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Field Study

Field study may be granted for academic study that requires a student to be away from the Hampshire campus for an entire semester. Field study status assumes that the student is engaged in academic work away from the College, not just living off campus, and that the study or work to be carried out is of such a nature that it cannot be done while the student is in residence at Hampshire. In general, field study is the term used to describe work for which there has been adequate academic preparation and that must be done in a particular place away from the College—a “field site.” The Center for Academic Support and Advising staff are available to answer questions about field study.

Students completing a semester’s work at a site away from Hampshire College, which has been pre-approved by their Division II or Division III committees for inclusion into their Division II or Division III, are placed on field study. Students who want to be on field study must be in good academic standing and good disciplinary standing to qualify. The enrollment notification deadline is listed each year in the academic calendar and tuition information on the Student Financial Services website. All forms must be submitted by that date.

A student on field study generally is supervised by an appropriate person at the field-study site. The student is entitled to supervision by the Division II or Division III committee. A semester of field study is considered a semester of enrollment for the purpose of academic standing (see the section on Guidelines for Academic Progress).

Students must submit the required documentation to show evidence of continued full-time enrollment in the field study semester and successful completion of the semester.

Students are expected to fulfill the academic requirements as outlined by their field study program and their Division II or III committee. Failure to successfully complete a semester of field study may impact a student’s academic progress, divisional status, or financial aid eligibility.

Enrollment Status
Students on field study will be considered full-time students for the purpose of educational loan obligations. If for other valid reasons certification of student status is necessary, the Central Records Office will prepare a letter bearing the College seal.

All students, including those on field study, are automatically enrolled in the Hampshire College health insurance program through Gallagher Koster. Medical care coverage is outlined in the College insurance company brochure and on the Student Financial Services website. Field-study students are required to have insurance. Students who receive this permission have the option to waive Hampshire’s insurance if they are covered under another insurance plan; students who will be studying outside of the United States will need to confirm that their private carrier will cover them internationally.

A student on field study may not have use of any Hampshire College or Five College facilities. A student on field study may have access to library resources.

The fee for a field study is approximately one third of the Hampshire College tuition for that semester. Refer to the Student Financial Services website.

Financial Aid
Refer to the Financial Aid website.

Procedures for Filing for Field Study
The process for filing for field study should begin about six weeks into the term preceding the field study. 

  • Field-study forms are available from the Center for Academic Support and Advising.
  • A meeting with the advisor (Division II or Division III chair) who will be supervising the work during the field study should occur at an early stage. If this is a Division III field study, this planning meeting must be followed by a meeting with one of the deans in the Center for Academic Support and Advising.
  • After the project has been planned, it must be put in written form. A copy of the Division II concentration statement or a preliminary Division III plan (see below) should be attached. A written agreement between the student and the faculty supervisor outlining the obligations each is willing to undertake is an important part of the form. A statement about how and when the work will be evaluated should also be included.
  • Filing for field study requires the signature of the following: Division II or Division III chair, assistant director of residence life, bursar, the director of financial aid (for financial aid students), the director of global education (for students traveling outside the United States),the international student advisor in the multicultural and international student services offices (for  students with an F-1 student visa), and a member of the Center for Academic Support and Advising staff. The CASA dean cannot sign field study or exchange forms without the student obtaining all other necessary signatures.
  • All students traveling on a Hampshire College-sponsored study are required to submit an Assumption of Risk and General Release form. College-sponsored travel is any travel that a student receives any funding, academic credit for work done during or upon return from the travel; or any travel which has been arranged by the College. This includes participation in field study, whether domestic or international.

The enrollment notification deadline is listed each year in the academic calendar and  tuition information on the student financial services website. If plans are not definite or if a signature is missing, the form should still be submitted by the deadline and an appointment made with a CASA staff member the following week. Occasionally a student will find that their plans cannot be finalized until later in the term or during the summer.

Any field study for which final approval has not been received will be canceled.

International Students
International students (with an F-1 student visa) are required to consult with the international student advisor regarding visa implications of field study BEFORE applying for field study. The advisor is located in the multicultural and international student services office in the Lebrón-Wiggins-Pran Cultural Center.

Returning from Field Study
In order to preregister for courses or participate in the on-campus room-choosing lottery process, the student must notify CASA of their intention to return by the November and April enrollment deadline. Students should refer to online forms and information on the Hampshire College website. If CASA is not notified of the student’s plans for the term following the field study by the notification deadline, the student will be withdrawn from the College. Other information regarding returning to Hampshire is also included at this website.

Permission is rarely granted to extend field study if the field study was originally approved for one semester. If such permission is granted, students must file a new field-study form and obtain updated signatures. Failure to do so will result in cancellation of the field study and students will be placed on leave of absence.