Office of Academic Services

Academic Progress & Intervention Efforts


Early Intervention Program

Student progress may be monitored through the Early Intervention Program, a program that seeks to identify students who are experiencing academic, labor, or other difficulties. Curtis Sandberg, the Director of Academic Services, coordinates the Early Intervention Program. In cases where Berea College becomes aware of student difficulty, the adviser and/or Early Intervention Program coordinator may initiate contact with the student. The program coordinator works closely with College faculty, academic advisers, labor supervisors, Residential Life professionals, and many others on campus to ensure that students receive the full benefit of campus resources and remain on track to personal and academic success.

Declaration of Primary Major

During the regular term in which a student is expected to complete fifteen (15) course credits, s/he will submit to the Office of Academic Services (OAS) an Intent to Declare a Primary Major form. The intent form and the student’s transcript will be sent by OAS to the Department Chairperson or Program Director for consideration of admission into the major. (See Academic Programs and Courses in the Catalog for admission to the major requirements and recommendations, if any.)

Students admitted to the major will complete a Curriculum Plan for the remaining terms of enrollment and submit it to OAS. This Curriculum Plan provides a guide for the most efficient use of a student’s time in meeting the College’s graduation requirements within the guideline of the Eight Term Rule (see “Enrollment Regulations” in this section of the Catalog). Students for whom admission to a major is pending will be notified that they have not yet satisfied requirements for admission to the major and, consequently, must reapply the following term by submitting a new Intent to Declare a Primary Major form. These students and advisers may choose to develop a Curriculum Plan that can be retained by the student and the adviser and later submitted to OAS if admitted to the major.

If the student needs more than eight (8) regular terms (or the equivalent for transfer students) to complete the selected major, s/he must complete a Request for Extension of Terms form, which must be submitted to OAS along with a letter explaining why the program cannot be completed within eight (8) regular terms. Failure to follow an approved Curriculum Plan will not be considered a valid reason for an extension of terms beyond the normal eight.

Students who fail to complete the Declaration of Major process by the end of the term in which they accumulate fifteen (15) course credits, or who do not meet the minimum requirements for admission to the major, have one (1) regular term to meet the minimum requirements. Failure to complete the process by the end of the next regular term may result in suspension from the College for two regular terms.

See “Academic Difficulty” in the Catalog for penalties associated with failing to declare a primary major within the time allowed by the College to do so.

Questions about the Declaration of Major process should be directed to Chris Thomas, Student Enrollment Status Manager. If you want to change your major or minor, please stop by the Self-Serve Room (101 Lincoln Hall) and pick up a Change of Adviser/Major/Minor form to complete and return for processing.

Credit Requirements

Berea College students must accumulate the following number of courses each year to remain in good standing and continue to make Progress Toward Graduation (PTG). For purposes of the PTG requirement, basic, non-credit courses are counted.

Academic Year
Cumulative Total


Graduation Requirements

Minimum number of course credits needed to graduate: 32 (34 for Nursing)
Minimum number of course credits outside the discipline: 20


Application for Degree

Students who expect to be candidates for graduation must file an application for degree in the Student Service Center prior to registering for classes in the term in which they expect to graduate. Once the application for degree has been filed, it is the student’s responsibility to inform the Student Service Center of changes in plans or programs. Students who file the application for degree are expected to attend commencement exercises. Failure to do so, without approval from the Provost’s Committee, will result in a processing fee in order to receive the diploma.

All requirements for the degree except regular course work must be completed 30 days prior to the commencement at which the student will be graduated. Diplomas will not be issued to students with past due financial accounts.

Convocation Requirement

Convocation events constitute a significant part of the General Education program at Berea. These events bring to the campus notable speakers, scholars, performers, and authorities on a variety of subjects. Because convocations are a valuable part of their learning, students are expected to attend such events regularly. Students automatically will be enrolled in a .25 credit convocation course (CNV 100) during each regular term of enrollment, with the exception of the final term of enrollment, for a maximum of eight such terms. Enrollment in this course is optional during the final term at Berea (or is prohibited if the student already had enrolled in this course eight terms).

For each term of enrollment in CNV 100, a grade of CA (calculated in the GPA as an A) is earned for attending at least seven convocations. The grade of CF (calculated in the GPA as an F) is earned for attending fewer than seven convocations.

Further information about convocations can be found on the Convocations Web site. Check back to that site often for the latest listing of convocation events for the academic year.

Degree Audit

Students and advisers are encouraged to use the Degree Audit Web tool to regularly evaluate progress toward graduation.

Once a student has submitted an application for graduation, the Student Service Center will perform an official audit of the student’s coursework. This is done after the student has registered for the final term as a means of determining if all degree requirements will be satisfied for graduation. If problems are discovered, the student will be notified in time to adjust the final term schedule.


Baccalaureate and commencement ceremonies are held each year in May to honor the Berea College graduating class. Additionally, the College holds a recognition service in December for mid-year graduates. Dates of these ceremonies can be found in the Academic Calendar.

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