Early and Continuous Enrollment in English and Math (All Undergraduate Degrees)
Undergraduate students enrolled in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences Students are expected to make timely progress towards completing their degree requirements. In an effort to have students remain compliant with the requirements of the KU Core and the College, students are required to complete the Written Communication and Quantitative Literacy requirements of both the KU Core and their degrees within the first year of undergraduate study.
Written Communication – Students are expected to enroll in two courses that meet Goal 2, Learning Outcome 1 of the KU Core in their first year of study. Students should pay close attention to their degree specific requirements (such as for the Bachelor of Arts) given that certain degrees require specific Goal 2, Learning Outcome 1 courses despite advanced standing in writing courses due to examination scores. To ensure compliance with this policy, students may be administratively registered for courses if the College determines that they are not on track to complete this requirement in the first year of study. If a student is found to be in non-compliance with this policy, the College retains the right to place a hold on their records to prevent future registrations.
Quantitative Literacy - Students are expected to meet the requirement of Goal 1, Learning Outcome 2 of the KU Core in their first year of study. Students should pay close attention to their degree specific requirements (such as for the Bachelor of Arts) given that certain degrees require specific Goal 1, Learning Outcome 2 courses to meet both KU Core and degree specific requirements. To ensure compliance with this policy, students may be administratively registered for courses if the College determines that they are not on track to complete this requirement in the first year of study. If a student is found to be in non-compliance with this policy, the College retains the right to place a hold on their records to prevent future registrations.
Requirements for Graduation (All Undergraduate Degrees)
Grade-Point Average Required for Graduation
To be eligible to graduate from the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences with any of the 3 degrees (B.A., B.G.S., or B.S.), a student must earn at least a 2.0 grade-point average in courses taken at KU (including grades earned in Independent Study courses through KU Continuing Education) and at least a 2.0 in KU junior/senior courses (courses numbered 300 and above) in the major. All junior/senior level major-eligible courses attempted at KU will be included in the GPA calculation.
Hours Required for Graduation
To be eligible to graduate from CLAS with any of the 3 degrees (B.A., B.G.S., or B.S.), a student must successfully complete at least 120 credit hours, 45 of which must be junior/senior hours (courses numbered 300 and above), and 100 of which must be completed in Liberal Arts and Sciences/School of the Arts course work. The required 120 hours are divided into 4 categories: the KU Core, College specific degree requirements, major, and elective requirements. The total hours are increased by enrollment in MATH 002 or any developmental course numbered below 100. The total also is increased by enrollment in excess of 64 hours of community college credit, 4 hours in physical education activity courses, 6 hours in music organization courses, and any repeated courses for which a student has already received credit.
Minimum and Maximum Hour and Grade-Point Average Requirements for All CLAS Degrees (B.A., B.G.S., B.S.)
|Hours in CLAS and/or School of the Arts||100|
|Junior/senior hours (courses numbered 300 or above)||45|
|Hours in residence at KU (all must be taken at the junior/senior level)||30|
|KU cumulative grade-point average||2.0|
|Grade-point average in KU junior/senior hours in the major||2.0|
|Grade-point average in KU hours in the minor||2.0|
|Hours from community colleges||64|
|Hours in physical education activity courses||4|
|Hours in music organization courses||6|
|Note: Courses numbered below 100 do not count toward a degree but are included in the grade-point average.|
General Education Degree Requirements
All 3 degrees require courses that reflect the breadth of the disciplines in the College.
All undergraduate degrees from the University of Kansas require completion of the KU Core Curriculum. In addition to the KU Core, students must satisfy the degree specific and major requirements of the degree they are pursuing. Below are the degree specific requirements of the various degrees of the College. Major requirements may be found on the specific departmental pages in this catalog.
Electives Required for Graduation
- The Bachelor of Arts degree requires:
- Quantitative Reasoning. 3 credits. This course must have MATH 101 (College Algebra) or a higher mathematics course as a pre-requisite. Additionally, this course must also be either approved for Goal 1, Learning Outcome 2 of the KU Core or another course approved by CUSA.
- Laboratory or Field Experience. Variable credits. This course must be an academic-credit bearing laboratory or field experience. This course may be taken in conjunction with a lecture but the course combination must contain a laboratory.
- Writing. 6 credits. Students must complete six credit hours (two courses) of collegiate writing-level instruction. Students must complete ENGL 101, Composition and ENGL 102/105, Critical Reading and Writing /Freshman Honors English. Students who place in ENGL 102/105 by examination, must complete ENGL 102/105 and another course meeting Goal 2, Learning Outcome 1 of the KU Core.
- Non-English Language Proficiency. Variable credits. Students must demonstrate fourth semester proficiency in a single non-English language, or third semester proficiency in a first non-English language and first semester proficiency in a second non-English language. This requirement may be met through coursework or examination by the appropriate language department.
- Option A. Completion of the requirements of a single BGS major AND a secondary field of academic study (a second major or minor) OR
- Option B. Completion of the B.G.S. in Liberal Arts and Sciences. This degree program requires:
- All Bachelor of Science degree requirements are listed on their respective academic department pages within this catalog.
The Bachelor of General Studies degree has two distinct options for completion and requires either:
- - Liberal Arts and Sciences Breadth Requirement. Satisfied by the completion of a course (with a minimum of 2 credit hours) in 15 unique departments/programs within the College or School of the Arts (as determined by course prefix). Courses fulfilling this requirement may also contribute to the KU Core and other requirements.
-World Language and Culture. Satisfied by either:
- 2 courses (each with 3 credit hours or more) in a single world language OR
In addition to the common degree requirements above, the student must complete 3 courses (each with 3 credit hours or more) in world, non-Western culture (W or NW designated courses), or language areas. This may include a variety of areas, languages, and cultures.
- Additional Natural Sciences and Mathematics. Satisfied by the completion of two additional courses from the natural sciences (requirement code N) and/or mathematics (MATH prefix courses).
The Bachelor of Science degree:
Each degree allows a certain number of elective hours. In addition to general education degree and major requirements, students may choose elective courses to bring the total credit hours to 120. In choosing electives, students should be aware of limits in certain areas listed under Hours Required for Graduation.
Junior/Senior Hours Required for Graduation
KU requires all students pursuing bachelor’s degrees to complete a minimum of 45 credit hours at the junior/senior level (courses numbered 300 and above).
Majors and Minors
Students must complete a major to graduate with a degree in CLAS. Students pursuing the B.G.S. in Liberal Arts and Sciences may not choose a secondary field of study.
A major requires the student to study at least one discipline in depth. The average number of required credit hours in the major for the B.A. degree is 30 hours. The Board of Regents requires a major to be at least 24 credit hours. See the individual major listings for specific minimum requirements. View a current list of all CLAS majors and minors.
Degree requirements and course descriptions are subject to change. Check with department offices or College Student Academic Services for current information.
Declaration of Major
CLAS requires every student to declare a major or be admitted to a professional school no later than the semester after completion of 60 credit hours. A student is required to meet with an academic advisor to discuss course selection and choice of major each term until the major is declared. An enrollment hold is placed on the student’s record to ensure this advising occurs. For a major to be officially declared, CLAS Student Academic Services must receive a copy of the Major Declaration form signed by the student and the major department representative. If a student is pursuing a double major, he or she should complete a Major Declaration form in each major department.
Departments may reserve enrollment in courses in the department for declared majors.
This policy does not preclude changing or adding majors. Changing majors late in the academic career can delay graduation. Consult a graduation advisor in 109 Strong Hall.
Students are encouraged to explore different disciplines before choosing their majors. Students who are not ready to declare a major can register interest in a major at CLAS Student Academic Services. Help with choosing a major can be obtained at the University Advising Center (126 Strong Hall), CLAS Student Academic Services (109 Strong Hall), and the University Career Center (110 Burge Union).
Admission to CLAS Majors
Admission requirements to a particular major offer potential students the critical foundation of knowledge and skills necessary to become successful in that major. View current admission requirements for each CLAS department in the department's section of the current catalog.
CLAS department admission requirements include the following:
Designated Admission Course Requirements and Minimum Admission Grade-Point Average
Departments may designate up to 4 courses and require an admission grade-point average from 2.2 to 3.0. If a student may choose from a set of course requirement options, and he or she has taken more than the minimum number of course options in the application term, grades received in any designated admission course requirement up to and including that term may be computed in the grade-point average for admission consideration. Only course grades from repeated lower-level courses, meeting the standards of KU’s course repeat policy, are removed from the grade-point average calculation.
The Credit/No Credit option is not available for any course that is an admission requirement. If a student has mistakenly requested the CR/NC option for a course required for admission, 1.7 grade points for any CR grade recorded and 0.0 points for any NC grade recorded are calculated into the grade-point average for admission purposes. A department may determine that any designated admission course taken with the CR/NC option must be repeated.
Students must complete all requirements for admission to a major by the first semester of the junior year or before. Application to the major should occur in the term in which admission requirements will be completed. If a student does not meet established admission grade-point average criteria or neglects to apply for admission in this term, she or he must petition the department for permission for late application. The department, as part of an approved petition, determines late admission requirements (including grade-point average and course requirements) and the final admission deadline.
Hours in the Major: Maximums and Minimums
There is no limit on hours taken in the major for the B.A., B.G.S., or B.S. degree. Departments are not allowed to require more than 40 hours in the major for the B.A. or more than 50 hours in the major for the B.S. Some skills courses and supporting science courses are not included in this maximum limit. A minimum of 12 hours in the major must be in courses numbered 300 or above. At least 15 of these hours in the major must be taken in residence at KU.
Major Grade-Point Average Graduation Requirement
A student must earn a grade-point average of at least 2.0 in KU junior/senior courses (numbered 300 and above) completed in the major. All junior/senior level major-eligible courses attempted at KU will be included in the GPA calculation.
If a student has mistakenly requested the Credit/No Credit option for a course in the major, 1.7 grade points for any CR grade recorded and 0.0 points for any NC grade recorded are calculated into the major grade-point average for certification purposes. A department may determine that any major course taken with the CR/NC option must be repeated.
A student may earn a double major if he or she satisfies the requirements of both majors and completes 15 hours unique to each major in consultation with advisors in each department.
KU Edwards Campus Majors
Students who would like to complete a bachelor’s degree in the Kansas City area may choose from 4 CLAS undergraduate majors offered on KU’s Edwards Campus in Overland Park. Contact the CLAS undergraduate advisor, Dan Mueller, firstname.lastname@example.org, 864-8659 (from Lawrence) or 913-897-8659 (outside of Lawrence), about each of these degrees.
- Psychology. B.A. and B.G.S. degrees are offered. See requirements for the major under Psychology.
- Literature, Language, and Writing. B.A. and B.G.S. degrees are offered. See requirements for the major under English.
- Molecular Biosciences. The B.S. degree is offered. See requirements for the major under Biology Undergraduate Program.
- Public Administration. B.A. and B.G.S. degrees are offered. See requirements for the major under Public Administration.
Students who feel that their best interests cannot be served by the majors listed may petition for a special major (B.A. or B.G.S.), if they follow the guidelines below. Such majors are supervised by special committees of three faculty members recruited by the student. Interested students should consult College Student Academic Services, preferably before the end of the sophomore year.
The following guidelines apply to special majors:
- An official endorsement by one or more of the CLAS departments or degree programs involved must accompany a petition for a special major. The petition must be submitted to the committee on undergraduate studies and advising (CUSA).
- At least 12 credit hours numbered 300 or above counted toward the special major must be taken after approval of the special major.
- At least 2 committee members must be from the CLAS faculty.
- At least 2/3 of the credit hours to be counted toward the special major must be CLAS courses.
- Special majors must not overlap significantly with existing KU major programs and should not have the same titles as existing majors.
- A student seeking a special major must fulfill the general education
degree requirements necessary for the B.A. or B.G.S degree.
Note: Students considering classes to include in a special major should be guided by the fact that most CLAS majors require about 30 hours.
CLAS offers more than 40 approved minors. These are open to all students in the College regardless of the degree they are pursuing. The schools of Architecture, Design and Planning; Business; Education; Engineering; Journalism and Mass Communications; Music; Nursing; and Social Welfare permit their students to earn minors.
Requirements for the minor vary, but all must be at least 18 hours including 12 hours at the junior/senior level (numbered 300 and above). 9 of the junior/senior-level courses must be taken in residence at KU. Up to 3 hours of credit may be used to fulfill requirements for both the major and the minor. Students may not earn a minor unless they have completed a major and have completed at least one course for the minor after the date the minor was approved by College Assembly. Successful completion of a minor requires a minimum KU grade-point average of 2.0 in all courses taken for the minor. For requirements for each minor, see the programs listed on the Departments & Programs page.
The Credit/No Credit option is not available for any course that may satisfy minor requirements. If a student has mistakenly requested the CR/NC option for a course in the minor, 1.7 grade points for any CR grade recorded and 0.0 points for any NC grade recorded are calculated into the major grade-point average for certification purposes. A department may determine that any minor course taken with the CR/NC option must be repeated.
View a current list of all CLAS majors and minors.
The KU Core curriculum, coupled with degree and major requirements in the College, ensure a balance of breadth and depth of knowledge critical in today’s world.
See the General Education Degree Requirements section above for details regarding College-specific requirements.
Bachelor of Science Degree Requirements
All general education degree, major, and supporting requirements for each B.S. program are specified by department faculty, with approval of the College Assembly. They are listed under the department or program on the Departments & Programs page. B.S. candidates are held to a more prescribed program with fewer electives than B.A. candidates. Students pursuing the B.S. may complete an approved minor.
Overlap Between Requirements
A course may be used to fulfill a KU Core or College degree-specific requirement and a minor or major requirement.
A student may earn more than one major if he or she satisfies the requirements of all majors and completes 15 hours unique to each major in consultation with advisors in each department.
One course overlap is allowed between major requirements and minor requirements.
Graduate Degree Requirements
Requirements for the completion of master’s and doctoral degrees in the College are governed by department- or program-specific policy, College policies and procedures, Graduate Studies policies, and the University Senate Rules and Regulations.
Information on degree requirements presented in this section are limited to the most frequently consulted policies and key milestones in the graduate career. Students will find additional information under the KU Policy Library, the Graduate Studies and College regulations sections of the online catalog, the academic unit’s handbook, and the University of Kansas Rules and Regulations.
Master's Degree Requirements
Coursework requirements for the Master’s degree are established and tracked by the department or program, and their completion verified and approved by the College. Please consult with your advisor, the academic unit’s graduate handbook, and the relevant Departments & Programs section of the online catalog for further information on specific courses or course sequences required for the degree.
Master’s students complete either a thesis or an equivalent enrollment in research, independent investigation, or seminar. General rules for the preparation of a thesis are available on the Graduate Studies website.
A final general examination in the major subject is required. The examination is held during the semester of the student’s final enrollment in course work and, in the case of thesis students, when the thesis has been substantially completed. In thesis programs, an oral thesis defense may be one of the degree requirements. Such a defense may be offered in addition to, or in conjunction with, the required general examination in the major field. Students earning a master’s thesis degree must have completed at least 1 hour of thesis enrollment before the master’s degree can be awarded. See also Master’s Degree Requirements, M.A. and M.S. Degrees, in the Graduate Studies section of the online catalog.
Doctor of Philosophy Degree Requirements
Coursework requirements for the doctoral degree are established and tracked by the department or program, and their completion verified and approved by the College. Please consult with your advisor, the academic unit’s graduate handbook, and the relevant Departments & Programs section of the online catalog for further information on specific courses or course sequences required for the degree.
Research Skills and Responsible Scholarship
Graduate Studies requires that all doctoral students meet the Research Skills and Responsible Scholarship requirement before proceeding to the Comprehensive Exam. Meeting this requirement is determined by the department or program in consultation with Graduate Studies. Specific information on these requirements is contained in the department or program’s approved research skills requirement plan. Consult with your advisor and the Departments & Programs section of the online catalog for further information.
Two semesters, which may include one summer session, must be spent in resident study at KU. The College requires that residency be fulfilled before the comprehensive oral examination is scheduled. For more information on residency requirements, please see the Graduate Studies section of the online catalog.
Comprehensive Oral Examination
The comprehensive oral examination covers the major field and any outside work for which the academic unit wishes to hold the student responsible. The examination is expected to be broader than a mere defense of the dissertation proposal.
The student must be enrolled the semester or summer session in which he or she completes the comprehensive oral examination. If the student takes the oral comprehensive examination for the Ph.D. degree before the first day of finals, the hours in which the student is enrolled at the time will count toward the 18 post-comprehensive enrollment hours, described under University Regulations in this section of the online catalog. If more than 5 years elapses between the completion of the comprehensive exam and degree completion, the student may be required to retake the oral comprehensive.
More information about comprehensive exam requirements may be found in the Graduate Studies section of the online catalog.
Dissertation and Final Exam
Completion of the dissertation is the culminating phase of a doctoral program, marked by the final oral examination and defense of the dissertation. In all but the rarest cases, tentative approval of the dissertation is followed promptly by the final oral examination. Refer to the Graduate Studies section of the online catalog for further information on the regulations governing the final oral examination, including committee composition and attendance regulations.
Guidelines for preparing and submitting the final copies of the dissertation are available on the Graduate Studies website.
At the end of each spring semester, the College holds a master’s hooding ceremony and Graduate Studies organizes the annual doctoral hooding ceremony. The School of the Arts also hosts a separate ceremony for SOTA graduates. University Commencement information is available in the KU Commencement section of the KU website.
Attendance at these ceremonies is optional. Please consult the COGA website for more information.