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In addition to providing the highest-quality classroom education, the Social Science & Policy Studies Department offers many resources to help ensure a rewarding and positive experience for every student.

Course Credit Transfer Authorization


General Guideline

  • WPI requires students to complete 2 social science courses. In satisfying the 2-course social science requirement, students are free to take courses in any of social sciences offered by the Department of Social Science & Policy Studies (SSPS). Courses with the following prefixes may be counted toward the social science requirement:
    • ECON – Economics
    • DEV - International Development
    • ENV – Environmental & Sustainability Studies
    • GOV – Society, Technology, & Policy / Political Science / Government
    • PSY – Psychology
    • SD – System Dynamics
    • SOC – Sociology
    • SS – General Social Science
    • STS – Science, Technology, & Society

Instructions to Obtain Transfer Credit

  • To transfer social science courses from other colleges and universities to WPI, students must complete a WPI transfer credit authorization form.
  • Fill out the form completely above the box listing the WPI course equivalent. Students must include:
    • Name of the off-campus school
    • Name and number of the course students wish to take at the off-campus school
    • Term and year that the course will be completed at the off-campus school
  • Obtain a copy of the course syllabus and the name and author of the textbook used. Next, students should contact the following program directors/faculty for approval of the course content, determination of WPI equivalent, and transfer grade requirement. If approved, the program director will complete the appropriate paperwork, and forward the transfer credit form to the department head for her/his signature. No transfer credit will be granted without the department head's signature. The student will be informed by the Registrar's Office when credit transfer has been granted. For information about specific courses, contact the following transfer credit coordinator and faculty members.

Additional Transfer Credit Information

  • Courses of fewer than 5 weeks duration are generally not accepted for transfer credit. 
  • Courses taken at a foreign university, or taught in a language other than English, will normally not be accepted unless the level and content of the course and the accreditation status of the university can be verified and accepted by the department.

Double Majors

WPI's most ambitious and talented students often complete two majors. Any major offered by the Social Science & Policy Studies Department can be combined with any other major offered at WPI.

Completing such a demanding program of study requires careful planning, so students interested in double majors should seek the advice of faculty in both major departments as soon as possible. To obtain a double major, students must satisfy all of the degree requirements of both majors. Because all WPI students take some Social Science, and all Social Science majors take foundation courses in math and science, some double counting of courses can reduce the overall course load. Students will have to complete an MQP in both majors. However, students who double major in Social Science, and complete an MQP in Social Science are not required to complete a separate IQP as a University requirement.

Unlike other double majors, the double major in Social Science & Policy Studies does not require three qualifying projects (two MQPs and an IQP). However, the Social Science MQP must meet the goals of both the IQP and MQP. It must be interactive in nature, involving an aspect of technology as well as in application of social science knowledge and analytical techniques.

For more information on the rules governing double majors at WPI, see the Course Catalog.

Program Requirements

The Social Science & Policy Studies Department has requirements for its many programs. See the Calendar and Courses for specifics.