Undergraduate Degree Requirements

This is an archived copy of the 2023-2024 catalog. To access the most recent version of the catalog, please visit http://catalog.shsu.edu.

Undergraduate Degree Requirements (General)

All degrees contain the following MINIMUM requirements:

Total Hours. A minimum of 120 hours total (developmental courses not included) is required of each degree. Some degree programs may require additional hours above the 120 minimum.

Advanced Hours. (3000-4000 level courses) 42 semester hours of advanced work must be completed for a degree. Courses taken from a community college do not transfer for advanced credit.

Minimum Residence - All college level courses completed at SHSU are considered "in residence" including when taken at SHSU - The Woodlands Center, as an online course, or at any pre-approved off-campus sites (example: Student Teaching courses completed at a pre-approved school district).  Note: Courses previously completed through correspondence are NOT considered "in residence" hours.  Developmental courses are not considered college level hours for the completion of the degree.

Required hours completed "in residence" for an undergraduate degree:

  • At least 25% of the credit hours required by the degree (e.g., 30 semester credit hours for a 120 credit hour program) of which 24 semester credit hours must be advanced (3000 or 4000-level),
  • 12 semester credit hours (SCH) of advanced (3000 or 4000-level) coursework within each major field of study,
  • 6 semester credit hours (SCH) of advanced (3000 or 4000-level) coursework within each minor field of study (if applicable).

    Note: Previously completed correspondence courses DO NOT satisfy residency requirements.

Grade Point Average (GPA) - Degree Requirements

A minimum 2.00 GPA is required in the following:

  • Overall GPA (SHSU coursework and transfer coursework. This is considered the cumulative grade point average.)
  • SHSU Major GPA (some programs may require a higher GPA)
  • Overall Major GPA (SHSU coursework and transfer coursework)
  • SHSU Minor GPA (some minors may require a higher GPA)
  • Overall Minor GPA (SHSU coursework and transfer coursework)

Academic Credit and Institutional GPA

  • Academic credit for additional major or minor coursework shall be applicable to institutional grade point average in order to achieve minimum required grade point averages for graduation purposes. Academic credit for additional major and minor coursework beyond course requirements as notes on a student’s degree plan may be used for institutional grade point average purposes and does not increase the total required hours for the degree program.

Degree Works/Degree Plan

The specific degree course requirements will be listed in the student’s degree plan. A degree plan outlines academic requirements for successful completion of a specific degree. Students are encouraged to use the Student Advising & Mentoring (SAM Center) for advice on degree plans. Students may view their degree plan via My Sam using DegreeWorks located under the Student Tab.

The Notes in Degree Works contain important information placed by either academic advisors, Registrar's Office, or academic departmental staff, including academic deans. Students should review the Notes in Degree Works regularly.

The university provides advisors through the Student Advising & Mentoring (Sam Center) to assist students with registration to ensure appropriate progress toward completion of degree requirements.  However, the student bears sole responsibility for assuring that all degree requirements are fulfilled.

Students are placed under a degree and major based on the selection at the time of application to Sam Houston.  Through an advisement session at the Student Advising & Mentoring (Sam Center), a student has the option of changing their degree, major, minor, or adding an approved concentration.  In addition, a later catalog may be selected provided the requirements are met not later than six years from the effective date of the selected catalog. Students are responsible for knowledge of the detailed requirements of the degree plan, including any special requirements of the major and/or minor department.   Some academic departments may require approval of the change of major.

Please, visit the Student Advising & Mentoring (Sam Center) website for contact information to make an appointment with an academic advisor.

Second Degree

Any student with a completed baccalaureate degree from Sam Houston State University or any other regionally accredited institution may earn a second baccalaureate degree differing in basic academic subject area and concentration from the first degree earned by completing the following requirements:

  • A minimum of an additional 30 semester credit hours in residence above the total hours required for the first degree, of which 24 must be advanced hours
  • Any additional requirements of the department and college approving the respective degree plan
  • Any additional University requirements associated with the second degree sought
  • Completing two majors under the same baccalaureate program in the same term, does not constitute a second degree
  • With academic chair and dean approval, a student might be permitted to pursue a second degree with a major in the same discipline as a previously awarded minor.

University Academic Policy Manual and Student Guidelines

Sam Houston State University’s Academic Policy Manual and Student Guidelines provide specific information pertaining to the educational procedures of the University and student conduct. Copies of these publications may be viewed at the Reference Desk in the Newton Gresham Library or online.