Five College Policies and Procedures
Students are entitled to participate in a course interchange program which allows them to construct up to one half of their program from liberal arts courses at the four other colleges without additional cost (see catalog for further information). Be aware that there is not a separate transcript for classes taken at another college and that only fall or spring semester courses are eligible for the interchange. The college class is indicated on your Amherst transcript with a letter designating the particular host college: H/=Hampshire, M/=Mt. Holyoke, S/=Smith, U/=UMass. Also freely available to students are the libraries of each institution. The present and continuing emphasis of the Five College Libraries is on the sharing and enhancement of total resources and services.
Amherst students participating in the 5-college consortium must adhere to the Amherst College policies pertaining to Pass/Fail, grade extensions, withdrawal from courses and course credit. The Amherst Registrar will input the grade that is sent to their office from the 5-college institution. To declare the Pass/Fail option, please submit a Pass/Fail form to the registrar's office.
Grades are assigned based on the grades offered at the host institution. If a grade is not offered by an institution, they cannot be offered to students from other colleges taking classes there.
While we don't usually speak of Amherst classes in terms of credit, each class is equivalent to four semester hours of credit as are most of the courses at Hampshire, Mt. Holyoke and Smith colleges. The majority of classes at UMass are equivalent to 3 credits and we give full course credit for a maximum of two courses per semester. Credit of 1.5 at UMass or 2 at the other colleges is considered a "half" class which we designate with an "H" on your transcript. Any course with credit less than 1.5 at UMass or less than 2 at the other colleges will not be accepted for credit here at Amherst.
Note that while there are many courses offered at the Five Colleges, not all courses offered are accepted for credit at Amherst. Pre-professional and business classes cannot be taken for credit. You can check with your advisor and the registrar for approval before requesting enrollment at the host college or university.
For students who will be attending another college during meal times, there is a program allowing you to participate in meal exchange. You can find details and contact information at this link.