Requirements for Bachelor of Arts Degree
Students are held to the requirements of the catalog in effect at the time they first enroll as a degree or certificate-seeking student.
The Bachelor of Arts degree at Scripps is earned by satisfactory completion of a minimum of 32 courses to include the following:
1. General education requirements as follow:
All general education requirements must be completed by the end of the first semester of the senior year.
2. Completion of a major (nine or more courses - minimum of eight courses plus senior thesis - as defined in this catalog).
3. Additional elective courses, to bring total to 32 minimum.
Each requirement addresses important elements in the building of a student’s educational foundation. They are designed to introduce each student to a variety of formal ways of thinking, to provide a reasonable base of understanding of, and participation in, the world of the 21st century, and to encourage a commitment to lifelong learning. Upon entering Scripps College, a student is assigned a faculty adviser who will aid in arranging a program of studies suitable to the student’s interests, previous training, and academic objectives. The student is expected to consult with an adviser throughout each year regarding academic plans.
General Education Requirements
All general education requirements must be completed by the end of the first semester of the senior year.
- Core I to be taken fall semester of the first year;
- Core II to be taken spring semester of the first year
- Core III to be taken fall semester of the second year.
Writing (one course)
Breadth of Study
Scripps College believes that it is important for all students to understand that there are different ways of thinking about knowledge and of defining and examining problems. The goal of the breadth of study requirement is to introduce students to different ways of knowing and different ways of thinking. All students are required to complete one course in each of the areas below. A course may meet only one of the four Breadth of Study requirements (i.e., Fine Arts, Letters, Natural Sciences, or Social Sciences).
1. Fine Arts (one course from among the following):
- Any art course;
- Dance (full course only which includes dance history and theory);
- MUS 003 , MUS 081 , or any other music theory or music history course;
- THEA 001A , THEA 001C , THEA 001E , THEA 001F , THEA 002 , THEA 023 , THEA 024 , THEA 115D , THEA 115J , THEA 115M , THEA 115N , THEA 115O , THEA 141 ; or
- An equivalent course.
2. Letters (one course from among the following):
- Any art history course
- Any literature course completed in English or a foreign language - excludes writing and film studies courses;
- Any philosophy course except logic;
- Any classics course except Greek, Hebrew, and Latin language through the intermediate level;
- Any religious studies course;
- An equivalent course.
3. Natural Sciences (one course from among the following):
- Any Keck Science course numbered 50–89 for nonscience majors; or
- Any introductory science course for majors in biology, chemistry, neuroscience, or physics; or
- An equivalent course with a lab.
4. Social Sciences (one course from among the following):
Race and Ethnic Studies (one course)
- The race and ethnic studies requirement assesses the systematic discrimination and exploitation of African Americans, Latino Americans, Native Americans, Asian Americans, and Arab Americans that have figured so critically in the history of this country. This requirement is met by taking one course that focuses primarily on one or more of these five groups in the United States.
- A list of courses approved to meet this requirement is maintained on the Registrar’s web page and a link to the currently available courses appears near the bottom of the “Course Area” list (SC Race and Ethnic St Req) on the academic portal schedule of courses for each semester.
Gender and Women’s Studies (one course)
- Students must complete one course in gender and women’s studies. The requirement may be met by passing any course in the Scripps Feminist, Gender, and Sexuality Studies program or any other course approved by Intercollegiate Feminist Center for Teaching, Research and Engagement. Courses that fulfill this requirement will be identified in the biannual registration materials.
Language Requirement Statement
Students are strongly encouraged to fulfill their language requirement in an uninterrupted sequence. In all cases, however, the language requirement must be completed by the end of the first semester of the senior year.
Foreign Language (three courses should be completed in an uninterrupted sequence)
- Three semesters of one language (through intermediate level);
- Equivalent courses or competency
Mathematics (one course)
Core Curriculum in Interdisciplinary Humanities
The Core Curriculum offered at Scripps gives students the opportunity to investigate important issues of human existence in an interdisciplinary context. Each first-year student is required to complete the three-course Core beginning in the first fall semester. The courses are described under Core Curriculum in Interdisciplinary Humanities : Histories of the Present .”
Students who transfer to Scripps will be placed into the Core Curriculum sequence based upon their class standing at entrance.
- Students who transfer with the equivalent of four or fewer Scripps courses will be required to begin with Core I and complete the three-course sequence.
- Students who transfer with the equivalent of five to eight courses will complete Core II and Core III.
- Students who transfer as first-semester sophomores (eight to twelve courses) must complete Core III.
- Transfer students entering Scripps with the equivalent of 12 or more Scripps courses will be waived from the Core Curriculum requirement.
One of the most important features of a liberal education is familiarity with the language of a culture other than one’s own. Such familiarity not only clarifies a student’s sense of cultural identity, but also enhances articulateness and enlarges the view of the scope of thought and language. Languages currently available for study in Claremont include Modern Standard Arabic, Chinese, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Russian, and Spanish. Classical Greek, Hebrew, and Latin are also available.
The Scripps language requirement is met by demonstrating competency and proficiency in one foreign language, ancient or modern, by:
a. The achievement of a thorough knowledge of basic grammatical structure;
b. The ability to write a composition correctly; and
c. In the case of a modern language, the ability to understand a native speaker at a moderate speed and to respond intelligently. The required level of language competency must be demonstrated in one of the following ways:
- By passing the third-semester level course in one language through The Claremont Colleges Modern Languages Program, the cooperative Classics Department, or full-course American Sign Language credit. Students are strongly encouraged to fulfill the language requirement in an uninterrupted sequence. In all cases, however, the language requirement must be completed by the end of the first semester of the senior year.
- By passing a departmental competency examination. Language placement tests in French, German, Italian, Latin, and Spanish are held at Scripps during fall Orientation, or by arrangement, to demonstrate competency for full or partial waiver of the courses required using one of those languages. Placement exams in Modern Standard Arabic, Chinese, Japanese, Korean, and Russian are administered by other Claremont Colleges during Orientation.
- By scoring at or above the (recentered) scores indicated below on a SAT Subject Tests Foreign Language Achievement Test:
The foreign language requirement will be waived for international students who graduated from a non-English high school program. Other students may petition for a waiver of the requirement based upon written verification of non-English language proficiency by an interview with a Claremont faculty member who is fluent in the language. Students may also petition to waive the language requirement by successful completion of an off-campus examination at another college, verified by a letter bearing that college’s seal, and forwarded in a sealed envelope to the Registrar. (Any examination fees will be paid directly to the other college by the student.)
Because of the importance of language to the study of the humanities, to work in most majors, and to many future careers, students who have met the basic language requirement in any one of these ways are strongly urged to continue their study of foreign language and literature beyond the required competency level. Scripps students may not receive credit for courses taken in the intercollegiate Self-Instructional Language Program (SILP) because SILP has not yet been evaluated by Scripps faculty. This policy will be evaluated at a later date.
The extensive use of mathematics in our lives as individuals and as a society indicates that a knowledge of mathematics is essential for practical living and for professional development. The math requirement may be met in either theoretical or applied mathematics. Theoretical mathematics involves methods of inquiry based on rigorous deduction and formal proof that are different from those in other areas. Applied mathematics is a fundamental tool in the social and natural sciences and in many other areas. The math requirement may be satisfied in any one of the following ways:
- By passing MATH 023 , Precalculus, or a higher-level math course.
- By successful performance on the Math 23/30, 30/31, or 31/32 placement exams. The Math Placement Exam is administered during Fall Orientation.
- By passing a course in the applications of mathematics, i.e., statistics; BIOL 175 KS - Applied Biostatistics ; ECON 120 SC - Statistics ; or PSYC 103 SC - Psychological Statistics .
- By passing a course in formal logic through the Philosophy Department.
Because of the importance of mathematics to the study of the social and natural sciences and to work in many careers, students are strongly encouraged to continue their study of mathematics beyond the required level.
Writing: Critical Analysis
Scripps College believes that its students should be able to read well and to express themselves with precision, logic, and subtlety. WRIT 050 must be passed with a grade of C or higher during the first semester of Scripps enrollment. Students earning less than C will be required to enroll in WRIT 050 the subsequent semester and until passed with a C or higher; all grades will be computed in the grade point averages.
- Transfer students who have completed a clearly identifiable and equivalent college writing course with a grade of C or higher will have met this requirement.
- Transfer first-year and sophomore students who have not completed an equivalent course will be required to enroll in WRIT 050 during their first semester.
- Students who transfer to Scripps as juniors are waived from this requirement.
Requirements for the Major
Majors are offered in fields in which the senior thesis can be supervised by a member of the Scripps faculty, and, if the major is offered at Scripps, the Scripps major requirements must be met.
Before preregistration in spring of the sophomore year, each student must declare a major by filing an approved junior major form in the Registrar’s Office. At the same time, the student will select a faculty adviser within the major field who will assist in planning the future program. Students who plan to complete two majors must also declare the second major by filing a second approved junior major form assisted by a faculty member in the second field. Students planning to complete a minor are encouraged to formally declare the minor at the end of the sophomore year.
A major is an integrated program of study composed of courses and independent work within a discipline or interdisciplinary program. It should have an inner rationale and coherence of structure. The basic educational policy of Scripps is to enable students to think independently and critically. In planning a major, a student should implement this policy by seeking to fulfill the following goals:
- Mastery of (a) skills and methods, (b) principles and theory, and (c) essential materials in the field. This mastery will usually be accomplished by successfully completing certain courses or a combination of courses and supervised independent study as determined by the department faculty. Passing the required courses for the major, a minimum of eight semester courses or their equivalent, with at least a 6.0 (C) grade point average is the basis for this standard.
- Demonstration of competence in the field. In the areas of music, dance, and theater, a senior performance and/or a thesis is required as a demonstration of competence. In studio arts, and Digital/Electronic and Film/Video tracks of Media Studies, a senior project is required. In all other fields, competence must be demonstrated by writing a senior thesis.
During September of the senior year, in consultation with a major adviser, the student files an approved senior major form in the Registrar’s Office for each major the student anticipates completing, indicating those courses which the student plans to use to complete the major requirements. Seniors will be held to the specific courses indicated on the senior major form. Written requests on a course substitution form (available in the Registrar’s Office) to change these intended courses must be approved by the major adviser and forwarded to the Registrar.
Choices for Majors
Scripps major requirements must be met if the major is offered at Scripps.
Requirements for majors at Scripps College are defined by departments and are listed in the catalog under the descriptions of the departmental programs. All majors consist of a minimum of eight semester courses or their equivalent, and a senior thesis (or senior seminar or project). At least half of these courses must be taken at Scripps, except where this regulation is specifically waived. Courses that fulfill major requirements will be chosen by the student in consultation with the adviser and listed on the approved senior major form.
Up to two courses (including prerequisite courses) may double count towards each of two majors (but not also a General Requirement). Students may exceed this double counting limit if the total number of unduplicated courses on the approved Senior Major Form for each major (excluding senior seminar and thesis) is at least six courses. See Double Counting Courses in this catalog.
Majors are offered in fields in which the senior thesis can be supervised by a member of the Scripps faculty. If the major is offered at Scripps or is an intercollegiate major in which Scripps participates, the Scripps major requirements must be met and a Scripps faculty member must serve as the major adviser. If a student wishes to major in a field for which no provision is made at Scripps (for example, sociology), the student may complete the major in part or entirely at one or more of the other Claremont Colleges, and a faculty member of the off-campus college department must be the major adviser. In this case the student must meet the specific requirements of the other colleges for the major, to include at least eight courses, and also write a senior thesis. A Scripps faculty member must serve as a thesis reader. Off-campus majors require the on-campus adviser’s signature of approval plus the signature of the off-campus adviser in the major field on the senior major form. All majors are subject to review by the dean of the faculty and the Committee on Academic Review.
- A dual major must fulfill all of the major requirements for each of the two disciplines (unless an exception is specified in the catalog) and complete a senior thesis that integrates the skills and knowledge of both fields. The two thesis readers are from the faculty of the two fields represented by the dual major. Normally, students who undertake a dual major would be required to complete only one senior seminar, but two may be taken for credit if the thesis readers recommend it. In the case of a dual major where each department requires participation in a senior seminar, and in the event these seminars meet at the same time, the student, with the assistance of advisers from each department, will determine the senior seminar in which the student will enroll. Courses that fulfill each major requirement will be listed on each of the two senior major forms as approved by the adviser in each field. Courses that fulfill each major requirement will be listed on each of the two senior major forms as approved by the adviser in each field.
- A double major must fulfill all of the major requirements for each of two disciplines and complete two theses, one in each of the two subject areas. Courses that fulfill each major requirement will be listed on each of two senior major forms as approved by the student’s adviser in each field.
In exceptional cases a student may petition the Academic Policy Subcommittee of the FEC for approval of a self-designed major. The major must consist of a minimum of ten semester courses or their equivalent (including senior thesis); these courses should allow the student to acquire mastery of the skills, methods, principles, theories, and history related to the course of study. The major will culminate in a thesis that will allow the student to demonstrate the acquired expertise. To plan the course of study the student will work closely with a Scripps academic adviser with experience and fluency in the field. The petition for this self-designed course of study must include:
• A description of the major and its learning objectives.
• An explanation as to why/how proposed major is an intellectual course of study with a unified and coherent subject matter.
• An explanation as to why proposed area of study cannot be accommodated by existing majors, minors, and electives and/or any combinations thereof.
• Statements from at least two faculty members who will be working with the student, defending and supporting the petition. These statements must include a detailed explanation of the basis for this course of study and why the area of study cannot be served by existing 5-C majors, minors, or a combination thereof.
• A signature of a Scripps faculty member who agrees, barring unusual or unforeseen circumstances, to serve as a reader for the thesis and, if this Scripps faculty member cannot serve as first reader, then the proposal must, in addition, be signed by a Claremont Colleges faculty member who agrees, barring unusual or unforeseen circumstance, to serve as first reader for the thesis.
• Initially, a student major petition form must be signed by individual faculty members whose courses are being counted towards the self-designed major. Subsequent changes to the proposed major requires only the major adviser’s signature.
Completion of a Senior Thesis/Project is required of every Scripps student. Senior theses constitute an individual and independent work supervised by two faculty members (one of whom must be a member of the Scripps College faculty): the director of the thesis and a second reader chosen in the relevant field. Options consistent with the basic educational policy of the College may be considered equivalent to the thesis upon approval by two faculty members and petition to the Committee on Academic Review. Due dates for senior theses are determined by the faculty of each discipline. A minimum grade of D is required for the senior thesis/project for graduation. Each completed senior thesis/project shall be uploaded to and permanently stored in The Claremont Colleges Digital Library’s Scholarship@Claremont site. See the Registrar’s web page for senior thesis upload policies and procedures.
If an honors program in the major is offered at Scripps, the Scripps honors requirements must be met. When the Scripps major does not offer honors, a student may discuss with the department/program chair the possibility of creating an honors program.
Scripps College Departmental Honors
Minimum GPA of A- (11.0) in the major
Minimum grade of A- on the thesis
In the case of dual theses:Readers should provide their department’s respective guidelines for thesis preparation and evaluation at the outset of the thesis process. In the event of conflicting guidelines, the readers should elaborate criteria that mutually agreeable. Students will be required to schedule meetings with both readers present at least twice during the preparation of the thesis.
These are the minimum College requirements; individual departments or programs may have additional Honors requirements.
Scripps students may petition for honors in off-campus majors if that major offers honors and the student meets both the off-campus honors requirements and the Scripps minimum requirements for honors as follow:
- GPA requirement of A- (11.0) within the major (consisting of at least 8 major courses plus thesis, excluding prerequisites); and
- An honors quality senior thesis with a grade of A or A– and when required the oral defense must include at least one Scripps reader.
When the off-campus major has honors at one college and not at another, the student should follow the program of the college that offers honors, but in unusual circumstances may petition the Committee on Academic Review for an exception. In both instances, the petition must include the minimum criteria required by the readers (for example, additional or specific courses or minimum thesis length) and must be acceptable both to the off-campus major adviser and reader(s) as well as the Scripps adviser and reader(s).
For intercollegiate programs where no honors major program has been defined in the Scripps or another catalog, Scripps students may petition for honors in the major. The minimum honors requirements will be as follow:
- GPA requirement of A- (11.0) within the major (consisting of at least 8 major courses plus thesis, excluding prerequisites); and
- An honors quality thesis with a grade of A or A- and when required the oral defense must include at least one Scripps reader.
In a self-designed major, it would be the decision of all faculty members involved in that self-designed major to agree to an honors program and to determine the criteria for honors provided the student meets the Scripps minimum requirements for honors as follow:
- GPA requirement of A- (11.0) within the major (consisting of at least ten major courses plus thesis, excluding prerequisites); and
- An honors quality thesis with a grade of A or A– and when required the oral defense must include at least one Scripps reader.
Scripps minor requirements must be met if the minor is offered at Scripps.
- Students planning to complete a minor are encouraged to declare the minor formally at the end of the sophomore year by completing a junior minor form, including the approval of the student’s Scripps adviser and a professor in the designated minor area of study. A senior minor form must be submitted to the Registrar no later than the deadline to add classes in the last semester of enrollment. Satisfactory completion of a minor will be measured by passing grades in all required courses with a minimum grade point average of 6.0 (C) or higher.
- Requirements for minors at Scripps College are defined by departments and are listed in the catalog under the descriptions of the departmental programs. All minors consist of a minimum of six semester courses or their equivalent. Up to one course may double count between a major and a minor or between two minors (but not also a major or General Requirement). Students may exceed this double counting limit if the total number of unduplicated courses on the approved declaration form for each minor is at least five courses. At least half of the minor courses must be taken at Scripps, except where this regulation is specifically waived.
- A few off-campus minors in disciplines not offered at Scripps are available at Pitzer or Pomona Colleges. The requirements for the off-campus minor must be met, but in all instances must consist of at least six semester courses or their equivalent. The above double counting limits apply. The minor form must be approved by the off-campus faculty minor adviser as well as the Scripps adviser and major adviser.
- Students may petition to the Committee on Academic Review for a self-designed minor, provided that the minor consists of at least six semester courses or their equivalent. The student will work closely with a Scripps academic adviser in at least one of the fields chosen for this special minor in order to plan the course of study. This self-designed minor is to be approved by a faculty member in each relevant field, Scripps adviser and major adviser(s), as well as by the Committee on Academic Review.
Double Counting Courses
- The Core may not double count to meet any other General Requirement.
- No course may fulfill more than two requirements. Examples: Social Science plus Race and Ethnic Studies; Social Science plus major. A course may meet only one of the four Breadth of Study requirements (i.e., Fine Arts, Letters, Natural Sciences, or Social Sciences).
- A course used to demonstrate minimum language or mathematics competency may be double counted toward major(s) and/or minor(s) under the conditions outlined below.
- Up to two courses (including prerequisite courses) may double count towards each of two majors (but not also a General Requirement). Students may exceed this double counting limit if the total number of unduplicated courses on the approved Senior Major Form for each major (excluding senior seminar and thesis) is at least six courses.
- Up to one course (including prerequisites) may double count toward each of two minors (but not also a General Requirement). Students may exceed this double counting limit if the total number of unduplicated courses on the approved declaration form for each minor is at least five courses.
- Up to one course (including prerequisite courses) may double count between a major and a minor (but not also a General Requirement). Students may exceed the above double counting limits if the total number of unduplicated courses on the approved Senior Major Form is at least six courses and the total number of unduplicated courses on the approved minor declaration form is at least five courses.
Residence Requirement for Graduation
A minimum of 16 courses, evidenced by a minimum of two years in regular, full-time attendance, must be completed in residence at Scripps, including the final eight courses. Affiliated off-campus study programs meet residence requirements. Normally, students may enroll in an affiliated off-campus study program for a maximum of two semesters; transfer students usually are allowed only one semester in an affiliated off-campus study program. A petition for an exception to residence requirements will be considered by the Committee on Academic Review.
Degree Completion and Commencement Participation
Students may participate in commencement exercises upon satisfactory completion of all degree requirements as verified by the Registrar. Satisfactory completion is demonstrated by a minimum grade point average of 6.0 (C) in the major(s), minor(s), and cumulatively and at least a C in WRIT 050 . The cumulative grade point average is calculated only on courses taken at The Claremont Colleges or on an affiliated off-campus study program (study abroad) as a Scripps student. The grade point average in the major(s) and minor(s) excludes grades received in courses prerequisite to the major(s) or minor(s). Students are normally expected to complete degree requirements published in the catalog and/or addendum of their first semester of enrollment.
Degrees are granted effective October 18 for students completing requirements over the summer, effective January 20 for students completing requirements during the fall semester, or effective in May at the end of the spring semester. Students completing requirements the preceding October and January will be invited to participate in the subsequent May commencement activities.
Women and men who have chosen late in their academic lives to pursue a career in medicine are invited to apply for admission to the Scripps Post-Baccalaureate Premedical Program. Please refer to the Special Programs section of this catalog.