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Undergraduate Programs

Morrissey College of Arts and Sciences

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Morrissey College of Arts and Sciences

The Morrissey College of Arts and Sciences is the oldest and largest of the undergraduate colleges of the University. It offers either a Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) or Bachelor of Science (B.S.) degree, depending upon the major discipline, and prepares its graduates for careers in a broad range of fields as well as graduate training in both professional and academic disciplines.

In the Morrissey College of Arts and Sciences a student's program consists of required Core courses, intensive study in a major field, and a choice of individual electives reflecting a student's personal interests.

Core—A modern version of the traditional Jesuit Ratio Studiorum, the Core in the Morrissey College of Arts and Sciences provides an introductory exposure to the various disciplines that define a liberally educated individual in today's world as well as to the philosophical and theological ideas that help integrate these different areas of knowledge into a student's own intellectual perspective. All Arts and Science students must complete the University Core requirements in the Arts, Cultural Diversity, History, Literature, Mathematics, Natural Sciences, Philosophy, Social Sciences, Theology, Writing, as well as a Foreign Language Proficiency Requirement.

Major—All students in the Morrissey College of Arts and Sciences must select a major field of study from the 36 majors offered in the college. Work in the major is not necessarily directly related to career training, but it is meant to develop critical and analytical thinking, professional and presentational skills, and an appreciation for the complexity of an area of study beyond the introductory level. A major generally consists of at least 30 credits (ten to 12 focused courses) in a field, some of which are sequentially organized required courses. Some of the courses are more narrowly focused major electives. A list of majors is available at

Electives—Electives in the Morrissey College of Arts and Sciences are designed to challenge students to help define their own individual educations. Students may use electives to pursue intensive work in another field with a second major or minor; to study fields that bridge traditional disciplines through organized interdisciplinary minors; to pursue professional interests in management, education, or nursing; or to explore their own individualized personal, intellectual, and artistic interests.

Thus, the purpose of the Morrissey College of Arts and Sciences is to produce broadly-educated, as well as highly-skilled graduates.

To ensure a coherent, well-developed program, students must meet with their faculty advisor before registration for each semester. They should also consult with other faculty, students, the Deans, the Premedical and Prelaw advisors, the Counseling Office, and the Career Center.

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Special Academic Programs

The Honors Program

All Boston College undergraduates are required to complete the Core curriculum in the humanities and the natural and social sciences. The Honors Program provides students with the opportunity to complete much of this Core in a 4-year sequence of courses that provides an integrated liberal arts education of a kind one can find in few colleges or universities. On this solid foundation, a student can then build a major concentration in one or more specialized disciplines or add one of the interdisciplinary or departmental minors available to all students in the College.

The program offers small classes the give and take of seminar discussion, the close personal attention of instructors, and the companionship of bright and eager classmates on the journey through the history of ideas. It also offers students a set of challenges matched to each level of their development—in first and second years an overview of the whole Western cultural tradition, in the third year a course focused on the twentieth century's reinterpretation of the tradition, and in their final year the chance to bring together what they have learned in a thesis, creative project, or in an integrative seminar.

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Scholar of the College

Scholar of the College is a designation given at Commencement to exceptional students (those with overall GPAs of 3.700 or better) who have done independent work of the highest quality for a significant part of their senior year under the supervision of scholars in their major fields. The program is administered by the Dean's Office. Students apply through their major departments and ordinarily do Advanced Independent Research projects within that department. Interdisciplinary projects require the approval of all of the relevant departments, one of which must be the student's major department.

Normally, the Advanced Independent Research that qualifies for Scholar of the College recognition will consist of twelve (12) academic credits, six (6) each in the fall and spring of senior year, although occasionally a 3-credit senior thesis in the fall may develop into a 6-credit Advanced Independent Research in the spring. Students who successfully complete Advanced Independent Research projects with grades of A- or better and maintain cumulative GPAs of 3.700 or higher may be nominated for Scholar of the College recognition at Commencement.

To be considered for Scholar of the College recognition, finished projects, along with the evaluations of the faculty advisor and a department-appointed second and independent reader, must be submitted to the Office of the Dean in mid-April. Student should consult the Dean’s office for the exact deadline for the current year. All projects nominated for the McCarthy Prize will be reviewed by a faculty committee appointed by the Dean. The Scholars of the College will be selected from among the nominated student authors.

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Departmental Honors

The designation of departmental honors is reserved for above average students who have demonstrated academic achievement in additional or more difficult courses, or by successfully undertaking an approved research project, as determined by each department.

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Departmental Minors

A departmental minor consists of at least 18 credits (typically six, 3-credit courses). These must include one introductory-level course and at least one upper-level course or seminar. Students choose courses for the minor in consultation with the director of the department's minor program. The following restrictions apply:

  • No more than two Core courses may be used toward a minor.
  • Core courses that do not count toward a departmental major will not count toward a departmental minor.
  • Students may not major and minor in the same department unless that department offers more than one major.
  • Students must have at least 15 credits in the minor program that are not used to fulfill requirements for another major or minor.

Minors are available in Arabic Studies, Art History, Biology, Chemistry, Chinese, Computer Science, Economics, Environmental Studies, Film Studies, French, Geological Sciences, German Studies, Hispanic Studies, History, Irish Studies, Italian, Linguistics, Mathematics, Music, Philosophy, Physics, Russian, Sociology, Studio Art, Theatre, and Theology. Information regarding specific requirements is available in the departments.

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Interdisciplinary Programs

In addition to the areas of major study offered by individual departments, a variety of special programs are available. All of them are designed to provide a coherent grouping of courses drawn from various disciplines and focused around a specific theme. Through such programs, a student can integrate or enrich an academic program through completing a minor or developing an independent major.

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Independent Major

Under usual circumstances, students are advised to follow the formal educational programs offered by departments. In rare instances, for students with special interests that cannot be satisfied in a regular major, double major, or a combined major and minor, the Educational Policy Committee will approve an interdisciplinary Independent Major. Students who wish to apply for an Independent Major must normally have achieved a minimum 3.5 GPA. The student must plan, with the aid of a faculty advisor, a program of thirty-six credits (ordinarily twelve courses), thirty of which must be in upper-division courses. These will extend over no more than three departments and will be selected in accordance with a clearly defined unifying principle. This program should be equal in depth and coherence to a typical departmental major and should include a plan for a final project or paper that demonstrates the intellectual coherence of the Independent Major and for ongoing assessment of the program by the student and the advisor. Each proposed major should be submitted to the Dean's Office before March 1 of the student's sophomore year. The Dean will then present it to the Educational Policy Committee for approval. An Independent Major will ordinarily be the student's only major.

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Interdisciplinary Minors

An interdisciplinary minor in the Morrissey College of Arts and Sciences must consist of at least 18 credits (typically six, 3-credit courses) and must include either a required introductory course or a concluding seminar or project. (Note: some programs require both.) The minor should aim for a coherent form appropriate to the subject matter and offer courses that give students a definite sense of movement—from a beginning to a middle and an end, from introductory to advanced levels, or from general to specialized treatments.

Students must select at least three of the courses from three different Arts and Sciences departments. With the approval of the program, students may use one Core course or one course from their major toward the minor (not both). In addition, at least 15 credits used for the minor cannot be used toward any other major or minor. For specific program requirements see the individual program descriptions below. Students carrying a double major are advised not to minor.

Each minor will be administered by a coordinating committee, consisting of a Director appointed by the Dean and at least two additional members who represent departments included in the minor. One important function of this committee is the advising of students enrolled in the minor.

Further information can be found in the individual program descriptions.

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African and African Diaspora Studies

The African and African Diaspora Studies Program (AADS) considers the history, culture, and politics of Africans on the continent and African-descended peoples in the U.S., the Caribbean, South America, Europe, Asia, and the Middle East. Covering vast historical periods and geographies, African and African Diaspora Studies acquaints students with the multiplicity and diversity of the African Diaspora and the world in which we all live. Using an interdisciplinary and comparative approach, the program draws on a broad range of methodologies in English, History, Sociology, Philosophy, Theology, Communication, and Theatre.

Central Themes

To get the most out of an AADS minor, students are encouraged to organize their courses around the central themes of globalization, intersectionality, or social justice.

Globalization: Globalization is as old as the trade in African slaves. Patterns of travel, labor, trade, commerce, and resource extraction have shaped the experiences of African-descended peoples and the peoples they have encountered. Selected courses explore the connections between various geographic regions, cultural traditions, and historical developments that have defined globalization.

Intersectionality: Race is defined by various identity categories and social locations such as gender, class, color, ethnicity, region, nation, age, sexuality, political ideals, and spiritual beliefs. Intersectionality reminds us that race is not a monolithic or homogenous category of human experience.

Social Justice: The history of African and African-descended peoples has been defined by the struggle for social justice as the fight for racial equality, the fight against discrimination, sexism, homophobia, and class exploitation. In resisting enslavement, segregation, patriarchy, imperialism, and colonialism, by striving to overturn discrimination in housing, healthcare, employment, religious institutions, and families, African and African Diasporic peoples have undertaken drives for social emancipation that have expanded the meaning of democratic ideals.

Minor Requirements—18 credits (or more)

Required Courses:

  • AADS1110 Introduction to African Diaspora Studies—3 credits
  • AADS6600 Senior Seminar (or the equivalent)—4 credits
  • Four additional courses (clustered around a theme)—we recommend that minors take AT LEAST two courses of three or four credits before taking AADS6600 Senior Seminar

AADS1110 Introduction to African Diaspora Studies familiarizes students with the major issues and methodologies involved in studying the African Diaspora. AADS6600 Senior Seminar is an intensive reading and writing course designed to assist students in synthesizing their minor experience.

To affirm and specify our Minors’ selected Central Theme, we suggest that their four additional courses reflect a particular thematic focus. Some possible themes are:

  • Cities and Urban Life
  • Economics of Inequality
  • Gender and Sexuality
  • Globalization and Development
  • Intellectual and Philosophical Traditions
  • Migration and Immigration
  • Music and the Performing Arts
  • Political Systems and Grassroots Protest
  • Popular Culture and New Media
  • Spirituality and Social Protest

Additionally, students may devise their own thematic foci, in consultation with the AADS Director or AADS Advisor.

Contact the African and African Diaspora Studies Department at 617-552-3238 or visit their website at

Core Offerings

The Program offers several courses that satisfy the Core requirement in Cultural Diversity and one course that satisfies the requirement in Social Sciences.

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American Studies

American Studies is an interdisciplinary program that brings together faculty from several departments to teach a wide range of approaches to American culture past and present. Thematic emphases include race and ethnicity; gender, sexuality, and culture; the cultures of cities; subcultures and society; popular culture and media; law, politics, and culture; America and the world; and journalism. Participating faculty come from English, History, Art History, Sociology, and Psychology, among other departments. The American Studies Program also supports a special concentration in Asian American Studies.

Courses used for fulfilling the major must come from outside the student’s major and from at least two different departments.  Eighteen credits are required for the minor. Nine of these credits must be clustered in a common area of concentration chosen by the student in consultation with the director of American Studies. In the fall of the senior year each student must take the elective designated as the American Studies senior seminar for that year. Also, ENGL2277 Introduction to American Studies is required for all students registering for the minor after October 28, 2014.

For further information on the American Studies minor, contact Professor Carlo Rotella in the English Department,, 617-552-3191, or visit the American Studies website at

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Ancient Civilization

The minor in Ancient Civilization aims at providing students the opportunity to study, in a systematic way, aspects of the ancient Greek and Roman world without the requirement of learning the Latin or Greek languages. Students learn about the history, literature, art and culture of antiquity in courses that emphasize the study of primary texts in English translation. Each student will design his/her own program in consultation with the faculty. A program will consist of a coherent blend of 18 credits chosen from two groups:

  • CLAS1186 Greek Civilization, CLAS2205 Greek History, CLAS2262 Roman Civilization, and CLAS2206 Roman History. These general courses, offered every other year, serve as a general overview of the field and an introduction to the minor. Students must take at least three credits in Greek History or Civilization and at least three credits in Roman History or Civilization.
  • Twelve (12) other credits, chosen after consultation with the director, from available offerings in Classics and other departments in the areas of literature, philosophy, religion, art and archaeology, history, and linguistics.

A list of the courses that are available each semester from the various departments and that can count for the minor will be published at registration time. Interested students should contact Professor Mark Thatcher of the Classical Studies Department, Stokes Hall 245S, 617-552-1807, or visit the Classical Studies website at

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Asian Studies

The interdisciplinary minor in Asian Studies consists of eighteen credits (six courses). The requirements are:

  • At least three credits from the following list of introductory courses:
    • ARTH2228 Arts of Asia
    • ARTH2246 Architecture in East Asia
    • ARTH2274 The Arts of Buddhism
    • ARTH4214 Art of the Silk Road
    • EALC2063 Wisdom and Philosophy of East Asia (Spring; 3 credits)
    • EALC2064 East Asian Literary Masterpieces (Spring; 3 credits)

    • HIST1005 Asia in the World I (Fall; 3 credits)
    • HIST1006 Asia in the World II (Spring; 3 credits)
    • HIST4090 Modern South Asia
    • PHIL4430 Classical and Contemporary Asian Philosophy (Fall or Spring; 3 credits)
    • PHIL4468 Asian Philosophy
    • THEO3505/PHIL3503/TMST7124 Buddhist Philosophy and Spirituality
    • THEO3507/PHIL3503/TMCE7124 Buddhist Philosophy and Psychology
    • THEO3548/PHIL4448 Buddhist Thought and Practice
    • THEO5387 The Path of the Bodhisattva: Mahayana Buddhism in East Asia
  • Six credits in an Asian language beyond the elementary level
  • Nine remaining elective credits, which must be approved by the Program Director.

Note: According to "New Co-Counting Limitations for Majors and Minors Adopted by the A&S EPC in 2014," "In order to earn an inter-disciplinary minor, students must have at least 15 credits in the minor program that are not used to fulfill requirements for another major or minor or a Core requirement." Please bear in mind this rule as you plan your studies.

Students interested in the minor are encouraged to apply in their sophomore year. Students are free to take any combination of courses to satisfy the requirements for the minor. It is highly recommended, however, to select courses to form a coherent theme. To register for the minor, as well as develop an individualized program of study, e-mail the Program Director Professor Sing-chen Lydia Chiang (

For more information about the Asian Studies Program at BC, visit

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Catholic Studies

The interdisciplinary minor in Catholic Studies at Boston College seeks to develop an intellectual and academic approach to Catholicism which does justice to the full human reality, integrity, and pluralism within this major world religious tradition. Since Catholicism comprises more than a religious institution, a set of moral or ritual practices, a body of doctrines, or individual and communal experiences, no one discipline or several disciplines functioning separately can properly understand it from the vantage point of its lived experience as a culture.

The Catholic Studies minor provides students with the opportunity to explore the Catholic intellectual tradition, emphasizing the richness of its philosophical and theological systems, its artistic and cultural expressions, its historical evolution (including internal and external moments of contestation), its approaches to social analysis and the natural sciences, in order to appreciate the vision and values which emerge from this tradition.


Six approved three-credit courses or a total of 18 credit hours:

  • Eighteen credit hours selected from the three Catholic Studies clusters: The Catholic Imagination, Catholicism in Time and Space, and Catholic Social Thought.
  • Students are strongly encouraged to take THEO1023 and THEO1024 Exploring Catholicism I and II (6 credits) to fulfill their Theology Core and count them as six of the 18 credit hours.
  • A concluding 3-credit research seminar which will focus on texts dealing either with the enculturation of Catholicism in different geographical/regional locations (e.g., Asia, Latin America, Africa, Oceania, Irish-American, Italian-American, Latino/a, Black, and Amerindian), or a Catholic theme that is approached from several disciplinary perspectives and across historical periods (e.g., Catholic practices of asceticism in art, music, literature, and theology). This seminar will offer the student the opportunity to research, write, and present a senior project that thematically integrates what has been learned in the minor. The seminar is facilitated by a member of the Catholic Studies advisory committee. It is envisioned that the seminar presentations will become an occasion for creating intellectual community among Catholic Studies minors and faculty advisors.

Further information is available from the Co-Directors, Professor Mary Ann Hinsdale, IHM, Department of Theology, Stokes Hall N343, 617-552-8603, and Professor Virginia Reinburg, Department of History, Stokes Hall S329, 617-552-8207, or visit

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East European Studies

The minor in East European Studies encompasses faculty and courses from across the University and spans the entire border of Western Europe, from Russia, through central Europe, to southeastern Europe (the Balkans). The curriculum helps to prepare students for careers focused on the region, in diplomacy, journalism, business, government, social service, as well as for graduate academic or professional study. Students will work toward proficiency in an East European language and attain the breadth of knowledge and skills that an interdisciplinary program can provide.

Further information is available from the Director, Professor Cynthia Simmons, Slavic and Eastern Languages Department, Lyons 210, (617-552-3914). Students may also consult the Slavic and Eastern Languages website at

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Environmental Studies

The Environmental Studies minor uses an interdisciplinary approach to understanding the science and policy of the Earth's environmental challenges and is designed to complement any undergraduate major.

The goals of the Environmental Studies minor are to provide undergraduate students with: (1) an awareness of the scientific, political and cultural aspects of the world's environmental problems and paths toward sustainable solutions; (2) a background for environmentally related careers in business, education, law, policy or research; and (3) preparation for graduate study.

The ES minor requirements include four credits of laboratory Environmental Systems science courses (EESC2201–EESC2208), a policy foundation course chosen from a short list of options, a senior seminar (ENVS4493), and at least ten credits of electives offered from departments across the university. For further information or to register for this program, contact ES Program Director Noah Snyder, see the program website at, or stop by the program office in Devlin 213.

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Faith, Peace, and Justice

The Faith, Peace, and Justice minor offers students the opportunity to explore, in an interdisciplinary manner, how their own serious questions about faith, peace, and justice are related to concrete work for peace and justice in our world. The goals of the Faith, Peace, and Justice Program are to help undergraduate students to acquire skills in the social scientific analysis of issues for justice and peace, to gain a solid grasp of the ethical and justice principles that arise from these issues, to learn how to formulate public policy or to initiate social change that would help to solve these problems, and to implement creative methods for conflict resolution appropriate for their particular issues.

To achieve these goals, each student is required to take the introductory course for the minor, THEO2160/PHIL1160 The Challenge of Justice and, in their senior year, UNAS4942 Faith, Peace, and Justice Senior Project Seminar. In addition, the students design, with the advice and approval of the Faith, Peace, and Justice Director, a cluster of four elective courses, taken from at least three different academic disciplines, that aims at an interdisciplinary course of study focused on a theme or concern for justice and peace which they have identified. These four elective courses are the foundation for the student's writing project in the FPJ Senior Seminar. Eighteen (18) credit hours are required for the minor.

For further information or to register for the Faith, Peace, and Justice minor, see the Director, Professor Matthew Mullane, Stokes 453N or visit the program website at

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German Studies

The interdisciplinary minor in German Studies offers students an introduction to the language and cultures of Germany, Austria, and Switzerland. The foremost goal of the program is to provide participants with an understanding of the history of German-speaking civilization but also to acquaint them with Germany's place in today's world.

The interdisciplinary minor in German Studies consists of six upper division courses—GERM 2242 Germany Divided and Reunited (three credits), two additional courses from the Department of German Studies (six credits), and three courses from other departments (nine credits). All students minoring in German Studies are strongly encouraged to spend one semester abroad.

Interested students should contact the Director of the Minor, Associate Professor Rachel Freudenburg, Department of German Studies, Lyons 201F, 617-552-3745,, or consult the website at

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International Studies

The minor in International Studies offers students the opportunity to combine insights from different disciplines so as to develop a broad understanding of international affairs. Students may earn a minor in International Studies by completing six courses (18 credits) from at least three different academic departments, selected from among courses approved for the program. Students structure their courses around a thematic concentration (International Cooperation and Conflict, International Political Economy, Development Studies, Ethics and International Social Justice, or Global Cultural Studies). The minor requires two core introductory courses and four elective courses as determined by the student’s chosen thematic concentration.    

The program strongly encourages study abroad and the advanced study of a foreign language. The minor provides a foundation for careers in government, business, non-profit organizations, international institutions, or journalism, along with preparation for graduate school. Guidelines for the International Studies minor and an enrollment form are available on the International Studies website at or from the International Studies Program office located in Gasson 109. Students may also consult the Director, Professor Robert Murphy, Department of Economics, Maloney Hall,, 617-552-3688, Associate Director, Professor Hiroshi Nakazato, Carney Hall 247,, 617-552-4892 or the Program Administrator, Patricia McLaughlin,, 617-552-2800.

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Irish Studies

Irish Studies is one of four units that comprise the Center for Irish programs. Founded in 1978, the program provides an interdisciplinary approach to the study of Irish culture and society. Our faculty includes internationally recognized scholars whose influential publications and professional commitment distinguish them as leaders in the field of Irish Studies. Undergraduate and graduate courses alike address social and economic history, literature, art, film, music, and the Irish language. The Irish Studies program also offers extensive public programs including a comprehensive lecture, symposia, and renowned music series developed by BC’s Sullivan Artist-in-Residence, Seamus Connolly. Faculty routinely collaborate with the McMullen Museum to present ground-breaking exhibits and have developed public programming, as well as undergraduate and graduate seminars, to complement the exhibits.

The minor in Irish Studies requires students to complete courses drawn from more than one discipline and designated as appropriate by the Irish Studies program advisor.

Must complete (18) credits in approved Irish Studies courses. Courses may not be “double counted” toward both a major and minor. Please contact Irish Studies at 617-552-6396 to arrange a meeting for curriculum planning assistance. A listing of Irish Studies-approved courses is posted on our website at Upon successful completion of the Irish Studies minor, students are eligible to apply for the Maeve O’Reilly Finley Fellowship for graduate study in Ireland.

Students pursuing the minor are encouraged to take advantage of the partnerships that the Irish Studies program and the Center for International Programs have forged with the National Universities of Ireland at Galway and Maynooth, University College Cork, University College Dublin, Trinity College Dublin, the University of Ulster, and Queen’s University Belfast. Those wishing to study in Ireland must successfully complete an Irish Studies pre-requisite course at Boston College. It is important to note that only two courses taken abroad in any given semester may be applied to the Irish Studies minor.

The Boston College Summer School in Ireland is a three-week, three-credit course that may be counted toward the Irish Studies minor and is open to all BC students seeking to visit and learn about Ireland. Lectures are combined with site visits that expose students to traditional and contemporary Irish music, politics, literature, and film. The program also affords students the valuable opportunity to study the Irish language with native speakers.

The staff of the center’s Dublin office, located at 42 St. Stephen’s Green, works to place qualified BC students in Ireland-based internships in concert with the university’s Office of International Partnerships and Programs. Upon arrival, students receive an intensive orientation conducted by the Dublin staff, who continue to provide support throughout the students’ placements. Host organizations include the National Gallery of Ireland, the Office of Public Works, the Department of Enterprise, Trade and Employment, the Department of Finance, and many more illustrious federal and local governmental departments and commercial and non-profit institutions.

Contact: Joan Reilly, Assistant to the Center’s Executive Director, Ext. 2-6396


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Islamic Civilization and Societies

This program emphasizes the interdisciplinary study of the Middle East and Muslim world from the rise of Islam in the seventh century to the present. Through a sequence of courses, it offers preparation in Middle Eastern and Islamic Studies useful to careers in journalism, diplomacy, business, and social service as well as graduate programs of academic and professional training. Courses cover the social, economic, political, cultural, and religious heritage as well as contemporary developments in their regional and world settings.

Students interested in the program should contact Professor Kathy Bailey, Political Science Department, McGuinn 528, 617-552-4170 or, or Professor Ali Banuazizi, Political Science Department, McGuinn 513, 617-552-4124, or visit

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Jewish Studies

The Jewish Studies Program seeks to examine the multiple dimensions and complexities of Jewish civilization throughout its broad chronological and geographical range. In so doing, the program contributes to Boston College's efforts to internationalize and enrich its curriculum by creating a space for reflection on an ethnically and religiously diverse campus. Far from being a parochial field, Jewish Studies is a well-established academic discipline, drawing upon almost every area in the humanities and social sciences in order to understand the myriad expressions of Jewish civilization over the course of thousands of years and in every corner of the globe.

The minor in Jewish Studies consists of a total of six 3-credit courses, including one foundation course, four electives selected from at least three departments within the Morrissey College of Arts and Sciences, and a concluding seminar/Capstone course.

Although the Minor in Jewish Studies has no specific language requirement, students are encouraged to take as many courses as possible in biblical and modern Hebrew. However, a maximum of six credits in Hebrew language may be applied to the minor. Students may participate in Boston College's study-abroad program at The Hebrew University in Jerusalem. They may also avail themselves of summer programs in Yiddish and Judeo-Spanish.

For additional information or to sign up for the Minor in Jewish Studies, contact the program co-director, Professor John Michalczyk, Devlin Hall 420, 617-552-3895 or, or contact the other program co-director, Professor Donald Fishman, Department of Communications, St. Mary’s Hall 454. Professor Fishman’s e-mail is The Jewish Studies Program Office is located in St. Mary’s Hall 454.

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Latin American Studies

The Latin American Studies program encompasses faculty and courses from across the University. With academic advisement from participating faculty, students can shape the Latin American Studies minor to fit usefully with their academic major and with the ambitions they hope to pursue after graduation. Students may earn a minor in Latin American Studies by completing 18 credits (approximately six courses) from at least three different academic departments, selected from among courses approved for the program. Proficiency in Spanish or Portuguese that is equivalent to successful completion of a third-year college language course is required for the minor (but this course is not counted as one of the above six). With approval from the Director two courses with focus on Latin America taken in a study abroad program can count toward the minor.

Students seeking to earn a minor in Latin American Studies must submit a proposed plan of study to the Director of the program, usually no later than the second semester of the sophomore year. The Director, in consultation with the student and other faculty in the program, will review the proposal, and notify the student of his/her acceptance into the minor.

For further information contact the Director, Professor Harry L. Rosser, Department of Romance Languages and Literatures, Lyons 307D, 617-552-3828, or visit

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Medical Humanities, Health, and Culture

In the Medical Humanities, Health, and Culture minor, students explore health and health care practices through multiple disciplines, including literature, theology, history, and philosophy, as well as natural and social sciences. From each vantage, humanistic and cultural approaches to health and the body are emphasized. The minor, interdisciplinary in its approach, draws on Boston College’s commitment to social justice, ethics, and care for the whole person. This is a useful program for students interested in careers in medicine, health care policy or law, psychology, public or global health, social work, patient advocacy, or health journalism. It is also helpful for students interested in exploring historical, narrative and cultural contexts for current (and at times competing) ideas about illness, the body, and representation.

The minor is comprised of 18 credits. Courses (not necessarily in sequence) include a required Introductory course (ENGL2212), four electives from a designated list of approved courses, and a final senior elective. In addition, minors will be encouraged to take part in reading groups, film series, conferences and relevant local events.

Students choose electives from at least three different departments. The following thematic clusters will help students to plan a path through the minor:

  • Global/Public Health
  • Values and Ethics
  • Mind and Body
  • Health Care Delivery
  • Medical narrative, writing and representation

Students interested in learning more or in registering for the minor should contact the Director, Amy Boesky, in Stokes 437 South or e-mail to set up an appointment.

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Psychoanalytic Studies

The "unconscious" dimension of human experience has been with us for a long time in art, literature, social studies, and even philosophy, but Freud was the first to give it a clinical status and to propose a method of investigating it. This conception was first presented to the world at large with Interpretation of Dreams in 1900 and soon became a challenge to every discipline that proposes to reflect on the nature of the human in all of its dimensions. The Minor in Psychoanalytic Studies offers students the opportunity to broaden their understanding of one of the major cultural and intellectual trends of the twentieth century. The minor consists of six 3-credit courses, one of which should be at the introductory level (e.g., PHIL4429 Freud and Philosophy), and representing a minimum of three departments within the Morrissey College of Arts and Sciences.

For further information on the minor, consult the Director, Professor Vanessa Rumble, Philosophy Department,, or visit the program website at

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Scientific Computation

The minor in Scientific Computation is an interdisciplinary program drawing on faculty in several departments, which complements students' training in the natural and social sciences. The minor focuses on applications of the computational methodologies developed in physics, chemistry, mathematics, economics, and finance for empirical research. Students selecting the minor will be exposed to a wide range of computational techniques of practical value in solving empirical and modeling problems.

Six three-credit courses are required for the minor: two mathematics courses (MATH2202 and MATH2210), one course in scientific programming (CSCI2227), one course in numerical methods and scientific computation (PHYS4300), and two elective courses from an approved list.

For further information on the Scientific Computation minor, see Professor Jan Engelbrecht, Physics Department,, or Professor Christopher Baum, Economics Department,, co-directors of the minor, or visit

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Women's and Gender Studies

The Women's and Gender Studies Program is a comparative interdisciplinary forum for the study of women's past and present positions in American society and across a diversity of nation-state, international, and global contexts.  Drawing from a broad range of theoretical frameworks and empirical scholarship, Women's and Gender Studies analyzes the intersection of gender with differential identity factors such as race, class, religion, culture, and sexuality. Women's and Gender Studies sheds light on the construction and maintenance of gender ideologies in different environments and locations, and considers gender relations a primary factor in our understanding of women's and men’s statuses and roles. Multiple perspectives and lenses—literary, historical, sociological, psychological, political, activist, popular culturist—are applied to the study of women’s lived realities, representations, histories, oppressions, coalitions and movements.

The Women's and Gender Studies Program offers an interdisciplinary minor that consists of two required courses, Introduction to Feminisms (ENGL2125/HIST2502/SOCY2225) and Advanced Topics in Women's Studies (SOCY5593), plus four additional elective courses, drawn from a broad selection across disciplines.

For more information on the Women’s and Gender Studies Program, visit or consult the Director of the minor, Professor Sharlene Hesse-Biber, Sociology Department, 617-552-4139, e-mail:

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Six-Year Bachelor and Law Degree Program

In order to respond to changing student needs, the Boston College Law School has instituted an accelerated admissions program (a 3+3 Program). The 3+3 Program allows to students to earn an undergraduate degree and a law degree in six years instead of seven.

Under this program, exceptionally well-qualified students from the Morrissey College of Arts and Sciences will be allowed to enter theBoston College Law School after completing their junior year of undergraduate study. During their junior year, students seeking to participate in the 3+3 Program apply to Boston College Law School. If accepted for admission, they begin law school immediately following completion of their junior year. Upon successful completion of the first year of law school with grades of “C” or better, students earn a bachelor’s degree from the Morrissey College of Arts and Sciences. Upon successful completion of the remaining two years of law school, students earn a J.D. from Boston College Law School.

The 3+3 Program is limited to undergraduates in the Morrissey College who have completed at least 4 full-time semesters in residence in the College. Interested students should contact the pre-Law advisor early in their program of study for more information and advisement.

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Fifth Year B.A./M.A.

The Morrissey College of Arts and Sciences and the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences offer a five-year B.A./M.A. program in some departments. Application to the program normally takes place early in the second semester of the junior year. The applicant must complete an application to the Master's degree program in the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, Gasson 108. Admission to the B.A./M.A. program normally requires an overall GPA of 3.333 and a GPA of 3.5 in the major. Although specific B.A./M.A. program requirements will vary across departments, the program limits the number of credits that can be applied towards the Master's degree to six credits that may also be applied to the 120 credits required for the undergraduate degree. The undergraduate degree will be conferred upon completion of undergraduate requirements. The Master's degree will be conferred upon completion of degree requirements specified by the department.

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Accelerated Bachelor of Arts-Master of Social Work Program

The Morrissey College of Arts and Sciences and the Graduate School of Social Work offer an Accelerated B.A./M.S.W. Program whereby a limited number of Psychology and Sociology Majors may begin the Social Work foundation courses during their junior and senior years and receive the B.A. at the end of four years and the M.S.W. after the fifth year. Students must meet all standard requirements for admission to the Graduate School of Social Work and enroll as final-year M.S.W. candidates for their fifth year. Interested students should contact the Director of Admissions of the Graduate School of Social Work by spring semester of the sophomore year at the latest. For prerequisites and application information, consult the Graduate School of Social Work, McGuinn 118, 617-552-4024.

The School also offers an upper-division introductory course that is not applicable to the M.S.W. degree, SCWK6600 Introduction to Social Work, which is cross-listed with the Departments of Psychology and Sociology in the Morrissey College of Arts and Sciences.

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Minors in the Lynch School of Education for Arts and Sciences Students

Arts and Sciences students completing minors in the Lynch School of Education must fulfill all major, Core, and elective requirements in the Morrissey College of Arts and Sciences and have completed at least 96 credits in the Morrissey College of Arts and Sciences.

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Inclusive Education Minor

The Department of Teacher Education, Special Education, and Curriculum & Instruction (LSOE) offers the Inclusive Education minor for students enrolled in the Morrissey College of Arts and Sciences. The minor is designed to (1) introduce Arts and Sciences students to the world of disabilities and special education, with an emphasis on special education practice, and (2) enhance the ability of future professionals to meet the needs of an increasingly diverse population of students in America’s schools. Classes address the nature and implications of disabilities as well as effective practices in special education. The minor consists of six courses and a zero-credit field observation.

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Secondary Education

Students majoring in Biology, Chemistry, Classical Studies, English, Geology, History, Mathematics, Physics, or Theology (not for certification) in the Morrissey College of Arts and Sciences may apply to minor in Education. This program begins in the sophomore year and interested students should contact the Coordinator of Secondary Education or the Associate Dean in the Lynch School of Education during the sophomore year. Only those students majoring in the disciplines listed above may apply for a minor in Secondary Education.

N.B. Students majoring in English have additional requirements. Consult Maureen Raymond at for more information.

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General Education

Students who have an interest in Education may follow a minor of five or six courses with their advisors' approval. This program does not lead to certification, but does offer students an introduction to programs that could be pursued on the graduate level. The following courses constitute a minor in Education: Child Growth and Development; Family, School, and Society; Psychology of Learning; Classroom Assessment; Working with Special Needs Children; and one Education elective as an optional sixth course.

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Minors in the Carroll School of Management for Arts and Sciences Students

Arts and Sciences students completing minors in the Carroll School of Management must fulfill all major, Core, and elective requirements in the Morrissey College of Arts and Sciences and have completed at least 96 credits in the Morrissey College of Arts and Sciences.

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Minor in Management and Leadership

The Department of Management and Organization offers a minor in Management and Leadership for students enrolled in the Morrissey College of Arts and Sciences. The minor is designed to help students develop and enhance their ability to lead and manage people and organizations by (1) developing an appreciation for the fundamentals and complexity of successful leadership; (2) identifying exemplary leadership in themselves and others; and (3) learning and demonstrating effective leadership skills. The minor consists of six courses. Students interested in the minor must complete an application, available in either the office of the Dean of Arts and Sciences or the Management and Organization Department, by February 15 or October 15 for the following semester. For more information, please consult the Chairperson of the Management and Organization Department, Professor Judith Gordon, Fulton 430A, or visit

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Managing for Social Impact and the Public Good

The interdisciplinary minor in Managing for Social Impact and the Public Good seeks to provide Boston College undergraduate students with a well-defined interdisciplinary program of study focused on analyzing the multifaceted social impacts of local and global organizations. Students in this minor will explore the personal and professional challenges of managing corporate, non-profit and public sector organizations in ways that foster the public good.

The Managing for Social Impact and the Public Good interdisciplinary minor is a structured 18 credit program centered on one of three social impact focus areas:

  • Digital Economy, Social Innovation and Citizenship
  • Economic Development, Equality and Enterprise
  • Managing for Local and Global Sustainability

Students must take the two required courses listed below and earn at least 12 additional credits by taking elective courses approved for Core requirement.

Required Foundation Course: Managing for Social Impact (ISYS/MGMT3345) is offered in the fall semester.

Required Senior Seminar: The Social Impact Senior Seminar is offered in the spring semester. This course is open only to seniors in the Managing for Social Impact program.

Application Procedure for the Interdisciplinary Minor in Managing for Social Impact and the Public Good: During a two-year pilot period beginning in spring 2016, a maximum of 25 students per year will be accepted into the Managing for Social Impact minor. Students who are graduating in 2018 or later are eligible to apply. For a link to the application form and more details about the social impact focus areas and elective courses for this minor, visit the MCAS Interdisciplinary Minors web page at /schools/cas/academics/minors/interdiscminors.html.

For specific questions about the Managing for Social Impact and the Public Good interdisciplinary minor, please contact the Co-Directors: Kenneth Himes, O.F.M., Theology Department, E-mail: or Mary Cronin, Information Systems.

International Study

The aim of international study is to enable students to become fluent in a foreign language and to better understand a different culture. Students wishing to spend a year or a semester abroad and transfer the credits earned to their Boston College degree must receive approval from a Dean and enroll in a program approved by the College. To qualify for Dean's approval, a student must have at least a 3.2 average in the major and approximately the same cumulative average, have completed a significant number of courses in the major and have made substantial progress on Core requirements, have the approval of the Chairperson of the major department, and have adequate proficiency in the language of the country in which he/she plans to study. For students who have not passed the language proficiency requirement, a minimum of one year of college-level language study is required.

Students should begin the application process by contacting the Office of International Programs early in their sophomore year.

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Academic Regulations

Satisfactory Academic Progress

A student in the Morrissey College of Arts and Sciences must complete at least 120 credits to earn the bachelor’s degree. Particular requirements for gaining those credits, or compiling those courses, are stated elsewhere in this section.

All Morrissey College of Arts and Sciences students must complete the University Core requirements in the Arts, Cultural Diversity, History, Literature, Mathematics, Natural Sciences, Philosophy, Social Sciences, Theology, and Writing, as well as the Language Proficiency requirement (visit the University Policies and Procedures chapter of this catalog).

To continue enrollment in a full-time program of study, a student must ordinarily maintain a cumulative average of at least 1.667 as the minimum standard of scholarship and must not fall more than sixseven credits behind the total number of credits a student of their status is expected to have completed (an average of 15 credits each semester). Any student who is permitted by the deans to continue enrollment in a full-time undergraduate program, with the exception of students on probation, is considered to be in good standing.

Failure to maintain good standing either through a low cumulative average, or by incurring deficiencies including failures, withdrawals, Incompletes or unapproved underloads, will result in the student's being placed on probation, or being required to withdraw, as the Dean shall determine.

A student on probation may return to good standing by approved methods (e.g., make-up of credits via approved summer school work; students may make up no more than ten credits in a single summer.) A student who incurs additional failures or withdrawals, or carries an unapproved underload while on probation, may be required to withdraw from the School at the time of the next review.

During a probationary semester a student must successfully complete at least 12 credits in graded Morrissey College courses and achieve a GPA of 2.0 for those 12 credits. A probationary semester is not considered a full-time semester with respect to the minimum number of regular full-time semesters required for graduation. Consequently, the student’s graduation date will be delayed by at least one semester. Students who make up credits by preapproved summer study and satisfy all other requirements may be able to regain their original graduation date. (International students should consult their dean regarding visa requirements as they affect probation.) Probation will not be extended to a second consecutive semester nor may a student have more than two probationary semesters in total. A student who fails to meet the conditions of probation will be withdrawn from the Morrissey College.


Students in the Morrissey College of Arts and Sciences who are able to complete all requirements for the degree in less than eight full time semesters may appeal to graduate after seven semesters of full time study if the following conditions are met:  

  • The student has completed a sixth semester of full-time study at Boston College and will complete all requirements in the seventh semester. 
  • The student successfully completes at least 12 credits in the seventh semester. (Students approved for acceleration but failing to meet this condition must complete an eighth full-time semester at Boston College.)
  • All courses used for acceleration must be taken at Boston College or through the Office of International Programs or the Consortium.
  • The student is not an external transfer student nor has elected to take advanced standing.    

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Procedure of Appeal

Students with questions of interpretation or petitions for exception from the Morrissey College of Arts and Sciences Regulations, apart from those specified in the University's academic integrity policy, may submit them to the Associate Deans.

A student should always attempt to resolve problems concerning the manner in which grades have been awarded or the academic practices of an instructor by direct contact with the instructor. In the rare case of an unresolved question the student should first refer the matter to the Chairperson or Director of the relevant department or program.

A formal appeal of a course grade, which ought not be entered lightly by a student nor lightly dismissed by an instructor, should be made no later than the sixth week of the following semester. In making a formal appeal, a student files a written statement with the Dean for his or her class. The Dean will then request written responses from both the instructor and Chairperson and submit the case to the Appeals Committee of the Educational Policy Committee. The committee will review the case thoroughly and make a recommendation on resolution to the Dean of the College. The Dean's decision will be final.

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