Your academic experience abroad is going to be very different from home. Working under the policies and processes of the local institution, you may find a lot less structure, or a lot more.

Courses (How to find courses, Course restrictions, Course load, etc.)

  • To find information on specific courses, go to the relevant UCT "Faculty" (college/school) and look for the undergraduate degree (major) that most matches your academic interests for your semester/year abroad.  You will find information on specific courses in the "Undergraduate Handbook" for each degree.  Each Faculty or School has a handbook that lists all the degrees. Course offerings for each year of the degree are listed along with course descriptions that appear towards the end of each handbook.
  • Courses may be taken in all University of Cape Town faculties excluding health sciences and law. Areas of study include (but are not limited) to Afrikaans, economics, political/social studies, and environmental and geographical sciences.
  • CIEE students take three to four courses, following these guidelines.
    • Students need the equivalent of 15-18 U.S. credits per semester (60-72 UCT credits)
    • Courses at UCT have variable weights from the equivalent of 2.5 to 8 credits per course (typically 4-6 credits each).
    • 1 or more courses must have specific African content, or offer an African perspective. Courses may be taken in all University of Cape Town faculties except Health Sciences and Law.
  • The CIEE Intercultural Communications and Leadership course or CIEE-directed Independent Research are both options.  (Note: Cornell A&S students may not take the Leadership course as part of their 15 credits).

Credit Approval

  • To discuss program fit, such as program type, expectations, level of structure/independence, or to compare options, get advice from Global Learning advisors and returned students. 
  • For assistance in selecting courses, see your faculty or college advisor. (Note: You may earn elective, distributional, minor or major credit depending on your major and college.)
  • Complete the Proposed Course of Study form that is part of the Global Learning application for a record of how your courses will count for credit at Cornell.

Academic Policies

  • Study the language of the host country (or take a course in that language) when studying in a non-English speaking country for a semester or year
  • Take the equivalent of 15 Cornell credits for a full semester, even if it is possible to take fewer and still graduate on time
  • Complete all the academic work and stay until the end of the program, defined as the last officially-sanctioned exam for any course you take abroad

Registration and Grades

  • You will be registered at Cornell and will earn credit for approved coursework for your semester/year study abroad
  • Decisions on the final allocation of credit are made upon successful completion of the course (equivalent of a ìCî or higheróall courses for a letter grade)
  • Grades will appear on the Cornell transcript in the same format as they are recorded on the original transcript generated by the study abroad program or university. Grades are not factored into the Cornell GPA