Students 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.
The Bachelor of Arts degree is conferred upon students who have
successfully completed the following:
1. A major.
2. Three Winter Term credits.
3. At least 112 credit hours, subject to the following distribution
a. Maximum hours in one department or program. No more than 56 hours applied
toward graduation may be earned in a single department or program. Therefore,
at least 56 hours must be earned outside any single department or program. For
purposes of this requirement only, course work in two different languages in
the same department or program will be counted as though in two different departments
or programs in the Humanities.
b. Maximum hours in a single division. No more than 84 hours within a single
division (i.e., Arts and Humanities; Social and Behavioral Sciences; Natural
Sciences and Mathematics) may be applied toward graduation. Therefore at least
28 hours must be taken outside the division with the highest number of credits. b.1. Liberal Arts and Engineering Program. Students in the Combined Liberal
Arts and Engineering Program may apply no more than 63 hours in a single division
towards graduation. (Students in this program have different graduation requirements;
these are described in the "Engineering" section of this catalog.) b.2. Maximum hours in Experimental College (ExCo) courses.No more than five hours in Experimental College (ExCo) courses may be counted
c. Liberal arts credits for double-degree students. Double-degree candidates
must complete a minimum of 62 hours of non-music liberal arts credit in addition
to the music credits required for the Bachelor of Music degree. For more details,
see the section on the Double-Degree Program.
d. Distribution requirements. At least nine credit hours are required in each
of the three divisions of the College of Arts and Sciences, taken from at least
two departments or programs within each of these divisions. For the purposes
of this requirement, course work in two different languages in the same department
or program will be counted as though in two different departments or programs
in the Humanities. d.1. Divisional credit for Conservatory courses. For students in the College
of Arts and Sciences who are not in the Double-Degree Program, courses in the
Conservatory will be counted toward the Humanities (HU) distribution requirement.
e. Cultural Diversity requirement. At least nine credit hours in courses dealing
with cultural diversity, including foreign languages, are required. These must
be taken in at least two departments or programs and may also count toward the
nine hours required in each division.
4. Writing Proficiency. This requirement applies to all students in the College
of Arts and Sciences, including transfer and double-degree students. Students
changing divisions from Conservatory of Music to the College of Arts and Sciences
or to the double-degree program are also subject to this requirement. Proficiency
may be demonstrated in either of the following ways:
a. by a score of 710 or better on the SAT II: Writing Test, or by a score of
5 on the Advanced Placement Examination in English Language/Composition or Literature/Composition;
b. by certification of writing proficiency by two Oberlin College instructors
who have taught the student in courses designated for writing proficiency (WR
or WRi) in two different departments or programs.
For further details, please see "Rhetoric and Composition Program."
5. Quantitative Proficiency. This may be demonstrated in any of the following
a. by earning credit in one of the courses designated "Quantitative Proficiency
b. by certification of quantitative proficiency by the instructors of any two
courses designated "Quantitative Proficiency Certification-Half";
c. by the following scores on Advanced Placement Examinations:
4 or 5 on the AB or BC exam in Calculus or 4 or 5 on the AB subscore of the
BC exam in Calculus;
4 or 5 on the Chemistry exam;
4 or 5 on the Physics B or C exam;
3, 4, or 5 on the Computer Science AB exam or 3 or higher on the Computer Science
4 or 5 on the Statistics exam.
For further details please see the "Quantitative Proficiency" section
of the course listings.
Residence Requirement. Students must complete at least 56 hours of Oberlin College
work. Students must also spend at least four semesters in residence at Oberlin
or enrolled in Oberlin programs. Ordinarily the last semester must be spent in
residence at Oberlin.
Marching at Graduation. Students 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.
Students who have permission to finish their work away from Oberlin may participate
in Commencement exercises only after all requirements have been completed and
the degree awarded.
Finish Away. A student who lacks at the end of the spring semester a maximum
of eight credit hours or at the end of the fall semester a maximum of four credit
hours required for graduation may apply in the Office of 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 careful consideration of educational or personal reasons by the Office
of the Dean of Studies.
In rare cases, a student who has spent at least six semesters in residence or
on Oberlin programs and has completed a major, may request a waiver of the last
semester-in-residence requirement with a program of up to 15 hours of off-campus
study (either Enrolled-Not-In-Residence or study at another institution). Such
a request must be justified by a clear educational rationale.