Missouri State University

General Baccalaureate Degree Policies and Requirements

General degree policies

Majors and options

A major is an academic program of study. A major may be divided into options or emphasis areas that consist of a core area of study plus selected topical courses related to the specified option. The diploma will list the major and not the option. For example, a student majoring in Marketing with an option in Advertising and Promotion will have Marketing listed on the diploma. Both the major and the option title will be listed on the student transcript.

Multiple degrees and/or multiple majors

Students may pursue multiple majors and/or degrees at the same time. The first major will determine the students’ department and dean for various administrative purposes. 

Definition of multiple degree: A student who completes all requirements for two or more different degrees (e.g., Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Science) in the same semester will be awarded multiple degrees and will receive multiple diplomas.

Definition of multiple major: A student who completes all requirements for two or more majors under the same degree in the same semester will be awarded one degree and will receive one diploma. If one or both of the majors is non-comprehensive and requires a minor, the other major will fulfill this requirement.

Multiple use of courses

Courses may be counted toward meeting the requirements in more than one area (major and minor, two majors, major and general education requirements, etc.) unless specifically prohibited by the academic departments and so stated in the catalog.

Courses completed for graduate credit cannot be applied toward an undergraduate degree program, nor can courses taken for undergraduate credit be applied toward a graduate degree program.

Subsequent undergraduate degree

Definition of subsequent undergraduate degree: A student who returns or transfers to the University to obtain a subsequent undergraduate degree after being awarded the first degree.

General Education Requirements. Students whose first baccalaureate degree was from Missouri State or another regionally accredited college or university will be considered to have met all General Education requirements.

Major/Minor Requirements. Such students must satisfy all requirements for a major that is in a different field of study from any previously earned major. Any minor requirements are waived for students who have earned a Bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited college or university. If the student chooses to pursue a minor, however, that minor may not be in the same field of study as any previously earned major or minor.

Specific Degree Requirements and General Baccalaureate Degree Requirements. Such students must satisfy all specific degree requirements and all general baccalaureate degree requirements.

Teacher certification

A Bachelor of Science in Education degree may be granted without a recommendation for a teaching certificate if the graduate does not present evidence of good moral character as determined by the Professional Education Committee.

Time limit

Credit for courses completed in the major more than eight years before the student’s date of graduation may be disallowed by the major department.

Bachelors degree requirements

Catalog of graduation 

Students shall satisfy the General Education, General Baccalaureate Degree Requirements, and Scholastic Honors requirements in effect upon first enrollment as a degree seeking student at Missouri State. Major and minor requirements and other specific degree requirements in effect at the time the student is admitted to that program shall be satisfied. Candidates for the Bachelor of Science in Education degree must meet all Missouri state teacher certification requirements in effect at the time the certificate is granted.   If a student re-enrolls after an absence of one calendar year or more from Missouri State, requirements in effect at the time of readmission as a degree seeking student must be satisfied.   Any undergraduate student who re-enrolls at Missouri State within one year of being released from military assignment shall be allowed to continue under the same “catalog of graduation.” Any undergraduate student who had been admitted to a degree program or any graduate student with an approved program of study prior to mobilization and who re-enrolls within one year of being released from military assignment shall not be subject to any additional degree requirements enacted in the interim.   Transfer students from Missouri public colleges and universities may follow the general education and general baccalaureate degree requirements in effect at Missouri State when they first enrolled (or re-enrolled after an absence of one calendar year or more) as degree seeking students at the institutions from which they transferred. The general education catalog year for these students will be established at the point of admission on the basis of this policy. Students who elect instead to follow the general education and general baccalaureate degree requirements in effect during their first semester may do so by notifying the Office of the Registrar. 

Constitution study requirement

No student may graduate without complying with the state law known as Senate Bill No. 4, 1947 (Mo. Rev. St. Sec. 170.011), which provides that students must be “given regular courses of instruction in the Constitution of the United States and of the State of Missouri, and in American history including the study of American institutions.”

Students may meet this requirement by completing the American Studies requirements under general education. Transfer students who have had a course in American government (PLS 101) that did not include a study of the Missouri constitution must enroll in PLS 103. 

Credits and grade point average requirements

All candidates for any baccalaureate degree must meet the following minimum credits and grade point average requirements:

  1. Completed a total of at least 125 semester hours of credit.
  2. Completed 40 hours of upper division credit (courses numbered 300 and above.)
  3. Attained at least a 2.00 GPA on all courses attempted at Missouri State.
  4. Attained at least a 2.00 GPA on all college courses attempted both at Missouri State and in transfer.
  5. Attained at least a 2.00 GPA on all Missouri State and transfer courses used to meet the General Education requirements.
  6. Attained at least a 2.00 GPA on all courses attempted at Missouri State that are required in the major and all other courses bearing the prefix of the major*.
  7. Attained at least a 2.00 GPA on all courses attempted at Missouri State that are required in the minor and all other courses bearing the prefix of the minor*.

*Excluding those courses which are designated by the departments as not counting toward the major and/or minor.

Candidates for the Bachelor of Science in Education degree are also required to meet the following additional grade point average requirements. All GPA requirements include both Missouri State and transfer grades.

  1. Attain at least a 2.50 GPA on all courses attempted at all colleges attended.
  2. Attain at least a 2.50 GPA in the certificate subject area (major field of study).
  3. Attain at least a 2.50 GPA in any additional certificate subject area.
  4. Attain at least a 2.50 GPA in the professional education courses.
  5. Have no grade lower than a “C” in all professional education courses

Note: Many majors and minors require GPA's higher than the above stated minimums for admission, graduation, or both. Such requirements are listed as a part of the major or minor requirements.

University exit exam

All students admitted into a baccalaureate degree program during or after the fall 1993 semester must complete a nationally normed test designed to assess basic academic knowledge and skills.  Students must take this University Exit Exam prior to graduation and upon the completion of 90 or more credit hours.  Completion of the University Exit Exam is tracked by student enrollment in GEN 499 (University Exit Exam). Each section of GEN 499 is tied to a date and time when the University Exit Exam is offered. If the student completes the exam, the student is awarded a “pass” grade. Students who take the exam but submit an answer sheet that is invalided or incomplete will receive a “not pass” grade. If the student fails to complete the exam, the student is dropped from the corresponding section of GEN 499 by the assessment office and must register for another available section.

Students who complete more than one baccalaureate degree are only required to take the exam one time.  Requests for exceptions to the exam requirement due to extreme hardship should be directed to the assessment office. Information regarding the University Exit Exam may be obtained online at http://www.missouristate.edu/assessment/.

Residence requirements

A candidate for a degree who transfers credit from another college must meet the following residence requirements:

  1. Complete a minimum of at least 30 hours of courses administered by the Springfield Campus.
  2. Complete at least 12 hours of upper division credit in the major in courses administered by the Springfield Campus.
  3. Complete at least 6 hours of upper or lower division credit in the minor in courses administered by the Springfield Campus.
  4. Complete at least 20 out of the last 30 hours in courses administered by the Springfield Campus. Students who have completed at least 90 hours in courses administered by the Springfield Campus, may petition the department head of their major to take less than 20 out of the last 30 hours on the Springfield Campus. If this petition is granted, written approval from the department head must be forwarded to the Office of the Registrar prior to the semester of graduation.
    Exceptions to 20 out of the last 30 hours requirement are made for the following: a) Medical Technology majors when the last year is completed at an approved school of Medical Technology, b) Radiography majors when the last two years are completed at an approved school of Radiologic Technology, c) Animal Science major. when the last two years are completed at the University of Missouri School of Veterinary Medicine, d) students who participate in a Missouri State study away or exchange program approved by the Office of International Programs, and e) students in the West Plains Campus completion degree programs.

Appeals for exceptions

Students who wish to appeal for exceptions to the general baccalaureate degree requirements as stated above should submit an appeal to the Degrees Committee. The procedure for submitting an appeal is maintained by the Office of the Provost.