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Columbia Campus    
2016-2017 Undergraduate Studies Bulletin (Archived Copy) 
  Jul 15, 2024
2016-2017 Undergraduate Studies Bulletin (Archived Copy) [Archived Catalog]

Academic Programs

Academic Programs

Undergraduate degree programs on the Columbia campus are offered through the Colleges of Arts and Sciences ; Hospitality, Retail, and Sport Management ; Education ; Engineering and Computing ; College of Information and Communications ; Nursing ; Pharmacy ; and Social Work  and through the School of Music , the Arnold School of Public Health , and the Moore School of Business .

For a list of undergraduate programs offered on the Columbia Campus visit one of the following links:

Carolina Core Requirements

The Carolina Core curriculum provides the common core of knowledge, skill, and academic experience for all Carolina undergraduates. The Core begins with foundational courses early in the undergraduate experience, followed by an integrative course near the end in which selected Core learning outcomes are integrated into discipline-specific study. For more information go to

Code Carolina Core
Carolina Core
Learning Outcomes
Credit Hours
  I. Lower Division:
Core Courses
Learning Outcomes to be met at
foundational level of mastery
28-34 hours
CMW Effective, Engaged, and Persuasive Communication: Written Component Identify and analyze issues, develop logical and persuasive arguments, and communicate ideas clearly for a variety of audiences and purposes through writing and speaking. 6
Written component
ARP Analytical Reasoning and Problem-Solving Apply the methods of mathematical, statistical, or analytical reasoning to critically evaluate data, solve problems, and effectively communicate findings verbally and graphically. 6
SCI Scientific Literacy Apply the principles and language of the natural sciences and associated technologies to historical and contemporary issues. 7
GFL Global Citizenship and Multicultural Understanding: Foreign Language Communicate effectively in more than one language. 0-6
(depending on placement test)
GHS Global Citizenship and Multicultural Understanding: Historical Thinking Use the principles of historical thinking to understand past human societies.    3
GSS Global Citizenship and Multicultural Understanding: Social Sciences Use the principles of the social sciences to explore diverse cultural identities and to analyze political and environmental issues. 3
AIU Aesthetic and Interpretive Understanding Create or interpret literary, visual or performing arts 3
  II.  Lower Division:
Stand-Alone or
Overlay-Eligible Courses
Up to two of these three Core
requirements may be met in overlay
courses that combine learning
outcomes from two Core courses.
3-9 hours
(depending on whether
these three outcomes are
met with stand-alone or
up to two overlay courses)
CMS Effective, Engaged, and Persuasive Communication: Spoken Component Identify and analyze issues, develop logical and persuasive arguments, and communicate ideas clearly for a variety of audiences and purposes through writing and speaking. 0-3
Spoken component
INF Information Literacy Collect, manage and evaluate information using technology, and communicate findings. 0-3
VSR Values, Ethics, and Social Responsibility Examine different kinds of social and personal values, analyzing the ways in which these are manifested in communities as well as individual lives. 0-3
Integrative III.  Upper Division:
Integrative Course in the Major
Upper division course in the major
program of study includes learning
outcomes from the Carolina Core
Students should refer to their
program major for more information.
N / A
  TOTAL Hours in
Carolina Core
  31-43 hours
(depending on language
placement tests and use
of at most two overlay courses)

Special Academic Opportunities

Special academic and cultural programs whose scope extends beyond the disciplinary field of any specific college, school, or department are offered at the University.

Cognates and Minors

The University recognizes the importance to students of in-depth study of an area to supplement their major field. Most colleges within the University require either a cognate or a minor in addition to the major as part of degree requirements. Some programs require neither.

A minor is a series of courses that display a distinct curricular pattern in one discipline that is different from the major. Undergraduate minors normally require a minimum of 18 credit hours of prescribed courses. Undergraduate minors appear on the transcripts, but not on the diplomas.

A cognate is a series of courses that display a distinct curricular pattern in one or more disciplines different from the major. Undergraduate cognates require a minimum of 12 credit hours in advanced level courses related to, but outside the major. Cognates are variable according to what is appropriate as determined by the student and the major advisor. Thus cognates do not appear on either the transcripts or the diplomas.

Students are advised to consult their academic dean as to whether a minor or cognate is required for their degree program. For a list of undergraduate minors visit Programs A-Z .

South Carolina Honors College

South Carolina Honors College was established in 1978 as a means of encouraging gifted students to develop their full intellectual capacities. For additional information, please visit the South Carolina Honors College  section of this bulletin

Study Abroad

Each year hundreds of students participate in study abroad programs in many locations around the world. The Study Abroad Office staff is available to guide students through the study abroad process, providing information about study abroad options, scholarship opportunities and diverse academic, cultural, and linguistic experiences available to them. By developing and implementing quality programming, the Study Abroad staff helps prepare students interested in experiencing a culture other than their own prior to departure and facilitate their return to USC after their study abroad experience has ended.

In addition, the Study Abroad Office assists faculty in developing short-term international programs, provides support services for exchange students who attend USC, and administers exchange programs with international universities. The Study Abroad Office is continually developing new program options for the benefit of interested students.

For more information contact the Study Abroad Office at 803-777-7557, or visit our Web site at

University 101

University 101 is a 3-credit-hour seminar course provided for and offered to freshmen and to other undergraduate students (i.e., transfer students) in their first semester at USC Columbia. This course provides an introduction to the nature and importance of university education and a general orientation to the functions and resources of the University. Many sections are offered for students enrolled in a specific USC college or academic major.

The course helps new students adjust to the University, develop a better understanding of the learning process, and acquire essential academic success skills. It also provides students a support group in a critical year by examining problems common to the new-student experience. Extensive reading, writing, and research assignments relevant to the student’s college experience are required.

Offered in small classes of 20-25 students, University 101 is taught by faculty members and administrative personnel who have a special interest in working with new students. The course may be taken as part of a student’s regular load or as an overload. Course credit is awarded on a letter-grade basis. Credit is applicable as either elective or required credit toward most baccalaureate degrees offered by the University.

Undergraduate Research

Many students enrich the academic experience through research opportunities in all disciplines. Students work one-on-one with a faculty mentor, receive funding for their projects, and gain professional research experiences. The Office of Undergraduate Research assists students in making connections with faculty and facilitating projects. Discovery Day showcases students’ scholarly pursuits in and out of the classroom. Students present their research discoveries through poster discussions, oral presentations, artistic presentations & visual art displays. Some students elect to live together in a unique community on campus. Students will benefit from field trips, the Discover Seminar Series, networking events with faculty and other researchers, and access to service learning opportunities study abroad programs and internships.

Service Learning

Service-learning offers students an opportunity for hand-on involvement with real world concerns as a venue for educational growth. Combining the academic experience with community service provides a context for testing, observing, or trying out discipline-based theories, concepts, or skills. The Service Learning website offers information on service learning courses available for students

Leadership Learning

Many programs and activities are available at USC to develop leadership talent in students across disciplines, across colleges, across campus, and throughout the community. Several well known programs include the annual Student Leadership and Diversity Conference, the Emerging Leaders Program (ELP), and the leader mentor network. The ELP assists students in learning about basic leadership theory. Students assess and explore their own leadership style and capacities, develop skills relevant to leadership work, and develop a personal development and leadership plan. Emerging Leader Mentors (ELMs) are students who have been at the university for more than 4 semesters who provide mentoring for first year students and transfer students in the Emerging Leaders Program.

Career and Pre-Professional Counseling

Students interested in careers requiring postgraduate professional training should plan their undergraduate curricula to meet the entrance requirements of the professional schools involved. Special advisors are available to offer assistance in career and curriculum planning in the following fields of postgraduate specialization:

Law (Eileen Korpita, pre-law advisor). Most law schools require for admission a B.S. or B.A. degree and an acceptable score on the Law School Admission Test. A solid liberal arts education is the best academic background for the study of law. Hence, no particular major or specific courses are required for successful performance in law school.

Medicine, Dentistry, Veterinary Medicine, Optometry, Podiatry (Eileen Korpita, health careers advisor). Students may obtain general advice concerning health related careers from the health careers advisor in Rooms 127-129, Sumwalt. Medical schools urge undergraduate students to obtain a broad liberal arts education but also require certain specific courses for admission. These include courses in the areas of biology, chemistry, English, mathematics, and physics. A very high scholastic average and a good score on the appropriate national admission examination (MCAT, DAT, etc.) are also essential for admission. Premedical, predental, preveterinary medicine, preoptometry, and prepodiatry students should have their course programs approved by the faculty advisor beginning with their freshman year in order to increase their chance for admission to a professional school.

Religious Vocations (Carl D. Evans, advisor). The professional schools of theology and religious education usually require a B.A. degree for admission. In regard to the undergraduate program, a broad liberal arts education with emphasis in religious studies, philosophy, English literature, history, and languages is recommended. Students planning professional religious vocations should work with the advisor in planning their academic program to be sure that they are adequately prepared for graduate professional study.

Education (Office of Student Affairs). Students may obtain general advice concerning teacher preparation from the Office of Student Affairs in the College of Education, Room 113, Wardlaw College.