Academics

College of Arts & Sciences

Academics

The Washington, D.C. Programs are rigorous and challenging. Students balance working full time four days a week, taking at least two three-credit courses and actively participating in an elective class after a full day of work once a week.

Courses are taken in conjunction with students and faculty from a variety of campuses and backgrounds. In addition to working with undergraduates from other universities in elective classes, Washington University in St. Louis undergraduates work side-by-side with professional and graduate students in the required core course and colloquium. Course work is as rigorous as at the Danforth Campus of Washington University, with expectations commensurate with students’ academic level and experience.

Enrollment, grades, transcripts and academic credit

During the fall or spring semester participants in one of the programs offered by the College of Arts & Sciences will be registered as full time students at Washington University. This will appear in WebSTAC as 12-15 units of coursework.

Students will be automatically enrolled in the courses that they indicated on the study plan in the application to the semester in Washington, D.C. Programs. If students elect to take non-WUSTL elective courses, they will be enrolled in three credits of L99 as a placeholder credit. They will select the appropriate elective course from the UCDC consortium offerings once they arrive in Washington, D.C.

Courses for Academic Credit

All A&S students participating in the Semester in D.C. Programs will be enrolled in the following courses:

  • L32 4001: Seminar on American Democracy and the Policy Making Process (3 credits, letter grade, taught by WUSTL faculty)
  • L32 3001: Colloquium on American Democracy and the Policy Making Process (1 credit, pass/fail, taught by WUSTL faculty)
  • L43 2993: Internship in D.C. (6 credits, pass/fail, supervised by WUSTL faculty)*

All A&S students participating in the Semester in D.C. Programs will be enrolled in ONE of the following courses:

  • L32 3002: Washington University Political Science Elective in D.C. (3 credits, letter grade, taught by WUSTL Faculty)
  • L99 8001 (Non-WUSTL elective course) (3 credits, must receive a C- or better to receive credit, taught by Non-WUSTL Faculty)**

All A&S students participating in the Semester in D.C. Programs may choose to enroll in WUSTL independent study (course number and credit options assigned by relevant WUSTL department, overseen by WUSTL faculty in St. Louis).

*Students may choose to substitute a six-credit directed fieldwork course option for the internship. This must be arranged with the relevant SAA and faculty mentor prior to departure and indicated on the internship plan.

**Students electing to take a course offered by the UCDC Consortium will be placed into three credits of L99 8001 placeholder credit while in Washington, D.C. Students must pass the course with a grade of C- or better to receive academic credit for the course on their WUSTL transcript. The credits may be used to satisfy major or minor requirements at departmental discretion. Upon return to WUSTL, students will receive an email with a Credit Award Request. Overseas Programs will review this together with the student’s internship plan and Washington, D.C. Certificate of Completion, and forward the file to the appropriate office for evaluation and recording of credits. If a student wishes to receive general elective credit toward graduation for the course, Overseas Programs will assign the course number “L32 3003 D.C. Elective” to the work and forward the file to the College Office to have the credits recorded. If a student plans to receive major/minor credit for the work, Overseas Programs will forward the file to the appropriate departmental Study Abroad Advisor (SAA). The SAA will then review the file, assign a course number to the credits, and forward the file to the College Office so that the credits may be recorded. If the department from which a student plans to receive credit requires a portfolio or research paper, this project must be submitted before the student can receive credit for his or her elective course in Washington, D.C. Once the credit has been awarded, it will appear on the academic record or transcript under the semester in which the student studied in Washington, D.C.

Distribution requirements

Up to three WUSTL units of credit per semester in Washington, D.C. may be used to satisfy an area distribution requirement outside a cluster if the course involves the appropriate subject matter. Credit may only count towards LA, NS, TH and SS, but will not be accepted for WI, QA, SD or CD. Preliminary guidance is available from academic advisors or a college dean, but final approval depends upon a review of the coursework upon return to WUSTL.

Major and minor requirements

Courses taken in Washington, D.C. may count towards satisfying the requirements of a WUSTL major or minor. However, the appropriate department (or school) has the discretion to decide which courses will count for which requirements and the minimum performance necessary. Please make sure to keep track of deadlines within your majors and minors, as well as for leadership positions throughout campus because students in Washington, D.C. are not exempt from these deadlines.

WUSTL Credits

Satisfactory academic performance in appropriate courses normally results in an award of 12-15 units of credit per semester in Washington, D.C. Students are expected to maintain enrollment in the number and type of courses recommended by WUSTL. Typically, no more than six or nine units per semester away from campus may be used to satisfy the minimum requirements of a given major or minor, but each department sets its own limits and performance standards. The summer maximum is 10 units.

Washington University Law

For information about advising, academics, curriculum and application information for students at Washington University Law, please visit the Congressional and Administrative Law Clinic website.