“Off-Campus Studies gives students hands-on experience in the field, generates thesis data and expands a student’s knowledge base. Any exposure to global perspectives is good and enriching."- Delbert Hutchison, Associate Professor
Off-Campus Studies can help Biology students…
- Improve foreign language skills
- Gain awareness of the major discipline in a different academic and geographic setting
- Develop primary research skills from field or lab work in a different locale
- Expand cross-cultural communication and problem-solving skills
- Prepare for an increasingly diverse and international workplace
How does a semester or year of OCS help students in Biology prepare for various career opportunities?
- Study abroad provides biology majors with research opportunities and exposure to the international scientific community that enhances international career opportunities.
As a general rule of thumb, the Biology Department recommends the following for students who wish to study off campus.
- First year students should enroll in CHEM 125 & 126 General Chemistry with labs; one year of Calculus; and perhaps BIOL 111 Biological Principles
- Second year students should enroll in CHEM 245 Organic Chemistry I; BIOL 111 Biological Principals, BIOL 112 The Biological World, and perhaps BIOL 205 Genetics with lab
Which requirements can Biology majors fulfill while off campus?
- Elective major credit
- General Studies distribution credit
- Major credit, especially courses in the three biology categories (Molecular/Cell Biology; Organismal Biology; Ecology/Evolution
- The biology department recommends against taking major requirements in non-English speaking locations. Biology courses selected during off-campus studies should take advantage of the location (e.g. Marine ecology in Australia).
Major Credit Limitations
- The maximum number of credits that can be applied to the Biology major from off campus studies (including AP credit, IB credit and credits from other U.S. institutions) is 11 credits with the approval of your major adviser.
- Business courses typically cannot be transferred to Whitman because they are vocational in nature and not considered liberal arts.
Minor Credit Limitations
- A minimum of three-fifths of the specific course and credit requirements for the minor must be completed in the on-campus program of the college.
What are the types of OCS programs recommended by the Biology department?
- Direct enrollment in a foreign university with host-country students
- Field study program with opportunities to engage in research with the local community and environment
- Program that offers an opportunity for independent study research
Which Partner Programs are recommended by the Biology department?
Field-based programs suitable for biology majors:
- SFS: Australia Tropical Rainforest Studies (Cairns)
- CIEE: Monteverde Tropical Ecology and Conservation (Costa Rica)
- SFS: Cambodia Conservation, Ethics, and Environmental Change
- SIT: Ecuador Comparative Ecology and Conservation (Quito)
- SFS: Tanzania Wildlife Management Studies (Moyo Hill Camp)
- SIT: Madagascar Biodiversity and Natural Resource Management (Fort Dauphin)
- SFS: Panama Tropical Island Biodiversity Studies
- SFS: Turks and Caicos Marine Resource Studies
- SEA Semester (Woods Hole, Massachusetts, USA)
University-based programs offering biology and other natural science courses:
- IFSA-Butler: University of Melbourne (Australia)
- University of East Anglia (UEA) (Norwich, England)
- University of Otago (Dunedin, New Zealand)
- University of St Andrews, (St Andrews, Scotland)
Students interested in health professions/public health may wish to consider the following options:
- SIT: Chile Public Health, Traditional Medicine, and Community Empowerment (Arica)
- DIS Copenhagen (Denmark)
- IES: London Health Practice and Policy (England)
- SIT: South Africa Community Health and Social Policy (Durban)
Students interested in Off-Campus Studies should attend an OCS First Step meeting in the fall of their second year, discuss their interests with their major adviser, and schedule an appointment with an OCS adviser.