The following graphic outlines the four primary degree requirements. Please read the text below for further details. Questions regarding major requirements should be directed to a student’s academic advisor or chair of the major department. Questions regarding College degree requirements should be directed to the Office of  the Registrar and/or a student’s Class Dean.

The four degree requirements for an Amherst College degree as outlined in the text on the page


Requirements for earning an Amherst College degree include:

Completing 32 Amherst College courses with an earned passing grade.

  • Some students may be eligible to graduate with 31 courses, as long as they follow the withdrawal process as outlined by Student Affairs. No student may graduate with a failure or withdrawal from a course during their senior year. Before earning their degree, seniors will be required to make up any deficiency earned during their last two semesters.
  • Only two sets of matching ½ courses will be counted towards the total courses required for graduation. 
  • Students complete the course requirements over four years (eight semesters) of residence. Transfer students must complete 32 full semester courses or their equivalent, at least 16 courses at Amherst, and must be in residence at Amherst for at least two years (four semesters).
  • Transfer credit from other institutions will only count towards an Amherst College degree if:
    • A student is making up an earned deficiency and has the approval of the Class Dean and Registrar’s Office to take a specific course for this purpose.
    • A student has taken an educational leave on an Amherst College approved study away program, and has has the specific courses approved for transfer credit by the Registrar’s Office.
    • A student matriculates as a transfer student to Amherst College and the Registrar’s Office has approved specific courses to count towards the Amherst College degree.
    • No pre-matriculation transfer credit is allowed to count towards the Amherst College degree for students who matriculate as first-years.
    • Transfer credit will only be accepted in four course increments, unless the transfer credit is required due to an earned deficiency. For example, if a student takes the equivalent of five courses while on an approved study away program, only four courses will count towards the total credits for graduation. Additionally, transfer students will only be able to transfer in courses in multiples of four. 
    • Note that transfer credit may not be used to advance class year or expected graduation date.

Enroll in and successfully complete a First Year Seminar.

  • All students must enroll in and successfully complete a First Year Seminar for those who matriculate as first years.

Maintain a minimum grade point average.

  • The minimum grade point average requirement for graduation is a C-, listed as a 6 on the 14 point scale in the College catalog.

Successfully complete the requirements for at least one  major.

  • All students must declare a major by the end of the second semester of the sophomore year. Students are only eligible for graduation when they have completed all major requirements as defined by the department, including a satisfactory performance in the comprehensive evaluation.
  • The degree Bachelor of Arts cum laude, magna cum laude, or summa cum laude (Degree with Honors) is awarded to students who have successfully completed an approved program of Honors work with a department or program. Other students who satisfactorily meet requirements as indicated below re­ceive the degree, Bachelor of Arts, rite.