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Study Abroad - Frequently Asked Questions

How does the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board define "Study Abroad"?

The Coordinating Board defines Study Abroad as "off-campus, academic credit instruction which is delivered outside the United States primarily to regular on-campus students."

What is a "Study-in-America" course?

A Study-in-America course is off-campus, academic credit instruction which is delivered outside Texas but in the United States primarily to regular on-campus students.

What Coordinating Board rules govern Study Abroad?

Study Abroad rules are detailed in Chapter 4, SubChapter Q § 4.276 - Approval of Off-Campus and Self-Supporting Courses and Programs for Public Institutions. These rules can be found on the Coordinating Board website at: http://www.thecb.state.tx.us/Chapter4SubChapterQ

What types of Study Abroad courses should be reported to the Coordinating Board?

All courses in which students are traveling abroad as a mandatory component of the course should be reported to the Coordinating Board. This includes faculty led programs of any length, including summer programs, "Maymester," and other interim semester courses as well as semester length programs and courses.

How do I report Study Abroad courses to the Coordinating Board?

The Coordinating Board now uses an online submission and certification process for Study Abroad and Study-in-America courses. The online certification form can be found at https://www1.thecb.state.tx.us/apps/StudyAbroad. You will need your institutional FICE code and a password issued by the Coordinating Board. To receive a password, please contact the Coordinating Board's Division of Academic Affairs and Research.

Why does the Coordinating Board require Study Abroad courses be reported?

The Coordinating Board has a legislative mandate that requires it to approve all off-campus instruction.

Do Study Abroad courses receive formula funding?

Yes, Study Abroad courses are eligible to receive formula funding for those students who meet the formula requirements.

Are there other requirements regarding Study Abroad courses?

Yes. In general, the Coordinating Board expects all Study Abroad courses to conform to the same set of standards and rules that govern face-to-face courses at an institution. In particular, this means:

  • All students enrolled will meet institutional standards for admission and will be actually admitted to the institution, or one of the participating institutions in an approved Texas Consortium.
  • All students enrolled will pay the appropriate tuition and fees for their residency category. Financial aid will be available to students registering in foreign classes on the same basis as for on-campus students.
  • Instruction will be provided by faculty of the institution or a consortium institution and will be supervised and evaluated according to institutional policies. Exception will be made only to take advantage of uniquely qualified personnel at the out-of-state location.
  • Each course is on the approved main course inventory of the institution, is a part of an approved degree or certification program, and is justified in terms of academic, cultural, or other resources available at the specified location.
  • For community and technical colleges, each course is on the list of approved courses in the Academic Course Guide Manual or an approved technical course.
  • Instruction will conform to all relevant academic policies. All classes will conform to workload and enrollment requirements, contact hour/credit ratio, and similar matters
  • Courses will not offer credit for activities undertaken primarily for travel, recreation, or pleasure.
  • Minimum enrollments will conform to the same standards applicable were the class to be offered on campus.
  • Advertising and marketing for study-abroad courses will emphasize the instructional nature of the classes, and not create the impression that they are primarily credit-for-travel experiences.
  • Faculty and staff will not realize unusual perquisites or financial gain for teaching study-abroad courses.
  • Free tickets for travel, accommodations, or other expenses provided by travel agents, carriers, or hotels will be used in direct support of the instructional program and will not be used as gifts to faculty, staff, or their families
  • All courses offered in a shortened format will consist of the same number of contact hours, normally 45-48, as courses offered in a regular or summer session. Students will not carry more courses at a time in a shortened format than will give them total credit of one semester credit hour per week of instruction unless the course(s) have been reviewed and approved through a formal, institutional faculty review process that evaluates the course and its learning outcomes and determines that the course does, in fact, have equivalent learning outcomes to an equivalent, traditionally delivered course. (CB rules Chapter 4, SubChapter A, §4.6). Pre-or post-travel class sessions will be scheduled to attain the required minimum length standard.
  • Whom do I contact with questions about Study Abroad policies and reporting?

    Requests for passwords for the online certification system: Coordinating Board's Division of Workforce, Academic Affairs and Research.

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