Credits and Transcripts

What Remains Behind

General Information

St. Olaf students who study off-campus on St. Olaf approved programs stay on track for graduation. General Education credits and major or concentration credits from approved off-campus programs count towards graduation. These credits do not count in the GPA unless taught by St. Olaf faculty, but they do appear on the St. Olaf transcript.  Some graduate and professional schools reserve the right to include off-campus program grades in computing a GPA and do so retroactively.

See the St. Olaf Catalog for complete academic regulations and procedures specific to Off-Campus Programs.

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Minimum and Maximum Credit

While student off campus, students are required to maintain full-time student status.  At St. Olaf, full-time status is defined as 3.0 or more credits per semester, with 4.0 credits being the normal course load.  If you are a MN State Grant recipient, you must complete 7.5 credits a year, with minimum enrollment each semester of 3.75 credits to be considered full-time. Interim enrollment can be counted towards either Fall or Spring semester’s 3.75 credits. See Terms and Conditions of Your Award for more details about enrollment requirements related to Financial Aid.

When studying off campus, students continue to pay regular St. Olaf tuition which covers up to the equivalent of 4.5 St. Olaf credits per semester and an additional 1.0 credit for programs classified as “with Interim” and are therefore allowed up to 4.5 credits from semester only programs or 5.5 credits from semester with Interim programs.  On some programs, students may be required to or choose to enroll in a credit equivalency greater than 4.5 semester and 1.0 Interim credit.  When students enroll in a course load equivalence of greater than 4.5 credits per semester or 5.5 credits for semester w/Interim, credits earned off campus become subject to credit reduction.  For example, a student studying on a fall semester only program enrolls in the equivalent of 5.0 St. Olaf credits but can only receive 4.5 St. Olaf credits, one course’s credit reduces from 1.0 to 0.5 credits for an overall total of 4.5 credits. Courses carrying GE/OLE Core cannot be reduced to receive less than 1.0 St. Olaf credit and retain the GE/OLE Core attribute.

Program specific credit equivalences are defined in the Course Credit and Grade Translation tool found below.

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GE and OLE Core Credits

Courses count toward St. Olaf general education requirements where appropriate.  Under the St. Olaf satisfactory/ unsatisfactory (S/U) policy, courses taken S/U do not fulfill general education requirements.  Courses must be equivalent to at least 1.0 St. Olaf credit and cannot be reduced below 1.0 St. Olaf credit if receiving GE/OLE Core attribute.  IOS and the Registrar’s Office maintain a list of pre-approved courses which carry GE/OLE Core credit.

Additional courses may be reviewed for GE/OLE Core approval by Assistant Registrar Renae Althoff.  Whenever possible, such authorization is made prior to the student’s participation in the program.

Searchable Database and Listing of Pre-Approved GE/OLE Core Credits
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Major Credits

Courses can count towards  a student’s academic major or concentration at the discretion of the department concerned, unless courses are worth fewer than three semester credits (usually 1.0 St. Olaf credit) at the off-campus institution/university.  To request major or concentration credit while off-campus, students must work with the Department Chair of their major or concentration.  When students request courses be reviewed for course credit, students should send the course syllabus and their reasoning for the request to the Department Chair by email to initiate the conversation.  Request requirements vary by department, but generally, these requests can be made before, during, and after the semester off-campus.  The IOS Office highly recommends students keep a written record (such as copy of email) of major/concentration course approvals from off-campus study, as Department Chairs can change from year to year.

Resources for Off-Campus Study By Major/Concentration and Area of Study
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Course Credit and Grade Translation

The Off-Campus Study Credit and Grade Equivalency tool allows students to see how off-campus course credits and grades have been translated into St. Olaf credits in semesters past. In order to use this tool, students must understand and agree to the following:

  1. St. Olaf and the International and Off-Campus Study Office cannot guarantee that the course curricula have not changed since these equivalents were recorded.
  2. Credit and grade equivalencies are subject to change.
  3. Students are strongly encouraged to speak to their Academic Advisor(s) and to the IOS Advising Coordinator prior to studying off-campus and before enrolling in off-campus courses.
  4. The credit equivalencies listed in the database are not a guarantee of credit.  Credit will be evaluated on an individual basis upon receipt of the Official Transcript from their off-campus studies program.

I do not agree.
I prefer to talk in person about credit.
I agree.*
After reviewing this information I will talk to my advisor and/or IOS.

*Note: Must be logged into St. Olaf account to view document.

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Transcript Process

  1. After committing to an International and Off-Campus Studies approved program, a credit registration placeholder is placed on the students account.
    **This is ONLY a placeholder and does not guarantee receipt of indicated credit amount.  Actual amount of credit received is dependent upon course enrollment and completion.

    • Fall or Spring Semester Only:  4.0 St. Olaf credits
    • Fall + Interim or Spring + Interim:  5.0 St. Olaf credits total (4.0 for semester and 1.0 for interim)
    • Interim:  1.0 St. Olaf credit
    • Year:  9.0 St. Olaf Credits  (4.0 fall, 1.0 interim, and 4.0 spring)
  2. An official transcript will be sent from the program provider or university directly to International and Off-Campus Studies with all of the student’s courses and grades listed.  It can take anywhere from 1-3 months (sometimes longer) for IOS to receive the transcript from our partner.
  3. Once the official transcript is received, students are notified.
  4. IOS translates course load credits, grades, and attributes pre-approved GEs to courses taken.
  5. IOS then notifies the Registrar’s Office for official entry into the student’s record.  Courses and grades will then be displayed in the student’s SIS degree audit and will be included on the St. Olaf official transcript.