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College Catalog


  • Students must complete all campus procedures, documents and requirements from the Global Engagement Office, including pre-departure course approvals and essays, and returnee surveys, in order to have their grades earned off-campus to appear on their Lake Forest College transcript.  Students who fail to do this before the next term starts may find that they do not have enough credits to be eligible to receive financial aid.

    Program Credit

    The type of credit earned depends on the program. Students will earn Lake Forest credit for all programs included on the College’s approved list of affiliated off-campus study programs.  

    For Lake Forest program courses taught by Lake Forest faculty, the grades will appear on the transcript and count toward the GPA.  These courses include College faculty-taught courses in the Loop and the Lake Forest College Border Studies and Greece programs.  Students may opt with Lake Forest’s Office of the Registrar to take these courses as Pass-Fail.

    For all other courses/programs on the approved list of affiliated off-campus study programs, the course titles and grades will appear on the transcript, and be considered Lake Forest credit.  (EXCEPTION: Chinese Government Scholarship - see below.) This includes any course taught by Lake Forest College faculty but NOT on a Lake Forest-sponsored program.  However, the grades will not count toward the GPA except for Dean’s List and honors calculations.  Students may not opt to take these courses as Pass/Fail through the College, but may elect to do so if allowed by their host program. Not all host programs allow Pass/Fail, and students should confirm with their departmental advisor at Lake Forest to determine whether their department will accept Pass/Fail courses toward the major or minor.

    Participants in any other programs, including summer programs and the semester-long Chinese Government Scholarship, will earn transfer credit for courses completed with grades of C- or better. All programs must be approved by the College before transfer credit can be earned; certain programs may have been pre-approved for transfer credit and students can consult with Ashley Sinclair for details.  Course titles and grades earned for transfer credit will appear on the College transcript, but those grades will not be calculated in the GPA except for honors calculations.  Transfer credit is not eligible to count for Dean’s List.

    • For purposes of calculating general honors (e.g. cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa), accepted transfer credit will be used in GPA computations.
    • With the approval of the department chair, transfer credit may count toward a major or minor.
    • No more than 16 transfer credits can be counted toward Lake Forest College degree requirements.
    • 12 of the last 16 credits must be Lake Forest College credits, and four of the last five credits must be Lake Forest College credits.**
    • 15-16 semester hours must be successfully completed to earn the equivalent of one Lake Forest semester (4 Lake Forest course credits). For other credit systems, students can consult with Ashley Sinclair or the Office of the Registrar.
    • The policy permitting students on the Dean’s List to take a fifth course without additional charge is not applicable for off-campus study.  Please consult the Student Handbook and Ashley Sinclair for further details.

    Any variance to the above requires approval of the Academic Appeals Board.

    **Students interested in studying off-campus during their final (8th) semester should consult with the Global Engagement Office. These participants must petition the Academic Appeals Board for a waiver of  this rule for any program earning transfer credit, NOT including the College’s In The Loop program when the Columbia/Roosevelt/School of the Art Institute of Chicago option for courses is selected.

    Note: Students who do not complete all required forms for off-campus study—including the eligibility application, the program confirmation, and the ensuing pre-departure documents—may NOT study abroad on Lake Forest College Approved Program Leave and should not assume transferability of credit from another program.

    Course Approvals

    All students must get their courses approved before departing on an off-campus program. These must be turned into the Global Engagement Office before the last day of the semester prior to the term abroad.

    A student’s academic advisor must approve all courses so that they can ensure that a student will stay on track to graduate on-time.  Advisors may approve courses to count for graduation or general education credit.

    A department or program chair must sign off on all courses that are to count for a major or minor.

    Successful completion of approved study abroad semester programs will meet the GEC Breadth: Cultural Diversity Global Requirement.  Approved study abroad courses that count in Lake Forest College academic divisions (as transfer credit or as Lake Forest College credit) also will count toward the GEC Breadth: Academic Divisions Requirement. 

    It is recommended that a student get more courses approved than one expects to take, in order to obtain maximum flexibility.  However, if a student arrives at their host institution and wants to make changes during an add/drop period, they can do additional approvals via email.


    Requests to send an official transcript (required by most programs) can be made as part of the Program Confirmation stage.  Students may opt to send their transcripts directly through the Parchment site at a cost set by the Registrar’s Office.

    You may download from your College account an unofficial transcript or request one free of charge from the Office of the Registrar. An unofficial transcript does not carry the College seal. Unofficial transcripts may be submitted as a campus eligibility document, but program hosts may require an official copy.

    All transcripts for completed programs should be sent directly to the Office of the Registrar. Grades are not posted until students complete returnee requirements.

    Note: Transcripts for completed off-campus programs will be recorded by the Registrar as received from the sponsoring program or institution. Students who earn credit from an approved off-campus program and whose financial aid has been applied to that program may not drop—in whole or in part—any such credit without also fully reimbursing the College for all aid transferred to that program.

    Grading Policy

    Different host institutions or countries have different grading policies than those at Lake Forest College, and that the College is not able to change your grade.

    Students cannot choose to withdraw from a course after the grade has been received, nor ask the Registrar to not post one of the courses.  

    The College cannot change student grades received on outside programs to Pass-Fail.