FAQs for the January Boston-London Program

What is the College of General Studies (CGS) and the January Boston-London Program?

The College of General Studies is a small, liberal arts college within Boston University, offering freshman and sophomore students an interdisciplinary curriculum that satisfies the University’s general education requirements for humanities, social sciences, natural sciences, and writing. Upon completion of the two-year curriculum and several electives in other colleges at BU, you will continue to one of BU’s nine degree-granting undergraduate schools and colleges to pursue your major. The CGS curriculum provides the strong general education foundation—a critical part of the BU degree—upon which you then build a specialized field of study.

The January Boston-London Program is a unique program at BU—it’s the only one that lets you study abroad during your freshman year. You begin freshman year in January with a semester in Boston on a team of four faculty and 100 students, a feature that promotes a rich learning experience. You will then study abroad in London during either the Summer 1 or the Summer 2 term, completing freshman year by the end of the summer. Whether in Boston or London, courses are taught by a team of CGS faculty members who work with you throughout freshman year. Classroom material is reinforced by experiential opportunities such as trips to museums, historical sites, and theaters.

The CGS January and September programs merge in the fall, and students complete sophomore year together.

Why was I admitted for the January 2018 semester when I applied for September 2017?

This was the most competitive year ever for admission to Boston University. We received over 60,000 applications for an incoming freshman class of 3,400 students. To accommodate this exceptional class, we selected a group of well-qualified students for January 2018 admission who we feel will excel in CGS.

Can I change my admission to the fall instead of January or be placed on the waitlist?

Unlike students on our waitlist, you have received full admission to BU through the January Boston-London Program. It is not possible to change your semester of entry.

If I start in January, will I graduate on time?

You will be fully on track to graduate in four years. You will earn a total of 32 credits for the spring semester and summer term, which fulfills first year credit requirements. In the fall of 2018, the CGS January Boston-London and September programs merge to continue the CGS sophomore core curriculum together.

After sophomore year, you have guaranteed continuation into one of the nine degree-granting schools and colleges at BU for your junior and senior years. Since the CGS curriculum requires that you take courses at BU’s other nine schools and colleges, you start accruing credits toward your intended major while at CGS.

Is the London semester required?

The experience in London is an essential part of the interdisciplinary course curriculum and is strongly encouraged. However, if due to personal circumstances, you are unable to study in London, you will work with your CGS advisor to find an alternative solution.

Can I transfer in September 2018 to other schools or colleges in Boston University?

The College of General Studies is a two-year program. You will finish your sophomore year in the College of General Studies and then continue to another school at BU in September 2019.

When will I register for classes and learn more about the Summer Terms?

Shortly after you accept BU’s offer of admission and submit your enrollment deposit, you will be contacted by your College of General Studies academic advisor who will provide one-on-one guidance to help you plan your courses. In the fall, you will officially register for courses. The classes you select will determine your team and the dates of your Summer Term in London. You will take classes with the same team of students and faculty from the Boston term through the London term.

What are the dates for the Summer 2018 Terms?

Summer 1:
Arrive in London: May 20
Orientation: May 21
First day of classes: May 22
Last day of classes: June 29

Summer 2:
Arrive in London: July 1
Orientation: July 2
First day of classes: July 3
Last day of classes: August 9

Where will I live on campus?

All incoming freshmen are guaranteed on-campus housing for four years. You will be assigned to a residence for January 2018. On BU’s Boston campus, you will be housed in one of our residences. Housing in Europe is at the BU campus in the Kensington area of London.

Costs, billing, financial aid; how do I learn more?

Information about the tuition, fees, room, board and other expenses is available on our CGS January Boston-London Program tuition page. There, you will also find information about University charges and the financial aid notification and disbursement process for the spring semester in Boston and the summer term in London.

How many students will begin their studies in the January Boston-London Program?

Approximately 300 students will begin their first semester in January 2018.

How do January Boston-London Program students fit in with the rest of the student body?

January Boston-London Program students will fit in seamlessly. You will attend University Orientation in the summer to connect with the Class of 2021, meet with your academic advisor, learn about campus activities, and explore the city of Boston. When you arrive to campus in January 2018, there are lots of winter welcome events, both specific to CGS students and for all undergraduates. You will also engage with BU’s dynamic community through your residential experience, where you will live with students from all undergraduate schools and colleges.

How should I spend the gap semester?

Students often take this opportunity to volunteer, participate in an internship, work or travel. This can be a very beneficial time to pursue a special interest. Students may also take approved non-degree college courses that could be applied for credit toward graduation.

Your CGS academic advisor will contact you in the summer to discuss any courses you might plan to take and will continue to be in touch by phone and email throughout the fall. We recommend that students also stay connected to BU through BU Today, The Daily Free Press (BU’s student newspaper), the CGS website, and the CGS current student portal, CGSNow. Be sure to join the BU Class of 2021 Facebook group, like the CGS Facebook page, and follow CGS on Twitter and Instagram.

Will I be able to enroll at another college or university for the fall semester?

Once you have accepted your place in the CGS January Boston-London Program, you are considered a Boston University student and, thus, are ineligible to matriculate at another college or university. If you do matriculate elsewhere, BU will be unable to honor your admission and enrollment. Students may take non-degree courses elsewhere in the fall. Before you enroll in classes, it is very important to speak with your CGS advisor to ensure the coursework will fulfill CGS requirements and not jeopardize your enrollment at BU.

Helpful links and contact information:

January Boston-London Program Page & CGS Professors
CGS Student Services
Phone: 617-353-2850
Email: cgs@bu.edu

BU Admissions
January Boston-London Program Student Next Steps
Phone: 617-353-2300
Email: admissions@bu.edu

BU Financial Assistance
January Boston-London Program Financial Assistance, Costs, and Payment Plan
Phone: 617-353-2965
Email: finaid@bu.edu