and breadth to how we teach PS 210 at UK. Course equivalencies can be generic to a discipline, such as "HIS 3--." This means that the course has been established as taught at a certain level within a particular department. In this example, "HIS 3--" indicates a history course at the 300 level. In some cases it might not be possible to determine a course equivalency because no such discipline exists at UK. In those situations students may receive a generic equivalency, such as "GEED" or general academic credit.
Course applicability refers to how a course may be used in a particular major, minor or degree program. Exact course equivalencies may be applied to a degree in the same way the course would be applied if it had been taken at UK. For generic course equivalencies, i.e. "Hist 3--" or GEED, students must speak with their academic advisor to determine how the credit may be applied towards their degree.

All students participating an a UK Exchange, UK Consortia: KIIS, UK Direct or UK Partner programs must complete and Education Abroad Academic Approval Form (AAF) prior to departure. To complete this form, students must take the syllabus or course description of each class to be taken abroad to the course department at UK to determine the transfer course equivalency. For example, a history course would need approval from the Department of History while a computer science course would need approval from the Computer Science Department, etc. This is not required for students enrolling in UK-taught coursework.

Unfortunately, there are times when courses cannot be evaluated in advance. This is most commonly done for courses in which students must take a language placement exam upon arrival at the host institution or when the anticipated courses may not be known until arrival. When courses cannot be pre-approved, students should keep all course materials including syllabi, course descriptions, coursework, textbook information, etc. so that the course may be evaluated upon return to UK.

UK Core Exceptions

If the student plans to or has taken a course abroad that is not a designated UK Core, they may petition the General Education Exceptions Committee to grant an exception to allow the course to satisfy a UK Core requirement. Some courses may not meet the requirements of the UK Core and it is important to note that exceptions are not guaranteed. This process requires significant planning on the part of the student prior to the beginning of an education abroad program.

An exception for courses that are considered transfer work will not be reviewed until an Academic Approval Form (AAF) has been completed by the corresponding department and a UK course equivalency has been established. Please note, a specific UK course equivalent is not required; generic discipline specific equivalencies, such as “HIS 3- -“, can be approved for UK Core exceptions. It is possible to submit a request prior to the program beginning and the committee may grant conditional approval for the exception pending proof of completion of the course. The transfer credit must appear on the student’s UK transcript before final UK Core Exceptions will be granted.

To submit a UK Core request, the student must complete the online UK Core Exceptions Form and attach an electronic copy of the course syllabus and/or description to the post. If the student is unable to provide an electronic copy, they may bring a hard-copy to the Division of Undergraduate Education office in 230 McVey Hall.&

If a conditional approval for a course was granted by the committee prior to the program beginning, it is the responsibility of the student to maintain a copy of the conditional approval and follow-up with the committee once the course credit has been transferred to the UK transcript. The final decision of the committee will be shared with the student and the student’s college. After notification from the committee, any changes will be reflected in 7-10 days in APEX Degree Planner.