University Degree Requirements, Graduation, and Commencement
- University Degree Requirements
- Policies Affecting Degree Requirements and Graduation
- Policies and Procedures for Student Discipline, Academic Integrity, and Academic Grievances
- Graduation with Honors
UIC has several degree requirements that apply to all students pursuing an undergraduate degree, regardless of major. University degree requirements serve as minimum standards; many colleges set higher standards than the minimum required by the university. A student must always fulfill the degree requirements outlined by the major college.
University degree requirements bring a level of consistency and quality to all undergraduate degrees awarded at UIC. By setting standards that are met or exceeded by the colleges, the university ensures the integrity of all the degrees it awards.
University degree requirements include the following:
- General Education Requirements (see the General Education section of the catalog)
- Grade Point Average Requirement
- Enrollment Residence Requirement
- Semester Hour Requirement
The minimum university degree requirements are outlined below. Important Note: Students should consult their college section of the catalog for specific information on how to meet the degree requirements set by the college.
Students should consult the General Education section of the catalog for a complete description of the university’s General Education Program as well as their college/department sections of the catalog to determine how to fulfill the General Education requirements within their degree program.
All candidates for a degree must have at least a 2.00/4.00 grade point average in all work taken at the University of Illinois at Chicago, in all work taken in the major field, and in all work accepted by the university (transfer work plus work taken at UIC). A student may be required to meet higher minimum grade point averages in certain degree programs.
Students should consult their college section of the catalog for more information on the grade point average requirement for their degree program.
The enrollment residence requirement must be satisfied. In all academic units except the College of Business Administration, either the first 90 semester hours or the last 30 semester hours of university work must be taken at UIC. In the College of Business Administration, the last 30 semester hours must be taken at UIC. In addition, at least one-half of the semester hours required in the student’s major area of study must be completed at UIC. Concurrent attendance at the University of Illinois at Chicago and another collegiate institution, or enrollment during the summer at another institution, when approved by the student’s college, does not interrupt the UIC enrollment residence requirement for graduation. Credit earned through CLEP and proficiency examinations, and through the University of Illinois Guided Individual Study and extramural courses, neither applies toward nor interrupts the enrollment residence requirement. Under exceptional circumstances, the enrollment residence requirement may be waived by the dean of the student’s college upon petition of the student.
Enrollment Residence Requirement in the Minor
A student must complete at least one-half of the course work required for the minor field in enrollment residence at the University of Illinois at Chicago.
Credit approved for transfer from an accredited community or junior college is limited only by the provision that the student must earn at least 60 semester hours required for the degree at the University of Illinois at Chicago or at any other accredited four-year college or university, except that the student must meet the enrollment residence requirements that apply to all students for a degree from UIC.
The minimum number of semester hours required for a degree is 120. The required number of hours varies within the colleges, schools, and degree programs. The student should refer to the section of this catalog that covers the college and curriculum to determine the hours required for a particular degree. The college office also provides this information.
All admission requirements for the student’s chosen degree program must be met.
All deficiencies in entrance credit must be removed prior to graduation.
If a college, school, department, or program changes the name of a major or curriculum or the title of a degree program as a result of reorganization, continuing students in the affected major, curriculum, or degree program will be transferred to the newly titled/named major, curriculum, or degree program.
Students must meet all requirements of their chosen college and degree program.
When degree requirements change, continuing students and those whose attendance has been interrupted for no more than two years may choose either the new requirements or the degree requirements in effect at the time the students were admitted. Students whose attendance has been interrupted for more than two years are responsible for meeting the requirements of the University and college as well as the degree program in effect at the time of the student’s reenrollment.
If a curriculum is eliminated in its entirety, or if required courses are eliminated from a particular curriculum, the department, school, or college reserves the right to offer substitute courses as deemed appropriate by the unit’s faculty. Students may have to fulfill new requirements when external accrediting or certifying agencies change their professional requirements.
Students may repeat a course to increase their knowledge of the subject matter. There are circumstances under which repeating a course is advisable and to a student’s advantage. There are also circumstances where repeating a course may disadvantage a student and narrow a student’s options. Some colleges require students to discuss any plan to repeat a course with their academic advisor before they register to repeat the course.
Courses with A or B grades may not be repeated. Normally, courses with a C grade may not be repeated. Courses with D or F grades may be repeated once without written permission. In all cases, the original grade for the course and the grade for each repeat will appear on the transcript. Only one registration for the course counts toward the total number of credits required for graduation. A course cannot be repeated after receiving credit in a course for which the repeat course is a prerequisite.
To repeat a course more than once requires written permission from the student’s college dean. Students who have been dismissed may not appeal on the grounds of intention to repeat courses. Certain courses may not be repeated; students should consult their college before repeating a course.
Undergraduate Grade Point Average Recalculation Policy
- Colleges may elect to implement this policy as early as the end of the junior year, or as late as the final semester during degree certification.
- The college will evaluate each student unable to graduate because of an academic grade point average deficit. The deficit may occur in the UIC GPA, the program GPA, or both.
- The academic record is examined so as to determine if courses, deemed appropriate by each college, with grades of F or grades of D, may be excluded from the student’s grade point average.
- A total of four courses may be excluded, with one course excluded at a time until the necessary quality points are obtained to meet the UIC GPA requirement and/or degree program minimum GPA. The semester hours associated with excluded course grades will not count towards graduation requirements.
- Only the college can initiate course exclusions, and only in consultation with the evaluated student.
- Students may not request exclusions.
- Only courses taken at UIC may be converted as part of this policy.
- This policy only applies to undergraduate degree seeking students.
- All courses taken and all grades will remain on the official transcript.
- The grade exclusion policy does not apply to courses failed as the result of a student conduct hearing.
- In cases where these procedures would impact program accreditation, licensure or similar, colleges may use their discretion to allow the policy. Colleges, departments, and programs may have discretion in choosing courses that impact the student’s major.
The following general definitions are offered for informational purposes. Students should consult their college section of the catalog for information about the options available to them and the policies associated with those options. In addition, students should check with an academic advisor before pursuing one of these options.
A double major consists of one bachelor’s degree with two majors. A double major does not ordinarily have, as a requirement, additional semester hours beyond those required for a single major. To double major, students must complete all of the requirements for two majors within one college. A double major is generally not permitted when there is substantial overlap in course work between the two majors.
Double degrees consist of two bachelor’s degrees completed concurrently. Double degrees require a minimum of 30 additional semester hours beyond those required for the first degree. To receive double degrees, students must formally request acceptance into the second degree program and complete all requirements for each of the degree programs. Double degrees can be within one college or across two colleges. Students who obtain double degrees receive a diploma for each degree. Double degrees are generally not permitted when there is substantial overlap in course work between the two degree programs. No more than two bachelor’s degrees may be awarded concurrently.
Second Bachelor’s Degree
A second bachelor’s degree is available only for students who have already been awarded a bachelor’s degree at UIC or another institution. A second bachelor’s degree requires a minimum of 30 semester hours at UIC after completion of the first degree. Students must apply to, be admitted, and complete the requirements for the second bachelor’s degree. A second bachelor’s degree is generally not permitted when there is substantial overlap in course work between the first and second degrees. Students pursuing two degrees concurrently must follow the policies for Double Degrees, not Second Bachelor’s Degree.
Earned credits in Military Science courses are applied toward partial fulfillment of degree requirements subject to the following:
- Military Science courses approved for general education are excluded from these limitations.
- Credits earned in 200-.300-,and 400-level MILS courses are applied as general elective credits and fulfill semester hour requirements for undergraduate degrees.
- Colleges may determine the applicability of MILS courses to satisfy college-specific requirements of majors, minors, concentrations, selectives, or electives.
- Colleges may allow a maximum of three semester hours of credit for Military Science courses at the 100 level. Colleges may allow an additional one hour of credit in basic military science for a minimum of six months of extended active duty in the in any branch of the armed forces of the United States.
- These rules apply to courses in naval science (NS) courses offered to UIC undergraduates and appearing on a UIC transcript but taught at the Illinois Institute of Technology (Illinois Tech).
3030 Student Services Building (SSB)
The mission of the Office of the Dean of Students is to provide a student-centered, learning environment that offers support, advocacy, and resources that contribute to student success. This is accomplished through a number of services available directly to students:
- Student Advocacy Services
- Student Ombuds Services
- Student Conduct Process
- Student Veteran Affairs
- Student Legal Services
Additionally, office staff serve as advisors to student governments on campus and help support the University community through programming and consultative support for students, faculty, and administrators.
The Student Disciplinary Policy is recognized as the standard process for handling incidents of student misconduct. The Student Disciplinary Policy is independent from and may be implemented in addition to any other university document, policy, or process, which may exist and relates to matters of student behavior. This policy governs all regional sites of the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC).
The Student Disciplinary Policy addresses both academic misconduct (such as plagiarism, cheating, or grade tampering) and behavioral misconduct (such as theft, assault, sexual assault, stalking, domestic violence, underage drinking, and drug use). It applies to the on-campus and off-campus conduct of students and Registered Student Organizations (RSO) in direct connection with any required educational activity or co-curricular experience (e.g., a professional practice assignment, internship, field trip, student teaching assignment, research, student leadership conference, social event, etc.) and any activity or event sponsored, conducted, or authorized by the university.
The Student Disciplinary Policy may also be utilized to address student conduct occurring off campus that affects the interests or environment of the university community and/or individual members or specific groups within that community including, but not limited to, behavior that:
a. Constitutes a violation of local, state, or federal law (e.g., all alcohol and or/drug violations and other repeat violations of any local, state, or federal law).
b. Poses a threat to the health or safety of the student or others.
The main purpose of the student conduct process is to ensure that students receive due process, which means that every student should have a fair opportunity to express their side of the story before any decisions are made about their conduct case. The student conduct process is designed to be educational in nature. The Student Disciplinary Policy is housed in the Office of the Dean of Students and is available online.
To report non-academic misconduct, please use the Student Misconduct Incident Report. To report academic misconduct, please use the Academic Integrity Incident Report. For more information on filing an incident report to initiate the student conduct process, please contact the Office of the Dean of Students at (312) 996-4857 or online.
As an academic community, the University of Illinois at Chicago is committed to providing an environment in which research, learning, and scholarship can flourish and in which all endeavors are guided by academic and professional integrity. All members of the campus community—students, staff, faculty, administrators—share the responsibility of ensuring that these standards are upheld so that such an environment exists. Instances of academic misconduct by students, and as defined herein, shall be handled pursuant to the Student Disciplinary Policy.
Students are expected to comply with the UIC Guidelines for Academic Integrity. Violations of the UIC Guidelines for Academic Integrity include, but are not limited to:
- Cheating: Either intentionally using or attempting to use unauthorized materials, information, people, or study aids in any academic exercise; providing to, or receiving from another person, any kind of unauthorized assistance on any examination or assignment.
- Fabricating Academic Materials: Unauthorized reproduction, falsification, lack of attribution, or invention of any information or citations in an academic exercise.
- Facilitating Academic Dishonesty/Plagiarism: Intentionally or knowingly representing the words or ideas of another as one's own in any academic exercise.
- Offering Bribes, Favors, or Threats: Bribing, attempting to bribe, promising favors to, or making threats against any person with the intention of affecting a record of a grade or evaluation of academic performance; any conspiracy with another person who then takes, or attempts to take action on behalf of, or at the direction of the student;
- Examination by Proxy: Taking or attempting to take an exam for someone else is a violation by both the student enrolled in the course and the proxy or substitute;
- Grade Tampering: Any unauthorized change, attempt to change, or alteration of grades;
- Submitting Nonoriginal Works: Any unauthorized submission or attempt to submit any written work, written in whole or in part, by someone other than the student.
The Student Disciplinary Policy outlines other applicable policies, rules, guidelines or procedures established by the university, college, academic unit, or instructor (e.g., in a course syllabus) related to academic integrity. The following may be considered violations of those standards:
- Professional Standards: Conduct which violates any commonly recognized or generally accepted professional standards (as defined by the student’s college) including, but not limited to, unacceptable conduct in clinical, practicums, internships, or off-campus training sites. Note: A representative from the student’s college will be invited to any conduct meeting where this violation is alleged to explain the college’s professional standards;
- Fabrication of Research: Manipulating or making up research materials, equipment or processes, or changing or omitting data or results such that the research is not accurately represented in the research record;
- Unauthorized Collaboration: Working with others without the express permission of the instructor on any submission, whether in draft or final form, to meet course requirements (including a paper, project, take-home exam, computer program, oral presentation, or other work). Unauthorized collaboration also means using any work submitted from a previous semester of a course by another student to meet course requirements. Collaboration between students will be considered unauthorized unless expressly part of the assignment in question, or expressly permitted by the instructor.
- Abuse of Academic Materials: Destroying, defacing, stealing, or making inaccessible library or other academic resource material.
- Participation in Academically Dishonest Activities: The university defines participation in academically dishonest activities as any action taken by a student with the intention of gaining an unfair advantage over other students. Examples include, but are not limited to:
- Misrepresenting oneself or one’s circumstances to an instructor;
- Purchasing a prewritten paper(s) or assignment(s);
- Selling, loaning, or otherwise distributing materials intended for the purpose of cheating, plagiarism, or other academically dishonest acts;
- Destroying, altering, stealing, or forging someone else’s work, library materials, laboratory materials, academic records, course syllabi, or examination/course grades;
- Misrepresenting academic documents, including forgery, alteration, or knowing misuse of graded examinations, quizzes, grade lists, or official records of documents, including, but not limited to, transcripts from any institution, letters of recommendation, degree certificates, change of grade slip, examinations, quizzes, or falsifying academic information on one’s resume.
The Student Academic Grievance Procedures define an administrative process through which students may seek resolution of complaints or Grievances regarding academic standing during their enrollment at UIC.
Student Academic Grievance Procedures Eligibility
- These Procedures may only be used by Students:
- with a Complaint or Grievance regarding academic standing during their enrollment at UIC.
- about an academic decision made about them by an agent (e.g., faculty or staff member, administrator, committee) of the University of Illinois at Chicago that directly and adversely affects the Student.
- These Procedures may not be used:
- in deciding or appealing issues relating to student discipline under the purview of the Senate Student Judiciary Committee;
- in resolving any complaint, request, or question involving student records subject to campus procedures established under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) and contained in the Guidelines and Procedures Governing Student Records;
- by applicants for admission;
- in review of any decision by any university administrator or properly constituted board or committee relating to allocation of resources to support any unit’s projects or programs.
A complete description of the procedures is online.
The UIC Senate and the University of Illinois Board of Trustees establish the criteria under which students are awarded department, college, and university honors. Campus standards for college and department honors are described below. Currently applicable standards appear in the appropriate college and department sections of this catalog.
Departmental Distinction shall be based on grade point average and on other criteria considered appropriate by the department in which the major is completed and by its college. The transcripts carry the designation distinction, high distinction, or highest distinction, as appropriate.
General College Honors
General College Honors shall be awarded to a specific percentage of students, to be decided by the college, but not to exceed 15 percent of the students graduating in the college. The diploma and transcript carry the notation of such an award. Graduation with College Honors benefits the student when being considered for a graduate fellowship, job placement, or some other competitive opportunity.
The following criteria have been revised and are in effect beginning with students participating in Spring 2015 commencement ceremonies.
University Honors are awarded to graduating students who satisfy UIC hours residency requirements with a UIC grade point average that falls within the following honors categories:
- Summa cum laude: 3.90 and above
- Magna cum laude: 3.75 to 3.89
- Cum laude: 3.50 to 3.74
University Honors will be awarded based on UIC GPA at the end of the term prior to the term of graduation for commencement ceremony purposes. UIC will make permanent adjustments to student transcripts and diploma related to University Honors based on final grades.
A degree from the University of Illinois at Chicago is awarded by action of the Board of Trustees on recommendation of the appropriate college and the Senate. Degrees are awarded three times a year, at the end of the fall, spring, and summer terms. The student receives the degree in a stated curriculum.
Students completing all degree requirements for their declared major will need permission from their college to enroll in additional undergraduate courses. After the degree has been awarded, students must submit a new application for admission to UIC in order to continue studying at the university.
The colleges hold their own commencement ceremonies at the end of the spring semester. At each college ceremony, undergraduate, graduate, and professional degree students are individually recognized as degrees are conferred. Graduates from the preceding summer and fall terms and current spring semester are eligible to participate in the Spring Commencement ceremonies.
Check with the college for eligibility requirements. Additional information on commencement, including the schedule of ceremonies, maps and parking, and cap and gown information, is online.
Diplomas for both undergraduate and graduate students are mailed approximately three to four months after the degree award date.
Change of Name
To be reflected on the diploma, name changes must be submitted to the Office of the Registrar, 1200 Student Services Building, by the last day of the degree expected term.
If the original diploma is destroyed, a duplicate diploma may be ordered by contacting the Office of the Registrar, 1200 Student Services Building. There is a fee for the replacement diploma, and it bears the signatures of the current officials of the state and university.