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Undergraduate Programs

woods college of advancing studies

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Woods College of Advancing Studies

The James A. Woods, S.J., College of Advancing Studies offers both full and part-time study to undergraduate and graduate students from widely differing backgrounds and preparations who wish to maximize their experiences and master the skills necessary to advance their future.

Boston College fosters in its students rigorous intellectual development coupled with religious, ethical, and personal formation in order to prepare them for citizenship, service, and leadership in a global society.

Within the context of the Boston College environment, James A. Woods, S.J., College of Advancing Studies promotes the care and attention to the human person that is the hallmark of Jesuit education while faculty and students engage in scholarship that enriches the culture and addresses important societal needs.

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Undergraduate Programs

The James A. Woods, S.J., College of Advancing Studies offers the atmosphere of a small college within the environment of a large university. The professional staff at the James A. Woods, S.J., College of Advancing Studies has experience helping students arrange a realistic program of study, one that combines work responsibilities with educational goals. Students receive personal attention while enjoying access to the many resources of Boston College. A flexible admission process coupled with academic advising allows a student to select the most appropriate major based on individual needs. Courses are ordinarily scheduled between the hours of 6:00 and 10:00 pm.

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Bachelor of Arts Program

The Bachelor of Arts program prepares students to address and master the challenges of a rapidly changing and increasingly complex world. A broad-based and robust liberal arts curriculum which includes core requirements permits students to choose courses and majors reflecting individual interests and varied career objectives. The curriculum offers intensive work and a degree of disciplined mastery in a major area.

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Degree Requirements

A distinguishing characteristic of liberal arts education is a required core curriculum. The Bachelor of Arts programs require the following core courses:

  • 3 English
  • 3 Philosophy courses comprised of Logic, Ethics, and a Philosophy elective
  • 3 Theology courses comprised of two sequential Theology courses and one Theology elective
  • 2 Social Science courses
  • 2 History courses
  • 1 Mathematics course
  • 1 Natural Science course
  • 1 Computer course
  • 1 Fine Arts course
  • 1 Public Speaking course

Degree candidates must fulfill all program requirements in addition to earning a minimum of 120 credits. Students are required to achieve a minimum cumulative GPA of 1.67 to be eligible to graduate.

Admission as a transfer student is also available. A minimum of sixty credits must be completed at Boston College to satisfy residency. A maximum of sixty credits may be transferred into a student’s program from regionally accredited institutions. Courses with an earned grade of C will be accepted in transfer; however, courses transferred from schools within Boston College may be accepted with grades of C-. A minimum of three semester hours is required for a transferred course to satisfy program requirements.

For students in the degree program, normally the maximum course load is three per semester. Authorization for one additional course will be given only if a student has completed these three courses, each with a grade of B- or better, in the previous semester.

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Undergraduate Admission

Applications for admission may be submitted at any time and are reviewed on a rolling basis during the academic year. The following documentation is required:

  • Completed application form;
  • Two essays (requirements are found on the application);
  • Optional SAT, PSAT, or similar standardized test results if the student graduated from high school less than four years previously;
  • Academic placement testing in English and Math for students who graduated from high school more than four years previously, those who have never taken standardized tests, or those who do not wish to submit standardized testing results;
  • Two letters of recommendation (if four years or less from high school, request one from a guidance counselor or, for students whose high school graduation is greater than four years, request one from a teacher, employer, or other personal reference); and
  • Demonstrated English Language Proficiency with an IELTS score of 7 or TOEFFL score of 100.

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Non-degree Students

Non-degree students are individuals interested in taking evening undergraduate courses for academic credit, but not in applying for a degree. Such students enroll during the fall, spring, or summer registration periods with no prior application required.

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Visiting Students

Individuals wishing to attend during the day as special undergraduate students are required to apply for Visiting Student status at the James A. Woods, S.J., College of Advancing Studies. Qualified applicants are admitted to specific courses on an individual basis.

More specific application instructions for those interested in applying for Visiting Student status can be found at

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Professional Studies Certificate

The Professional Studies Certificate is an end in itself for some students. For others, it may be applied toward completion of a bachelor’s degree. Whatever one’s ultimate goal, whether to qualify for promotion, initiate a career change, or earn an undergraduate degree, a Professional Studies Certificate can help to achieve that objective. The number of courses required to complete a Professional Studies Certificate varies with the area of study, but in every instance courses must be completed at Boston College.

Certificate requirements include the following:

  • Students must receive at least a grade of C for each course credited toward the certificate.
  • Certificate requirements should be completed within two years of initial enrollment for non-degree students, and prior to degree completion for students already enrolled in a degree program; courses are permanently retained on the student record.
  • A request to apply to a certificate program must be made to the James A. Woods, S.J. College of Advancing Studies. A request must also be made to receive a formal certificate upon completion.
  • A Professional Studies Certificate may be obtained in Accounting, Communication, Criminal and Social Justice, Finance, Human Resources, Information Systems, Management, and Marketing.

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Contact Information and Office Location

Course catalog and program information can be found at

Office of the Dean
James A. Woods, S.J. College of Advancing Studies
St. Mary’s Hall South, Ground Floor
Boston College
Chestnut Hill, MA 02467
(617) 552-3900

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