Academic Credit & Internships

Students are able to complete an internship with or without academic credit. For students who want to earn academic credit for their internship, there are two options: major-specific credit and elective credit. Read the UNC Asheville Internship Policy for Credit-Bearing Courses for more information. Please note: Academic credit, whether or not it is major-specific or an elective, must be earned during the period of the internship and cannot be awarded after an internship is complete.

Required of All For-Credit Internships

To formalize the internship arrangement between the student, employer, and university, it is critical to have all parties sign an internship agreement form. The UNC Asheville Internship Agreement includes the minimum standards required according to the UNC Asheville Internship Policy for Credit-Bearing Courses. Individual departments may choose to add additional requirements.

LA 271: Internship Search Elective

The Career Center offers the ‘LA 271: Internship Search’ 1 credit elective course during Term 2 in the fall and for the entire semester in the spring. This course is designed to help students obtain an off-campus internship. Students will learn how to search and apply for internships, as well as how to network and explore internship opportunities. They will actively prepare for and seek internships as a part of this course. Students of all majors are encouraged to participate. Only students planning to complete an internship in future semesters should register for this course. For more information, please email 

As an added benefit of completing the Career Center’s 1 credit LA 271 course, applicants who take LA 271 will have fewer application requirements for the Internship Assistance Fund scholarship application process.

Please note: Since this course is to help students prepare for and search for an internship, students who have already secured an internship should not enroll in this course. 

IST 325: Elective Course

The Career Center offers ‘IST 325: Internships,’ a 3-credit elective course, every spring semester and summer session. The course is designed for students participating in exploratory internships to clarify and/or advance their career goals. It provides a structured and guided learning environment to help students make the most of their internship experience. Course components facilitate students’ professional development, focusing on the transition from the role of a student to the role of a professional.

To learn more and/or be admitted to the course, students should email Cate Marshall at Students must have an internship secured with a completed Internship Agreement. Within the course dates, students must document 105 hours at their internship site. Hours worked before the course starts or after the course finishes cannot count towards the 105 hours.

Academic Departments & Internships

It is up to each academic department to determine whether or not to award academic credit for an internship. Some departments may have an experiential requirement and an internship is one way to satisfy that requirement. If you are considering an internship, consult your academic advisor or your department’s internship faculty coordinator to see how it fits with your course of study.

Students should have completed Intermediate Accounting or be enrolled in ACCT 302 concurrently with the internship to benefit most from the experience

    • Should have completed or be enrolled in ACCT 302 concurrently to benefit the most from internship
    • Can be completed with senior research
    • Must complete all prerequisites (SOC 338 or ANTH 336) to enroll in 305 or 405
    • Present on internship and research at Undergraduate Research Day
    • Option to meet one 4cr Art History elective requirement
    • Can complete an internship at any time
    • Can enroll in ARTH 302 to earn academic credit
    • Can enroll in ATMS 381, 382, or 383 to earn academic credit (which course # is determined by how many internship hours will be completed)
    • Requires department chair permission
    • May be repeated for a total of 6cr
    • Offered fall and spring semesters
    • Must complete an internship or undergraduate research as senior project in DRAM 490
    • Encouraged to complete an internship at any point, with DRAM 490 as a culminating experience that’s completed summer before or fall of final academic year
    • All EDUC courses have a field placement component
    • Must complete EDUC 455/456 (student teaching) after completing all major requirements
    • Department offers several orientations and online resources
    • Mechatronics Ambassador Program brings in many company representatives to discuss internships and jobs in the engineering field
    • Department happy to help find internship opportunities
    • Encouraged to wait until junior/senior
    • All majors/minors can enroll in LIT 340 or LANG 340 to earn academic credit
    • Must complete an internship or undergraduate research
    • Most students choose an internship
    • Generally during their junior or senior year
    • Can enroll in ENVR 490 to earn academic credit
    • ENVR 490 offered every semester
    • Option to complete required senior capstone, HWP 459
    • Can complete an internship at any time, though during senior capstone may be most appropriate and beneficial
    • Required for the ESI concentration
    • Not required for the AME concentration
    • ESI 490/491 can be taken senior year
      • Students unable to fulfill the Study Abroad requirement should discuss the international internship class, INTS 365, as an alternative with the department chair.
    • Option to meet experiential learning requirement
    • Must complete a minimum of 30cr in major as and attend information session offered by the department to enroll in MGMT 489
    • Must submit a 1-page project proposal for review and approval
    • Can enroll in elective MCOM 352 to earn academic credit
    • Must complete a minimum of 12hrs in major and have a 2.5 GPA or higher to take course
    • MCOM 352 offered during spring semesters
    • Complete independent study during the academic year or enroll in NM 340 for 2-6cr during the summer to earn academic credit for internship
    • To enroll in NM 340, must have completed the prerequisites NM 231, 251, and 281 and have a 3.0 GPA or higher in major
    • Option to meet senior seminar requirement
    • Can enroll in PSYC 412 to earn academic credit after completing minimum of 85hrs
    • Internship info session held each semester
    • Option to complete senior seminar requirement
    • Must have sophomore status or higher

Best Practices for Internship Courses

Internship Agreement Form

To formalize the internship arrangement between the student, employer, and university, it is critical to have all parties sign an internship agreement form. The UNC Asheville Internship Agreement includes the minimum standards required according to the UNC Asheville Internship Policy for Credit-Bearing Courses. Individual departments may choose to add additional requirements.

Internship Learning Objectives

The purpose of an internship is to engage students in activities designed to address or meet the student’s professional needs, where students learn job preparedness skills and where learning is intentionally linked to academics. At the beginning of the internship, the student (in collaboration with the host agency supervisor) will develop a set of learning objectives (approximately 3-5). The faculty supervisor can then review the objectives and make suggestions as needed.

Learning objectives typically fall into four different categories:

  • Academic learning – The student applies and tests knowledge learned in the classroom to the workplace.
  • Career development – The student advances knowledge of the qualifications and duties of a position and can explore their interest in a field.
  • Skill development – The individual gains an understanding of the skills and knowledge required for success in the workplace.
  • Personal development – The student develops decision making and critical thinking skills, increased confidence and self-esteem.

Learning objectives are statements of the specific and measurable knowledge, skills, attributes and habits interns are expected to achieve and demonstrate as a result of their experience. When creating learning objectives, consider these career readiness competencies developed by NACE (National Association of Colleges and Employers). Article on writing strong learning objectives coming soon!

A measurable learning objective includes the follow:

  1. Completes this sentence: Upon completion of this internship, I will be able to (DO SOMETHING).
  2. Begins with an action verb, particularly from a higher level of Bloom’s taxonomy suited to a 300-400 level course. Avoid words like “understand, learn or know”.
  3. Precisely describes behavior that can be observed or evaluated.
  4. Lists specific assignments and projects that support the desired learning objective, including necessary resources.
  5. Sets a target date for completion and a method of evaluation.

The learning objectives are part of a learning contract that is signed by the intern, host agency supervisor, and faculty supervisor.

Evaluation Forms

An important component of the intern’s professional development is the opportunity to receive feedback directly from an employer. Host agency supervisors are asked to complete a midterm and final evaluation of the intern. At the end of the internship experience, student interns are asked to complete an evaluation of the host agency. This feedback will help the faculty supervisor evaluate and improve the internship experience.