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Earn College Credit During Your Gap Year

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Some colleges allow students to apply to school-sponsored gap-year programs. Students can receive funding to travel and work (or volunteer) abroad. Others receive college credit. If you haven’t applied to a university-specific program, though, there are many ways you can earn college credit during your gap year.

American Gap Association

The American Gap Association (AGA) provides a helpful, detailed list of universities that accept enrollment deferral, as well as college credit policies. If your school is on this list, you can choose from a range of programs and organizations on the AGA website. 

If your college isn’t on this list, though, contact someone in the admissions office. Depending on the school, it’s possible that an admissions officer can help you create a curriculum to earn college credit. 


This organization allows students to enroll directly at Naropa University and transfer credits to their university. LEAPYEAR advocates for growth in maturity and self-awareness during a gap year. Participants choose from programs in India and Latin America where they'll volunteer or intern for one of LEAPYEAR’s partner organizations.

Carpe Diem

Carpe Diem is affiliated with an American university, so you can transfer credits to your school of choice at a later date. With Carpe Diem, you can travel abroad to a variety of different destinations while learning and gaining college credit. Participants are accountable for documenting their experiences, but Carpe Diem makes it easy.

International Studies Abroad

International Studies Abroad (ISA) allows students to pick from a range of countries and narrow down what they want to do. Areas of interest range from language studies to academic pursuits. After a year with ISA, they’ll send a transcript to your university, which will then evaluate your grades and match them with the courses necessary for accreditation.

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