What is the Academic Planning Form, and when is it due?

The Academic Planning Form is a “contract” between you and your advisor regarding the courses you are  planning on taking while studying abroad, and how they will count towards your graduation requirements when  you return. This form is available and due after you are accepted to your CSU IP program. 

Be sure to follow the listed instructions! You will print the document that is linked in the instructions and take  that to your academic advisor for them to sign. The form should be mostly completed BEFORE taking it to your advisor. Faculty get very frustrated when students ask them to complete this form for them. Faculty are not  familiar with all of the classes available abroad, so it is your responsibility to do your research ahead of time, use your best judgement to match courses abroad with what you need to graduate, and then take that information to your advisor. We even recommend creating a spreadsheet of the courses you need, and what classes abroad are similar to those courses. Be sure to bring courses descriptions and as much information on the courses as  available.  

Keep in mind that faculty are VERY busy the last two weeks of classes, the first two weeks of classes, and around  registration; they are also often unavailable during winter and summer break. You should not expect faculty to help you during these times, so be sure to plan accordingly.  

If you are planning on taking classes in your major, then a faculty member in that department will sign. If you want to take classes in your double major or minor, then likewise your advisor in that department will sign. If you want to take GE courses, there is no designated person to sign. You can either go to the department that houses that GE (ex. a history GE class would be in the history department) and ask one of them to sign, or you can have your normal academic advisor give their best guess.  

Navigating GE courses abroad can be difficult since there is no designated GE advisor. Use your best judgement  by matching the abroad course with a SSU GE course title and course description. The more similar the abroad  course is to a SSU course, the easier it will be. You can also use the following GE area descriptions to help guide  you in matching GE courses: https://catalog.sonoma.edu/content.php?catoid=3&navoid=141#general-education-program

Keep in mind, and you can tell your advisor this, that the course information will still be reviewed once you  return from studying abroad. Signing this form does not provide a blanket guarantee of how classes will transfer  back; faculty can be hesitant to sign if they feel that way. That is why it is imperative you bring back syllabi for all  of the courses you take abroad!

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