Graduation Requirements

 

The following information is an excerpt from the 2012-2013 Academic Bulletin (PDF).

The responsibility for meeting the requirements for graduation rests primarily upon the student. Students should acquaint themselves with the various requirements in this bulletin and from the freshman year plan their college courses to meet them.

Students who maintain continuous residence may meet the requirements in the bulletin current at the time of entry or any bulletin published during the time of residence. Students who have discontinued their residence longer than two consecutive semesters must meet the requirements in effect when they return.

Commencement

Commencement exercises are held annually in May, although diplomas are issued in August and December. Students who complete a program at the end of the spring semester are expected to participate in the graduation exercises.

Exemption from participation in the annual exercises is granted only by the president. Graduates from the previous December are invited to participate. A fee is charged to all graduates to cover the costs associated with graduation.

Academic Recognition at Graduation

Students graduating from Union College are awarded degrees with the following designations appropriate to the minimum cumulative grade-point average attained:

Bachelor’s Degrees    GPA
Summa Cum Laude     3.90
Magna Cum Laude      3.75
Cum Laude                 3.50

Prospective Summer Graduates Participation

Students who plan to complete requirements during the following summer may apply to participate in the graduation ceremonies in May as prospective summer graduates if the remaining requirements are limited to a practicum or six semester hours of coursework. Students must present documented evidence that the remaining requirements can reasonably be completed prior to the August graduation date. A deposit of $200 will be charged to the student’s account, and refunded or applied to any unpaid Union College charges if all graduation requirements are completed and recorded in the Records Office by the August graduation date. If the degree is not completed on time, the deposit will be forfeited.

Residency Requirements

For a baccalaureate degree, 30 of the final 36 hours or at least 100 semester hours must be in residence. A minimum of 12 semester hours in the major must be taken in residence. For a minor, at least three semester hours of the required courses numbered at the 300-level or above must be taken in residence.

A minimum of 56 semester hours must be completed in four-year colleges or universities.

For an associate degree, 24 of the final 30 hours or at least 50 semester hours or at least half of the hours in the major must be in residence.

Associate Degree Requirements

Associate degrees are conferred upon students who have

  • Successfully completed at least 64 semester hours;
  • Fulfilled the specific requirements of a major described in this bulletin. General studies and personalized programs may have more individualized requirements;
  • Earned a minimum of C (2.00) for all courses forming part of the major;
  • Achieved a minimum cumulative grade point average of 2.00, or higher as required by the individual major;
  • Completed the general education program, LEAD@Union, appropriate to the degree;
  • Met the residency requirement, including those for the major and any minors (see below);
  • Participated in the assessment program as requested;
  • Applied for graduation, preferably by the end of their junior year giving the proposed schedule for the year;
  • Provided all official transcripts and completed courses designated I or IP.

Bachelor's Degree Requirements

Bachelor’s degrees are conferred upon students who have

  • Completed successfully at least 128 semester hours, with at least 40 hours at the 300-level or above;
  • Fulfilled the specific requirements of a major described in this bulletin. General studies and personalized programs may have more individualized requirements;
  • Earned a minimum of C (2.00) for all courses forming part of the major;
  • Achieved a minimum cumulative grade point average of 2.00, or higher as required by the individual major;
  • Completed the general education program, LEAD@Union, appropriate to the degree;
  • Met the residency requirements, including those for the major and any minors (see below);
  • Participated in the assessment program as requested;
  • Applied for graduation preferably by the end of their junior year giving the proposed schedule for the senior year;
  • Provided all official transcripts and completed courses designated I or IP.

Second Degrees

Graduates of regionally accredited institutions may earn baccalaureate degrees from Union College by fulfilling all requirements for the major, including its specific general education requirements, and successfully completing a minimum of 30 hours in residence with a cumulative GPA of 2.00 or higher if stipulated by the major. Students with an international bachelor’s degree must complete the Union College general education requirements.

Multiple Majors

Students may complete multiple majors. When different degrees are involved, both degrees will be awarded.

Academic Minors

Completion of an academic minor is not required unless a specific major requires an accompanying minor. One or more minors may be elected from the minors outlined in this bulletin. At least three semester hours of the required courses numbered at the 300 level or above must be taken in residence. A minimum grade of C (2.00) is required for all minor courses.

General Studies Program

The Bachelor of Science degree in general studies allows students to develop academic knowledge and skills in several areas of study. Except for completion of the major, the graduation requirements for bachelor's degrees must be met. Because general studies does not include a recognized major, the college does not extend the Guaranteed Education option to students who graduate under this program.

General studies courses are taken in addition to the general education (LEAD) requirements. A minimum of 24 semester hours must be earned in one academic division and 12 semester hours each from two other academic divisions. A minimum of 15 semester hours numbered at the 300 or 400 levels are required. All qualifying courses must be completed with a grade of C or higher.

Personalized Degree Program

The personalized degree option is intended for a student who, in consultation with an advisor, wishes to design and fulfill a unique program of study that achieves individual educational goals. An individually designed program may prepare for employment or further study.  However, the program carries no endorsement or recommendation for such results by the college, and the Guaranteed Education option is not available to students who graduate under this program.

The student should present a proposed curriculum no later than the first semester of the junior year.  This proposal must be approved by the Academic Council.

Requirements for a bachelor’s degree in this program are broadly the same as for a regular degree with variations in the general education requirements also approved by Academic Counsel. Personalized degree studetns may utilize courses offered on other campuses for which the student is financially responsible. The residency requirement is that 64 hours of this degree must be taken at Union College.

Post-Baccalaureate Professional Program

Exceptional Union College students occasionally gain acceptance into professional programs such as medicine, dentistry or law before completing a bachelor’s degree. Union College will confer the appropriate bachelor’s degree upon those who have

  • Apply for a Union College degree within two years after successfully completing the first-year of a post-baccalaureate professional program;
  • Complete the general education requirements as outlined in this bulletin;
  • Complete a minimum of 92 semester hours of college-level courses, including twenty or more hours of 300-400 level;
  • Meet the residency requirement;
  • Arrange verification from the professional school that the applicant has successfully completed the first year of the professional program and is eligible to continue.

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