Transfer Credit

Obtaining Transfer Credit in Sociology

Students who have successfully completed college courses elsewhere may apply to the University for the transfer of credit. Brown University policies for credit transfer may be found here.

Students may apply for transfer credit in Sociology if they:

  • studied abroad
  • transferred to Brown from another institution
  • took courses else where during the summer or while on leave

Courses eligible for transfer credit in Sociology must:

  • qualify for Brown graduation credit (check with a student Dean)
  • be transcripted (listed on your Brown transcript)

Decisions about granting transfer credit are based on the following criteria:

1. Is the course a sociology course?

  • Many courses in history, cultural studies, anthropology, or other departments may be similar enough to American sociology that we would consider sociology credit appropriate. At the same time, many "sociology" departments abroad cover areas that we consider more in line with other disciplines or concentrations.  Only sociology courses will be considered for approval (courses where at least 2/3 of the readings are directly derived from sociological literature).

2. Is the coursework equivalent to what you would do for a course at Brown?

  • Of course we recognize that you're not doing the course at Brown, but often in a non-Brown setting that has its own sets of challenges and delights. We still need to know that full course credit is warranted for the work you did.  If the course you wish to receive transfer credit was not taken abroad, make sure you contact a transfer credit dean prior to submitting the Sociology transfer credit form to verify that the course qualifies for Brown graduation credit.  This is particularly important for courses taken at institutions with a quarter system and those taken over the summer which may meet for fewer class hours than that required by Brown.

If the answer to both questions is “yes,” carefully follow the transfer credit instructions.


Special Instructions for Sociology Concentrators

Before you leave to study in another place, we may grant provisional approval for transfer credit work done in sociology, but the final approval for this credit can only be granted after you return. To receive provisional approval, please follow the provisional transfer credit instructions. When you return from abroad, a concentration advisor will need to review your transcript, syllabus, coursework, and any course notes as well as a formal discussion of what you learned before final approval can be granted. If the course does not meet Brown University sociology expectations, even after preliminary approval, concentration credit may not be provided.  After this meeting, you may apply for final transfer credit approval.

Independent Studies and Field Courses

We often award course credit for these components of study abroad programs. The amount of credit depends on the amount of time and work that was involved. Many SIT programs only award 2 credits to field study methods seminars (compared to 4-8 for regular courses), even though they may last 8-10 weeks. Conversely, the "independent study" segment may only last 4 weeks but is given 4 credits because it builds on the field study seminar, home study, and other field experience. We may fold the two together, awarding credits for the 2 courses, depending in part on whether your independent study involved a sociological topic.

We do not give a field study methods course credit equivalent to SOC 1020 (Methods of Social Research).