Earning a degree

In order to graduate, every undergraduate student in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences must earn a baccalaureate degree: a bachelor of arts (BA), a bachelor of science (BS), a bachelor of music (BM), or a bachelor of fine arts (BFA).

Your degree has three components:

1) General Education CLAS Core requirements

2)  Requirements for your major

3)  Electives

Many students use their electives to earn minors and certificates—smart ways to enhance your learning and your skills.

To earn a bachelor's degree, you must:

  1. complete a minimum of 120 semester hours of credit towards graduation
  2. satisfy the UI and CLAS residence requirements
  3. complete the requirements of the CLAS Core General Education Program
  4. complete a major
  5. meet the College’s academic standards
  6. clear any “I” marks from your record (by completing any incomplete courses or allowing the “I” to lapse to an “F”)

Some students have the opportunity to earn additional credit for courses through the Furthering Language Incentive Program (FLIP) or the Mathematics Incentive Program (MIP). If you love languages or math, look into these two opportunities.

Set your academic goals high!

Did you know you can graduate with special academic recognition? The University of Iowa also offers an Honors Program for qualified students and most CLAS departments provide students the opportunity to graduate with honors in the major. Visit each departmental section in the UI General Catalog to find out more about honors in the major.

Did you know?

Your classification (freshman, sophomore, etc.) is not determined by your year in school, but by the number of semester hours you’ve taken. Learn your classification.

If you already have a bachelor's degree, see Earning multiple undergraduate degrees.