University Bulletin 2022-23

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College of Arts and Sciences

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Arts & Sciences Administrative Staff (251) 460-6280
Dean Andrzej Wierzbicki
Associate Dean Eric J. Loomis
Assistant Dean Robert L. Coleman
Director of A&S Academic Services Crystal Thomas
Assistant Director, A&S Academic Services Kelly Taylor
Graduation Specialist Shylonda Stewart

College of Arts and Sciences website

College Mission Statement

The College of Arts and Sciences is the intellectual center of the University of South Alabama and is the foundation for establishing and building the quality of the University’s academic programs. In the College of Arts and Sciences, students receive broad exposure to all areas of academic inquiry, as well as in-depth knowledge in their chosen field of study. The College provides every undergraduate student at the University, regardless of major, with the fundamentals of a liberal arts education to enhance students’ knowledge and create an atmosphere in which students develop their own critical thinking, communication skills, and the tools with which to carry out independent inquiry. Such an education promotes a heightened sense of intellectual curiosity, an appreciation of the values and accomplishments of the sciences, arts and humanities, and a sense of awareness and responsibility for the well-being of their society.

In achieving these educational goals, the College of Arts and Sciences will:

  • offer a full range of subjects in the humanities, fine arts, social sciences, mathematics, and the natural sciences 
  • encourage breadth of learning and training in the fundamentals of scholarship
  • create and apply knowledge in the arts and sciences through dedicated research, teaching, scholarship, and creative works
  • maintain a community of teachers and scholars devoted to the preservation and discovery of knowledge and its transmission to students and to the public
  • encourage and support the application of knowledge in service to the University, the Mobile metropolitan area, and the wider society
  • emphasize the regional uniqueness of southwest Alabama, including its cultural heritage, its natural environment, and its strategic location as a port city on the Gulf of Mexico
  • prepare students to participate in the larger world beyond the region by giving them an awareness of the complexity of global issues and contexts
  • prepare students for meaningful and productive careers and contribute to the development of an educated work force responsive to the needs of the region


The College of Arts and Sciences offers the following undergraduate degrees:

Department Degree
Advertising and Public Relations B.A.
Anthropology B.A.
Art and Art History B.A., B.F.A.
Biology B.S.
Communication B.A.
Chemistry B.S.
Criminal Justice B.A.
Digital Film and Television Production B.A.
English B.A.
Environmental and Sustainability Sciences B.S.
Geography B.S.
Geology B.S.
History B.A.
International Studies B.A.
Journalism B.A.
Marine Sciences B.S.
Mathematics and Statistics B.S.
Meteorology B.S.
Modern Languages and Literature B.A.
Music B.M.
Philosophy B.A.
Physics B.S.
Political Science B.A.
Psychology B.A.
Social Work B.S.W.
Sociology B.A.
Theatre B.A.

Options exist for students to earn dual degrees, double majors, or complete more than one minor. Students interested in these options should contact the office of A&S Student Academic Services at (251) 460-7233 for details.

Degree requirements are to be satisfied with Arts and Sciences courses unless otherwise specified. Credits earned in the Developmental Studies Program or the Department of English as a Second Language (ESL) cannot be used to satisfy degree requirements.

At least 30 hours of course work, which represents 25% of the required 120 hours, must be at the upper division level in order to fulfill the University’s residency requirement. At least 15 of the 30 upper-division hours must be in the major or concentration area. If a minor is required in the particular degree program, at least 9 (lower and/or upper-division) hours of courses in the minor must be completed at the University.

An overall grade-point-average (GPA) of 2.0 is required for graduation. In addition, a minimum GPA of 2.0 is required in the student’s major or concentration area.

Majors in Arts and Sciences may be completed with a minimum of 120 semester hours unless designated otherwise.


Mathematics Proficiency

All incoming students who do not have ACT scores and require MA 112 or higher for their major must take the Mathematics Placement Test administered in the department.

Calculators and other outside resources are not permitted during this exam.

Students should complete the exam at least 48 hours prior to coming to campus for orientation. If the exam is not taken, the students will be blocked from registering for all mathematics courses. To take the test, students will need their JAG number and the e-mail address provided by the USA Office of Admissions. The result of the test will be e-mailed to the student's JagMail e-mail address. Students should keep a copy of their Mathematics Placement Test results to take to their academic advisor. Students should anticipate a 48 hour lag time between the time they take the Math Placement Test and the time they register.

Required ACT, SAT, or Math Placement Exam scores for entry into MA 112 or higher are viewable at the following link:

The Math Placement Exam schedule and sign-up instructions are available at:

Questions concerning the Math Placement Exam should be directed to the Math/Statistics Department (251) 460-6264. The PAWS registration system will enforce the placement and course prerequisites.

CAS 100: First Year Experience (2cr)

A course for first-year students majoring in the College of Arts and Sciences that assists with maximizing the student's potential to achieve academic success and to adjust responsibility to the individual and interpersonal challenges presented by college life. Taught in small groups, the course provides an introduction to the nature of higher education and a general orientation to the functions and resources of the University.

All first-time freshmen must successfully complete CAS 100: First Year Experience as a degree requirement. Students must enroll during their first term at USA, except for summer-entry students who may enroll in CAS 100 during their first summer or fall term.

Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Science

A minimum of 120 hours in prescribed and elective courses is required for the Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science degrees in the College of Arts and Sciences.

Candidates for these degrees must meet the general education requirements listed below, as well as completing the requirements for a major and minor field. All Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Science degrees within the College of Arts and Sciences require a minor. Requirements for a major or minor are listed under the departmental headings. Major programs may require no more than 47 hours in a single discipline. A student may count no more than eight hours of directed study toward a degree. Two courses (6 semester hours) may count toward both the major and minor only after approval of the student's advisor, chair of the major department, chair of the minor department, and the dean.

Majors and Minors in the College of Arts and Sciences

Undergraduate students pursuing a Bachelor of Arts or a Bachelor of Science degree in the College of Arts and Sciences are required to have a major and a minor. The exceptions to the minor requirement are: students pursuing a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree, or a Bachelor of Music degree.

Requirements for a major are determined by the department and are listed under the departmental listing in this Bulletin.  At least 15 hours of upper-division course work in the major must be satisfactorily completed in residence at the University of South Alabama. Courses are chosen in consultation with departmental advisors. Substitutions for stated requirements must be approved by the Chair of the department and the Dean of the college.

Requirements for a minor are determined by the department and are published in this Bulletin. At least 9 hours of (lower and/or upper-division) course work in the minor must be satisfactorily completed in residence at the University of South Alabama.
Students may not choose a major and a minor in the same department unless they are clearly separate disciplines that fall administratively under a single department and have been approved by the Dean. Two courses (6 semester hours) may count toward both the major and minor only after approval of the student's advisor, chair of the major department, chair of the minor department, and the Dean.  Students electing to complete two minors may not count related courses from one minor toward the fulfillment of the requirements for the other minor.

Minors offered by Arts and Sciences students include: Air Force Studies, Anthropology, Applied Linguistics, Art, Art History, Biology, Classics Communication, Chemistry, Composite Sciences, Criminal Justice, Dramatic Arts, English, Foreign Languages and Literatures, Forensic Sciences, Geography, Geology, History, Interdisciplinary Studies (African-American Studies, Gender Studies, Gerontology), Jewish and Holocaust Studies),  International Studies, Marine Science, Mathematics, Meteorology, Military Science, Music, Museum Studies, Philosophy, Philosophy and Medicine, Physics, Political Science, Psychology, Related Sciences, Religion, Sociology, and Statistics.

Students who take two minors cannot count the same or equivalent courses toward both minors.

Double Major

Undergraduate students pursuing a Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science degree may elect to fulfill the requirements for two majors simultaneously. To do so, the student must declare a primary major and a secondary major on the Declaration of Major form that is filed with the Registrar’s Office. The student’s academic file will be maintained in the department of the primary major. Students who complete the requirements for a second major are not required to complete a minor.

Students may count related courses from one major toward the fulfillment of the requirements for the other major, provided that the total number of credit hours counted toward both majors does not exceed twelve. Required courses for a major that are not in the major discipline do not count toward the twelve hour limit. At least one major must be in the College of Arts and Sciences. Written permission of the student’s academic advisors, the Chair or Director of each major department or program and the Deans of all involved colleges is required for all courses double-counted.

Bachelor of Fine Arts in Studio Art

The degree requirements and admission requirements to the B.F.A. program in studio art are listed under the Department of Visual Arts.

Bachelor of Fine Arts in Theatre Art

The requirements for the B.F.A. degree in theatre arts are listed under the Department of Dramatic Arts.

Bachelor of Music

The requirements for the B.M. degree in performance and music education are listed under the Department of Music.

Bachelor of Social Work

The requirements for the B.S.W. degree in social work are listed under the Department of Sociology, Anthropology, and Social Work. 

Programs in Other Colleges and Divisions

Students in the College of Arts and Sciences may elect to pursue a second major or a minor in other colleges and divisions of the University.

Students seeking dual degrees or second degrees must have a course of study approved in advance by the student's advisor, department Chair, and the Dean.

Transient Course Credit

Students enrolled in the College of Arts and Sciences must receive prior approval from the Chair of the Department and the Dean before enrolling in courses at another domestic institution. Approval will not be granted for transient enrollment in a course during a semester in which the requested course is available at USA. Students must have earned a “C” in English 101 before transient approval is granted.  If these conditions are met, transient course approval may be granted in one or more of the following circumstances:

    A student is not a resident of the area and leaves USA to return home for one or more semesters;

    A student has met the residency requirements for the University and moves to another area prior to completing all degree requirements;

    A student is scheduled to graduate and the course is not offered at USA during their final term.

Failure to obtain prior approval may result in a loss of credit for the course work. This policy applies to transient courses offered at domestic institutions only.

International Programs

The College participates in a number of international programs: summer sessions in England, and Mexico; student exchange programs and seminars in France, Germany, Russia and Greece; as well as the International University Consortium.

For further information about these programs, contact the Department of Foreign Languages and Literatures, or the Office of International Programs.

Teacher Certification for Arts And Sciences Students

Students in the College of Arts and Sciences may participate in the program leading to teacher certification in middle and high school education.

See College of Education and Professional Studies for Teacher Certification Requirements.

Cooperative Education Program

Students in the College of Arts and Sciences may participate in the Cooperative Education Program, which is described in a later section of the Bulletin. For further information, write to the Director, Career Services Center, University of South Alabama, Mobile, Alabama 36688-0002.


Graduate Studies

The College of Arts and Sciences offers programs leading to a Master of Arts degree in Communication, English, History, or Sociology; a Master of Public Administration degree; a Master of Science degree in Biology, Marine Sciences, Mathematics, or Psychology;  a Master of Music degree in Music, a Master of Science in Environmental Toxicology, a Master of Fine Arts degree in Art, and to Doctor of Philosophy degrees in Marine Sciences and Clinical and Counseling Psychology.

Requirements for Admission

Each applicant to a graduate program must meet the general Graduate School standards stated in the Graduate School Admission Requirements and Procedures. Individual programs may have additional requirements for admission and may be restricted because of capacity limitations. Consult departmental descriptions for additional information.