Undergraduate College Academic FAQs

What is the difference among majors, minors, concentrations, and pre-professional programs?
Major – The student’s primary academic focus, usually consisting of 10 or more courses working toward a degree
Minor – The student’s secondary academic focus, working through additional courses in another discipline that add to or broaden the chosen course of study
Concentration – Another way to enhance the course of study through a smaller set of courses that allow a deeper dive into a specific subject area
Pre-Professional Program – An academic interest, such as pre-law or pre-med, comprised of a sequence of courses that are paired  with a major to enhance the preparation of students who intend to enter professional school after graduation.
Joint/Accelerated Degree Programs Academic programs that combine bachelor’s and master’s degrees in accelerated formats

Can I major in pre-law or pre-med?
The College of Mount Saint Vincent offers pre-professional options for both pre-law and pre-med. Students will first choose a major, and then pair it with the program that fits their career plans. The pre-law and pre-med programs add courses that help students gain admission to law school or medical school.

What does it mean to be an undecided major?
Undecided majors are students who haven’t yet chosen a major. Each year, more than half of all incoming undergraduate students at the Mount fall into this category. Typically, after exploring different types of academic programs through the Core Curriculum and the Oxley Career Education Program, undecided students declare a major after their sophomore year.

How competitive is the Nursing Program?
Nearly one third of current students at the College are pursuing a degree in nursing, which is highly-regarded and therefore highly-competitive. The Nursing Program produces graduates who achieve great success in many diverse areas of the healthcare and nursing fields, and the majority of our graduates stay on to pursue a Master of Science in Nursing.

Do you have a program for students with learning disabilities?
The College of Mount Saint Vincent implements ADA guidelines across campus and in every academic department. The Academic Resource Center (ARC) offers a wide range of services for all students with disabilities. Among them you’ll find help with special accommodations, schedule planning, testing, and much more. Additionally, students with documented disabilities are eligible to participate in the College’s federally funded TRiO Student Support Services program.

Do you have an honors program?
The Honors Program at the College of Mount Saint Vincent offers a dynamic learning environment for talented, motivated students. Participating students thrive in the atmosphere of challenging courses, and extend their studies through independent research and creative projects.

Do you offer any five-year bachelor’s/master’s programs?
The Mount offers 12 joint degree programs. These are five-year programs in which students earn both a bachelor’s and a master’s degree. Our Joint Degree Programs jump-start your career by allowing you to earn professional credentials that much sooner.

What is your average class size?
Although class size varies slightly, the average class has 20 students. Combine that with our student-faculty ratio of 13:1 and the result is a personalized learning environment in which our faculty become mentors who develop life-changing relationships with their students.

Can I study abroad as a College of Mount Saint Vincent student?
Absolutely. International study is a transformative educational opportunity. Living in other cultures enables students to broaden their experience and enrich their perspective. The Mount currently offers study-abroad programs in South America, England, Russia, and Spain. The College also partners with a number of consortiums for international study and service opportunities, as well as with IPSL (formerly the International Partnership for Service-Learning and Leadership).

How many computers are available to students?
There are currently 11 computer labs located throughout the campus, with dozens of desktop computers available for student and staff use. Lab computers are equipped with a range of software applications, including programs for computer graphics, fine arts, and video editing, as well as department specific labs. Lab hours vary by semester but are generally available when you need them.

What is the Core Curriculum?
The Mount’s Core Curriculum provides a common intellectual experience and a core of shared learning for all students. The Core extends over  four years, pairing classes from a range of disciplines to provide students with a solid foundation of knowledge, an appreciation of all that a liberal arts education has to offer, and a wide range of skills such as analysis, problem solving, and communication.