Procedures and Guidelines for Granting Study Away Transfer Equivalencies

The Department of Modern and Classical Languages (MCL) enthusiastically encourages all students in its programs to participate in study away experiences that improve their language proficiency and increase their cultural competence. However, MCL generally only approves transfer equivalency requests for courses taken abroad which closely match – in terms of level and content – those in its curriculum. Students in MCL programs should familiarize themselves with the procedure and guidelines outlined below and plan their study away experiences accordingly.


  1. Students planning to complete language courses as part of a study away experience must meet with their advisors beforehand to determine which MCL courses would be acceptable transfer equivalents for the courses they plan to take at the institution abroad.
  2. After meeting with their advisors to discuss appropriate transfer equivalencies, students must request preapproval of those equivalencies through the online Request Transfer Credit Preapproval/Re-Evaluation tool that is part of the My Missouri State portal (Registration tab). This tool requires students to enter detailed information regarding the course abroad (course name, description, learning objectives, proficiency level, etc.).
  3. Students must ensure that copies of any transcripts issued by the institution abroad are sent to the Study Away Office. The Office of Admissions requires these transcripts. Certificates may not be acceptable, so students should ensure that they enroll in accredited institutions that issue transcripts.
  4. If the courses actually taken by students abroad differ from those originally requested as part of the pre-trip preapproval procedure, they must repeat steps 1 and 2.


  1. In most circumstances, requests for equivalencies will be denied if the course to be taken abroad is not a close match – in terms of level and content – to the proposed transfer equivalency in the MCL curriculum. For example, a request to transfer a course such as "B2 Intermediate Spanish" taken at a school in Spain as MCL’s SPN 415 (Business and Professional Spanish) or SPN 410 (Translation) would be denied.
  2. In general, requests for equivalencies involving upper-division content courses, such as civilization, specific purposes (business, translation), and literature will be scrutinized for similarity more closely than requests for lower-division language skills courses.
  3. When available, descriptions of proficiency levels referencing the ACTFL Guidelines (Novice, Intermediate, Advanced, etc.) or the Council of Europe Common Framework of Reference (A1, B2, C1, etc.) should be provided when requesting transfer equivalents for language skills courses, and that information will be considered when granting or denying equivalency requests.
  4. Students must take the University’s residency requirements into account when planning how to integrate study away into their degree plans. The Department will not support appeals of the requirement that majors complete 12 hours of upper-division credit on the Springfield campus or that minors complete at least 6 hours of their program on campus.

Missouri State Study Away

Spending time at a university in another country is a vital part of any foreign language program. Our department encourages its students to take advantage of Missouri State University’s Study Away programs.