Academic Opportunities

The following are value-added academic options offered to qualified Bachelor of Liberal Arts (ALB) and Master's of Liberal Arts (ALM) degree candidates that can enhance the degree-earning experience. For additional options, visit Degree Privileges webpage.

Faculty Aide Program

In the fall and spring semesters, approximately 40 to 50 faculty aide jobs are offered by Harvard Extension school instructors to admitted ALB and ALM degree candidates. As a faculty aide, you’ll provide research assistance to a Harvard Extension School or other Harvard University faculty member. You’ll develop academic research skills while connecting with a scholar in your field of interest. The stipend is $15 an hour for a maximum of 50 hours per semester (typically five to seven hours a week). 

This is an honors option subject to the rules, regulations, and policies of the Harvard Extension School Career and Academic Resource Center (CARC). For more information, visit the CARC website.

Harvard Graduate School Tuition Vouchers

You can apply for a Harvard Graduate School of Education (HGSE) or Harvard Divinity School (HDS) tuition voucher to take a maximum of one four-credit, graduate-level course free of charge that can apply to your Harvard Extension School degree. Minimum credit and GPA requirements apply for both ALB and ALM candidates. Master’s candidates need to check in with their academic advisor, because not all courses at these schools count toward each master’s field.

Application deadlines are August 1 for fall and December 1 for spring. 

Download the graduate school voucher information.

Special Student Status

Special Student status enables you to enroll for either one or two courses (two is the maximum) in Harvard College, Harvard Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, or another Harvard Graduate School (certain restrictions apply). The fee is approximately $6,000 per course. 

If you are an ALB candidate at the time of application you need to have completed 64 credits with 32 completed at Harvard, and a 3.5 GPA or higher. If an ALM candidate, you need a 3.5 or higher GPA.

The deadlines are September 1 to enroll in the following spring term Harvard courses and February 1 for the following fall term courses.

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Teacher’s Aide Internship

Each fall you can apply for a paid internship ($15 per hour for 100 hours) at St. Peter School in Cambridge (K-8), where you can gain classroom experience as a teacher’s aide to support a future career in education. Application deadlines are September 1 and December 1. 

Study Abroad

Harvard Summer School offers study abroad opportunities for eight credits. Financial aid is available for qualifying candidates. Contact your academic advisor in mid-November to determine if study abroad courses are applicable toward your degree. Ordinarily, the application process opens on December 1. Study abroad courses are selective admission and are not applicable for all degree programs. ALM candidates may count no more than eight credits from the Harvard Summer School study abroad programs toward their degree requirements.

ALB candidates also have the opportunity to pursue other, year-round study abroad opportunities, if they have completed less than 64 transfer credits. Be sure to submit the transfer credit petition form for any non-Harvard Summer School study abroad program to have the credit preapproved before you enroll. Transfer credit will not be awarded without prior approval.

Graduate Certificates for ALM Candidates

As an ALM degree candidate, it may be possible to earn a graduate certificate along with your master's degree. Certificates provide an opportunity to concentrate in a specific area while earning an additional graduate-level credential. Possible certificate options are listed on the degree course search.

You are responsible for ensuring that the courses you select meet both degree and certificate requirements. To do this, use both the degree and certificate course search. The degree search lets you know that a certificate course counts toward the degree, while the certificate search identifies the specific certificate requirement the course fulfills.

To both track your certificate progress and request the certificate use the Certificate Course Tracker and Request Form available in online services.  Please note that you must complete your certificate coursework within three years and earn grades of B or higher in all certificate courses (grades of B- and below do not count).

If you are receiving financial aid, only certificate courses that also count towards your degree meet financial aid requirements. If you need to take an additional courses to earn the certificate, financial aid is not available.

We recommend working closely with your academic advisor on degree/certificate course selection.

Independent Reading and Research for ALB Candidates

Pursue your own undergraduate research project under the supervision of an Extension School instructor or a faculty member at another Harvard school. The reading and research course counts as four credits toward your concentration and field, and can fulfill Harvard instructor credit.

At the time of application, you must have completed 64 credits, with 32 credits at Harvard, and 12 credits in your field of study, with a GPA of 3.33 or higher. The deadlines are August 1 for fall projects, December 1 for spring, and May 1 for summer. For more information, review the Reading and Research proposal form.

Washington Center Opportunity for ALB and ALM Government or Journalism Candidates

In January, ALB candidates and ALM candidates in the fields of government and journalism have the option to attend a four-credit two-week long course at The Washington Center. While in Washington, DC, you can witness firsthand the political process in action.

The course is led by a Harvard instructor, so you can earn on-campus and Harvard-instructor credit. Details are emailed to eligible candidates early in the fall term and the two-week long course is listed with our January session offerings. The Washington Center's application deadline is in November.

Premedical Program Advising and Sponsorship for ALB Candidates

ALB degree candidates interested in applying to medical school can work with our Premedical Program (PMP) advising team. Candidates with a GPA of 3.5 or higher in Harvard coursework and a 3.2 combined, cumulative GPA from Harvard as well as all previously attended institutions (AMCAS GPA), may be eligible for medical school sponsorship.  To obtain medical school sponsorship, you must meet the following criteria: work with PMP staff for a minimum of one academic year prior to graduation, pay the standard $500 sponsorship fee, and meet minimum credit, course selection, GPA, and MCAT requirements as outlined by PMP staff. If interested, schedule a preliminary meeting with the PMP advisor by emailing  Prior to your appointment request that your ALB advisor forward copies of transcripts from all schools attended.

CORe for ALB Candidates

Harvard Business School Online's CORe is an online program that teaches the fundamentals of business on a highly engaging and interactive platform designed by Harvard Business School (HBS) faculty. CORe (Credential of Readiness) consists of three critical business topics: Business Analytics, Economics for Managers, and Financial Accounting. As an ALB candidate, you can pursue CORe for credit to gain a valuable business credential that compliments your liberal arts degree as long as you have not already completed similar course content for degree credit (ex. financial accounting or business economics). CORe will count as eight credits of Harvard instructor, upper level, and social science credit. It will also count toward the fields of study in economics and business management and administration. It does not count toward any minors or as a degree course for admission. 

You apply directly to Harvard Business School Online and, if accepted, you register and pay tuition for the eight credits through their system. The Harvard Extension School course registration happens automatically. Only select CORe cohorts are available for undergraduate credit (ordinarily, January, May, and September). If you register for the January or May cohorts, you cannot register for additional Harvard courses. Credit is not offered for past or future noncredit cohorts.

Unique On-Campus Option for ALM Management and Finance Candidates


ALM candidates in the field of management and finance—in good standing with a 3.5 or higher—have the option to fulfill their entire on-campus requirement via a week-long, on-campus, Harvard University John F. Kennedy School of Government (HKS) Executive Education program. While these programs do not count as credit toward the degree, your entire on-campus requirement is waived once you successfully complete one, week-long program, allowing you to complete all of your coursework (48 credits) online.

Before applying to an HKS Executive Education program, you need to receive approval from the ALM Advising Office ( using the Harvard Kennedy School Residency Request form. Once approved, you may apply to one of the HKS approved programs (offered year round). Admission is selective. The program fee (approximately $9,100) includes tuition, housing, curricular materials, and most meals.

Upon completion of the program, you'll be awarded a certificate of completion from Harvard University, John F. Kennedy School of Government, Executive Education. Your HKS Executive Education Program Instructor will sign our Confirmation of Participation form, which he or she will forward to the ALM Advising Office on your behalf. If you are an international student, the I-20 certificate for the F-1 VISA is not required. For details, visit the John F. Kennedy School of Government Executive Education Program website.

Joint Program for ALB Candidates

Designed for highly motivated adult professional students with a proven track record of success in the ALB program, our Joint Program provides an accelerated pathway to earn both a bachelor’s and master’s degree. In the Joint Program, you earn the ALB and ALM degree in any field we currently offer with four graduate-level courses counting toward both degrees.

Once you earn 96 credits toward the ALB degree with a 3.5 or higher GPA and have at least five years of full-time, paid, professional work experience, you can petition to join the Joint Program by submitting the application and supporting documentation. Documentation includes a resume, employer letter of recommendation, and an essay that outlines your reasons for wanting to pursue the ALM degree, specifically stating how your professional experience aligns with your graduate field interest. On the form you'll list the four courses that you plan to double count, which must include the two or three courses required for ALM admission. 

If accepted by the Joint Program acceptance committee, you will be required to earn grades of B or higher in all four double-counting courses. If not, the courses will not double count, may only apply towards the ALB, and you’ll be ineligible to move forward with the Joint Program. Earning even one grade below B will disqualify you from the program, this includes withdrawal grades.

Double counting of credit is not offered unless you apply and are accepted to the Joint Program. Courses taken prior to acceptance will not be counted.