Undergraduate and Precollege Programs
- Bachelor of Arts in Liberal Studies Degree Program
- Undergraduate Certificate Programs
- Summer Study at Georgetown
- Summer Programs for High School Students
- Academic and Administrative Policies
1. Bachelor of Arts in Liberal Studies Degree Program
The Bachelor of Arts in Liberal Studies was designed for non-traditional students interested in a values-based interdisciplinary education. The program helps students build a multidimensional understanding of a complex world. The Core Area curriculum brings together work from a variety of integrated disciplines in the areas of Culture, Humanities, Natural Sciences, Philosophy, Social Sciences, and Writing. Additionally, students choose one or more of the following concentrations: Business and Entrepreneurship, Humanities, Individualized Study, International Relations, Professional Media and Communication.
The program is designed to meet the unique needs of working adults. Students can complete their entire degree part-time and without ever setting foot in a classroom during traditional working hours. Acceptance to the Bachelor of Arts in Liberal Studies program does not guarantee or imply acceptance into another undergraduate program within the School or University. Students admitted to the program who wish to transfer to one of the four undergraduate schools must apply through the Office of Undergraduate Admissions.
A student is officially admitted to the program when a notice of acceptance has been received and registration has been completed. All new students are encouraged to attend New Student Orientation and register online through MyAccess prior to the beginning of their first semester on the designated date for that term.
The successful applicant for the Bachelor of Arts in Liberal Studies degree completion program will typically have completed some coursework at a postsecondary institution or have professional, military, or life experience prior to applying to the program. The School of Continuing Studies accepts up to 64 transfer credits, including military training, which can be applied toward your concentration or elective credits on a case-by-case basis. Applicants who do not have previous post-secondary college experience may be considered for provisional admission; we strongly recommend that these applicants submit a resume with their other application materials.
The program maintains three articulation agreements with two-year colleges in the area: Montgomery College, Northern Virginia Community College, and Prince George’s Community College. Please note that these agreements are exclusively between these institutions and the Bachelor of Arts in Liberal Studies program and do not apply to other undergraduate programs or Schools at Georgetown. Details of each agreement are outlined on the Bachelor of Arts in Liberal Studies Admissions page.
Transfer credit ordinarily is not awarded for study at other institutions after you have started study at Georgetown. However, students sometimes seek to take summer classes at institutions outside the Washington DC area. Consult with the academic program before registering for such classes, so you can be sure that they will apply to your academic program.
Students applying to the Bachelor of Arts in Liberal Studies program who have previously attended another Georgetown University undergraduate program should be aware that their entire undergraduate academic record will be reflected on their transcript. This means that all courses, grades, and credits earned at Georgetown University will be factored into the cumulative GPA and credit totals without exception. While all previously completed undergraduate coursework will be reflected on the transcript and will be applied towards the cumulative GPA and credit totals, students are still responsible for completing all of the program requirements, including all Core Area and concentration courses.
Advanced Placement/CLEP Credit
The Bachelor of Arts in Liberal Studies program offers Georgetown credit for students who have completed certain Advanced Placement examinations and College Level-Examination Program examinations with qualifying scores. These credits count against the 64-credit maximum for transfer credits. In awarding credit for Advanced Placement, the program follows the standards outlined in the university’s Undergraduate Bulletin Advanced Credit section. Credit for CLEP examinations is offered only for scores equal to a course grade of B or higher. Please note that it is the student’s responsibility to arrange for the College Board to send the AP or CLEP scores directly to the program; AP or CLEP scores listed on another college’s transcript will not be evaluated.
The Bachelor of Arts in Liberal Studies program follows recommendations from the American Council on Education to grant transfer credit, on a case-by-case basis, for certain military training. The student should have the Joint Services Transcript sent directly to the academic program for evaluation. These credits count against the 64-credit maximum for transfer credits.
Part-Time and Full-time Registration Status
Students in the Bachelor of Arts in Liberal Studies program are permitted to enroll as part-time or full-time students. Students seeking a full-time courseload are limited to 14 credits per semester.
Prospective students on J-1 or F-1 student Visa status must enroll full-time. Please consult with the Office of Global Services when making enrollment decisions that could affect your Visa status.
The program offers academic advising for students in the program. The advising staff helps students to make wise choices in their academic programs and to navigate through difficulties that they may encounter.
Continuing students are encouraged to meet with the Liberal Studies advising team at least once each semester prior to the start of registration for the following semester’s courses. The academic program team is also available to meet with students who are encountering difficulty in their studies. Advisors may refer students to supportive services throughout the University, including the Academic Resource Center, the SCS Writing Center, the Career Center, and Counseling and Psychiatric Services.
Students with disabilities seeking accommodations are strongly encouraged to contact the Academic Resource Center before the start of classes to discuss the documentation guidelines and accommodation process. There is a formal procedure for requesting an accommodation that must be completed before accommodations can be implemented. Instructors are not permitted to make accommodations until a student has completed this process and accommodations are not retroactive. As such, it is imperative that students contact the Academic Resource Center to initiate the process.
A graduate of the Bachelor of Arts in Liberal Studies program will be able to:
- Critically analyze and engage with historical, contemporary, and enduring questions of the human experience;
- Understand fundamental concepts and methodologies in the humanities, the sciences and mathematics/statistics, and the social sciences; apply these methods to the analysis of complex problems;
- Discover and analyze primary and secondary sources relevant to specific research questions in particular academic disciplines;
- Recognize and respond to social justice issues, locally and globally; enact ethics-based approaches in study and work;
- Write well and present information clearly for specific audiences in appropriate forms and media;
- Demonstrate the ability to apply intercultural knowledge and competence by meaningfully and ethically engaging others.
Bachelor of Arts in Liberal Studies Degree Requirements
All students are required to take one course from each Core Area (3 credits each/18 credits total); multiple courses will fulfill each core area requirement. Each Core Area required course will be interdisciplinary.
- Culture – Integrated disciplines include, but are not limited to, Classics, Non-Western, Ancient Civilizations and Cultural Studies
- Humanities – Integrated disciplines include, but are not limited to, Literature, History, Art and Art History
- Natural Sciences – Integrated disciplines include, but are not limited to, Biology, Chemistry, Physics and Geology
- Philosophy – Integrated disciplines include, but are not limited to, Philosophy, Theology/Religious Studies and Ethics
- Social Sciences – Integrated disciplines include, but are not limited to, Economics, Psychology and Sociology
- Writing – Integrated disciplines include, but are not limited to, Writing, Rhetoric, Communication and Technology
Detailed descriptions of the course are available online in the university’s course catalog.
In addition to completing the core courses, students must complete 48 credits (16 three-credit courses) in one of the program’s concentrations.
Business and Entrepreneurship
The Business & Entrepreneurship concentration will prepare you with the skills you need to become an ethical leader in a variety of professional environments. You’ll build a foundational understanding of practical business knowledge, including techniques for identifying business opportunities and effectively applying skills in the areas of accounting, marketing, finance, and management. This concentration is ideal for students who work in business or those who want to pursue a career in business.
In the Humanities concentration, you’ll examine human values and complexities from a range of academic perspectives—leading to a broad comprehension of philosophical, religious, literary, and artistic movements in human history. You’ll consider the human experience, which will influence your understanding across the intersections of history, culture, politics, and religion in the modern world.
The individualized study concentration provides you with the unique opportunity to combine multiple disciplines of interest, choosing from a broad selection of courses offered within the Bachelor of Arts in Liberal Studies program. This concentration offers the flexibility to study under multiple concentrations without fully committing to a single degree path. The individualized study concentration is a good fit for students who would like exposure to a variety of academic disciplines. Additionally, the concentration is suitable for students who are considering a graduate degree and who would like to explore more than one academic discipline within liberal studies.
In the International Relations concentration, you’ll form a critical awareness of the complex issues in foreign policy and international relations, as well as an ethical framework for making informed decisions about these issues. You’ll identify and characterize the major social, political, and economic developments in a specific country or regional grouping while drawing from the body of Western intellectual and moral tradition. Throughout the program, you’ll analyze global issues and international relations with an emphasis on questions of global social justice.
Professional Media and Communication
The Professional Media & Communication concentration is interdisciplinary in design, incorporating media theory and history, ethics, the social sciences, digital media practices, and technological and cultural perspectives. This concentration prepares you for the contemporary and evolving media landscape. Through a blend of theory and practical application, you’ll explore modern-day industry challenges while examining the intersections between media and organizations in both the public and private spheres.
Each student is encouraged to review their MyDegree Audit each semester. Degree Audit is a computerized analysis of the student’s progress toward the degree that will indicate which requirements remain to be completed. The MyDegree Audit is available on MyAccess (new window). Every student majors in liberal studies, and each must also have a concentration. An admitted student is initially enrolled in the concentration that they declared in the admissions application. Students must meet with their academic advisor to discuss whether changing concentrations will necessitate additional coursework by the student.
Degree Conferral Timeline
In addition to completing the Core Area courses and concentration requirements, all students must complete 120 credits with a cumulative GPA of 2.000 or better to qualify for graduation. In some cases, students may need to complete more than 120 credits in order to satisfy all Core and concentration requirements. The Bachelor of Arts in Liberal Studies degree must be completed within 10 years of first registration. Students may submit a request to the academic program for an extension with documentation of exceptional circumstances. Such requests must be reviewed and approved by the Office of Academic Affairs and Compliance. If approved, students will receive a limited extension to complete their studies. If the request is not approved, students will be terminated from the program.
A student who does not register for class in either the fall or spring semester will be involuntarily withdrawn from the program. In these cases a notation of “Withdrawn for Failure to Register” will appear on the official transcript. A student can avoid being withdrawn by instead requesting an official Leave of Absence during a fall or spring semester. Contact the academic program for information on requesting a Leave of Absence and for deadlines for requesting return from leave. Students must consult with the Office of Financial Aid on the consequences of taking a leave of absence.
Please Note: The above policy does not apply to summer semesters. Students need not request a leave in order to avoid taking classes during summer.
Earning the Bachelor of Arts in Liberal Studies degree requires a total of 120 credits, earned at Georgetown or elsewhere (depending upon transfer credits), with a minimum GPA of 2.000. These are divided among Core courses, concentration courses, and electives. The GPA only reflects coursework completed at Georgetown. Courses accepted for transfer credit are not factored into the Georgetown GPA, though the credits apply towards the 120 required for graduation.
Degrees are conferred in May, August, and December. Students should contact the academic program in their final semester to review their remaining requirements and ensure that they are on track for degree completion. Students must apply online in MyAccess to graduate by the deadline for the semester in which they intend to complete all requirements.
Students must settle all financial obligations to the University—e.g., overdue tuition, library fines, and late fees—so that their account balance is $0 before submitting their thesis or completing their last course to be eligible to graduate and receive a diploma and final transcript. The financial clearance deadlines are Dec. 1 if completing the degree in December, May 1 if completing the degree in May, or August 1 if completing the degree in August.
All graduates are awarded their degrees and diplomas at Commencement Exercises scheduled in May. Students whose degrees were posted earlier are encouraged to participate in the formal commencement ceremony in May of each year.
2. Undergraduate Certificates
The Bachelor of Arts in Liberal Studies program offers two credit-bearing undergraduate certificates within the on-campus program. An undergraduate certificate can be taken as a standalone credential or, once completed, the 18 credits can be used toward earning a Bachelor of Arts in Liberal Studies degree.
Undergraduate Certificate Requirements:
- Undergraduate certificates consist of 18 credits (6 courses).
- Students pursuing an undergraduate certificate must complete all coursework for the undergraduate certificate as outlined in the requirements below.
- Students may be eligible to transfer credits towards the certificate pending program approval.
- Students must maintain a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.000 to remain in good academic standing and to be eligible to earn the certificate.
- The undergraduate certificate must be completed within three years of beginning the program.
Undergraduate Certificate in Business & Entrepreneurship
Students who successfully complete the concentration in Business & Entrepreneurship will be able to:
- Build foundational knowledge in a variety of core business areas, including accounting, finance, and marketing;
- Develop technical skills in areas such as statistics in order to interpret and analyze data in professional settings;
- Apply strategic principles to develop creative solutions to complex business problems;
- Understand how to identify new business opportunities, analyze data, pitch, and develop new products;
- Apply ethical considerations to a variety of business cases and issues and develop the skills to become ethical leaders in a variety of professional environments.
Undergraduate Certificate in Business & Entrepreneurship Requirements
To earn an undergraduate certificate in Business & Entrepreneurship, students must successfully complete the following 6 courses (18 credits):
BLHV 231/BLHV 2005: Ethical Leadership
BLHV 232/BLHV 2000: Introduction to Business
BLHS 227/BLHV 2003: Business Statistics
BLHS 229/BLHV 2006: Principles of Accounting
BLHS 22/BLHV 2004: Financial Management
BLHS 299/BLHV 2001: Introduction to Marketing
Corresponding Credentials and Degree Requirements
Students may complete this certificate on its own or as part of the Bachelor of Arts in Liberal Studies degree (to include applying the certificate courses to the appropriate elective and concentration requirements) as well as using it to explicitly meet the Business & Entrepreneurship concentration requirements.
Students who successfully complete the certificate and choose to enroll in and complete the Bachelor of Arts in Liberal Studies will also be awarded the “Generalist Credential” badge, a credential established by the Greater Washington Partnership initiative. The credential provides students with the data analytic skills needed to solve the digital technology skills gap of the corporate, healthcare, education, and government entities in the Greater Washington region. The credential is recognized by regional businesses as a differentiator in hiring/deploying talent and incorporates the knowledge, skills, and abilities needed by industry for various positions in a wide variety of occupations.
Undergraduate Certificate in Critical Analysis & Applied Ethics
To earn an undergraduate certificate in Critical Analysis & Applied Ethics, students must successfully complete 6 courses (18 credits) from courses selected by the program to meet the certificate requirements. Courses include but are not limited to:
BLHS 010/BLHV 1003: Religion and the Word
BLHS 011/BLHV 1004: Ancient Mediterranean: Cultural Encounters
BLHS 046/BLHV 1001: Philosophy of Gender, Love, Sex
BLHS 061/BLHV 1002: The Human Condition
BLHS 077/BLHV 1038: Humanities Encounters
BLHV 231/BLHV 2005: Ethical Leadership
Corresponding Credentials and Degree Requirements
Students may complete this certificate on its own or as part of the Bachelor of Arts in Liberal Studies degree (to include applying the certificate courses to the appropriate elective and concentration requirements).
3. Summer Study at Georgetown
Each year, Summer at Georgetown University offers more than 250 courses and more than 25 programs for high school, undergraduate, graduate, and continuing education students.
Enrollment in summer courses is open to: (1) newly admitted or matriculated Georgetown undergraduate and graduate students in good standing with permission of their academic deans; (2) undergraduate and graduate students in good standing at other colleges and universities; (3) high school students who have been admitted through the Summer College program; (4) foreign students who can provide documentation of a TOEFL score of 550 and above or 600 for Linguistics courses; and (5) individuals whose educational background and experience qualify them for the courses they wish to take.
The School offers three distinct summer sessions: the presession, first session, and second session. The presession, which starts in mid-May, allows students to take courses during a four week period. Because of the pre-session’s compressed and intensive nature, students are permitted to take only one course. The first and second summer sessions run consecutively, the first beginning in June, the second in early July; each session lasts five weeks.
3. Summer Programs for High School Students
The School of Continuing Studies offers a diverse series of programs for high school students. Students can participate in non-credit programs from eight days up to three weeks, depending on the programs. The School of Continuing Studies offers the following non-credit programs: Medical Institute; American Politics; College Preparatory; Creative Writing, Entrepreneurship; Forensic Science; International Relations; Broadcast Journalism; Law Institute; Leadership; Medicine; National Security and Counterintelligence; Sports Industry Management.
The School of Continuing Studies also offers the following credit programs during the five week Summer Sessions to high school students: Summer College I; Summer College II; Fundamentals of Business, English, Economics, Law, Medicine and American Government.
4. Academic and Administrative Policies
Students are responsible for familiarizing themselves with all academic and administrative policies, procedures, and deadlines. Questions about any policies should be directed to the Liberal Studies Program. In addition to the policies described in Academic Policies, students are responsible for the academic and administrative policies, procedures, rights, and responsibilities (including the SCS Academic Rules and Regulations, the Code of Student Conduct; the Honor Code; Disability Support; Immunization Requirements; Tuition Refund Guidelines; and others) that apply to all SCS and Georgetown University students. University policies can be found online here (new window).