Study in the College of Arts and Sciences and the Conservatory of
Music (The Double-Degree Program)
General Educational Guidelines
General. Students accepted to both the College of Arts and
Sciences and the Conservatory of Music pursue a degree in each division.
Oberlin's encouragement of such study--in conjunction with an exceptionally
broad range of course options--make Oberlin a uniquely effective
environment for study of both music and the liberal arts.
Double-degree programs must be carefully planned. Music study in
the Conservatory is pre-professional study with an organized sequence
of courses and requirements designed to prepare students for professional
careers in music. The College of Arts and Sciences offers a broad
liberal education, thus encouraging intellectual breadth and depth.
the educational goals of each division differ, an increasing number
of students elect the challenging and unique opportunity Oberlin
offers through the Double-Degree Program.
Admission to the Program. Students not currently enrolled
at Oberlin enter the double-degree program by applying for admission
to each division separately. Students currently enrolled in one
division may apply for admission to the other division.
Degrees. Double-degree students are awarded the Bachelor
of Arts (B.A.) degree from the College of Arts and Sciences and
the Bachelor of Music (B.Mus.) degree from the Conservatory of Music
upon completion of the program. A double-degree student may not
pursue a Bachelor of Arts in music. Normally both degrees are completed
in the same semester. A double-degree student may elect to graduate
from each division in different semesters; however, to do so, the
requirements for the first degree as a single-degree must be met.
Refer to the Arts and Sciences or the Conservatory of Music portions
of this Catalog for the single-degree requirements.
General. A student pursuing majors in both the College of
Arts and Sciences and the Conservatory of Music must earn a minimum
of 152 hours of course credit. In addition, he or she must complete
institutional requirements as well as course and non-course requirements
for a major in each division.
A few combinations of Conservatory and Arts and Sciences majors,
together with the institutional graduation requirements, add up
to more than 152 hours. Early planning and consultation with advisors
in each division is important in order to complete the program in
five years. It should be noted that in a few cases completion of
all requirements in five academic years may not be possible.
Institutional Graduation Requirements. All students--Arts and Sciences,
Conservatory of Music, and Double-Degree--are responsible for compliance
with the institutional graduation requirements stated in the Oberlin
College Course Catalog in effect when they first matriculate at
Oberlin, unless action by an appropriate faculty body specifically
directs otherwise. See the following section on Major Study for
regulations concerning majors.
The following summarizes these institutional requirements for the
1. 152 minimum total hours
2. 62 minimum Arts and Sciences hours
3. 76 minimum Conservatory hours
4. 5 semesters in residence
5. 3 Winter Term credits
6. Completion of a major in each degree program
7. 30 Arts and Sciences hours by the end of the fifth semester
8. 9-9-9 distribution requirement in Arts and Sciences
Double-degree students are required to complete at least nine credit
hours in each of the three divisions at Oberlin College. These credits
must be from at least two departments or programs within each division.
Double-degree students may count Music History courses above MHST
101, upper-division Music Theory courses (refer to list of Music
Theory courses in the back of this catalog), and Historical Performance
courses toward the Arts and Humanities portion of this requirement.
However, these Conservatory courses do not count toward the 62-hour
Arts and Sciences requirement. Double-degree students are not required
to fulfill the 84-hour rule, i.e., are not required to have 28 Arts
and Sciences hours outside the Arts and Sciences division in which
they have the most credit.
9. 9-hour cultural diversity requirement
credit hours of courses labeled cultural diversity from at least
two departments or programs are required. This work will count simultaneously
toward other distribution requirements.
10. Writing Proficiency
11. Quantitative Proficiency
semesters in residence at Oberlin or in Oberlin College programs
are required. Further, the Conservatory degree requires that at
least 24 of the last 30 required credit hours must be earned in
residence at Oberlin.
Note: A minimum of 40 Conservatory hours and 36 Arts and Sciences
hours must be earned at Oberlin. A maximum of 45 credits may be
transferred by double-degree students to Oberlin College following
matriculation. Up to 24 hours of transfer credit in the Conservatory
and 21 hours in the College of Arts and Sciences will be permitted.
Please note: for students who decide to drop either degree, the
transfer of credit limitations for the remaining degree will apply.
Finish Away. Normally double-degree students complete both
degrees at the same time. However, under certain circumstances,
a student may request permission to finish degree requirements off
campus according to the following procedures.
In the Conservatory of Music, a student who lacks not more than
six credit hours may request approval of Finish Away status from
the Assistant Dean in the Conservatory in order to complete these
hours at another institution; if any of these hours are requirements
for the student's major, the major department must also approve
completion of requirements for Finish Away status. In a small number
of cases, a student who has spent at least 6 semesters in residence
or in Oberlin programs and who has completed a major, may request
a waiver of the last semester-in-residence requirement with a program
of off-campus study, justified by clear educational purposes, for
up to 15 hours, either Enrolled-Not-in-Residence, or at another
the College of Arts and Sciences, a student who lacks not more than
eight credit hours at the end of the spring semester or four hours
at the end of the fall semester of the amount required for graduation
may apply through the Registrar for permission to complete these
hours away from Oberlin. The work may be done at another institution
or through Oberlin courses on an Enrolled-Not-in-Residence registration.
Permission to complete more than four hours at the end of the fall
semester or more than eight hours at the end of the spring semester
away from Oberlin will be granted only after consideration of educational
or personal reasons by the Office of the Associate Dean.
A student must be registered for work sufficient to complete, by
the end of the last semester in residence, all requirements for
the degree(s) sought, in order to be eligible to participate in
the annual Commencement exercises following that semester. In addition,
students must complete all non-course requirements by the end of
classes prior to the Commencement in which they wish to participate.
Students who have permission to finish their work away from Oberlin
may participate in Commencement exercises only after all requirements
have been met.
Off-Campus Study. Double-degree students must reconcile different
policies about off-campus study between the College of Arts and
Sciences and the Conservatory. Therefore, they should carefully
consult the "General Information" section of the catalog where specific
provisions are presented under "Academic Life."
Important considerations are as follows:
Double-degree students may apply for Academic Leave, Personal Leave,
or Enrolled-Not-in-Residence (for Oberlin programs abroad);
2. Double-degree students are subject to the same regulations as
Conservatory students with respect to withdrawal/suspension and
Declaration of a Major. The Conservatory and the College
of Arts Sciences have different requirements regarding declaring
a major as described below.
The Conservatory major is declared as part of the admissions process.
A request for a change of major is initiated in the Office of the
Associate Dean in the Conservatory. Conservatory students must complete
the requirements for their Conservatory major which were in effect
upon entering Oberlin. Should the requirements for the major change
while the student is enrolled, the student may elect to follow the
Conservatory major requirements in effect when entering Oberlin
or those in effect in any subsequent year during which the student
is enrolled; in any case, the student must elect to follow a complete
set of Conservatory major requirements in one of those years.
Double-degree students must declare the Arts and Sciences major
before the end of the fifth semester. The requirements that apply
are those published in the Course Catalog in effect in the student's
fifth semester. These requirements may be altered as necessary in
individual cases by the departments or programs.
Requirements for Major Study. Students with majors in both divisions
must be aware of the requirements which apply to each major, as
stated in the College of Arts and Sciences as well as the Conservatory
of Music sections of this catalog. Much that the double-degree student
needs to know is not included in this section of the catalog but
in the other two sections. The double-degree student must meet every
requirement for each major in the two divisions, as outlined fully
in those sections of the catalog.
Recommended Course Distribution
1. In order to progress satisfactorily toward the B.A. degree, it
is strongly recommended that double-degree students will have earned
at least 12 Arts and Sciences hours by the end of his or her first
year and 25 hours by the end of his or her second year. By the end
of the fifth semester a double-degree student must have earned 30
Arts and Sciences hours. The student will be asked to drop one portion
of the double-degree program if the 30-hour rule has not been met.
Up to four hours of Advanced Placement or pre-matriculation transfer
credit may count each year. Transfer hours earned at the end of
the first year will be credited to the second year. Students should
consult the major grid for the recommended course distribution for
each Conservatory major.
2. It is strongly advised that each double-degree student, at every
stage of his or her Oberlin career, prepare and update a ten-semester
course distribution plan of study, and that this plan be regularly
reviewed by the student in consultation with his or her advisors.
3. Double-degree students should refer to the section of the catalog
describing requirements in their Conservatory major for the Private
Study Committee Exam timetable. Students may deviate from the Private
Study Committee Exam timetable only with special permission. In
consultation with the principal private study teacher a double-degree
student may petition the private study department for permission
for these exams to occur in the third, fifth, or seventh semesters.
4. Double-degree students may take 17 credit hours in any semester
without special permission. Schedules of 18 or 19 hours may be approved
by the appropriate dean in each division. See the early pages of
this catalog for a fee schedule for additional hours. Generally,
a student requesting approval of a schedule in excess of 17 hours
must have demonstrated the ability to successfully manage a heavy
Honors Program. Students interested in pursuing Honors should
refer to the description of Honors for the major in which he or
she is interested. Further general information on the Honors program
is elsewhere in this catalog.
Faculty Advisors. Students admitted to both divisions are
assigned advisors as follows. For a Conservatory performance major,
the principal applied study teacher is the student's faculty advisor.
For all other Conservatory majors, a faculty member from the major
department or program is assigned as advisor. For the College of
Arts and Sciences, students are initially assigned faculty advisors,
usually in the areas of their possible majors. When the student
officially declares the major, an appropriate Arts and Sciences
advisor is chosen. Whenever possible, advisors are selected who
have a particular interest in and knowledge of the concerns of the
Double-degree students should consult with both of their faculty
advisors for help in recommending and selecting an appropriate distribution
of courses over ten semesters for majors in the two divisions.
Double-degree students are expected to achieve at least a minimum
level of acceptable accomplishment in each division in order to
be considered in good academic standing. The academic standing of
double-degree students will be determined jointly by the College
of Arts and Sciences and Conservatory of Music Academic Standing
Committees. See "Academic Standing" in the College of Arts and Sciences
and Conservatory of Music sections of this catalog for further information
on the purview of the Academic Standing Committees of each division.
Incomplete Grades. The individual policies of each division
apply for double-degree students, that is, the student follows the
policy of that division in which the course is taught. These policies
are described in appropriate sections of this catalog. Educational
incompletes are available to double-degree students only in courses
in the College of Arts and Sciences. For emergency incompletes,
double-degree students must apply to the Office of the Dean of Studies
for Arts and Sciences courses, and in the Conservatory to the Assistant