Degree and Program Definitions


A major represents a degree-seeking student's primary field of study which embodies a structured plan of study requiring a minimum of 30 credit hours. The major appears on a student’s official transcript. Courses taken to fulfill requirements for a major cannot also be applied to fulfill the requirements of a minor.

Declaring a Major

All students are required to declare a major when they reach 60 credit hours. Students transferring 62 credit hours or more are not required to declare a major before admission, but must do so during their first term at UM-Dearborn.

Double Major

Students who want a double major must meet all requirements in two fields and must officially declare, and be approved for, both majors. Courses that satisfy major and/or cognate requirements for more than one field can be applied simultaneously to both fields. The business studies major may only be a second major.


A bachelor’s degree at the University of Michigan-Dearborn is an award given for the completion of a series of courses and other requirements and requires at least 120 credit hours along with a focus of study within a major that is at least 30 credit hours for its completion.

For the definition of a second/dual degree and concurrent degree please see Sections Dual/Concurrent Degree Requirements.

  • Bachelor of Arts (AB)
    A Bachelor of Arts degree usually encompasses an array of courses drawn from the liberal arts disciplines. The degree is intended to create a well-rounded program of study and should give students a broad perspective of the world through the study of diverse topics.
  • Bachelor of Science (BS)
    A Bachelor of Science degree has a strong focus of study within the science and mathematics disciplines. The degree emphasizes technical knowledge but, with the requirement of a strong general education program in the Dearborn Discovery Core, it also requires students to think broadly about their education. At a minimum, a Bachelor of Science degree shall have at least 60 credit hours of coursework (at least 20 credit hours of which are in upper-level courses 300 or above) within the sciences and mathematics disciplines.


A concentration is a structured plan of study within a major. The number of credit hours required for a concentration varies, but is included within the required credit hours for the major. If successfully achieved, the concentration appears on a student’s official transcript.


A minor is an approved, coherent concentration of academic study in a single discipline, involving substantially fewer hours of credit than a corresponding major.

Students in most majors may pursue one or more minors and, upon successful completion of the prescribed course work, have that accomplishment officially recognized on their transcript through established verification procedures that all requirements for the minor have been met and the college of the student's major allows the official recognition of the minor.

Certain major and minor combinations may be deemed inappropriate either by the college or department of the major or minor. Courses taken as part of a minor may not count toward both the major degree and the minor. Courses taken as cognates can, however, be counted towards the requirements for a minor.

  • College of Arts, Sciences, and Letters
    A single disciplinary minor requires a minimum of 12 credit hours of upper-level coursework. No more than three credit hours of transfer credit, field placements, internships, seminars, S/E-graded courses, and independent study/research may be applied to any 12 credit hour minor. Note that a few interdisciplinary majors do not offer minors.
    A minimum grade point average (GPA) of 2.00 is required in the courses applied to a minor. The grades (including E’s) in all upper-level courses in the discipline of the minor will be reflected in the minor GPA. Courses elected pass/fail (P/F) cannot be used in a minor. Courses used in a minor cannot dually be used in a major.


An undergraduate certificate is a non-degree credential, less extensive than a degree program, which is designed to provide students with a specialized set of courses that supplement a primary field of study, area of expertise, or provide an interdisciplinary experience within a defined body of knowledge. All students are required to complete a minimum of nine (9) credit hours in order to receive a certificate and must meet the specific GPA requirements established for the certificate they seek to achieve. The certificate appears on a student’s official transcript.

Students can be admitted into a certificate program if they are enrolled in an undergraduate degree program; have earned a bachelor’s degree; or have not earned a bachelor’s degree but would like to earn a certificate. Students may apply directly through the undergraduate non-degree admissions procedures.

Second Bachelor’s Degree

Applicants pursuing a second Bachelor’s degree must submit the Application for Undergraduate Admission and Scholarships and meet the same admission requirements as transfer students. Each of the four academic schools and colleges of the University have their own admission criteria:


Current Class Standing Criteria
CASL 2.50
COB 2.70
CECS 2.75
CEHHS 2.75