Graduation Requirements

Graduation Requirements 

Associate Degree 

Minnesota State University Moorhead offers the two-year Associate in Arts (A.A.) degree in Liberal Arts. The degree requires:

  • At least 60 semester credits, including at least 22 credits in courses taught by faculty awarding the degree (MSUM courses).
  • A GPA of at least 2.00 in all MSUM courses applied to Liberal Arts and Sciences Curriculum (LASC), a 2.00 GPA in all courses applied to the A.A. degree, and a 2.00 in all courses taken at MSUM.
  • Students who earn the A.A. degree must complete the LASC requirements of 14 courses minimum (42 credits minimum) that includes English 101 (or an approved alternative) and two additional writing intensive (W) courses.
  • Students who are admitted to and complete the associate degree and who decide to continue with a baccalaureate program, may do so by meeting all additional requirements for the bachelor’s degree, including the restriction against using more than two LASC courses from the student's major rubric to fulfill the LASC requirements.
  • Completion of the application for graduation, with the advisor approval, and submission to the Registrar's Office.

Bacccalaureate Degree

  • At least 120 credits are required for all baccalaureate degrees. At least 40 semester hours of upper division courses (300 / 400 level) are required.
  • Accumulation of 120 credits alone does not result in a degree. Credits must be earned as part of a baccalaureate program approved by the Board of Trustees of the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities system. Students are responsible for making certain their coursework fulfills requirements for a major in their designated degree.
  • Candidates must have a GPA of at least 2.0 for all credits applied to the degree program. Students should check with the major department to find out specific graduation GPA requirements.
  • Freshmen and transfer students who have not completed an approved general education curriculum will satisfy the University’s general education requirement by completing the requirements of the Liberal Arts and Sciences Curriculum (LASC). Completion of LASC requires a minimum of 14 courses (42 credits minimum) with a cumulative average GPA of at least 2.0 for all courses applied to the requirement. No more than two LASC courses from the student's major rubric may be applied to the LASC requirements. Transfer students must have an average GPA of at least 2.0 for all courses applied to LASC.
  • All students entering with less than 32 transferrable credits must complete five writing intensive (W) courses at MSUM. Refer to the Registrar's Office webpage for a list of approved courses.

    • ENGL 101 (or an approved alternative).
    • One 300/400 level writing intensive course designated by the student's major.
    • One writing intensive course in LASC.
    • Two writing intensive courses at the 200-level or higher, only one of which may hold the rubric of the student's major.

  • All students entering with 32 or more transferable credits must complete two writing intensive courses at MSUM:
    • One 300/400 level writing intensive course designated by the major.
    • One writing intensive course at the 200-level or higher.

    If a student has multiple majors, they must fulfill the university writing-intensive course requirements as well as the upper level writing requirement of each major.     

  • All students entering with less than 24 transferrable credits must complete a freshmen seminar course.
  • The degree program must include at least one major with a GPA of 2.0 or above. Certain majors may specify a higher GPA.
  • No minor is required, but a GPA of at least 2.0 must be attained in any minor presented for graduation.
  • Candidates must be enrolled as a resident student for at least 30 credits taught by the faculty awarding the degree (MSUM courses), and eight of the last twelve credits must be awarded by MSUM. At least twelve credits must be earned from the MSUM department which awards the major.
  • Undergraduate students may apply graduate credits taken at MSUM towards their undergraduate degree with approval from the Office of Graduate and Extended Learning and their undergraduate program. Graduate level courses may be transferred from sending institutions towards undergraduate degree requirements with approval from the student's undergraduate program.
  • An application for graduation must be submitted to the Registrar's Office prior to the semester in which candidates expect to complete graduation requirements. Students must secure the approval of each major advisor before submitting the application for graduation. Candidates for graduation must have official transcripts from all previous post-secondary institutions on file in the Registrar's Office. No student will be eligible for graduation while in special or non-degree status.
  • Candidates for graduation with a teaching major shall fulfill all teacher licensure requirements.

First Year Seminar Graduation Requirement 

All new entering undergraduate students are required to successfully complete a 1-credit hour First Year Seminar. Successful completion of the course is a graduation requirement. New students who have completed 24 or more transferable credits will be exempt from this requirement.

Multiple Majors and Multiple Degrees

Students completing two or more majors with different degree designations will be awarded the more appropriate degree, except that the B.S. degree shall be given if one major is in a field of professional teaching.

Students who seek more than one baccalaureate degree (different designation, i.e. B.A. and B.S.) will be required to complete at least 30 credits beyond the minimum of 120 or 128 credits applied to the first degree.

Students who hold a previous baccalaureate degree from Minnesota State University Moorhead or from another institution whose degree is recognized by MSUM may earn an additional bachelor’s degree (degree name must be different than the initial degree, i.e. B.A. and B.S.) by:

  • Completing at least 30 resident credits at MSUM;
  • Meeting all MSUM course requirements for the degree program, including at least six credits from the MSUM department awarding the degree and including an approved major and teacher education requirements for any teaching major; and
  • Maintaining at least a “C” average in all studies at MSUM.

Students with a previous Minnesota State University Moorhead degree may add another major or minor by completing any additional requirements as certified to the Registrar by the department offering the major or minor and by the education department in the case of any teaching major.

Students completing two majors must meet departmental requirement for each major.

Four-Year Graduation Guarantee

Minnesota State University Moorhead guarantees that all undergraduate students wishing to graduate in four years will be provided necessary courses as required by the University in the student’s selected major field of study. Any required courses needed beyond four years will be provided to the student tuition-free. See the Dean of the College for more information.


The graduation guarantee is only effective if the following conditions are met:

  • All fall semester freshmen wishing to participate in the graduation guarantee program must complete the guarantee application form and officially declare a major before the drop deadline of fall semester.
  • All participating students must be qualified to begin without remedial courses as determined by the department and the university.
  • All participating students must register for classes each semester and have their class schedules approved by their official departmental advisor.
  • All participating students must meet any program GPA or grade requirements.
  • All participating students must successfully complete an average course load of 16 credits, or 15 credits for B.A., each semester (32 credits, or 30 credits for B.A./year).
  • Participating students selecting a major requiring a minor must choose the minor no later than the end of their first year.
  • Any courses failed or repeated will void the guarantee.
  • Any change in major, options, or minor will void the guarantee.
  • Required internships and research projects are beyond the scope of the guarantee (except for chemistry research).

Posthumous Baccalaureate Degree

When a student has made considerable progress towards the completion of a degree, Minnesota State University Moorhead will extend to the campus community, family and friends an opportunity to share in the student’s academic success. The following minimum requirements must be met to award a posthumous baccalaureate degree.

  • The student must be enrolled at MSUM at the time of death (excluding summer), or their continuous enrollment was interrupted by their injury, illness, military service, or other extenuating circumstances.
  • The student must have completed at least 70% of the credit hour requirements of an academic program.
  • The student must have completed at least twelve credits from the department which awards the major.
  • The student must have a minimum 2.0 cumulative GPA or meet the GPA requirements of their program in the case of programs with higher GPA requirements.
  • The student must be in good academic standing and not on university disciplinary probation.