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The Undergraduate Calendar

Arts Degree Requirements

Bachelor of Arts

Bachelor of Arts Degree Requirements
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The Bachelor of Arts (BA) degree is awarded by the University of Waterloo upon successful completion of all program-level (your BA degree) and plan-level (your major) requirements.

Program-Level (BA) Requirements

Common to All Bachelor of Arts Degrees

Specific to the Particular Bachelor of Arts Degree

Note: Most courses have a 0.5 unit weight; see Unit Weights for specifics.   

  • Three-Year General Academic Program
    • 15 academic course units (30 courses),
    • minimum academic course units above the 100-level: 8.0.
  • Four-Year General Academic Program
    • 20 academic course units (40 courses),
    • minimum academic course units above the 100-level:
      • Liberal Studies: 12.5,
      • all major plans: 8.0.     
  • Honours Academic Program
    • 20 academic course units (40 courses),
    • minimum academic course units above the 100-level: 8.0.
    • for co-op:
      • minimum work-term units: 2.0,
      • minimum Professional Development (PD) units: 2.0.

Plan-Level (Major) Requirements

  • specific academic plan average and course requirements (see individual Academic Plan sections of the Faculty of Arts section of this calendar). 

Which Undergraduate Studies Academic Calendar does a Student Follow?

As per the University's regulations: Academic regulations and requirements listed in this Calendar apply to those students commencing their studies in their chosen program (Honours Arts or Arts and Business) in September 2017, January 2018, or May 2018. Students are normally governed by the regulations current for their academic plan at the time they commence studies in that plan, except when plan selection is required only after a specified period of registration. Students who select a plan within the time limits specified by the Faculty will be governed by the regulations current in the term in which they entered the Faculty.

In the Faculty of Arts, the above text means that students in Honours Arts or Arts and Business normally choose their major in their 1B term, and thus enter their 2A term with a declared major (e.g., Student A in table). Those students are governed by the degree and major requirements in the Undergraduate (UG) Calendar in effect when they started at the University of Waterloo.

If students do not declare their major until after their 2A term (e.g., Student B in table), they are governed by the major requirements in the UG Calendar in effect when they declared their major.

For Bachelor of Arts requirements (i.e., program-level requirements), students are always governed by the rules and regulations in effect in the UG Calendar when they first started in the Faculty of Arts.

Examples of Determining Which Undergraduate Calendar to Follow
Example Student  Start Program in 1A Declare Major for 2A  Declare Major after 2A  Program (BA)Requirements  Major Requirements 
Student A Fall 2017 Fall 2018 Not applicable  2017-2018 UG Calendar  2017-2018 UG Calendar
Student B Fall 2017 Not applicable  Fall 2019 2017-2018 UG Calendar 2019-2020 UG Calendar 

Exceptions to the above rules do exist. Students who are unsure of which UG Calendar they should be following should seek advice with their academic advisor or with the Arts Undergraduate Office. Students returning after a Failed - Required to Withdraw decision or after a lengthy absence must confirm applicable UG Calendar dates when resuming studies.

When degree requirements change, a student may continue to be governed by the set of regulations as specified in the preceding paragraph or can elect to be governed by the new set of regulations, unless the Faculty specifies otherwise when the change is introduced. Students must notify their advisor of this selection by completing and submitting a Plan Modification or Internal/Faculty Transfer Form.


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