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Dean of Studies

Vassar College

Vassar students wishing to study away must have the support of their major department and the formal approval of the Committee on Leaves and Privileges. To be eligible to apply, members of the sophomore class must have:

  1. completed at least one full year's work at Vassar.
  2. declare a major, chosen a major adviser, and discussed study abroad plans in detail with him/her.
  3. a recommended cumulative and major GPA 3.2 or higher.
  4. completed a petition for Domestic Study Away.

Course selection, registration, and credit

Consult with your major advisor when making course selections, making sure to confirm with him/her which courses are to apply to your major. Your advisor will be contacted by the Assistant Dean of Studies for his or her approval of your course of study.

Vassar College approval will be granted for only those courses listed in your petition and approved by your adviser. You must include official course numbers, names, and credit or quarter hours for each course you list. It is often difficult to adhere to a list of courses compiled far in advance of actually enrolling in your study away program, but students are expected to conform to the spirit of the plans set forth in their petition if they are unable to do so to the letter.

Changes to proposed coursework after approval must be communicated in writing and approved by the major advisor and the Assistant Dean of Studies. Pre-professional courses, vocational courses, business courses, physical education courses, internships and ungraded work CANNOT be transferred for Vassar credit. If you are unsure whether a course you select falls into any of the above categories, consult with the Assistant Dean of Studies BEFORE registering for the course.

Once you complete your academic leave, you must make a request to the registrar at the institution you attended to send an electronic transcript of your completed course work to All courses and grades from your study away program will appear on your Vassar transcript, but only those with grades of "C" or better will be awarded credit. Credit earned during domestic study away counts towards the maximum 10 units of transfer credit. Grades earned during domestic study away are not calculated into your Vassar GPA.

Once you are approved for Domestic Study Away, your status will be adjusted to reflect that you will not be present on campus during the semester specified on your Domestic Study Away petition. If for any reason you decide NOT to take a Leave, you must notify Casey Trocino, Assistant Dean of Studies, in writing IMMEDIATELY.

Timeline and Deadlines 

  • First Monday of December: Deadline for submitting petitions and applications for all Domestic Study Away programs for the following academic year to the Committee on Leaves and Privileges
  • February: You will receive email letters with the CLP decision for Domestic Study Away.
  • April: If you are accepted, you will be asked to submit a Financial Aid Budget Worksheet through the Financial Aid office.

Please consult directly with your program for any additional deadlines.

Applying to your Program

If you are applying to the Vassar-Twelve College Exchange Program, your petition/application will be forwarded directly to the host school. You will receive a decision letter directly from the host institution.

If you are applying for any other program, you will need to consult the host institution for their application timing and deadlines. All further arrangements are handled by you and the host college directly. You may be required to pay a nonrefundable deposit.

Changing or Revoking your Study Away Program

If you decide not to accept a Study Away offer, you must notify the host institution and Vassar in writing.

If you change your mind after confirming participation in study away, you have the option to return to Vassar to earn credit or take a personal leave of absence. You may not study elsewhere and transfer credit without the express permission from the Committee on Leaves and Privileges.