Global Health Studies (GHS) Major Study Away Advising Guide

The Global Education Office and the Global Health Studies (GHS) Department have compiled the following information for GHS majors to assist in planning for a semester of study away. Students should let their Academic Advisor know as soon as possible about their plan to study away so they can help fit this experience into the student’s graduation plan.

Academic Planning Prior to Going Away

Successfully Complete the Following Courses Before Studying Away

In order to be eligible to study away, students in the GHS major must successfully complete the following courses at Allegheny prior to studying away:

  • FS-101, FS-102 OR SWS-105 *wording TBD 
  • GHS 130
  • FS*GHS 201
    • NOTE: With the sunsetting of FS*201 courses, FS*GHS 201 will eventually be replaced by a sophomore-level GHS course.
  • If studying abroad during the junior year, we encourage students to have completed at least one methods course (GHS 321, GHS 350, or GHS 352.)

When should I study away?

It is recommended that students in the GHS major should study away during their sophomore year or the fall of junior year. Summer study away opportunities are also encouraged.

  • NOTE: FS*GHS 201 (and its future equivalent) is currently only offered in the fall semester and GHS 575 is currently only offered in the spring semester; students in the GHS major should plan their study away with these constraints in mind.

Allegheny’s graduation requirements state that a student’s final 16 semester credit hours before graduation must be taken in academic residence on campus; therefore study away during the second semester senior year is not allowed without the permission of the Dean’s Exemption Committee.

Plan Around Your Junior Seminar/Senior Project

Since the junior seminar (GHS 575) for GHS majors is currently only offered on campus in the spring term, students typically cannot study away in the Spring of their junior year.

  • A student who studies away during the spring semester of junior year will need to plan well in advance in order to take GHS 575 as a sophomore. Approval of both the academic advisor and GHS Chair is required.

The GHS major requires a two-semester senior project; therefore students typically cannot study away in the senior year.

  • In very rare circumstances, the program has worked with students to study abroad during the fall semester of their senior year. Such situations are handled on a case-by-case basis, must be approved by the program Chair, and require both early planning and a significant record of academic progress to indicate the likelihood of success in a revised pathway for completing the senior project.

Courses that Must Be Taken on Campus

The following courses in the GHS major cannot be taken during a study-away program: 

  • Methods Courses (GHS 321, GHS 350, or GHS 352)
    • NOTE: If the student has completed the required two methods courses, a third course taken while studying away can be counted toward the major.
  • Junior Seminar (GHS 575)

How Studying Away Counts Towards the Major

The Global Health Studies program views study away as a valuable opportunity to increase one’s intercultural awareness and communication, both of which are essential skills in the field of GHS. We therefore strongly encourage students to pursue semester-long or summer study away programs, whether internationally or domestically. We strive hard to help GHS majors (and minors) pursue these opportunities, and look forward to working with students to identify appropriate programs and make study away part of their pathway toward graduation and future careers in global health. We are also mindful of the costs involved with study away and encourage students early on to explore internal as well as external sources of funding, such as the Gilman Scholarship Program

Students in the GHS major can focus on coursework for the four dimensions and/or the language requirement while studying away.

We strive to be as flexible as possible when it comes to recognizing coursework taken while studying away. The student’s progress toward the major should guide the selection of courses according to their content and level. We also encourage students to consider taking courses that relate to their possible senior project topic, particularly in areas that are not covered at Allegheny.

  • For example, students can use study away as an opportunity to explore particular health issues of concern among certain regions and populations.

Students should consult with the GHS Chair well in advance to identify a range of courses, including backups, that would substitute for existing Allegheny courses or meet the goals of the dimensions. Students taking courses in a language not offered at the College can typically count these towards the GHS language requirement or as an elective in the dimensions.

Students in the GHS major can transfer up to 16 credits from approved study away coursework toward major requirements.

GHS majors typically are allowed to apply up to 16 total transfer credits toward the major; therefore, previous transfer credits may affect the total amount of approved transfer credits from approved study away.

Exceptions must be approved in advance by the GHS Chair.

Courses that do not apply to the GHS major may be used to fulfill other requirements, such as in the student’s minor.

Suggested Programs for GHS Majors in the Global Health Studies Department

The GHS program values both domestic and international study-away opportunities. We encourage students to consider a full range of study away opportunities according to their goals and interests, and are willing to work creatively with them to identify courses that could apply to the GHS major (or minor).

The following is a highlighted list of sponsored study away programs that have approved coursework for the GHS major:

Students are encouraged to consider sponsored summer internship programs, such as SVYM, Mysore, India and Global Health Internship in Moldova (currently on pause). There may be other semester-long or summer programs beyond Allegheny to support one’s goals; students should consult with the Assistant Dean for Global Education and the GHS Chair.