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2012-2013 General Catalog
Southern Utah University
  Feb 21, 2018

Obtaining a Degree at SUU


Obtaining a Degree at SUU

Table 13.1 lists the types of degrees and certificates offered at Southern Utah University. Please refer to the individual department listings in Academic Programs  for details on specific programs of study.

Table 13.1
Types of Degrees and Certificates Offered at SUU
MAcc Master of Accountancy BA Bachelor of Arts
MBA Master of Business Administration BIS Bachelor of Interdisciplinary Studies
MEd Master of Education BS Bachelor of Science
MFA Master of Fine Arts BFA Bachelor of Fine Arts
MSW Master of Social Work
(University of Utah degree at SUU)
BSN Bachelor of Science in Nursing
MA Master of Arts in Professional Communication BM Bachelor of Music
MSFS Master of Science in Forensic Science AA Associate of Arts
MSSCP Master of Science in
Sports Conditioning & Performance
AS Associate of Science
MPA Master of Public Administration AAS Associate of Applied Science

Master Degrees

Degree requirements for master programs are administered through sponsoring colleges. Details on the programs are available by contacting the deans of the sponsoring schools or colleges

  • Master of Accountancy: School of Business
  • Master of Business Administration: School of Business
  • Master of Education with specialties in Education Administration Supervisory License, Gifted and Talented Education, Instructional Technology, Physical Science, Reading, Social Science: College of Education & Human Development
  • Master of Fine Arts in Arts Administration: College of Performing and Visual Arts
  • Master of Social Work: In cooperation with the University of Utah
  • Master of Arts in Professional Communication: College of Humanities and Social Sciences
  • Master of Science in Forensic Science: College of Science
  • Master of Science in Sports Conditioning & Performance: College of Education & Human Development
  • Master of Public Administration: College of Humanities and Social Sciences

Associate Degrees

Candidates for an associate degree must complete 24 of the final 30 hours at SUU or through classes offered by distance education through SUU.

Bachelor Degrees

Common requirements for all bachelor degrees include the following:

  1. A minimum of 120 semester credit hours in courses numbered 1000 - 4999.
  2. Of the minimum total hours, 40 semester hours must be in upper-division courses (3000 - 4999).
  3. Minimum GPA requirements for course work in the major and a minimum GPA of 2.0 overall in work taken at SUU as well as a combined SUU and transfer GPA.
  4. Completion of SUU general education, experiential education, major and/or minor requirements.
  5. Candidates for a bachelor degree must complete at least 30 credits at SUU or through classes offered by distance education through SUU. A minimum of 20 of these credits must be completed in upper-division courses, of which at least 10 credits must be completed in courses required by the student’s major. Each major may have residency requirements in addition to SUU requirements.
  6. Completion of specific requirements for one of the bachelor degrees offered by the university:
  7. A major, a composite major or dual major are required.

Undergraduate degrees available at SUU fall into one of two categories: associate degrees and baccalaureate degrees (also known as bachelor degrees). Depending on the program of study you choose, you will receive one of the degrees offered by SUU. For instance, if you major in biology, you will receive a Bachelor of Science degree. If you major in English, you will receive a Bachelor of Arts degree. If your degree is in Information Technology you will receive an Associate of Applied Science degree.

Traditionally, obtaining a baccalaureate degree has required four years or more of full-time study, while obtaining an associate degree has usually required two or more years of full-time study.

This section defines the minimum credit requirements for each degree available at SUU, as well as general policies applying to all degrees. After reading this section, you should turn go to Academic Programs  and Course Descriptions  where you will find additional requirements you must meet in order to obtain a degree.

These additional requirements (known as major requirements) are determined by the department or interdisciplinary program responsible for the degree you wish to obtain. From time to time, as your academic work progresses, review this chapter and other relevant sections of the catalog to verify that you are making satisfactory progress toward your academic goals and that you are meeting all the requirements for the degree you seek.

In addition to the information contained in this catalog, you should consult regularly with your academic advisor. Use this opportunity to discuss your academic goals and your plans for achieving them. If you have selected a major, you will work with an advisor in the academic College/School responsible for your major. If you have not selected a major, you will work with an advisor from the University College.

Academic and Career Advising

Academic and career advising are the processes by which students receive assistance in forming their educational and career goals and planning ways to achieve them. Based on students’ individual circumstances, personal development and skills, advisors provide information and support and foster a sense of responsibility in students to achieve their own goals. Academic advising includes:

  • ongoing contact with an informed and supportive representative of the campus community
  • degree planning, including introduction to and explanation of academic requirements, policies and procedures
  • exploration of necessary skills
  • referral to campus resources

SUU encourages you to seek academic advising whenever you have questions about academic planning.

Bachelor of Arts

This degree includes study in a foreign language which may be met by one of the following:

  1. A minimum of 16 semester credit hours in one foreign language.
  2. Documentation of language proficiency through an examination administered by the Foreign Languages & Philosophy department or through an examination by a recognized testing agency.
  3. Students for whom English is a second language may meet the BA foreign language requirement by verifying their proficiency in their (non-English) native language in cooperation with the language and literature department and verifying their proficiency in English as a second language by either passing an ESL exit test or passing the ESL special examination.
  4. Documentation of a minimum proficiency level in American Sign Language through an examination administered by any accredited institution of higher education. The signer must produce and maintain American Sign Language with continuity and precision.

Bachelor of Fine Arts in Art and Design

Please refer to the Art department requirements  in this catalog for admission and program requirements.

Bachelor of Fine Arts in Theatre/Bachelor of Music

Please refer to the Theatre Arts & Dance or Music department requirements  in this catalog for admission and program requirements.

Bachelor of Science/Bachelor of Science in Nursing

This degree includes successful completion of 12 credit hours in mathematics or laboratory science that emphasize scientific inquiry through experimental, analytical or statistical methods. It may include the completion of MATH 1010  (MATH 1010 will not count toward a general education requirement). Electives, General Education, or required courses in the major or minor may satisfy this requirement. The additional science/math courses requirement for the BS degree may be met by successfully completing courses in agriculture, astronomy, biology, chemistry, computer science and information systems, engineering, geology, mathematics, physics, nutrition and food science, and kinesiology (PE 3060 ).

Bachelor of Arts/Bachelor of Science in General Studies

The Bachelor of Arts/Bachelor of Science in General Studies degree provides maximum flexibility for the student who wishes to embrace a broad educational program of study while maintaining a focus on personal, career or professional goals.

This degree is a customized program in which the student, in collaboration with and under the guidance of experts in the field of interest, undertakes the responsibility for the design of an undergraduate degree with an emphasis in a selected area of study that reflects their particular personal and professional interests. The program is intended for independent-minded, self-directed adult learners who have completed a minimum of 90 college credits from a regionally accredited college or university. Except in extenuating circumstances and with permission of the Dean of University College, students who are within 15 credits of completing an established SUU major are not eligible to complete a Bachelor of General Studies.

Before a student is accepted into this degree program, they will propose a program of study consistent with their educational goals which is reviewed and approved by a faculty advisor and the Dean of the appropriate academic college or school, or his or her designee, in consultation with faculty from the college.  All approved plans will be required to have academic rigor and integrity; be consistent with the broad undergraduate competencies of the academic area granting the degree; and be in harmony with the career or professional goals of the student.  

Bachelor of Interdisciplinary (BIS) Studies Degree

Program Description

This degree serves students in an individualized academic program across diverse fields of study.  The Interdisciplinary Studies Degree was designed to allow students to develop, with directed faculty assistance and appropriate administrative approval, a composite major which is interdisciplinary and which is not currently an approved major at SUU.  While this program offering is intended to be somewhat flexible, no request will be approved unless the student candidate, faculty advisor, and BIS Program Coordinator have jointly planned and organized the proposed composite major which constitutes the Interdisciplinary Studies Degree.  This Proposed Program Outline should be submitted as early as possible in the student’s undergraduate career and must include all courses which are to constitute the composite interdisciplinary major as outlined below. Formal admission to the program is required. Students must submit an application to the BIS Program Coordinator. The application must include the proposed plan of study.  Students may contact the University College for more information.

Graduates from this degree program cannot be approved for state certification as a teacher.

Major Requirements

The BIS major requires students integrate two or more specific disciplines into a customized program of study, which is then linked together by a common core of classes designed to help students synthesize and communicate the relevance of the integration.  Specific numbers of credits are prescribed in each of the disciplines used for the program of study and course substitution is not allowed within the common core.  The BIS degree is housed in University College and has a program administrator who approves proposed programs of study.

Bachelor of Interdisciplinary Studies, B.I.S.

Two options exist for the 44 to 67 credit hours required in the composite major:

  1. The student must take at least 17 credit hours in each of two different disciplines at SUU, (the total of the two disciplines equaling 44 or more credits).
  2. The students must take at least, respectively, 17, 10, and 7 credit hours from at least three different disciplines at SUU (the total of the three disciplines equaling 44 or more credit hours).

General Education Core

See General Education 

  • Core Course Requirements 16-17 credits
  • Knowledge Areas Requirements 16 credits

University Requirements

Major Requirements

  • 51 total credits
    • 9 credits from BIS Core
    • 42 additional credits from one of two tracks (described below)
    • Minimum 30 upper division credits (6 from the BIS core and 24 from the chosen disciplines)
    • Program of study approved by BIS Program Coordinator
    • Formal admission to the program required

BIS Core (Foundation core) 9 Credits

Track 1 – Integrated Studies

  • Students integrate two distinct disciplines equally
  • 21 credits in each discipline
  • Minimum of 12 upper division credits per discipline

Track 2 – Thematic Studies

  • With consultation from faculty, students chooses courses from multiple disciplines that effectively inform the topic of their BIS program of study
  • 42 credits approved by Program Coordinator

Electives (33-34 credits)

  • To graduate, students will need an additional 33-34 credits. Please consult with an academic advisor to determine how these credits can best be completed to compliment the student’s area of interest.

Total Credits, B.I.S. degree: 120

Additional Information

One BIS option in the Department of Agriculture and Nutrition Science has received formal approval. (See Agricultural Science and Industry, B.I.S. )

Other degrees in Interdisciplinary Studies may be generated in other disciplines. Contact appropriate Dean for information.

Majors for the Bachelor of Interdisciplinary Studies

Agricultural Science and Industry, B.I.S.  

Requirements for a Second Bachelor Degree

Students seeking a second Bachelor Degree must complete the following criteria:

  1. The first baccalaureate degree must have been previously conferred by a regionally accredited or otherwise recognized foreign college or university. The first and second baccalaureate degree may not be awarded during the same semester or term.
  2. A minimum of 30 semester hours must be earned in residence at SUU. These 30 credits represent academic work beyond the requirements for the first degree and therefore must be in courses that were not applied towards the requirements for the first degree.
  3. For students whose first baccalaureate degree is also from SUU, credits earned in conjunction with but beyond the minimum credits required for the first degree may be applied toward the second baccalaureate degree. However, a minimum of 18 semester hours must be earned at SUU after the first baccalaureate degree is conferred.
  4. All of the requirements of the second declared major must be fulfilled by a combination of previous course work and the required additional 30 semester hours.
  5. A minor may be required for a second baccalaureate degree as specified by the major department.
  6. Additionally:
    1. Foreign Language Requirement: If the first degree is not a Bachelor of Arts degree and the second baccalaureate degree is to be a Bachelor of Arts, the current SUU foreign language requirement must be met by some combination of courses taken as part of the first baccalaureate degree and/or courses taken in conjunction with the second degree.
    2. Science Requirement: If the first degree is not a Bachelor of Science degree and the second baccalaureate degree is to be a Bachelor of Science, the current SUU science requirement must be met by some combination of courses taken as part of the first baccalaureate degree and/or courses taken in conjunction with the second degree.
  7. The general education requirements associated with the second baccalaureate degree shall be considered satisfied if the first baccalaureate degree was conferred by a regionally accredited or otherwise recognized foreign college or university.

Declaring a Major

It is required that a student declare a major by the time the student has completed 75 semester credit hours.  

Academic Major

All baccalaureate degrees must be awarded with a major. Minimum requirements are 30 credit hours in the major. Major requirements are listed under department headings which should be consulted for detailed guidelines. Students seeking an emphasis within a degree will be required to complete all coursework appropriate to the emphasis, as directed by the department head. Composite majors require a minimum of 52 credit hours. A student seeking a dual major will be required to meet all the course work requirements and meet the total cumulative number of hours in terms of upper division, total number of hours for residency, total number of hours for graduation, and possess a minimum of 60 unduplicated credit hours in the dual major. Required hours for the major and minor requirements must also be unduplicated.

Academic Minor

Many degree-granting programs authorized by the University offer a formal minor. A minimum of 16 credits is required. Minor requirements are listed under department headings which should be consulted for detailed guidelines. Major and minor credit hour requirements must not be duplicated.

Associate of Arts/Associate of Science Degree in General Studies

SUU offers an Associate of Arts (AA) and an Associate of Science (AS) degree in general studies.

Candidates for either degree must:

  1. Complete a minimum of 60 credit hours (24 of the final 30 hours must be completed in residence).
  2. Achieve a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.0 for all work completed at SUU, as well as a 2.0 for a combined SUU/Transfer overall GPA.
  3. Complete all SUU general education requirements.

In addition:

  • For the AA degree: Complete eight hours of one foreign language, beyond the 1010 level. All foreign language classes must be completed with a “C” grade or higher.
  • For the AS degree: complete an additional course of at least 3 credits in an approved math or science discipline.

Students seeking this degree option will be advised in the Academic and Career Advisement Center.

Associate of Applied Science Degrees

SUU offers the Associate of Applied Science (AAS). The AAS requires 64 credit hours for completion.

Requirements for an Associate of Applied Science Degree

Candidates for an AAS degree must:

  1. Complete a minimum of 64 credit hours (24 of the final 30 hours must be completed in residence).
  2. Complete course requirements as outlined by the program degree. Achieve a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.0 for all work completed at SUU, as well as a 2.0 for a combined SUU/Transfer overall GPA. Refer to specific programs for GPA requirements in the field of study.
  3. Complete a minimum of 20-21 credit hours in general education as follows:
    1. A minimum of one course in each of the following core categories, Literacy (English), Quantitative Literacy (Mathematics) Information Literacy, and Computer Literacy.
    2. Three courses representing three of six remaining general education categories (fine arts, interdisciplinary, humanities, social and behavioral sciences, life science, and physical science)
    3. Students should check the department AAS requirements to determine if specific general education classes are recommended (ENGL 1010  will satisfy the English requirement for an AAS degree)

Requirements of a Certificate of Achievement

Candidates for a certificate of achievement must earn a minimum number of credit hours as specified under the particular program listing in the academic department offering that award.

Upper-Division Requirement for Bachelor Degree

Of the minimum total hours, 40 semester hours must be in upper-division courses. (Southern Utah University upper-division courses are numbered 3000 - 4999.) Credit from a two-year college will not count toward upper-division hours.

A minimum of 20 credits must be completed at Southern Utah University in upper-division courses, of which at least 10 credits must be completed in courses required by the student’s major.

Residency Hour Requirements for Bachelor Degrees

Candidates for a bachelor degree must complete at least 30 credits at SUU or through classes offered by distance education through SUU. A minimum of 20 of these credits must be completed in upper-division courses, of which at least 10 credits must be competed in courses required by the student’s major. Each major may have residency requirements in addition to SUU requirements.

Special Recognition of Academic Achievement

Faculty place a high value on the academic accomplishments of students. The university’s academic reputation and its stature in the community of universities are tied inextricably to the scholastic achievements of its students. The university’s rich and extensive resources provide a foundation of support for the realization of this goal. The university’s scholarly and dedicated faculty strive to challenge students’ intellectual development and their achievement of excellence.

The university community believes that student efforts in the attainment of high levels of scholarship deserve appropriate recognition. The university community officially acknowledges their achievement throughout the academic year.

Deans’ List

The Deans’ List is a roster of undergraduate students who have received very high grades during a particular semester of full-time enrollment. To be included in the Dean’s List you must meet both of the following criteria:

  • You must complete 15 or more credit hours in a given semester, excluding classes graded Pass/Fail.
  • For that semester, you must attain a semester grade-point average (GPA) of 3.6 or higher.

The Office of Marketing and Public Relations will submit Dean’s List names to the hometown newspapers of the students. There is no Deans’ List during the summer term.

Academic Honors Convocation

Each college/school holds a recognition evening during the spring. This is a well-planned event that provides time and positive recognition for those academic achievement awards honoring the students, parents, family members and friends.

Graduation Exercises

To be eligible for graduation at the end of a given semester a student must:

  • Submit the appropriate graduation paperwork to the Registrar’s Office
  • Pay the appropriate graduation fees
  • Receive approval for any transfer work to be applied to their program of study
  • Pay any outstanding account balances at the Cashier’s Office

The deadline for paperwork submission is October 15 for spring and summer semesters and February 15 for fall semester. The deadline for transfer credit approval is January 2 for spring and summer semesters and May 30 for fall semester. The deadline for account payment is April 15.

Students are held responsible for meeting all academic regulations and program requirements. All degree candidates are expected to attend graduation exercises in May. Those unable to attend must notify the Registrar’s Office prior to April 15.

Caps and gowns are required for all graduates participating in commencement exercises and should be ordered and paid for through the Cashier’s Office before February 1. Students who are within 12 credits of completing their degree requirements and who will complete those credits during the summer semester following commencement may elect to participate in the commencement exercises of the current or the following year.

Honors Program

The Honors Program provides enrichment opportunities for exceptionally talented, creative and academically committed students. See Honors Program .

Student/Faculty Scholarship Day

The Annual Student/Faculty Scholarship Day is intended to encourage and promote scholarship and creativity among faculty and students. The conference honors and showcases the cooperative efforts between members of both groups to enhance academic, professional and personal growth. With this end in mind, students and faculty are given the opportunity to present their research and other examples of scholarship and creativity through various mediums. Faculty and students also attend workshops centered on the theme of promoting undergraduate scholarship.

Individual Study

Any department offering a baccalaureate degree may offer Individual Study. Individual Study is a delivery mode for courses, listed in the official catalog, needed for a student’s progress toward graduation. If a student needs a course for graduation and a scheduling or other conflict necessitates that the student complete the course through individual study, the student will obtain a learning contract from the appropriate department. Additional course fees may apply.


Most departments offer academic credit for internships or cooperative education programs that provide on-the-job experience in an area of interest or in your major.  More information about internships is available from your department and the Career Café.  

Service Learning

Service-learning is a teaching and learning method that utilizes student involvement in community service to meet instructional objectives of a course. Students apply information from a class to authentic settings while addressing real needs in the community. In addition to relating theory to practice, this service enhances students’ sense of citizenry in a democratic society. Furthermore, service-learning supports and fulfills SUU’s institutional mission, vision, and core values.

Service-learning is not adding on “volunteer” activities to a course. Service is integrated so that students apply the knowledge and skills they are learning in class to meet identified community needs. The student’s service receives a grade similar to traditional assignments, such as written papers or exams. The service activity is incorporated as part of the “out-of-class” work expected per credit hour.

Reflection is an essential element of service-learning courses. It is a structured time for students to recount and analyze their experiences. Reflection can be accomplished in a number of different ways depending on the instructor’s preference. Some common forms of reflection include writing in journals, answering specific questions posed through a class list-serve or blog, papers, classroom discussions, and other in-class activities. Web-based materials can be found through SUU’s Community Engagement Center and the Service-Learning Committee.

Some courses at SUU are specifically designated as “service-learning”(“SL”) classes following established policies and criteria. Applications and course syllabi are evaluated through ongoing and systematic review by the Faculty Service-Learning Committee. For a course to receive an “SL” designation and to be listed as such in the SUU Schedule and Catalog, several criteria must be addressed:

  • The relation of service-learning to course subject matter is explained in the syllabus.
  • Service-learning components provide a needed service to individuals, organizations, schools, or other entities in the community.
  • Course requirements provide a method or methods for students to reflect about what they learned through the service experience and how these experiences relate to the subject of the course. Credit is earned for the learning and its relation to the course, not for the service alone.
  • Projects recognize the needs of the service recipients and provide an opportunity for recipients to be involved in the evaluation of the service.
  • Service-learning aims at the development of civic education of the participants, even though they may also be focused on career or graduate school preparation.
  • Course options ensure that no student is required to participate in a service placement that creates a religious, political and/or moral conflict for the student.

As service-learning develops at SUU, more courses in many disciplines and at all levels will be offered to students and indicated in the online Class Schedule and the Catalog. The university’s Service-Learning Committee will maintain a list of SL-designated courses and provide other information to assist students who wish to participate in service-learning opportunities. Please visit the Service Learning & Community Engagement web site at for more information.

Besides enrolling in service-learning courses in specific disciplines, undergraduate students have opportunities within schools and colleges to earn credit through a course entitled “Service Learning.” These courses will be designated by the college prefix followed by the number 2120 (e.g. HSS 2120 Service Learning ). This course is designed to take the student volunteer through the process of volunteerism and its application to themselves and their academic training through practical experience and critical reflection. This one-credit P/F course may be taken twice for credit, and can be offered in Fall, Spring, or Summer. For more information about these course options, students can contact the Dean of the respective college/school in which the course is offered.

Service-Learning Scholar Program

Students who consider service-learning a desirable way to learn may wish to participate in the Service-Learning Scholar Program. This program provides unique and challenging opportunities to any undergraduate who wishes to combine meaningful service with an academic program. Students meeting the requirements outlined below will be honored at graduation with a cord, recognition at the University Commencement program, recognition at their College Convocation program, and a transcript notation. Students and faculty involved would also be honored at an awards ceremony in the spring semester. Each student’s capstone project summary will be reviewed by a faculty committee and archived in the Sherratt Library.


  • 12 semester credit hours of service-learning coursework
  • Overall GPA of 3.0
  • 400 hours of community service
  • Capstone Service Project (CSP)

The CSP’s service portion should be a minimum of 40 hours and be related to the student’s academic major. Hours devoted to the CSP will count toward the 400 hour total. The capstone project will be overseen by a committee consisting of the following:

  • Faculty advisor in student’s major (selected by student)
  • Faculty member
  • Student Service Leader
  • Community Engagement Center Staff

To complete the program, each student is to submit a CSP summary (a minimum of seven typewritten pages) that includes an overview of the project’s development, an assessment of community need, and explanation of how the project addressed the need. The summary also will include a reflective component related to what the student learned through the service activity. This reflection piece may take a form appropriate to the CSP and the student’s area of academic study, e.g., prose, photography, interpretive dance, theatre, or other forms of expression. Two copies of the CSP summary must be submitted both on acid-free bond paper, for deposit in the archives of the Sherratt Library.

Letter of Completion

Letter of Completion upon finishing general education is available from the Registrar’s Office.