College of Arts and Sciences Graduation Requirements

Undergraduate Programs

Catalog Requirements 
Undergraduate students must complete the graduation requirements as stated in the catalog in effect for the year of formal admission, or the catalog in effect for the year of graduation. A student is not free to select graduation requirements from more than one catalog. If a student is readmitted, the requirements prevailing at the time of readmission or graduation must be met.

Quantity and Quality of Work 
To graduate, students must complete all of the requirements of their degree programs and earn at least 128 credits of academic credit. 

Students must maintain a grade point average (GPA) of 2.00 or better in all work taken at the University of Redlands. In addition, they must maintain a GPA of 2.00 or better in their major field and in their minor or related field. Quality grade points (derived from numeric grading) are not awarded for transfer work or courses taken on a Credit/No Credit basis, and credits for these courses are not calculated in the GPA.

Activity Credit 
College of Arts and Sciences undergraduates may apply up to 8 activity credits distributed between Community Service Activity (limit of 3 credits), Physical Education Activity (limit of 4 credits), and University Activity. (Community Service Activity is described later in this section. Physical Education Activities are described in the Physical Education section; University Activity is described in the Additional Course Offerings section.)

The minimum residence requirement for the bachelor’s degree is one year, during which no fewer than 32 credits must be completed successfully. The last two semesters before graduation must be taken in residence at Redlands except for students studying in approved off-campus programs such as the Salzburg Semester, or for students following approved professional programs, in which case the final undergraduate year is completed at a professional school.

First-Year Seminar
First-Year Seminars are 4-credit courses that begin in New Student Week and continue through the entire Fall semester. All new students entering the University are required to take a First-Year Seminar during their first term at Redlands. First-Year Seminars provide every student with a close personal relationship with a faculty member who not only teaches the course but also serves as academic advisor and mentor to class members, introducing them to college-level skills as well as assisting them in planning their academic program. Students select from a list of seminars that changes each year. Most seminars are interdisciplinary in focus, and students are encouraged to select seminars according to interest, regardless of their possible majors. Past seminar offerings have included topics such as Popular Culture in China and Japan, Amazing India, human rights, the Rise of American Capitalism, Shakespeare and Film, and History of Jazz. 

For students fulfilling the Liberal Arts Inquiry requirements, see additional information in that section of this catalog.

Community Service and Engagement 
All students are required to successfully complete an approved community service learning activity – a Community Service Activity (CSAC) for students fulfilling the Liberal Arts Foundation requirements or a Community Engagement and Reflection (CER) for students fulfilling the Liberal Arts Inquiry requirements (see the General Education section of this catalog). Activities typically consist of service outreach at a nonprofit agency, hospital, or school. Students gain a greater understanding of problems faced by individuals and communities through meaningful participation in, and reflection on, efforts to help address such challenges.

Students may undertake their required CSAC/CER during any semester, May Term, or summer; may do so while in residence at Redlands or at approved locations outside Redlands (e.g., one’s hometown); may fulfill the requirement through faculty-taught courses that emphasize active learning through service (generally, permission to enroll is required), through CSAC/CER 360 special topics courses, or through courses cross-listed with Community Service Learning. Students should check in the Schedule of Classes for available opportunities.

Students completing the CSAC/CER requirement should be aware of the program announcements published by the Office of Community Service Learning each semester. May Term CSAC/CER information sessions are offered during the Spring semester. All CSAC/CER preparatory information is discussed at these sessions, along with information regarding faculty-taught, service-learning courses. Students fulfilling CSAC/CER during summer should be aware that preparatory work must be completed during Spring semester or May Term prior to a summer CSAC/CER placement. Registration for those completing service over the summer takes place the following Fall. Students are encouraged to visit the Office of Community Service Learning for details and service opportunities.


Application for Graduation 
Students must file a formal application for graduation in the Registrar’s Office by the first semester of their senior year.

Comprehensive Exams
Some major programs require passing a comprehensive examination. (See individual program descriptions.) These exams are usually scheduled during the first semester of the senior year.

General Education Program 
The specific requirements for the BA and BS degrees are found below. For Foundation requirements applying to the BM, please see ”Graduation Requirements for the Bachelor of Music” in the Music section in this Catalog.

The Liberal Arts Inquiry

First Year Seminar (FYS)

  • In the first year seminar, students will begin to demonstrate critical thinking, disciplinary awareness, and integrative practice.  They will show the ability to articulate connections and adapt them to new experiences, settings, questions, and ideas. (Some FYS’s may serve one additional LAI requirement).

Students fulfill this requirement by completing one course that bears the appropriate designation.

Areas of Inquiry 
A single course may satisfy at most two Areas of Inquiry outcomes, only one of which can be an Inquiries into Practices outcome. Additionally, these courses may host embedded experiences.  At least four disciplines (programs or departments) must be represented in the collection of courses that satisfy the Area of Inquiry requirements.

Inquiries into Practices across the Liberal Arts (C, H, N, and S)
A broad, liberal-arts education requires sampling the disparate practices we use to explore and create: Creative Practice, Humanities Practice, Natural Sciences Practice, and Social Scientific Practice. 

Creative Practice (C)

  • Students will use the tools and techniques specific to a creative medium and reflect critically on their own and others’ endeavors.

Humanities Practice (H)

  • Students interpret human experience through engagement with the methods of some tradition of humanistic thought, and embrace ambiguity in their response to records of human activity.

Natural Scientific Practice (N)

  • Students will construct knowledge of the natural world through the acquisition and analysis of measurable, empirical evidence in field, laboratory or experimental settings.

Social Scientific Practice (S)

  • Students will construct knowledge of the social world through the analysis of empirical evidence in field, laboratory, or experimental settings. 

Students fulfill the requirements of this category by completing four appropriately-designated courses, one from each of four areas; no more than two can bear the same department/program alpha.  

Inquiries into Self and Society (APW, ESS, CPI, and TG)
In a highly connected but also complex and fractured world, individuals and communities draw on values and beliefs to create systems of meaning, which inform their thoughts and actions and can guide appropriate and ethical action.  Preparing to be global citizens, students will explore how people make sense of the world in diverse ways, even as they question received assumptions and cultural conventions.

Analyzing Perspectives and Worldviews (APW)

  • Students will distinguish among different ways people make sense of the world around them.

Evaluating Self in Society (ESS)

  • Students will develop critical and reflective insight into their own relationships to cultural practices and assumptions.

Critiquing Power and Inequalities (CPI)

  • Students will critique forms of power, privilege, and inequality and the ways in which they have been resisted and/or transformed.

Thinking Globally (TG) 

  • Students will assess benefits and challenges of interconnections on a global scale, and how they have been resisted and/or transformed.

Students fulfill the requirements of this category by completing courses that bear the four designations; since a single course may bear up to two of these designations, two to four courses may be required.

Literacies and Skills 
No course can satisfy more than 2 embedded experiences.

Community Engagement & Reflection Embedded Experience (CER) 
Students will participate in, and reflect on, efforts to help address problems faced by individuals and communities. Students will engage in active citizenship, using community-based learning to explore their role in society as agents for change. Students who meet this requirement will: 

• clearly describe problems and challenges faced by the individuals or communities with whom the student served;
• thoughtfully describe their personal growth and development as responsible citizens during their service;
• accurately describe and analyze or evaluate organizations and communities using knowledge acquired through community service.

See the Community Service and Engagement section of this catalog for a discussion of the variety of ways in which this requirement can be satisfied.

Foreign Language Learning (FL)
Focused study of a language other than one's first language promises multiple pedagogical benefits beyond language proficiency itself, providing students opportunities to extend their cross-cultural understanding and to practice their skills for communication across national, social and cultural boundaries.  As such, language learning is an essential step to global citizenship. At the novice-mid level as defined by the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages, or an analogous level for languages not covered by these standards, students taking language courses will:

• deepen their understanding of the nature and structure of language by comparing structures in the learned language to structures in their first language;
• communicate/interact in a language other than their first language using basic skills such as reading, writing, listening, signing, and speaking;
• identify distinctive perspectives embedded in a language and its cultural/cross-cultural context. 

BA: Complete a two-course sequence at the 100-200 level or one course at the 300-level or higher.  
BS: Complete one course at the 102 level or higher.

Information and Media Literacy (IMLI and IMLA)
Ideas, perceptions, knowledge, and values are represented via information. Media are the vehicles through which such information is communicated, whether print, visual, audio or digital. When conceived jointly, information and media literacy involves the ability to interpret and critically negotiate information as well as to create meaning via information. Courses designated as satisfying the IML requirement will devote a significant portion of instructional and student production to IML concepts and skills.

Introductory Embedded Experience (IMLI)  
As a result of taking this course, students will:

• assess what type of information is needed and choose appropriate tools for locating, accessing, and comprehending that information (Examples: defining research topic/prospectus);
• critically evaluate various forms of information and mediated communication and data, whether print, digital, visual, or audio (Examples: book review, discussion);
• with an awareness of their purposes, audiences, and modes of production and expression, effectively read, comprehend, use, and summarize information and media (Examples: literature review, annotated bibliography).

NOTE:  All courses fulfilling WR/IMLI also fulfill IMLI.

Advanced Embedded Experience (IMLA)  
As a result of taking this course, students will:

• interpret information within the contexts and conditions of its production, distribution, and use (Examples: research papers, presentations, posters, portfolios, maps, exhibitions, performances);
• analyze and synthesize information to solve problems and develop compelling arguments and interpretations  (Examples: research papers, presentations, posters, portfolios, maps, exhibitions, performances).

Students complete the requirement of this category by taking courses with these embedded-experience designations.

Oral Communication Embedded Experience (OC)
Oral communication is an essential skill needed in both professional and personal lives.  The goal of the embedded Speaking experience is to provide focused opportunities for students to learn public speaking skills which enable them to be more comfortable and confident when communicating their ideas in an oral format.  Students will complete a minimum of two presentations of at least five minutes each.

In each presentation, students will:
• prepare an oral presentation that is organized, coherent, well-supported, and appropriate for the purpose and audience;
• deliver an oral presentation that effectively communicates ideas and positions while constructively engaging the audience or participants.

Students complete this requirement by taking one course with this embedded-experience designation.

Quantitative Reasoning (QRF and QRE)
An ever-growing wealth of quantitative data calls for the ability to use numerical information appropriately when solving problems and constructing sound arguments. In courses in this category, students will explore contextual problems involving quantitative relationships by means of numerical, symbolic, and visual representations. These courses focus on creating and discussing models; making appropriate assumptions; and deducing consequences or making predictions. Finally, they foster critical analysis of the uses and limitations of quantitative information and its representations.

Quantitative Reasoning Foundation (QRF)
In the foundational course focused on quantitative reasoning, students who have gained this competence will:

• explore contextual problems involving quantitative relationships by means of numerical, visual, and symbolic representations;
• construct, refine, and apply quantitative models to draw well-reasoned conclusions;
• identify potential limitations to models and analyses, including restrictive assumptions, uncertainties in data, and errors in reasoning.

Quantitative Reasoning Embedded Experience (QRE)
In the embedded experience, students will apply logical and quantitative reasoning skills to problems in a specific discipline or disciplines.  Specifically, students will:

• explore contextual problems in a specific discipline or disciplines that involve quantitative relationships by means of numerical, symbolic, or visual representations;
• construct, refine, and apply quantitative models in a specific discipline or disciplines to draw well-reasoned conclusions;
• identify potential limitations to models and analyses in specific disciplines, including: restrictive assumptions, uncertainties in data, and errors in reasoning.

Students complete the requirement of this category by taking one course with the QRF designation and one with the QRE embedded-experience designation.

Writing (WF, WR, and WD)
Writing, as thinking in action, is both a method of disciplined inquiry and way of representing an informed position based on a sophisticated awareness of situation, genre, and convention. Writing as a practice occurs throughout the curriculum, and it promotes responses to complex ideas and scholarly conversations, as well as the production of arguments that question various assumptions, values, and modes of reasoning.

Academic Writing Foundations (WF)
In the foundational course courses, students will focus on academic reading and writing strategies.
Students who have gained the competence will:

• practice writing as a generative and recursive decision-making process;
• learn and use a vocabulary about writing to identify the moves effective academic writing makes;
• Produce multi-draft, analytical writing projects, integrating ideas and perspectives from sources.

We offer four distinct course categories to support achieving the Writing Foundations competence:

  • Writing Studio (English X04)
  • Writing Across the Curriculum WF (WF-designated courses outside English Composition)
  • Analytic Reading and Writing (English 100)
  • Academic Writing Seminar (English 102)

With guidance from writing faculty, you will determine the combination of one or two courses that will best support your learning and your progress toward your goals, and set that combination as your Writing Foundations requirement. Once you choose your courses, the courses become part of your graduation requirements. To make revisions to your requirements, please contact the Director of Writing before the deadline to add courses in your second semester.

See the College Writing website for more details about these courses.

Research and Information & Media Literacy Introduction Embedded Experience (WR/IMLI)
In the first embedded experience, students within the context of discipline-based inquiry will extend the foundations by focusing on information fluency, research strategy, and practice in composing reference-dense texts (also satisfies IMLI requirement which means it counts as 2 embedded experiences).  Students who have gained the competence will:

• develop research ability by practicing core information literacy strategies: choosing appropriate tools and locating and selecting relevant, credible information;
• critically evaluate various forms of potential sources and their value in print, digital, visual, and audio genres;
• produce at least one multi-draft writing project, using reference conventions and integrating sources appropriate to the audience, task, and compositional mode, taking into consideration the sources’ own audiences tasks, and modes.

Writing in the Discipline Embedded Experience (WD)
In the second embedded experience, students will focus on the kinds of writing and reasoning characteristically used in the field.  This is an upper-division writing experience embedded in the major’s coursework.  The course builds directly on WF and WR/IML. 300-400 level.  Students who have gained the competence will:

• pursue and represent in writing disciplinary questions and projects using the core interpretive strategies of the field;
• adapt writing processes and research strategies to the contexts of disciplinary study;
• produce at least one multi-draft text appropriate to the context of the course, integrating sources using genre-specific forms of reference.

Students complete the requirements of this category by taking the course(s) appropriate for their WF placement and two more courses with the WR/IMLI and WD designations.