Graduation and Degree Requirements
University Policies: Graduation and Degree Requirements
The conferring of degrees by the University of Louisville is conditional upon completion of all requirements in the opinion of the unit faculty and dean, regardless of the students’ participation in commencement. Students are strongly urged to run preliminary degree audits on a regular basis so that possible deficiencies in degree requirements can be identified early.
Bachelor's Degree Requirements
The baccalaureate degree (arts, business administration, fine arts, music, science, or social work) is the undergraduate degree offered by the university. It is awarded to students who have completed both university-wide requirements and the requirements of the selected degree program. The following university-wide requirements apply to all baccalaureate degrees. The student must:
- Complete an online degree application by the specified date at the beginning of the semester of graduation.
- Complete an application for and be accepted for admission into a major program.
- Satisfy all Cardinal Core requirements.
- Complete all required courses and program requirements listed in the degree program section of this catalog.
- Have a cumulative university GPA of at least 2.00, or higher if specified by the program.
- Have a cumulative program GPA of at least 2.00, or higher if specified by the program.
- Complete a minimum of 120 hours applicable to the program, or more if required by the program.
- Complete at least 60 hours at an accredited four-year institution.
- Complete at least 25% of the total credit hours required for the degree in residence at the University of Louisville.
- Complete 30 of the last 36 hours in residence at the University of Louisville.
- Have neither missing nor outstanding I or X grades.
- Satisfy any additional requirements specified by the major program and unit.
- Be discharged of all financial obligations to the University.
- Be formally recommended for the baccalaureate degree by the unit faculty and dean and approved by the Board of Trustees.
To be awarded a second bachelor’s degree, students must earn a minimum of thirty additional semester hours in the program. For students pursuing two degrees simultaneously, these thirty hours will be added to the minimum total of semester hours needed for the degree requiring the least number of hours.
Students who want to take a minor must apply for admission to the minor program after acceptance into a major program. The course work requirements for a minor are prescribed by a department or unit and consist of at least 18 semester hours. Most minor programs are open to students from all units.
Satisfactory completion of course work required for a minor will be certified as completion of the minor, and will be shown on the student’s transcript only if the student’s application has been accepted by the department or program offering the minor.
In addition to the university-wide policies regarding Graduation and Degree Requirements, students may be subject to the unit-specific requirements listed below.
College of Arts and Sciences
Each student must earn a minimum of 121 semester hours of credit (unless a higher minimum is specified in a program of study). At least 50 of the total semester hours, whether required or elective, must be earned in courses numbered 300 or higher. A student who earns duplicate credit for courses will be required to complete more hours.
Maximum Hours in Major
Note: The standard number of hours to graduate is 120 and students may be at risk of losing financial aid if they take substantially more hours than required by their degree programs.
Departments may not require candidates for a BA degree to complete more than 40 credit hours within the department for graduation, but students may opt to take additional hours within their degree program. Students must still meet all Cardinal Core and College-level requirements to graduate.
Departments may not require candidates for a BS degree to complete more than 60 credit hours within the department for graduation, but students may opt to take additional hours within their degree program. Students must still meet all Cardinal Core and College-level requirements to graduate.
Fine Arts departments (with courses designated ART and ARTH) may not require candidates for a BFA degree to complete more than 80 credit hours within the department for graduation, but students may opt to take additional hours within their degree program. Students must still meet all Cardinal Core and College-level requirements to graduate.
Departmental Learning Outcomes Assessment
Completion of a baccalaureate degree also requires students to submit work to the department of the major for the department’s learning outcomes measurement. Details about the specific requirements and deadlines of an individual department are available in the department office. Students are advised to make themselves aware of these requirements as early as possible in their academic careers.
Requirements for Minors
The course work requirements for a minor consist of 18-23 semester hours. A maximum of 3 hours of pass-fail work may be applied. Students may elect a major and a minor in the same department only if there is more than one degree program in that department and if the major and minor are in two different programs of the department. Students are cautioned that completion of the major, which is required for all degrees, and completion of the minor, which is optional, may require the student to complete more than the 121 semester hours minimum required for a baccalaureate degree. Courses required for the minor may be used to fulfill other degree requirements.
College of Business
Each student must earn a minimum of 120 semester hours of credit. Required hours exclude non-academic credits (all remedial course work including Reading, English, and Math courses numbered 100 or below). Students pursuing a second bachelor's degree must be admitted to the College of Business in degree status, must earn a minimum of 30 hours beyond their last degree and fulfill all program and GPA requirements of the second degree.
- 2.0 cumulative grade point average
- 2.0 expanded grade point average in the major. All courses taken to fulfill the required courses in the major will be used for the major GPA calculation, including transfer courses.
At least 48 of the total semester hours, whether required or elective, must be earned in courses numbered 300 or higher. Note that the number of the course, not the student's classification, determines whether or not a course is senior-level.
Kent School of Social Work
Kent students participating in commencement will receive a generic letter stating that they have met the requirements of the BSW degree. This letter is an official letter that can be given to employers, for possible employment benefits. Students not attending commencement will NOT receive such a letter. Official degrees take up to six weeks to show on student transcripts. No personal letters for licensure or employment purposes can be given to students. These letters can also not be given before commencement due to specific university restrictions. Students should plan licensure exams or employment dates to accommodate this six-week delay after commencement to get an official transcript showing a degree.
School of Music
Minimum Hours and Point Standing
To be recommended for a degree or minor in Music, the student must have completed the prescribed number of hours in the courses taken and must have a 2.5 grade point average.
School of Nursing
A candidate for the Bachelor of Science in Nursing in the traditional BSN program must have satisfactory completion of the required BSN courses with a minimum undergraduate cumulative and program grade point average of 2.5; a minimum university GPA of 2.0 in all coursework is required. A minimum letter grade of C is required in all nursing courses (NURS).
A candidate for the Bachelor of Science in Nursing in the RN-BSN program must have satisfactory completion of the required BSN courses and earned a minimum university and program grade point average of 2.0. A minimum letter grade of C is required in all nursing courses (NURS).
J.B. Speed School of Engineering
Graduation and Degree Requirements
Degree requirements for all BS degrees granted by the J.B. Speed School of Engineering will be based upon the course requirements that are in effect at the time of admission to the School of Engineering. If an applicant has been admitted several times, the degree requirements in effect at the most recent time of admission will apply.
The following graduation and degree requirements apply to all BS engineering degrees. The student must:
Have credit for each of the three cooperative education work terms
Have a cumulative university GPA of at least 2.25 and have a cumulative program GPA of at least 2.25
Second Bachelor’s Degree
In addition to the requirements set by the university, satisfaction of the requirements for co-op must have approval of both departments.