Transfer & Study Abroad

Study-Abroad Courses in Political Science

Political Science majors may use up to two Political Science courses as well as two other major-related courses from your study-abroad curriculum. This cap may be adjusted at the discretion of the Undergraduate Chair when a student elects to spend an entire year abroad.

Any course taken abroad in a Political Science (or Politics or Government) department at an institution approved by the Office of International Programs will be eligible for credit provided the courses have contact hours, readings, and graded assignments that are roughly similar to what one might expect at a major four-year university in the U.S.

If, however, students plan to request Political Science credit for a course with significant political content offered by another department (such as Geography or Sociology), they should obtain tentative approval from the Associate Director of the Undergraduate Program (via e-mail) prior to registration.

Please submit requests and attach the relevant syllabi through the College’s external course approval tool, XCAT.  See: 

For more information on Penn's Study Abroad Program, one of the most extensive study-abroad programs in the country, you may visit the Office of International Programs website.

Transfer Credit for Coursework Outside Penn

To obtain credit towards the major for courses in Political Science taken at prior institutions, students should consult with the College’s Office for Transfer Students. Students who have matriculated at Penn must obtain prior approval before taking courses elsewhere with the intention of transferring credit. Transfer credits requests and supporting documentation may be conveyed to the Department through: the College’s external course approval tool (XCAT) available at:

After matriculation, students will not get approval for courses taken at a two-year college. Core courses should be taken at Penn, although students may be permitted to take one of their two core courses elsewhere if necessary. Note that the Department does not accept Advanced Placement credit towards either the major or the minor. The Department also does not offer course credit for internships although, in rare cases, internship experiences may be used as a basis for papers in a separate independent study.

University of Pennsylvania
208 S. 37th Street, Room 217
Philadelphia, PA 19104-6215
Phone: (215) 898-7641

Anne Norton Chair
Matthew Levendusky Graduate Chair
Marc Meredith Undergraduate Chair