The Department of Sociology offers an undergraduate student exchange program with the University of Copenhagen in Denmark. The University of Copenhagen is the largest, most prestigious and oldest (est. 1479) university in Denmark and among the best universities in Europe. It offers a variety of social science courses in English—many designed specifically for students from North American and other European universities. Students may choose courses in sociology, anthropology, government, psychology, and economics.
This is Dartmouth’s only off-campus program in any Scandinavian country. It allows students to benefit from the experience of a large, urban university in a country with social, political and economic systems that are much different from those in the United States. Students will be able to take courses that often focus on these systems. In particular, the Scandinavian countries are noted for having the most egalitarian economic systems in the world, social democratic governments, generous welfare states, and in most cases very liberal cultural traditions. The program will enable students to become fully affiliated members of the University of Copenhagen with complete access to libraries, lectures, seminars and, of course, the beautiful city of Copenhagen, and surrounding environs!
Sociology and Beyond: The program is especially relevant for students majoring or minoring in sociology or modifying other majors with sociology. Many of the courses offered in Copenhagen in the past and approved for transfer credit to Dartmouth cover subjects not taught at Dartmouth and that could fit into Dartmouth majors and minors in ways that substantially augment a student's educational experience. For instance, several courses might be incorporated into the Sociology Department's minor in Markets, Management and the Economy, such as "Gender, Work and Organizations," "Media Sociology" and "Danish Society: Social Perspectives." Other courses fit well with Sociology's minor in Social Inequalities, including "Sociology of Human Rights," "Conflict and Peacemaking," "Danish Culture" and "Comparative Studies in Welfare States." Of course, there are many other courses applicable to other social sciences too that are not available at Dartmouth, such as "Economics of the European Union," "Politics and Fear: Terrorism," "Corporate Governance" and more. (A partial list of courses offered in Copenhagen and approved in the past for transfer credit at Dartmouth is listed below.)
Program: Dartmouth students go to Copenhagen only during the fall term. They select from a variety of courses in the social sciences. Students will be expected to take the normal course load of a full-time student. Because the University of Copenhagen is on a semester system, Dartmouth students will take three or four courses, depending on the number of credits granted per course at Copenhagen. Students choose social science courses from the University of Copenhagen’s course offerings that are taught in English. These are courses in sociology, anthropology, political science, psychology, and economics.
This is an exchange program—not an FSP or LSA—and is best suited for students who are looking for a truly independent experience. That is, the exchange is for students who want to be immersed in the local culture and with the local people rather than segregated largely with fellow Dartmouth travelers. No Dartmouth faculty will accompany students on the exchange. Hence, when problems arise students will have to solve them as best they can on their own. Of course, the University of Copenhagen, primarily through its International Office, will assist students in any way it can, but it is a large bureaucratic university and does not have the sorts of support for students, that Dartmouth has, such as through the Dartmouth Dean of Student’s Office. Moreover, students participating on the exchange should not expect the amenities that they have at Dartmouth (i.e., high-speed internet in dorms and class rooms, wireless computing, free long-distance telephone, easily accessible and inexpensive/free photocopying, free access to gymnasium facilities, open stacks in the libraries, university cafeterias and dining halls, etc.). The Danish university system is different from Dartmouth’s. Nevertheless, the opportunity to live and study in a country like Denmark is extraordinary.
Language: Most Danes speak English fluently. For this reason and because the program’s courses are taught in English, Dartmouth students will not require language training in Danish. Indeed, Copenhagen is a very easy city to manage for English speaking travelers.
Academic Calendar: The University of Copenhagen is on a semester system, which starts the very end of August or very early September (depending on the calendar) and runs through mid-January. Classes are generally finished by mid-December with final exams in late December or early January. Dartmouth students make arrangements early in the term with their Danish professors to take final exams (or an appropriate substitute). Often courses require a major term paper (20-25 pages) rather than a final exam, so the possibility for scheduling conflicts between Copenhagen and Dartmouth is minimized. Despite the fact that students may arrange to take exams before January, they are still required to attend classes at the University of Copenhagen until classes are finished in December. Early exams do not justify missing the last week or two of classes! If classes are finished around December 17-18 and your exams follow within the next few days you should not plan on leaving Copenhagen until about December 21-22.
Tuition, Fees, Housing, and Other Costs: Students pay Dartmouth tuition to Dartmouth for the term. Housing costs are separate and are paid to either the University of Copenhagen or a landlord. Students typically do their own food shopping and cooking so, depending on your culinary skills and tastes, the costs of food vary. However, it is important to remember that exchange rates fluctuate. This means that the cost in U.S. dollars for housing, food, public transportation, and other things may vary. Copenhagen is an expensive place to live when the value of the dollar is weak against the Danish kroner, as it has been recently. As of February 2013, the University of Copenhagen estimates that living expenses will be approximately as follows (current exchange rate is $1.00 = 5.68 DKK), but especially housing and food costs may be more than this:
|Local transportation/Month||$54-108||(300-600 DKK)|
|Pocket money/Month||$357||(2,000 DKK)|
For further information see http://studies.ku.dk/arriving_and_living_in_copenhagen.
Financial Aid: All those presently receiving Dartmouth financial aid are also eligible for this aid in the Copenhagen exchange program.
Application Procedure: Applications are available on-line. Students apply for the program via the Off-Campus Program web site (http://www.dartmouth.edu/~ocp/). To apply, click on "Programs" located above the "Announcements" block. The exchange can then be found either by using the search engine, or listing all of the programs on the menu of options and then scrolling down to the "University of Copenhagen" and selecting the program. Once at the University of Copenhagen section, begin the application process by selecting "Apply Now." Applications must be submitted with two letters of recommendation by February 1.
The program is open to all social science majors. Students who apply are required to have an overall grade point average of at least 3.0. At the discretion of the selection committee, there may be an interview by the committee in the winter term. If you will not be at Dartmouth during the winter term, your interview would need to be in fall term unless you make other arrangements. Selection is based upon the strength of the application, two letters of recommendation, and the number of spaces available in the program (which varies from one year to the next). Recommendation letters must be from Dartmouth faculty members who have taught you in class, a class dean, or both. Acceptance letters will be mailed by early March.
In the past, a few students have registered as foreign students at the University of Copenhagen independently of the Dartmouth-Copenhagen exchange program. Now, however, under Danish law, the University of Copenhagen is not permitted to allow foreign students to register outside the bounds of a formal exchange agreement if such an agreement exits between the University of Copenhagen and the student’s home school. Hence, it is now illegal for Dartmouth students to enroll at the University of Copenhagen other than through the Dartmouth-Copenhagen exchange program.
Housing: All Dartmouth students will be provided by the University of Copenhagen with housing in flats, family homes, student apartments, or converted dorms. Because housing in Copenhagen is in short supply, it is likely that students will be notified about the specifics of their housing situation only 2-4 weeks before their departure to Denmark. Students should apply to the University of Copenhagen for housing as soon as possible after being accepted into the program. The University of Copenhagen has only a very few dormitories and no dining halls. As noted above, students should not expect the same level of amenities that Dartmouth offers its students in the dorms (e.g., high-speed internet access, free long distance telephone, etc.). Nor should students assume that they will necessarily be living with other Dartmouth students.
Course Load: A course load for Copenhagen students is usually three courses, depending on the number of credits per course. Dartmouth students will carry a similar course load. Some departments may not allow you to take courses unless you have already had a course in their field prior to arriving in Copenhagen. For example, if you never took a sociology course before, the Department of Sociology at the University of Copenhagen may not let you register for their courses.
Transfer Credits: Students can receive up to three credits at Dartmouth for work completed successfully at Copenhagen. You will receive 1 credit at Dartmouth for every 10 ECTS worth of credits at Copenhagen. (ECTS is the way Danes count credits for courses.) If you take less than 30 ECTS, then you will not receive 3 transfer credits at Dartmouth. For instance, if you only take 25 ECTS then you will only receive 2 transfer credits at Dartmouth.
Some courses in Copenhagen carry less than 10 ECTS (e.g., 5 or 7.5 ECTS). The economics and anthropology departments at Copenhagen offer courses worth 7.5 ECTS. Within a few years this will be true for all social science departments. Students who want to take these courses should be careful to take enough additional course work in the same department to ensure that they receive adequate course credit at Dartmouth. There are several ways you can handle this.
1. Take two courses in the same department each worth 5 ECTS in order to receive 1 transfer credit.
2. Take two courses in the same department each worth 7.5 ECTS in order to receive 1 transfer credit.
3. Negotiate with the professor for fewer ECTS to bring it down to 5 ECTS. This would mean a reduced work load. Then take a second 5 ECTS course along the same lines to receive 1 transfer credit.
4. Negotiate with the professor for more ECTS to bring it up to 10 ECTS, such as by writing additional assignments, a longer term paper, doing more reading, etc.
5. Take an independent study to make up the additional few ECTS. Perhaps do this with the professor from whom you take the 7.5 ECTS course.
Obtaining Transfer Credit Approval: Dartmouth requires students to obtain written approval of courses they wish to take at other universities in order for them to receive transfer credit for these courses. This includes the Dartmouth-Copenhagen exchange program. This must be done before the course is taken. Do not wait until the last minute to do this. It involves obtaining the appropriate transfer credit forms from the Registrar’s Office, and seeking permission for transfer credit from the relevant department. Sociology courses are approved by the Sociology Department; government courses by the Government Department; and so on. At the department’s discretion, students must often provide a copy of the course syllabus from Denmark and share it with the department from which transfer credit approval is being sought. This may take weeks to do so do not wait until the last minute. Grades received at Copenhagen are not recorded on the Dartmouth transcript. Instead, Dartmouth only records transfer credits as TR. Courses taken TR can be used for distributive credit at Dartmouth, if approved by the relevant department.
A partial list of courses offered in Copenhagen and approved in the past for transfer credit to Dartmouth includes the following. Not all courses are necessarily available every year:
Approving Dept. Course Title
Socy Sociology of Human Rights
Socy Conflict and Peacemaking in Divided Societies
Socy Marginalization in Society
Socy Danish Society: Sociological Perspectives
Socy Media Sociology
Socy Gender, Work and Organizations
Socy Comparative Health Policy: Regulation and Management
Socy Changing European Welfare Systems
Socy Health, Health Care and Promotion
Socy Flight, Migration and Transnationalism
Socy Danish Culture
Socy Comparative Welfare State Research
Socy Danish Society and Policy
Socy Doing Identity the European Way
Socy Globalization and its Discontents
Socy Health in Central and Eastern Europe
Socy International Social Welfare
Govy Europe and America
Govy The European Union as an International Actor
Govy Politics and Fear: Terrorism
Anth Danish Cultural Heritage
Anth Economic Anthropology
Anth Religion, Youth and Society in Africa
Anth Political Anthropology
Anth Medical Anthropology
Psyc Social Psychology I
Psyc Social Psychology II
Psyc Work Related Stress
Psyc Psychological Job Stress
Econ Corporate Governance
Econ Contract Theory and Economic Organization
Econ Theory of Finance
Econ Economics of the European Union
Econ Behavioral Economics and Finance
Econ Games and Economic Behavior
Econ The Danish Welfare Model
Econ History of Economic Thought: International Trade
Grades: In order for a course credit at Copenhagen to be transferred for credit at Dartmouth you must receive no less than a grade of 4. A grade of 4 is equivalent to a C at Dartmouth. The Danish system of grading uses a 7 point scale with 12 being the highest grade—one achieved by only a small fraction of students. The Danish-U.S. equivalences and performance requirements as stipulated by the University of Copenhagen are as follows:
|Danish Scale||Danish Performance Requirements||USA Scale|
|12||For an excellent performance displaying a high level of command of all aspects of the relevant material, with no or only a few minor weaknesses||A+|
|10||For a very good performance displaying a high level of command of most aspects of the relevant material, with only minor weaknesses||A, A-|
|7||For a good performance displaying good command of the relevant material but also some weaknesses||B+, B|
|4||For a fair performance displaying some command of the relevant material but also some major weaknesses||B-, C+, C|
|02||For a performance meeting only the minimum requirements for acceptance||C-, D+, D|
|00||For a performance which does not meet the minimum requirements for acceptance||D-, F|
|-3||For a performance which is unacceptable in all respects||F|
Student Health Services: All participating students will be required to carry adequate health insurance and to provide proof to the host institution that this insurance will cover the costs of health care for the full period of the exchange.
Student Visa/Residence Permit: Students are required by Danish law to obtain a student resident permit. The International Office at the University of Copenhagen will assist students in obtaining this permit. Application for a permit must be made at least two months prior to the student’s departure for Denmark. In fact, students accepted to the program should begin immediately to arrange for their visas. You will be required to submit your U.S. passport to the Danish authorities as part of the visa application process, so if you wait until the last minute to apply for a visa you run the risk of having neither a visa nor a passport when it is time for you to go to Copenhagen! Please note that in the past students who have failed to get a student visa have been denied access to the libraries and experienced other difficulties. For more information about obtaining a student resident permit, contact any Danish consulate in the United States, such as the Royal Danish Consulate General in New York (tel. 212-223-4545 ext. 5) or see their web site at www.denmark.org.
On the web: Further information about the program can be found on the web at http://www.samf.ku.dk (the University of Copenhagen social science programs web site) and http://international.ku.dk (the University of Copenhagen International Office web site). These sites include a tremendous amount of information about the University of Copenhagen, the city of Copenhagen, course offerings, semester calendar, exams and exam scheduling, computing facilities, photocopying facilities, faculty, visas, health insurance, different academic departments offering courses in English, housing, costs of living, grading, and many other things. Click here for a visual tour of Copenhagen.
Further Information: Professor John Campbell, Department of Sociology, 123 Silsby Hall.
Last Updated: 5/16/13