• Credit

    Each study abroad program earns academic credit, but it may be reflected differently on your UAB transcript depending on the type of program. Credit earned on Education Abroad programs transfer as letter grades and will affect your UAB GPA. Auditing of any course abroad is not permitted. All faculty-led and exchange programs receive credit in the same manner as if the student were at UAB. Affiliate programs will appear as transfer credit on your UAB transcript. Students should review the following instructions.

    Learn how your credit will be transferred. →
  • Registration

    While on university approved credit-bearing programs, students will maintain official status with UAB. Students participating in exchange and affiliate programs will be enrolled in a “placeholder” course, INTL 100, while abroad. Students participating in faculty-led programs enroll in the faculty course.

  • INTL Placeholder Class

    Once you return and we receive your host institution transcript, the placeholder course will be updated to Pass and your actual earned credits will appear on your transcript. Students participating in an affiliate program will be enrolled in a 15 credit hour placeholder for semester programs and a 6 credit hour placeholder for summer programs.

    UAB exchange participants will be enrolled in an INTL 100 placeholder with the appropriate billable credits reflected.

  • General Timeline for Registration & Payment

    Course registration for semester programs will be automatically generated for participants. Course registration occurs in mid-December for Spring term programs and early May for summer and fall term programs.

    Tuition bill and insurance payment timelines are determined by the Office of the Registrar and Student Accounts Receivable. For full details consult the Official Academic Calendar website.

  • Residency

    Courses taken on the following programs will satisfy the UAB residency requirement. Contact your Academic Advisor to ensure your Graduation Planning System record is noted accordingly:

    • UAB Exchanges
    • USAC programs
    • ISA programs
    • CISAbroad programs
    • U.S. - UK Fulbright Commission Summer Institutes
    • U.S. Department of State Critical Language Scholarship Program
    • Clinton Scholarship at the American University in Dubai
    • UAB Faculty-Led Programs
    • UAB Internship/Practicum Courses Abroad

    Individual UAB academic departments may have additional requirements. The residency requirement is listed in the UAB Undergraduate Catalog.

    Courses taken on non-supported programs may not be used to satisfy the residency requirement.

Earning Academic Credit

Students collaborate with Education Abroad to have courses from UAB approved credit-bearing experiences evaluated for transfer. Education Abroad does not determine course equivalencies but instead helps the student facilitate the process. All course approvals are granted through the Transfer Center and respective Department Chairs. Education Abroad will assist students to the best of our ability to receive approvals directly related to degree requirements.

Education Abroad will advise on the credit process, but ultimately the responsibility to get the credit approved lies with the student. Course articulations may take up to a month or more to receive a decision. It is imperative that students work ahead with this in mind.

Students are responsible for providing Education Abroad a completed “Request for Transfer Evaluation” form, provided in your online application, for any potential course they plan to take that has not been evaluated for UAB credit, as well as syllabi.

How Do I Begin?

Always seek advice from your academic advisor on courses you should take while abroad. It is important to find out what classes have a residency requirement and are required to be taken at UAB.

Make sure to set up an appointment with our Education Abroad team and bring a copy of your degree audit, a list of potential courses you may take while abroad, and UAB descriptions or syllabi of these courses (if available) with you to this advising session. Our Education Abroad team will provide guidance on the credit process and show you where you can find previously approved courses.

To find out if a course has been previously evaluated:

  • Visit the UAB’s program page for your selected program
  • Click on “Courses Approved for Previous UAB Students”
  • If one or more of your courses are NOT listed, you will need to submit a syllabus from the course in order to request a course evaluation.

What Do I Need To Do Upon Arrival in my Host Country?

We understand, classes can change when you arrive at your host institution. For any course not approved prior to departure, you will need to submit a “Request for Transfer Evaluation” form. This should be done as soon as you have finalized your schedule, preferably within the first month of your time abroad.

Students must provide a syllabus in order to request an evaluation of a course.

How Do My Grades From Overseas Appear on my UAB Transcript?

Affiliated Grades: Credits from your transcribing university will be posted by Education Abroad in collaboration with Enrollment Operations to the transfer credit section of your official UAB transcript. Courses and actual grades will appear and will affect your overall GPA. In most cases, grades recorded on transcripts from affiliates have already been converted from the foreign mark or grade to the American letter grade system.

Reciprocal Exchange Grades: Credit from exchange programs are posted by Education Abroad in collaboration with the Office of the Registrar to the official UAB transcript. Courses and actual grades will appear and will affect your overall and UAB GPA. The Office of Education Abroad, under authorization from the Provost, transcribes the grades from the foreign grading system to the UAB letter grade system for each course taken abroad. UAB follows the guidelines set by World Education Services to convert the foreign grade to a US equivalent grade.

What Do I Need to Do Upon Return to UAB?

Once the official transcript from the program has been received, the student should ensure that all credit articulations are on file. Students should make sure their credit is posted to their official UAB transcript within one semester or their placeholder will automatically turn to an F and negatively impact GPA. Students should contact Education Abroad with any questions pertaining to their credit. 

Are There Any Graduation Considerations?

Graduating the same semester or the semester immediately following your study abroad is not always possible, due to the delay in receiving your transcript at UAB. Most institutions issue transcripts 1-2 months after the completion of your program. Without your study abroad credit posted, you may not be able to file your Application for Graduation. If you are considering studying abroad during the semester of your graduation or the semester prior to your graduation, you should discuss this with both your Academic Advisor and Education Abroad Advisor. Below is a rough timeline of when Education Abroad anticipates receiving your host institution transcript:

Semester Abroad Transcript Arrives at UAB
Fall Mid February- early April
Spring Late summer – early fall
Summer Early fall

How do I Determine How Many US Credits?

Foreign universities often use a different system of measuring course credit than UAB. As a result, foreign credits often do not equal the same number of credits as UAB. We understand that each credit system comes with confusing acronyms. ECTS, SCQFS, Credits, Papers. It’s all Greek to us!

To help decode foreign credit systems, we’ve listed the most common systems and how they translate back to UAB.

Foreign CreditsUAB Credits
6 ECTS 3 US Credits
45 Contact Hours 3 US Credits
20 British/SCQF Credits 5 US Credits
4.5 Australian Credits 3 US Credits