Princeton’s Graduation Requirements

January 15, 2023
By AdmissionSight

Princeton’s Graduation Requirements

What are the graduation requirements for Princeton?

What are the prerequisites that must be met in order to graduate from Princeton? Princeton’s graduation requirements vary with each program.

Every undergraduate student who is working toward the A.B. degree is encouraged to build an academic program that is in response to personal objectives and interests. This is done while working within the overall curricular framework.

During their junior and senior years, students are expected to complete a significant amount of independent work in addition to taking classes that fulfill general education and departmental requirements as part of their educational program.

All students pursuing the A.B. degree are required to satisfactorily complete a minimum of 31 courses and two years of departmental independent work within eight terms of study, with the exception of those students who are granted one or two terms of accelerated standing.

If a student is obliged to withdraw from school due to academic difficulties, they will always be required to retake the term in which they performed poorly in order to fulfill the fundamental criteria for graduation, which is to have completed eight terms of study with a passing grade.

a man sitting at the front row and holding a pen looking at the camera

On the other hand, students pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Engineering (B.S.E) are required to take four courses during the first term of their first year and either four or five courses during each of the future terms. This is done according to a schedule suited to each student’s specific curriculum.

In order to earn a Bachelor of Science in Education degree, students are required to take a minimum of 36 classes throughout the course of their four years in school.

At the beginning of the junior year, sophomores, juniors, and seniors are required to have completed a minimum of 17 courses, and by the beginning of the senior year, they are required to have completed a minimum of 26 courses.

A student is expected to acquire a foundation in mathematics, physics, and chemistry by successfully completing courses in these subject areas or their equivalents as well.

Moreover, the completion of general education is part of Princeton’s graduation requirements. The criteria for general education distribution at Princeton are meant to expose students to a variety of modes of knowledge, all of which the university considers to be necessary for an educated citizenry.

While each student will focus on a specific field of study, they will also be given broad exposure to a variety of other types of knowledge. This will improve the student’s ability to determine which questions can be answered using methods that are native to their own fields and which questions require the use of other methods.

The study of a wide range of academic fields not only teaches Princeton to select the appropriate intellectual tools for the job at hand but also helps us develop a greater appreciation for the myriad of perspectives from which people seek to make sense of the world around them.

Students have the opportunity to develop intellectual rigor as well as humility through the general education requirements. This is accomplished by having students explore the possibilities and limitations of various types of academic investigation.

The general education topics for undergraduate classes are suggested by the professor teaching those classes; these suggestions are then evaluated and accepted by the Office of the Dean of the College on behalf of the Faculty Committee on the Course of Study.

Along with the special and major courses, these general education subjects are part of Princeton’s graduation requirements:

General Education Requirements for Students Pursuing A.B.:

  • Writing Seminar—one course
  • Language—one to four terms to complete, depending on the language students study and the level at which they start
  • Culture and Difference (CD)—one course
  • Epistemology and Cognition (EC)—one course
  • Ethical Thought and Moral Values (EM)—one course
  • Historical Analysis (HA)—one course
  • Literature and the Arts (LA)—two courses
  • Quantitative and Computational Reasoning (QCR)—one course
  • Science and Engineering (SEL/SEN)—two courses.  At least one course must be a science and engineering course with a laboratory (SEL).  Students may elect a second laboratory science course, or a non-laboratory science course (SEN).
  • Social Analysis (SA)—two courses

General Education Requirements for Students Pursuing B.S.E.:

  • Culture and Difference (CD)
  • Epistemology and Cognition (EC)
  • Ethical Thought and Moral Values (EM)
  • Language (at the 107/108 level or above)
  • Historical Analysis (HA)
  • Literature and the Arts (LA)
  • Social Analysis (SA)

What GPA do you need to graduate from Princeton?

What is the minimum grade point average required to graduate from Princeton? Part of Princeton’s graduation requirements is a good GPA.

There are a lot of colleges that require a certain minimum GPA, but frequently this is merely the bare minimum criterion.

To graduate from Princeton, you need to have a grade point average that showcases how you practically pass the board in all of your classes.

a female student looking at the camera

In addition, you must demonstrate that you are capable of easily handling the academic rigors of college by enrolling in challenging subjects.

At the conclusion of each academic term, final grades for undergraduate courses and independent work are reported using the following format:

  • A+ = Exceptional; significantly exceeds the highest expectations for undergraduate work
  • A = Outstanding; meets the highest standards for the assignment or course
  • A- = Excellent; meets very high standards for the assignment or course
  • B+ = Very good; meets high standards for the assignment or course
  • B = Good; meets most of the standards for the assignment or course
  • B- = More than adequate; shows some reasonable command of the material
  • C+ = Acceptable; meets basic standards for the assignment or course
  • C = Acceptable; meets some of the basic standards for the assignment or course
  • C- = Acceptable, while falling short of meeting basic standards in several ways
  • D = Minimally acceptable; lowest passing grade
  • F = Failing; very poor performance
  • P = Grades of A+ through C– in courses taken on a pass/D/fail basis
  • Audit = Satisfactory completion of required work in a course taken on an audit basis
  • INC = Course not completed at end of term (late completion authorized)
  • W = Student withdrew from a course after completing the ninth week of the term
  • YR = Completion of required work in the first semester of a year-long course

To compute your GPA, you may refer to the following:

  • A+ = 4.0 (4.3 prior to 2000-2001)
  • A = 4.0
  • A- = 3.7
  • B+ = 3.3
  • B = 3.0
  • B- = 2.7
  • C+ = 2.3
  • C = 2.0
  • C- = 1.7
  • D = 1.0
  • F = 0

A grade of D is the minimum acceptable passing grade in all courses.

How does Princeton’s graduation work?

How exactly does one graduate from Princeton? During the year-end activities that take place at Princeton University, the university will be honoring the achievements of students who are working for undergraduate and graduate degrees and have an on-campus Commencement ceremony for students graduating.

To gain in, you will need to purchase a ticket. Additionally, live streams of the events will be available on Facebook and YouTube, in addition to the homepage of Princeton University and the website for MediaCentral.

Smiling student holding her books.

The university’s Commencement website will be updated with professional photographs, and visitors will be able to download these images at no cost, courtesy of the university.

The following is a rundown of the events for students graduating with undergraduate and graduate degrees:

Commencement Ceremony

The commencement ceremony for Princeton University’s Graduating Class will take place in Princeton Stadium. This event is for graduating students in the undergraduate and their guests.

It is also for graduate alumni who received their final master’s degree or Ph.D. during the academic year and their visitors.

Baccalaureate Service

The event will take place in the University Chapel. Inside the chapel, seniors are seated in their designated areas. The event is displayed simultaneously on huge screens located on Cannon Green for the viewing convenience of guests.

In the event that it rains, there are several indoor simulcast places within close proximity to the chapel that are ticketed.

An honorable guest will also deliver a speech during the Baccalaureate.

Class Day Ceremony

There will be a ceremony to celebrate Class Day on Cannon Green. When the senior class procession begins, guests are required to be seated.

In the event that it starts to rain, the seniors will move into the University Church, while the guests would move to one of the simulcast venues surrounding the chapel.

A notable person will also deliver the address during Class Day.

Hooding Ceremony

The applicants for advanced degrees will be hooded during the ceremony that will take place on Cannon Green. Master’s and doctoral students who will have completed their degree requirements by the end of the academic year, as well as their visitors, are invited to attend the event.

Princeton’s graduation requirements are not easy to achieve. It will require hard work and perseverance. Hence, at the end of the day, it will always be worth it.

We, at AdmissionSight, are hopeful that you’ll be able to surpass academic challenges and be able to complete Princeton’s graduation requirements in the future. But before we think about that, the most important thing is to gain admission first.

With over 10 years of experience, AdmissionSight has been a great partner for students who wants to surpass the rigorous admission process. Contact us now to book your consultation.


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