Jul 25, 2024  
2023-24 Undergraduate Catalog 
2023-24 Undergraduate Catalog

Liberal Studies and Requirements for Graduation

Undergraduate students at IUP may pursue programs of study in any one of six undergraduate colleges: the Eberly College of Business, the College of Education and Communications, the College of Arts and Humanities, the College of Health and Human Services, the University College, or the Kopchick College of Natural Sciences and Mathematics. A student may earn the degree of bachelor of arts, bachelor of science, bachelor of fine arts, or bachelor of science in education. The University College offers an associate of arts degree program. The College of Health and Human Services offers two associate in applied science degree programs.

To meet graduation requirements in a baccalaureate or an associate degree program, the student must satisfy all of the degree requirements, which fall into three categories: (1) university requirements, (2) college requirements, and (3) department requirements. Requirements of the latter two categories may be found under the college and the department in which the student is pursuing a program of study.

University requirements for graduation in all curricula consist of Liberal Studies requirements, residency requirements in regard to awarding of degrees, and the credit and cumulative grade point average requirements.

A student may earn a second undergraduate baccalaureate degree by completing a minimum of 30 additional credits. A student may complete one or more secondary majors while earning the primary degree or may complete a dual baccalaureate degree.

Liberal Studies

All students must fulfill the requirements of the university’s Liberal Studies program. This involves a minimum of 40 credits divided among Learning Skills, Knowledge Areas, and Liberal Studies Electives. The number of credits may rise slightly depending on student choices. The maximum number of Liberal Studies credits is 48.

Different colleges and sometimes departments within colleges may have specific variations as to how these Liberal Studies requirements are to be met.

Liberal Studies provides the broad vision and understanding that enable individuals to enjoy full, rich lives and to play constructive roles in their communities. The goals for Liberal Studies include (1) the development of important modes of thinking and intellectual skills: critical thinking, literacy, understanding numerical data, historical consciousness, scientific inquiry, ethical perception, and aesthetic sensitivity; (2) the acquisition of a body of knowledge or understanding essential to an educated person; and (3) an understanding of the physical, as well as the intellectual, nature of human beings.

Liberal Studies Requirements

Note: Specific courses may be required or recommended by colleges or major departments; see degree program outlines for specifications.

Additional courses may be added to some categories during the next academic year. See the Liberal Studies website for the most current information.


Eligibility and Application for Graduation

It is the responsibility of all students to know and fulfill their requirements for graduation and to track their academic progress. Information on applying for graduation may be obtained at the dean’s office of the college of student’s primary major or program and on the commencement website.

Commencement ceremonies at IUP are in the month of May at the conclusion of the spring semester, and in the month of December at the conclusion of the fall semester. All undergraduate and graduate students must complete an application for graduation. The application for graduation is also required for participation in the commencement ceremony. The deadlines for the application for graduation are posted on the commencement website. Dual baccalaureate degree students must file a separate graduation application for each degree. Students apply for graduation through MyIUP.

Students who have applied for May graduation attend the May commencement ceremony and are included in the May commencement booklet. Students who have applied for August graduation attend the May commencement ceremony and are included in the May commencement booklet.

Undergraduate students: August graduates can petition the dean or the dean’s designee of the college of the student’s primary major to attend the December commencement ceremony but will not be included in the December commencement booklet (they are included in the May commencement booklet).

Graduate students: August graduates can choose to participate in the May or December commencement ceremony. August graduates will not be included in the December commencement booklet (they are included in the May commencement booklet).

Students who have applied for December or January graduation attend the December commencement ceremony and are included in the December commencement booklet. Please note: Students need to reapply for graduation if they have not met all of their requirements for their initial date of graduation

Degrees will not be finalized until approval by the dean or the dean’s designee of the college of the student’s primary major is received in the Office of the Registrar. Diplomas will then be mailed to the student provided all financial obligations and requirements (including primary major, secondary major(s), and minors) have been satisfied. NOTE: Students with an international address will have their IUP diploma sent to the Office of International Education [OIE].

Pre-approval for Transfer Coursework 

Students enrolled at IUP who wish to take coursework at another institution must complete an Application for Pre-approval of Coursework at Another College/University before taking the course(s). Only the credits from the course(s) transfer, not the grade; therefore, students cannot use outside coursework for IUP’s repeat policy.to replace/improve grades. Only the credits for which students receive the grade of “A”, “B”, “C” or “D” will transfer.

Please note that some academic programs require students to earn a “C” grade or better to meet program requirements. Therefore, in these cases, if P/F is the only grading option available, there must be either a narrative evaluation from the transferring institution’s faculty member certifying that the work was of “C” level or better or notification on the transcript stating that a “P” grade is equal to a “C” grade or better. 

No more than 60 credits total may be earned at a junior or community college for application towards an IUP degree unless it is part of an articulated agreement. Courses without prior approval are taken at the risk of the student; there is no obligation on the part of any officer of IUP to accept such credit.


Credits and Cumulative Grade Point Average Requirement 

Each student must complete a minimum of 120 credits to graduate, including a minimum of 40 credits and a maximum of 48 in Liberal Studies (all on a passing basis) and must have a 2.0 (C grade) cumulative GPA and a 2.0 (C grade) GPA in his/her major and/or minor field. Some programs require more than 120 credits for graduation.

Re-evaluation of Transfer Credit

If you believe a course was evaluated incorrectly, you may submit a reevaluation form with a syllabus for the course in question. The form and syllabus for each course submitted for review should be emailed to transfer-credit@iup.edu. Once received, the information will be reviewed by a transfer counselor and/or the appropriate academic department to determine whether a change to your transfer credit is warranted. A transfer counselor will email you with the results of the review once it is completed

Program Changes

To ensure their quality and relevance, academic programs at IUP are subject to review and change by duly appointed and responsible university groups. Because of this, the university recognizes that provisions must be made to prevent hardship to students already enrolled in programs if changes later occur in specific or general program requirements. Students affected by changes in programs, policies, and regulations are therefore given the option of following those requirements that were in effect when the student was
first enrolled in the program or those in effect at the time of expected graduation. The student cannot choose elements from both sets of requirements. Should a question of interpretation arise with respect to changes, the student, the student’s advisor, or both should petition the college dean for a decision about which requirements apply.

IUP Residency Requirement for Awarding of Degrees

All students receiving their first baccalaureate degree are required to complete 30 of their last 60 credits in courses at IUP. All students receiving their first associate degree are required to complete 15 of their last 30 credits in courses at IUP.

For an IUP major, minor, or undergraduate certificate, students are required to complete at least 50 percent of required credits in courses at IUP or another State System institution. Junior/Senior year Study Abroad semesters or other formal Articulation agreements in which State System students may reverse-transfer credits back to IUP are exceptions to this policy.

For undergraduate active-duty service members, IUP applies a more military-friendly set of residency requirements, and these students should consult the Military and Veterans Resource Center for more information.

IUP courses include all courses listed in the Undergraduate Catalog and Graduate Catalog.

Non-native Students: English Language Requirements

Non-native students of English who have not been admitted as undergraduate students, either international students or those from the US for whom English is not their first learned language, are required to take an MLW Screening/Placement Test before registration in the first semester attending IUP. The test is administered before registration in both the fall and spring semesters. Results of this test are used to determine for which English course (ENGL 100 /MLW, ENGL 101 /MLW, ENGL 202 /MLW, ENGL 121 /MLW) a newly admitted non-native student must register. In addition, any currently enrolled non-native student can take the regularly scheduled test to determine registration for non-MLW English courses. For further information, contact the chairperson of the English Department, 724-357-2261.

Timely Completion of Degree Requirements

The minimum total credit requirement for a baccalaureate degree at IUP is 120. Students who enroll in degree programs that require more than 120 credits, or who seek the added benefit of a double major, minor, or specialized program, or who change majors, should plan their sequence of courses proactively and carefully with an advisor. Such students should be alert to the possibility that they may need to carry a heavier-than-average class load to complete the degree in eight semesters. In some situations, summer or winter work and/or an extra semester may be necessary. The need to enroll in remedial or other preparatory course work or to repeat courses may also affect timely progress toward a degree.

Degree Requirements Based on Undergraduate Catalog

The university reserves the right to modify degree requirements through established governance channels. However, the general policy has been established that the following time frame regulations form the basis for application of the university’s undergraduate degree requirements:

  1. A student who has been in continuous registration (fall and spring semesters) or who has interruption(s) of less than two calendar years is governed by the requirements outlined in the catalog in effect at the time of entrance into a degree program (major).
    1. A student who changes majors will be governed by the requirements of the major and/or college at the time of acceptance into the new major, without change of Liberal Studies requirements except as specified by the new major.
    2. A student entering through the non-degree program is governed by the requirements in effect at the time degree candidacy is awarded.
    3. A part-time student may be covered by these provisions of continuous registration to a maximum of 10 years.
  2. If changes occur in program requirements during a student’s tenure, the student should contact their department for curriculum requirement options and complete any necessary “request for catalog change” forms.
  3. A student whose education is interrupted by two or more calendar years will be governed by the requirements in effect at the time of re-enrollment. The re-enrollment may carry specific requirements/substitutions necessary to provide for program integrity.
  4. The applicability of course work completed more than 10 years before the degree date is subject to review by the dean(s) or designee(s) for evaluation on a course-by-course basis. Also see Re-enrollment policy