Degree Planning Guide: Requirements

DO NOT use the Degree Evaluation on Minerva or the myProgress tool to confirm your program or degree requirements. You must confirm that you have completed your program requirements with your departmental program advisors. OASIS advisors cannot answer questions regarding myProgress audit sheets.


Students completing a Bachelor of Arts degree at McGill University must successfully meet the following requirements in order to graduate (see table below). Carefully review this information, including the links to the official policies found in the eCalendarIn all cases, the eCalendar policy will prevail over any other interpretations.

BA Degree Requirements | Minimum Credit Requirements | Program Options | Program Advising| Exceeding the BA Degree Credit Requirement

BA Degree Requirements 

In order to graduate from the BA degree, all students must:

eCalendar Policy: Notes/Exceptions:

Complete 120 degree credits

Minimum Credit Requirement
  • Students who enter with Advanced Standing may be required to do fewer credits and should verify their Minerva record to determine how many credits they need to complete to be eligible to graduate
Complete the Freshman / Foundation Program, if entering in U0 Program Requirements  

Students who are in their U1 year of study (96 or fewer credits), must complete at least two different programs (i.e. at least one Major Concentration/Honours and one Minor Concentration) in two different academic disciplines offered to students in the Faculty of Arts.  These programs of study must be entered on Minerva during the listed periods for making program changes.

For example, if you are completing a Major Concentration in Psychology and a Minor Concentration in Behavourial Science, both programs are comprised of courses from the same academic department but both programs use the same subject code (PSYC). In such cases, you must complete the program requirements for a second program of study offered in a different academic discipline and subject code.

Consult this website for information on programs offered and departmental advising available to students in the Faculty of Arts.

Be informed about important faculty policies on course load, course overlap, taking courses outside of the Faculties of Arts and Science and selecting the Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory grading option.

DO NOT use the Degree Evaluation Tool on Minerva or MyProgess to confirm your program requirements since it may contain errors.

Program Requirements
  • No course may fulfill the requirements for more than one program or concentration requirement.
  • The Faculty program option does not require a Minor Concentration to also be completed
  • The Enriched Honours program does not require a Minor Concentration to also be completed.
  • Second Degree students can complete two programs in the same academic discipline (as long as neither are the same as their programs completed in their previous McGill degree)
  • Second Degree students enrolled in an Honours program are not required to complete a Minor Concentration.

Complete at least 60 credits at McGill

Residency Requirement  

Complete at least 2/3 of all program requirements at McGill

Residency Requirement  
Earn grades of C or higher in all program requirements Course Requirements  

Have a cumulative GPA of 2.0, review the information on Academic Standing as you complete your degree

Grading and GPA

Academic Standing


Complete the BA degree within 10 semesters of full-time study (5 years), if entering in U0; complete the BA degree within 8 semesters of full-time study (4 years), if entering in U1

Time and Credit Limit

Exceeding the BA Degree credit limit 

  • If you think you may need to exceed this time limit (i.e. due to part-time study, program changes, etc.), speak with an Arts OASIS adviser
  • Students with some types of Advanced Standing credits may be permitted to exceed the BA degree credit requirement

Understanding your minimum credit requirement for a Bachelor of Arts degree

All students must complete a minimum of 120* credits for their undergraduate degree. These credits are divided into three categories.

Credits/Exemptions Advanced standing

These pre-McGill credits will be applied toward your minimum 120 credit Bachelor of Arts degree and will determine your year of study.

Program Credits

These are required and complementary credits that are used to complete a minimum of two programs of study offered in two different academic disciplines.

Elective credits

Elective courses are courses which are NOT being used toward a departmental program you are completing. Normally, students select their electives from the courses listed in the Arts or Science section of the McGill eCalendar

You are allowed a maximum of 12 credits in elective courses taken in faculties other than the Faculties of Arts and of Science.

You must ensure that you have completed the required prerequisite or co-requisite for any course for which you are registering by checking the course description in the McGill eCalendar.

Examples of ADVANCED STANDING with the typical number of credits granted:

CEGEP (30 credits)
French Baccalaureate (30 credits)
International Baccalaureate (Certificate or Diploma – max. 30 credits)
Advanced Levels (max. 30 credits)
Advanced Placement Exams (max. 30 credits)
University Transfer (max. 60 credits)
Degree completed under the Bologna system (30 credits)

* Explanation of “Minimum Credit Requirement”

How is my year of study determined?

U0 - Freshman / Foundation Year students - You have been admitted without advanced standing or with less than 24 credits of advanced standing.

U1 – University Year 1 students - You have been admitted with 24 or more credits of advanced standing.

U2 – University Year 2 students - You have been admitted with the maximum of 60 credits of advanced standing.

Understanding your program options

Option 1

Multitrack system diagram


MULTI-TRACK system: The Faculty of Arts offers a 90-credit multi-track system that offers students a chance to select programs of study that reflect their interests by completing a major concentration complemented by at least a minor concentration.

Major Concentration - is the student's primary area of study requiring the completion of 36 credits

Minor Concentration - as opposed to a major, an area of secondary concentration, which is a called a minor and requires the completion of 18 credits

Concentrations within option A and B cannot be within the same Subject Code (i.e. PSYC, ENGL)

NOTE: No course may fulfil the requirements for more than one program or concentration requirement.

Option A

Major Concentration (36) + Minor Concentration (18) + 36 credits of electives

Option B

Major Concentration (36) + Minor Concentration (18) + Minor Concentration (18) + 18 credits of electives

Option C

Major Concentration (36) + Major Concentration (36) + 18 credits of electives

Option 2

Honours diagram

HONOURS or JOINT HONOURS: These programs demand a high degree of specialization in one or two disciplines and require you to maintain a high academic standing.

Honours Program

1. Requires the completion of 42-60 credits

2. You must also complete a Minor Concentration (18 credits) in another program of study from a different teaching unit or department

3. Electives (12-30 credits)

4. Admission is normally after the U1 year of study

5. Minimum CGPA of 3.00 in the previous year; program GPA requirements vary according to department

Joint Honours

1. Requires two programs of study from different disciplines

2. 30 to 36 credits in each component

3. Electives (minimum of 18 credits)

4. Admission is normally after the U1 year of study

5. Minimum CGPA of 3.00 in the previous year; program GPA requirements vary according to department

6. You are not required to complete a Minor Concentration

Enriched Honours

Program option: Spécialisation enrichie du Département des littératures de langue française, de traduction et de création

1. Requires the completion of 72 credits

2. Electives (18 credits)

3. Minimum program GPA requirements of 3.00.

4. You are not required to complete a Minor Concentration

Honours program (without Minor)

Honours Mathematics and Computer Science

1. Requires the minimum of 72 credits or a maximum of 78 credits depending if student are exempted from COMP 202, COMP 204, COMP 208 and/or MATH 222.

2. Students must consult an Honours adviser in both departments to ensure that they have sufficient background to enter the program.

3. Minimum CGPA requirements of time of graduation, and GPA of at least 3.00 in the required and complementary Mathematics courses of the program.

Option 3

Faculty program diagram

Faculty Program: An approved selection of courses drawn from departments in at least two faculties to form an interdisciplinary program of study.

Program option:

1. Environment

Requires the completion of 54 credits

Students do not need to complete a second program of study.

Note: The Faculty Program in Industrial Relations was retired in 2022 and is no longer available 

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