The L&S Honors Program encourages all Honors students to consider studying abroad and to take advantage of enriching learning opportunities in a new place and culture.
Through the Honors study abroad petition process, a course taken during a semester abroad may contribute to completion of Honors in the Liberal Arts degree requirements. When a study abroad petition is approved, the Honors advisors submit an exception request so the course will count toward relevant requirements in the Honors in the Liberal Arts section(s) of your DARS. We encourage early and ongoing conversations with advisors about your plans.
Steps to Complete an Honors Study Abroad Petition:
Before you go abroad:
- Determine what type of Honors credit you still need for your Honors in the Liberal Arts degree.
- Review the frequently asked questions below and consider what types of courses you might take abroad.
- Discuss your plans with an Honors advisor.
- If you wish to enroll in Senior Honors Thesis credit (681 or 682) while away from UW-Madison, you must discuss this with the Associate Director for Advising and Curriculum and obtain permission prior to departure.
While you are abroad:
- Save your syllabus and your coursework, especially if you plan to petition for Automatic Honors.
- Make the most of your experience!
When you return:
- Run a DARS report to ensure that your courses from abroad have been applied to your student record.
- Double check the policy information below and in the petition form. Contact an Honors advisor with any questions.
- Complete your Study Abroad Petition Form and submit it to the L&S Honors Program.
There is no specific deadline for submitting study abroad petition, but we encourage submitting materials as soon as you can after the study abroad credit is applied to your UW record. Note that usually takes several weeks for your petition to be reviewed and for approved petitions to be reflected in your DARS.
Frequently Asked Study Abroad Petition Questions
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Am I qualified to submit a study abroad petition?
Before submitting a study abroad petition, check that the following are true for you:
- You are a declared L&S Honors student pursuing Honors in the Liberal Arts.
- You have not yet completed (and are not currently in the process of completing) all requirements for Honors in the Liberal Arts.
- You completed a course through a university-approved study abroad program lasting at least six weeks.
- You are only completing a study abroad petition for one course per semester abroad.
Note that this study abroad petition process does not apply to Honors in the Major. If you hope to have a course from study abroad apply toward Honors in the Major requirements, please discuss options with your major advisor.
Is the course I took abroad eligible?
In order for a course to be eligible, the following must be true:
- The course transferred to UW and carries Letters & Science (LAS) credit.
- You earned a B or better in the course.
- The course was not an independent study, directed study, research credits, or an internship.
- Earning Honors credit from the course would help you fulfill remaining HLA-specific requirements.
Is it possible to have a study abroad course count toward dedicated (Automatic) Honors?
For a study abroad course to be eligible to count toward Automatic Honors, it must fulfill either Option A or Option B:
The course was taught in a language other than English and was not primarily a language instruction course.
The course meets at least two of the following criteria:
- Intensive reading, defined in the following way:
- Reading assignments are an integral, ongoing part of the course
- Students must engage in reading and discussion around texts with a significant level of complexity, difficulty, and length as appropriate for the discipline in which they are studying
- Intensive writing, defined in the following way:
- Writing assignments are an integral, ongoing part of the course
- Writing assignments constitute a substantial and clearly understood component of the final course grade
- Students must produce a total of at least 14 double-spaced pages (c. 4000 words) of finished prose. This total does not include pages from drafts.
- Independent, mentored research or creative project
- Significant individual, one-on-one contact with the instructor, defined as at least one hour biweekly for the entire course term
- A service learning, internship, or field experience
Can I fulfill Honors breadth through a study abroad petition?
All study abroad courses are evaluated for breadth by the university. If the course is affiliated with a breadth category, it would be eligible to count toward the corresponding Honors breadth credit through the petition process.
How many study abroad petitions can I do?
Students may petition for one course per semester abroad (fall, spring, or summer) to count toward remaining HLA requirements.
What happens after I submit a petition?
- The L&S Honors Program Advising Team will evaluate completed petitions for eligibility, completeness, and appropriateness of the requested Honors credit.
- Proposals are typically reviewed within two weeks of the submission deadline. If there are questions about the Honors credit requested or other clarifications are needed, you will be given the opportunity to revise and resubmit the proposal.
- Upon approval of a study abroad petition, you will receive an email from the Honors Program and the Honors Program will submit an exception request to have the course count toward the approved HLA requirement(s) on your DARS. Note that approved courses will not appear with Honors credit on your transcript.