Second Degree

The following are key definitions with regard to second degree versus transfer student status:

  • Second degree student: you have completed a previous undergraduate degree at McGill University (eg. a previous BA, or BCom, BEd, BSW, BEng, BSc, etc). 
    • Students admitted to a second Bachelor's degree are not permitted to complete a Minor Concentration, a Major Concentration, an Honours, a Joint Honours or Faculty program in the same disciplinary area as what was completed in their previous McGill undergraduate degree. 
    • Notwithstanding the above point, students can fulfill their multi-track requirements with two programs from the same academic discipline.
    • The regular degree requirements are in effect, with one exception: if enrolled in an Honours program, second degree students are not required to complete a Minor Concentration.
  • Transfer student: you have completed credits or a full undergraduate degree at another recognized university/institution (ie. at an institution other than McGill).

Applications for a second degree in the Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) and questions about eligibility and program choices (based on the program(s) you completed in your previous undergraduate degree) must be made directly to McGill University, Enrolment Services. Please go to for more information.

Both Transfer and Second Degree students must complete at least 60 credits at McGill University - depending on transfer credits awarded - while registered as a Bachelor of Arts student. Credits that you have completed for your first undergraduate degree may not be applied towards the 60 McGill credits needed to complete your second undergraduate degree.

  • Important note: Second Degree students will not be permitted to exceed their degree credit limit, with very few exceptions (eg. if enrolled in an Honours program which requires this).


Transfer Credit

While you cannot receive credits for courses already taken in your previous degree, you may receive course exemptions for courses you passed with a grade of C or better and that have been evaluated as equivalent to a McGill course.

  • Please see your departmental program advisor regarding courses you have previously taken that might exempt you from one or more program requirement(s).
  • In cases where a course exemption is approved, these credits will have to be replaced by an approved substitute course taken at McGill.

Please note that the Cumulative Grade Point Average (CGPA) from your first undergraduate degree will not be calculated into the CGPA of your second undergraduate degree. You can find further information concerning GPA calculation here.

Second Degree BA Requirements

The multi-track system requires that students complete a Major Concentration (36 credits), with at least a Minor Concentration (18 credits).

  • Second degree students are permitted to complete a Major Concentration and a Minor Concentration in the same academic unit.
  • Second degree students pursuing an Honours or Faculty Program in the Faculty of Arts are not required to complete a Minor Concentration.
  • Please see general degree requirements and the Degree Planning Guide for more information.


You are strongly advised to meet with your departmental program advisors to discuss your course selection and possible course exemptions for your major/minor/Honours programs before the Add/Drop deadlines in the Fall and Winter terms. Your departmental advisors will ensure that you are on track to complete your program requirements and will approve your course selection for each semester.

How can you contact your departmental program advisors?

  • Many advisors will have drop-in or office hours scheduled that you can simply show up to.
  • If not, you can email your departmental advisor directly to schedule an appointment.

You are also encouraged to meet with a Faculty Advisor in Arts OASIS upon beginning your B.A. degree. A Faculty Advisor will ensure that you are meeting the overall general degree requirements of your B.A. degree.

How can you contact a Faculty Advisor in OASIS?

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