Because of the need to pass Division I, form a committee and file Division II, off-campus study is not recommended for Third Semester students other than in exceptional cases.
As soon as students file the Division II, they are eligible to participate in exchange or field study programs. For some students, off-campus study early in the Division II, i.e. in the Fourth Semester, spurs creativity and interest in what they are studying. Students often return from these experiences more mature, with a clearer sense of purpose, and with palpable excitement to continue their work as inspired by their off-campus experiences.
Fifth Semester abroad works well for most Div II students. By this point, they have taken substantial coursework, have successfully completed some independent research and engaged in other co-curricular experiences to support their off campus study. They are fully grounded in their Div II concentration and are generally ready to augment their studies by studying/doing research/working abroad or off campus.
Sixth Semester students are usually completing their Division II. For many, off-campus study becomes the capstone experience. Participating students find that these experiences serve as an immersion into environments that test (or continue the study of) theory, language skills and comparative world views that they have been studying at Hampshire. Because students are also trying to complete their Div II at that time, it is necessary for faculty to advise them about passing Div II and beginning Div III prior to leaving campus for the semester away. Students will need to return to campus prepared to pass Div II within the first few weeks of the following semester, so that they can begin their Division III early in that seventh semester.
New Div II Filing Procedures: The new Div II filing process does require a little more planning on the student and faculty sides. Students need to have a sense that:
Off-campus study is possible and encouraged as part of the Div II experience.
Off-campus study requires careful and early planning.
Help advisees consider the benefits of off campus and co-curricular work early on in their academic career.
Encourage students to go on Field Study or on a Hampshire Exchange Program during their fourth, fifth or sixth semester. Off-campus study during the third semester has generally proved problematic and will be considered only as an exception, in unusual circumstances.
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With The Global Education Office (GEO)
Global Education Office Hampshire College
893 West Street
Amherst, MA 01002