Early Admission Option for Graduate Study

Students with a GPA of 3.5 or better planning to pursue graduate work at the University of Pittsburgh may want to consider the early admission options for graduate study. These options allow students to use their first twenty-four (24) credits of graduate work as the last twenty-four (24) free elective credits of their undergraduate program. The following graduate schools at Pitt allow this option in conjunction with the College of General Studies degree program: Graduate School of Public and International Affairs (GSPIA), Graduate School of Public Health, and the School of Law.

Note: Students interested in the early admission option for graduate study should contact their CGS advisor as soon as possible to discuss their intention and the process that needs to be followed. 

CGS Guidelines

  • Must be superior graduate school candidates and be admitted to the Pitt graduate program. Admissions requirements can be obtained from the graduate schools.
  • Must have completed a minimum of ninety-six (96) credits toward the CGS degree, including all general education and major requirements (and no G grades), before the graduate program begins.
    • At least, the last thirty (30) of the ninety-six (96) undergraduate credits should be taken while the student is in residence in CGS, and before acceptance as a graduate student. Satisfactory completion of these requirements does not guarantee acceptance into the graduate program. This decision is made by the graduate program.
    • Students with a professional undergraduate major admitted to a professional graduate program are limited to 42 professional credits. Consequently, they should restrict their undergraduate professional credits to 18.
    • All other regulations governing the completion of credits for a CGS degree also apply.
  • The graduate program must include a minimum of twenty-four (24) credits of graduate-level coursework. Students must earn a B or better grade in all graduate coursework. (S or H grades in the MSL program)
  • Twenty-four (24) credits is the maximum number of graduate credits that can be used to fulfill free elective requirements of the undergraduate degree. A student may seek to use fewer than twenty-four (24) graduate credits toward their free elective credits if they have already partially fulfilled their elective requirements.

Note: Students who choose this option must be aware that enrolling as a graduate student may affect their financial aid package. Students are responsible for contacting the Financial Aid Office regarding this issue.

Graduation from CGS

  • Students must apply for graduation from CGS after completion of the first twenty-four (24) credits in their graduate program with grades of B or better. Students must have earned a total of at least 120 credits. 
  • The student will receive a B.A. or a B.S. degree depending upon the CGS major chosen. The final undergraduate transcript will specify the major completed in CGS.
  • The student's OPA for graduation from CGS will be calculated based solely on the credits earned while in CGS. Courses taken in the graduate program do not appear on the undergraduate record, but a notation will appear on the undergraduate transcript reading" Baccalaureate degree awarded in conjunction with University of Pittsburgh graduate degree program."

Graduate School of Public and International Affairs Five-Year Accelerated Program

High-achieving University of Pittsburgh juniors (and in some cases, first-semester seniors) in CGS may apply early to Graduate School of Public and International Affairs. If admitted, they may enroll at GSPIA in what normally would have been their senior years, allowing them to complete both bachelor’s and master’s degrees in a total of five years. Special eligibility requirements apply. 

Graduate School of Public Health Accelerated Bachelor's/Master's Program

This early admission master's program seeks outstanding University of Pittsburgh undergraduates who want to become public health professionals. Students must have completed all undergraduate requirements except for elective courses by the end of their junior year. If accepted to the program, they will no longer be registered as an undergraduate after their junior year but rather as a Pitt Public Health student, and will take Pitt Public Health courses. Approximately twenty-four credits of these courses will serve as your undergraduate elective credits and will complete the requirements for your bachelor's degree.

Master of Studies in Law Early Option

The School of Law offers this accelerated program for CGS students pursuing a Bachelor of Arts in Legal Studies.