About Academic Credit
Hundreds of students from more than 150 universities across the USA and Canada have earned independent study or internship credits from their university for participation in an ISV Program. Independent study is an individualized course of study that you set up with your own professor, academic advisor or other faculty member and agree on the requirements. Students from dozens of majors; from language programs to nursing, business to applied sciences, and many more, have earned credit this way towards their degree requirements or as an elective. As the name implies, an independent study course relies heavily on your own initiative, and the reward is a unique learning experience that is specific to your area of interest.
Students pursuing independent study credit can choose to follow an ISV Course Syllabus in Community Development or Natural Resources Management that is specifically designed by university educators to complement the ISV Volunteer Projects and related issues, objectives and activities and make the most of the learning opportunities presented. The course requirements include:
Keeping a daily journal during the volunteer project*
Participating in all group discussions*
Preparing and leading a group discussion (optional)*
Participation in all volunteer project activities*
Writing a final paper regarding your volunteer project upon completion of your ISV Program (graded by your professor/advisor)
*Your ISV Project Leader can provide an evaluation for each of these components of the course (with the exception of the final paper), which is submitted directly to your professor.
Since 2002, nearly 2,000 students from hundreds of universities across North America have received academic credit through independent study or transfer credit from an ISV partner university for their participation on an ISV program and successful completion of the course requirements. Former students describe earning academic credit for their ISV program as an incredibly effective and worthwhile learning experience.
If you wish to receive academic credit, it is your responsibility to seek approval for course credit from your academic advisor or a professor in your department. Universities (and faculties or departments within a university) have different rules regarding independent study and transfer credit. Approval may also depend on your major and the number and type of credit hours you need to complete your degree requirements. ISV strongly advises that you inquire within your department about receiving credit well in advance of your departure date.
For more details, view the Independent Study tab below. If you need further assistance, please email our office at firstname.lastname@example.org
Grading for independent study students following the ISV Course Syllabus is as follows:
Participation on the Project
You can take the Course Syllabus to your professor, advisor or faculty member and work with him/her to design an individualized independent study course in the field of conservation, community development or any other relevant topic. There is a fee of $50.00 USD payable to ISV for this independent study course option, which includes:
Course Syllabus in Community Development or Natural Resources Management
Oversight and evaluation by your ISV Project Leader/Instructor for all on-site requirements
Submission of grades/evaluation forms directly to your professor by ISV’s International Education Director