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Application process Independent Study Away Fall and Winter (including online)

Independent Study Away Fall/Winter (including online)

An independent study away is when a McGill student applies, registers, takes courses and pays tuition to an accredited degree granting institution and receives an official transcript of these studies from the same undergraduate degree granting school. Students must be registered at the host school as a “non-degree Visiting student” and take courses that are part of the host university’s undergraduate curriculum, taught by their faculty members.

Studies must be completed at a university that appears on the Arts OASIS list of institutions approved for transfer credit, grouped by continent: PDF icon AfricaPDF icon The AmericasPDF icon Asia and The Middle EastPDF icon EuropePDF icon Oceania

NOTE: If you are applying for an Independent Study Away, although a university may appear on the Arts OASIS lists of institutions approved for transfer credit, it is the student’s responsibility (not Arts OASIS) to confirm that:

  • the university has an undergraduate “visiting, non-degree” student status;
  • you meet the host university’s eligibility and student visa requirements;
  • you meet their application requirements and can afford the host university’s tuition.

Students should not enroll in courses at an affiliated or partner university of the host institution. Students will not receive transfer credit for studies arranged by or offered through study abroad organizations, third parties or intermediaries.

Before beginning an application, you should carefully review the information in the Plan & Prepare section of this website, the Arts OASIS Study Away Guide and the Arts OASIS Host University checklist.


At the time of application:

  1. Have a minimum McGill CGPA of 2.7 and maintain this CGPA for study away eligibility.
  2. Be currently registered as a full-time student in a McGill BA, BSW or B.Th. degree. (See course load)
  3. Have successfully completed a minimum of 12 graded McGill credit. Courses taken under the Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory option are not graded credits.
  4. Ensure that the host university you wish to attend appears on the Arts OASIS lists of institutions approved for transfer credit, grouped by continent.
  5. You must submit a completed Degree Planning Worksheet concurrently with your Minerva Study Away application.
  6. You must attend a mandatory Arts OASIS information session prior to submitting your Minerva application. See the Arts OASIS website for a listing of dates.


Application Deadlines

FALL TERM ONLY - February 1 to July 15

FALL & WINTER TERMS- February 1 to July 15

WINTER TERM ONLY- September 15 to November 15



Please note the following:

Students in the Bachelor of Social Work program MUST first discuss plans to take courses at another university with their program adviser in Social Work.

If your Minerva record shows that you are in your U3 year of study and you are planning to study away, please consult our Arts OASIS graduation checklist to be sure that you will be meeting all your graduation requirements.

Students who are taking one or more courses at another university during their term of graduation WILL NOT be eligible to graduate at the end of that final term. These students MUST select the NEXT available term of graduation.

Minerva Study Away Application

  1. If you do not submit all the required information by the deadline you have been given, your application will be FACULTY REFUSED.
  2. If you wish to take an online education course, please read the information under Transferring Credit, "Online Education Policy".
  3. If you have a “HOLD” on your Minerva record, this may prevent the processing of your study away application. Contact Student Accounts (514-398-3900) or Service Point (514-398-7878) immediately to resolve any outstanding HOLDS.
  4. Check your McGill email account regularly for important notices as this is our official means of communication during the application process and during your term away.

IMPORTANT: Minerva will time out within 90 minutes of inactivity so have your information ready electronically to paste into the form so you don’t lose your work and miss the deadline!

Part 1: Application Process

Step 1: Verify that the university you wish to attend appears on the Arts OASIS lists of institutions approved for transfer credit, grouped by continent, before proceeding with your study away application.

Step 2: Submit your completed Degree Planning Worksheet to Arts OASIS concurrently with the submission of your Minerva Study Away application. Using your McGill email account, send the PDF attachment to studyaway.arts [at] in the following "Subject" format: Degree Planning Worksheet [Family Name/First Name] [Student ID number].

Step 3: Minerva Study Away Application

To begin a study away application, you must go to the Minerva Study Away Request Form. To access the request form, log on to Minerva and navigate to: Student Menu > Student Records Menu > Exchange/Study Away Menu > Request for Study Away. For instructions, select the word “HELP” in the upper right hand corner of the Minerva screen.

Step 4: Submit a brief statement of purpose indicating your reasons for applying to study away. This text area allows 4000 characters (about one page single spaced). We recommend that the statement of purpose be written in a separate text editor (e.g. MS Word) to avoid being timed out and potentially losing work. If you are applying to multiple institutions you will need to submit a separate statement of purpose for each institution.

Your Minerva Study Away application will be evaluated only once ALL four steps have been completed.

Once your application is complete:

The processing time for a complete application is normally 5 to 10 working days.

Your application will be granted a status of 'Faculty Approved' or 'Faculty Refused' in the 'Faculty Application Status' field of your Minerva Study Away application.

Minerva Record

If your McGill study away application is “Faculty Approved”, your Minerva record will be updated to non-resident status for the equivalent McGill term(s) you will be away. This means that if you are already enrolled for courses at McGill during your study away term(s):

  • These McGill courses will be dropped.
  • Your transcript will indicate "Term Away".
  • You will not be able to register for McGill courses in that term(s).
  • Your McGill courses WILL NOT be re-instated if your plans change.

Once you have been approved to study away, remember to read the “SAO Special Instruction” section of your Minerva study away application and complete all the required steps.

Letter of Permission (LOP)

  • A Letter of Permission can be downloaded from your approved Minerva Study Away application.
  • This is your official letter of approval that grants you McGill authorization to take courses at the specified host university during the specified term as a Visiting student for the purpose of transferring course equivalences and credits toward your McGill degree.
  • This letter may be required by the Host University’s Registrar's Office, Enrollment Services or International Study Abroad Office.
  • The Letter of Permission (LOP) is provided in place of any forms that must be provided to the host school confirming your permission to study away.

NOTE: Please be advised that Arts OASIS does not send or fax Letters of Permission (LOP) to the host university. It is the responsibility of each student to submit their Letter of Permission directly to the host university.

Part 2: Transferring Credit

Once your study away application has been granted the status of 'Faculty Approved', read the information found under Transferring Credit for an explanation of this process.

Part 3: Pre-departure Information Session & Minerva Travel Registry

If approved for a Study Away term outside Canada you are required to attend a mandatory Pre-departure Orientation session.

Once your McGill record indicates “Term Away” for the specified term(s), if approved for a Study Away term outside Canada, you are required to fill out the Minerva Travel Registry Form.