Dual Degrees/Double Majors

Date Revised: May 11, 2020
Date Effective: August 27, 2020

Policy Statement

Undergraduate

Kent State University students may be able to simultaneously pursue two associate or bachelor’s degree programs through either a double major or a dual degree. A double major combines two majors within the same degree (e.g., Accounting and Finance majors in the B.B.A. degree). A dual degree combines two majors within different degrees (e.g., Architectural Studies major in the B.A. degree and Construction Management major in the B.S. degree).

Certain major combinations are not permitted by the colleges. Students interested in a double major or dual degree must consult with their advisor (and an advisor for the second major if in a different college) to determine whether the desired combination of majors is permitted. Declaring a double major or dual degree in the same department or school is allowed only when the department or school offers different majors. For example, a student may declare the Spanish major and the French major even though both majors are offered by the Department of Modern and Classical Language Studies. Some departments or schools may allow a student who earned a Bachelor of Arts degree to return to complete a Bachelor of Science degree in the same major.

Because of their generalist nature, the Associate of Technical Study degree (Individualized Program), Bachelor of Science degree in Educational Studies and Bachelor of Integrative Studies degree may not be earned as a double major or dual degree with another major and cannot be earned as an additional degree after another degree at the same level has been earned previously.

In addition, due to the similarity in program requirements, the Associate of Arts and the Associate of Science degrees may not be earned concurrently with each other; nor may either be awarded as an additional degree when one has been earned previously.

Students cannot be on academic probation and declare another major or degree at either the associate or bachelor’s level.

Students pursuing a double major or dual degree concurrently or subsequently must be officially admitted to the programs and complete all requirements for both in addition to the university’s undergraduate and residence requirements.

Graduate

Graduate dual degree programs allow students to simultaneously pursue two graduate degrees at the same level (two master’s degrees or two doctoral degrees) or two graduate degrees at different levels (one master’s degree and one doctoral degree).1 Rather than sequentially completing first one degree and then the other, the amount of time required to complete both sets of degree requirements may be reduced by completing the programs in a coordinated way. Graduate dual degrees are distinct from combined degree programs, which allow students to simultaneously pursue two degrees at the undergraduate and graduate levels (see policy on Combined Bachelor’s/Master’s Degree Program in the University Catalog for details).

Coursework common to both programs must constitute a well-planned and meaningful part of each program. A minimum of 60 percent of the total credit hours required for each degree program must be unique to that degree program, after which some courses may be double counted. The percentage of unique hours that must be completed in each degree program may vary from the 60 percent minimum only when the graduate dual degree program has been formally approved by the university.

Graduate credit transferred from another institution is limited to a maximum of 12 credit hours across both degree programs. Doctoral-level courses may be applied toward a master’s degree. Under no circumstances may master’s-level courses be applied toward a doctoral degree.

The maximum time limits for completing degree requirements and graduation apply to each degree individually (see the policy on Academic Standing–Graduate Student in the University Catalog for details).

Kent State University allows for both informal and formal dual degree programs, as described below.

Informal Dual Graduate Degree Programs

Students may simultaneously pursue two graduate degrees in different programs through an informal dual degree program (those that have not received official university approval). Informal dual degree programs offer students the flexibility to double-count some coursework, given that the two programs in question approve the arrangements. Once admitted to both degree programs, the student and advisor(s) must plan an integrated course of study. The plan must be approved by both programs and filed with the respective college(s). Culminating experiences (e.g. capstone courses, theses, dissertations, applied projects) and comprehensive examinations cannot be shared.

Formal Dual Graduate Degree Programs

A formal dual degree program is one that has been officially approved by the university. It has one curriculum established by two programs resulting in the completion of two graduate degrees at the same level. The following programs have been formally approved by the university:

Reason for Policy

Policy enforces uniform standards for students seeking to pursue multiple degree programs, either concurrently or subsequently.

Procedures

Undergraduate Dual Degrees and Double Majors

Undergraduate students request the second major/degree through the Manage My Program application in FlashLine and review program requirements in their GPS degree audit.

Graduate Dual Degrees

An applicant who is not currently a graduate student at Kent State University must submit an application and pay an application fee for each program.

Students who are currently enrolled in one graduate program at Kent State University must submit an application and pay an application fee for the second program, indicating on the application that the intent is to complete both degrees rather than to transfer from the first to the second program.

If applying to a formal degree program (see list above), the applicant/student should indicate the specific dual-degree concentration in the program.

If admitted to an informal degree program, the student and advisor(s) must plan an integrated course of study. The plan must be approved by both programs and filed with the respective college(s).

Forms/Instructions

Additional Resources

Frequently Asked Questions

There are no FAQ associated with this policy.

Definitions

Degree: an award for completion of a course of study at a specific level designated by the customary titles of associate, bachelor’s, master’s, specialist or doctorate. Examples: Associate of Arts degree, Bachelor of Arts degree, Master of Arts degree, Doctor of Philosophy degree.

Double Counting: allowance of a course (and its credit hours) to count toward the requirements of two programs.

Double Major: combines two majors with the same degree; e.g., Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology and the Bachelor of Arts degree in Sociology.

Dual Degree: combines two majors with different degrees, e.g., Bachelor of Arts degree in Fashion Merchandising and Bachelor of Business Administration degree in Business Management.

Formal Dual Graduate Degree: dual graduate degree program that has been officially approved by the university; the curriculum for the dual degree is published in the University Catalog.

Informal Dual Graduate Degree: an agreement between two program areas to allow a student admitted to both degree programs to double-count specific coursework toward both.

Major: a set of requirements for completion of a degree as authorized by the Kent State Board of Trustees and the Ohio Department of Higher Education. Examples: Geography major, Nursing major, Public Health major.

Related Information

Revision History

Amended August 2020: Revised to redefine "double major," eliminate the 140-credit hour requirement for dual degrees; eliminate additional 15 credit hours for concurrent or subsequent associate degrees; provide more information on certain major/degree combinations that are not permitted; restrict students on academic probation from declaring multiple majors; and include master's/doctoral degrees in the graduate dual degrees policy.

Amended August 2015: Revised to reflect university minimum semester credit hours for a degree was decreased, from 121 to 120 for one major or double majors. Minimum semester credit hours for dual degrees remains at 140. Disclaimer on dual concentrations within one major is added.

Amended August 1995: Revised to reflect university minimum semester credit hours for a degree was decreased, from 129 to 121 for one major or double majors and from 148 to 140 for dual degrees.

Amended August 1995: Distinction between double majors and dual degrees are made, with no minimum credit hours for double majors beyond what is required for one degree (129 semester credit hours). Minimum semester credit hours for dual degrees remains at 148.

Amended August 1988: Application fee for graduation is eliminated.

Amended August 1979: Revised to reflect the university’s conversion from quarters to semesters; total semester credit hours for two degrees is increased, from 147 (220 quarter credit hours) to 148.

Amended September 1974: Disclaimer added that some degree combinations are not permitted. Students are now allowed to declare and earn two degrees simultaneously. Required additional coursework (30-35 quarter credit hours) is eliminated. A deadline and fee are added for applying for graduation.

Amended September 1965: Allowance on qualifying for a degree in absentia is removed.

Amended June 1952: New allowance on qualifying for a degree in absentia after three years of work at Kent State University.

Amended June 1948: Total quarter credit hours for two degrees is decreased, from 234 to 220. Additional coursework is revised from one year to 30-35 quarter credit hours. Now recommends declaration in second degree as early as possible, changing it from junior to sophomore year. Second degree must be earned after first degree (no awarding of two simultaneously).

Amended June 1942: Revised to reflect the university’s conversion from semesters to quarters (now requiring 234 quarter credit hours); procedures added for students to seek college dean approval for a dual degree before the start of junior year.

Effective June 1939: Establishes a policy requiring students to complete 156 semester credit hours and one year (or six summer terms) of residence beyond four years to earn two degrees in any two colleges or two degrees in the same college.