USC offers approximately 150 minors open to all undergraduates, regardless of major.
USC undergraduates who pursue double-majors or majors-minors in broadly separated fields can be honored as USC Renaissance Scholars at graduation.
The student to faculty ratio is 9:1. The average class size is 26 students.
USC offers approximately 150 undergraduate majors.
Yes, USC encourages students to pursue double majors or a combination of majors and minors, especially in unrelated academic fields.
All USC bachelor's degrees require a minimum of 128 semester units. Certain undergraduate programs in USC's professional schools (such as Engineering) require slightly more. USC's bachelor of Architecture is a five-year, 160 unit program.
All the majors currently offered by USC are listed in the application. If the specific major you want is not listed, choose a major related to your field of interest, or choose 707-Open (Still Deciding). If applicable, specify the appropriate pre-professional emphasis.
USC offers students the opportunity of obtaining a second bachelor's degree. Second bachelor's degree applicants are considered transfer students and, if accepted, must fulfill all of the core requirements of their new major, along with any mandatory general education requirements not fulfilled during their first degree. The second bachelor's degree requires 64 units applicable to the degree to be completed in residence at USC (only 32 units are required if the first bachelor's degree was from USC).
Students who are pursuing their second bachelor's degree are eligible for a limited number of financial aid programs only - Subsidized Federal Stafford Loan and the Unsubsidized Federal Stafford Loan. Students who meet all financial aid application deadlines may also be considered for the Federal Work-Study and Federal Perkins Loan programs.
All undergraduate students entering USC may receive a combined maximum of 32 elective units for college courses and/or examinations (e.g., AP or IB) taken before graduation from high school. A maximum of 16 of these 32 units will be allowed for college courses taken before high school graduation. These courses must appear on a college transcript as part of a regular college curriculum and are expected to be taught on the college campus by college faculty. These courses (as well as AP and IB exams) can fulfill General Education categories I, II, III and V, but will not receive course equivalence or credit toward writing, diversity, foreign language nor receive equivalence to USC courses. Some departments may use them as a basis to waive prerequisites or specific course requirements on a case-by-case basis. Students may not receive credit for both an AP exam (or IB or other international exam) and a college course taken before high school graduation covering the same subject matter, nor for an AP and IB exam covering the same subject matter. Students who began full-time college bachelor's degree programs at four-year institutions before completing their high school diplomas can submit transcripts for course evaluation. More than 16 units may be granted. Programs which award a high school diploma concurrently with first- or second-year college level work are typically conducted on the post-secondary institution's campus and are taught by the regular faculty. These programs will be evaluated on an individual basis, along with the student's high school record, to determine both the student's admissibility and the transferability of courses. Students entering full-time college programs at two-year colleges before graduating from high school are subject to the 16 unit maximum stated above.
A student is considered to be enrolled full time when the student has registered for 12 or more units as an undergraduate student or eight or more units as a graduate student. The number of courses for which a student has registered are not a basis for determining full-time enrollment status. The student's department and/or school may have additional requirements for full-time status.
USC's most current Catalogue is available online. Alternatively, copies may be purchased through the USC Bookstore by calling (800) 447-8620.
Note: New students will each receive their own copy of the USC Catalogue at Orientation.
USC's academic programs are designed primarily for students who have applied and been admitted to a regular degree program. However, USC does have a very specific registration option known as "Limited Status Enrollment" that allows certain students in specific situations to take a limited number of courses at USC without being admitted.
The following restrictions and guidelines apply to Limited Status Enrollment:
- Students who have not yet completed a bachelor's degree are not eligible for limited status enrollment if they have been denied admission to USC or if they have been academically disqualified or suspended from any community college, college or university.
- At the post-baccalaureate (graduate) level, limited status enrollment is not available to students who have been denied admission to the department offering the course unless prior approval is granted by the department and appropriate dean.
- Limited status enrollment does not fulfill requirements for issuing a student visa. International students (students studying or wishing to study in the U.S. on a non-immigrant visa) must have the approval of the Office of International Admissions (Student Union Building, Room 311) before registering for classes.
- A pre-baccalaureate limited status student may not register for more than 16 units; a post-baccalaureate (graduate) limited status student may not register for more than 12 units. Exceptions to this policy will be considered by the Office of Admission for USC employees and for post-baccalaureate students who submit a disclaimer of intent to pursue a USC degree.
- Prior approval of the department offering the course is required for all limited status enrollment. If a limited status student is subsequently admitted to regular standing, no more than 16 undergraduate or the first 12 graduate units taken through limited status enrollment can be applied toward a degree. Individual exceptions must be approved by the dean of the degree conferring units.
- Pre-baccalaureate limited status students must settle their tuition and fees on the same day they register for classes or their enrollment will be cancelled by the Registration Department. This policy does not apply to USC staff and faculty.
- Additional registration restrictions include that a student must register in person, obtain permission from the department offering the course, and pay for the class at the time of registration.
- Financial aid is not available to limited status students.
USC believes that students who undertake an IB curriculum are well prepared for the rigors of university academic life. IB courses are factored into our admission evaluation process because we recognize the extreme rigor of such a curriculum.
USC grants either 20 units of credit to students who earn the International Baccalaureate Diploma with a score of 30 or higher or 6 semester units of credit for each score of 5, 6 or 7 on the IB Higher Level exams, up to a maximum of four exams, whichever is higher. No credit is granted to IB Standard Level exams. Advanced Placement (AP) credit can be accumulated in addition to the IB for a maximum of 32 units. However, credit cannot be earned for AP and IB exams on the same topic.
The USC Articulation Office will only grant elective credit upon receipt of an official IB Certificate. Therefore, students should be sure to have official IB results sent directly to USC.
In addition, the following Higher Level IB exams fulfill USC General Education requirements:
- History route 2: 20th Century World History
HL Option Europe and the Middle East (not Route 1: History of Europe and the Islamic World*) - Fulfills USC GE Category I
- History route 2: 20th century world history**
HL Option Asia and Oceania - Fulfills USC GE Category II
- Biology, Chemistry, or Physics - Fulfills USC GE Category III
*Possible General Education credit for History route 1: Europe and the Islamic World depends on a detailed review of the student’s HL course content. After certifying admission, students may file an articulation petition at www.usc.edu/oasis and provide supporting documentation electronically.
** Possible General Education credit for History route 2: HL Option Africa depends on a detailed review of the student’s HL course content. After certifying admission, students may file an articulation petition at www.usc.edu/oasis and provide supporting documentation electronically.
Besides this unit credit and General Education credit, some departments may use IB scores for placement purposes, such as waiving a course prerequisite or to waive certain degree requirements.
Yes! USC offers an extensive array of summer programs for middle school and high school students. See USC's Summer and Special Programs.
Every year, the Resident Honors Program (RHP) enables about 50 highly successful high school students to start college a year early and complete high school requirements while simultaneously enrolled as full-time college freshmen at USC. After one year at USC, most RHP students return to their high school to graduate with their senior class.
Generally, for the purposes of admission into USC, we review an applicant's coursework from grades 9 through 11 for admission into our fall freshman class. We may, however, request 7th semester grades (12th grade, fall semester) before making a final decision. Those students from whom we require 7th semester grades will receive letter requesting this information if we need it but we encourage all freshman applicants to submit 7th semester grades when they are available. You may self-report your grades by visiting usc.edu/midyeargrades.
Once admitted, all students are required to submit an official copy of their high school transcripts in order to verify their graduation dates. Students' transcripts will also be reviewed to ensure that they have maintained a continued level of academic achievement. A serious downturn in a student's senior year could result in the rescinding of an admission offer.
USC awards 4 units of elective credit for most AP examinations with a score of 4 or higher. In addition, scores of 4 or 5 for certain exams will satisfy General Education requirements. For further information on AP exam credit at USC, please click here.
Students should successfully complete at least sixteen yearlong college preparatory courses while in high school:
- 4 years of English (composition and literature)
- 2 years of foreign language
- 3 years of mathematics (algebra, geometry, algebra II, trigonometry, or calculus)
- 2 years of natural science (e.g., biology, chemistry, physics)
- 2 years of social sciences (e.g., U.S. history, government, economics, geography)
- 3 years of additional courses in subjects above or academic electives (e.g. computer science, art, music, speech)
- Students should pursue Advanced Placement or International Baccalaureate classes whenever possible.
The Trojan Admission Pre-pharmacy (TAP) program gives students the exceptional opportunity of completing pre-pharmacy requirements and gaining priority admission in the USC School of Pharmacy.
The TAP program offers talented students an opportunity to complete their pre-pharmacy courses at USC as an undergraduate. Upon meeting specific requirements, students are given priority admission to the four-year Doctor of Pharmacy program. TAP students must complete their pre-pharmacy coursework at USC, maintain a cumulative GPA of 3.20, and receive their bachelor’s degree prior to applying to the TAP program.
All pre-pharmacy courses must be taken for letter grades. TAP students are provided with individual advisement, membership to the USC Pre-pharmacy Society and access to the School of Pharmacy Student Affairs Office. For more information, visit the School of Pharmacy website.
USC awards 4 units of elective credit for each AP exam score of 4 or higher (for exams taken Spril 2008 or earlier, credit is awarded for scores of 3 or higher, except for Computer Science). Although these exams can only yield elective credit, some departments may also use their results for course placement or to waive degree requirements. A maximum of 32 units (8 exams worth of credit) can be earned.
Additionally, scores of 4 or 5 on the following AP exams provide general education credit:
- Art History (fulfills USC GE Category I)
- Biology (fulfills USC GE Category III)
- Chemistry (fulfills USC GE Category III)
- European History (fulfills USC GE Category I)
- Physics (any one of the 3 exams fulfills USC GE Category III)
In order to receive USC credit as outlined above, AP exam results must be officially sent from the College Board to USC. We will not grant credit for AP scores reported on high school transcripts or on student test reports.