What is an Academic Year in Residence?

The period students live on campus instead of commuting from home to campus, or studying online, is known as an academic year in residence (AYR). Living on campus provides several advantages to students pursuing undergraduate or postgraduate degree programs.

Many universities require all unmarried, full-time students to complete one- year academic residency and to live on campus within two years after graduation from high school, unless exempted, the students live with their families, or there is no space on campus.

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In-Residence Credit and Residency Requirements

According to the book American Universities and Colleges, degree courses that are not taken in-residence do not count in the computation of the Grade Point Average (GPA).

• American Universities require masters and doctoral students to obtain at least 18 semester credit hours of in-residence graduate coursework while pursuing a degree program.
• Students in Dual Degree programs must finish a minimum of 36 semester credit hours of in-residence training with a minimum 50 percent of the credits for each degree.
• Individual degree programs require more than 18 credit hours in-residence training
• At least 50 percent of the units in the Dual Degree Program must consist of in-residence academic studies, and the graduate must meet the residency requirements.

The benefits of campus housing to students include:

• Convenient access to classes
• Immediate access to resident academic advisors
• Unlimited opportunities to exchange academic knowledge with fellow students


The terminology academic year residency also refers to the time a scholar-in-residence spends at another university, other than the institution in which he teaches, doing research, developing curricula, preparing publications, and also producing manuscripts. The scholar-in-residence is a visiting don who spends time in another university during the sabbatical leave.

The scholar-in-residence program offers the visiting scholar the chance for intellectual exchanges, broadening of their pedagogical expertise, enriching the current courses at the hosting universities, or creating new academic programs.

As a scholar-in-residence, you have the advantage of expanding your professional contacts, enhancing your knowledge and skills, and will eventually share the intellectual skills learned at the hosting university upon going back to your home institution.

On Campus Research Consultancy

During the campus residency, the visiting scholar can confer periodically with the faculty at the hosting university as a research consultant. There are also regular collegial discussions, professional engagements, and forums for constructive criticism.

The contact between the scholar-in-residence and the staff in the hosting university develops into a professional relationship that continues beyond the period of direct participation in the Scholar-in-Residence program.

The networking scholar will have full library access, reading and borrowing privileges at the hosting university’s library.

Academic Year in Residence for Psychology and Medical Students

Residency for psychology and medical students is a stage of graduate medical training. The resident medical student will practice medicine usually in a clinic or hospital under the direct supervision of a qualified physician.

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Successful completion of an academic program is necessary before obtaining a license to practice medicine.

Whereas the medical school teaches the doctor theoretical medical knowledge and basic clinical skills, the academic year in residence for medical students provides in-depth practical training within a specific branch of medicine.