University of Pittsburgh


Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences





A&S offers several major options that are not administered by a specific academic department within A&S: the A&S/business dual major, the interdisciplinary studies major, and the politics and philosophy major. Descriptions of these majors follow:

A&S/Business Dual Major

The A&S/business dual major is offered jointly by Arts and Sciences (A&S) and the College of Business Administration (CBA). To satisfy the requirements, students must combine the business major with any A&S major. The A&S major will be listed first on the transcript as the degree—determining major (BS or BA), and the business major will be listed second. Students will be required to fulfill all A&S curriculum requirements. Students are admitted by a faculty committee that considers the cumulative GPA, specific courses taken and grades earned, SAT scores, and other relevant credentials. Students who have completed at least one full year of course work are eligible to apply to the program. Students interested in the program should seek assistance from their A&S advisor regarding the application process. For more information about the program, see

Major Requirements

To graduate with an A&S/business dual major, students must complete the following:

  • Four dual major prerequisites:
    • ECON 0100 Introduction to Microeconomic Theory
    • ECON 0110 Introduction to Macroeconomic Theory
    • MATH 0120 Business Calculus or 0220 Analytic Geometry and Calculus 1
    • STAT 1100 Statistics and Probability for Business Management

Note: Competency in Microsoft Excel (spreadsheet software) is required.

  • Twelve required business courses:
    • BUSACC 0030 Financial Accounting
    • BUSACC 0040 Managerial Accounting
    • BUSQOM 0050 Quantitative Methods
    • BUSENV 0060 Managerial Ethics and Stakeholder Management*
    • BUSECN 1010 Business Economics
    • BUSORG 1020 Organizational Behavior
    • BUSFIN 1030 Introduction to Finance*
    • BUSMKT 1040 Introduction to Marketing*
    • BUSHRM 1050 Human Resources Management
    • BUSMIS 1060 Introduction to Information Systems*
    • BUSQOM 1070 Operations Management*
    • BUSSPP 1080 Strategic Management*

Note: Courses noted with an asterisk (*) are considered non-A&S credits. All other courses are counted toward graduation as A&S credits. A&S students may include only 18 non-A&S credits in the 120 credits required for graduation.

All of the above listed courses must be completed with an average GPA of 2.00. All courses for the business major must be taken on a letter-grade basis. Students who complete the requirements of the A&S/business dual major are not required to complete a minor or A&S related area.

Interdisciplinary Studies Major

The interdisciplinary studies option is intended for students who wish to design their own major. This major allows students to be flexible and creative in planning a program to match their individual interests and career goals. Completing this major requires sound thought, planning, and extra effort. Students selecting this option must secure the sponsorship of two full-time A&S faculty advisors. Students will formulate a proposal for their major, including a course prospectus (classes chosen) and an essay stating rationale for their desired program of study. They will work on their proposal with their faculty advisors, who must approve the proposal before the interdisciplinary studies faculty committee can approve it.

Major Requirements

A student intending to complete an interdisciplinary studies major must submit a proposal to his/her faculty advisors before the end of the junior year. The faculty committee must approve the proposal before the student can officially declare interdisciplinary studies as a major.

  • All A&S degree requirements must be completed (120 credits, 2.0 overall GPA and major GPA, skills and general education requirements).
  • The interdisciplinary studies proposal must consist of a minimum of 42 credits, 21 of which must be earned from courses numbered 1000 level or above. Courses are chosen from at least two different departments and arranged in one, two, or three clusters or thematic groupings. Each cluster must contain a minimum of 12 credits.
  • A maximum of 6 credits of internship or independent study may be included. A maximum of 6 credits of non-A&S courses (i.e. BUS, BUSERV, ADMJ, ADMPS, IL, PSYED, etc.) may be used. There can be no more than 9 credits of internship/independent study and non-A&S credits combined.
  • A W course approved by the faculty advisors must be completed as part of the major.

A GPA of at least 2.00 must be maintained for all interdisciplinary studies course work. Students may achieve honors in interdisciplinary studies by earning a minimum GPA of 3.50 in the courses for the major and approval of a final paper or thesis.

International and Area Studies

Bachelor of Philosophy in International and Area Studies

The University Honors College (UHC) and University Center for International Studies (UCIS) have created the Bachelor of Philosophy in International and Area Studies (BPhil IAS), a research-based undergraduate major that will help students meet the demands of today’s world. The BPhil IAS degree is awarded jointly by the student’s home school and the University Honors College and is the first undergraduate degree in international studies at Pitt.

The goal of the BPhil IAS degree is to enable students to think critically about their global world and to gain “global competence,” which involves working effectively in different international settings, an awareness of the major currents of global change and the resulting issues raised, the capacity for effective communication across cultural and linguistic boundaries, and personal adaptability to diverse cultures.

Students seeking the BPhil IAS degree must have a minimum GPA of 3.50/4.00; complete an approved program of study involving coursework, second language, and study abroad; and write and publicly defend their research thesis before a faculty examining board that includes a visiting faculty member from outside the University. The BPhil IAS is not a freestanding major, as it requires the student to combine the BPhil IAS with a major in the student’s home school of admission (A&S, CBA, Engineering, etc.); students must combine the BPhil IAS requirements with all curriculum requirements for a degree in their home school of admission.

Students seeking the BPhil in IAS must:

  • have a minimum grade point average of 3.50/4.00; and
  • complete eight approved courses (24 credits); and
  • complete one methods course specific to their second major or to their BPhil thesis research topic; and
  • complete one directed study course related to their BPhil thesis research topic; and
  • complete three years of college-level language study or equivalent proficiency in a language relevant to their BPhil thesis research topic; and
  • write and publicly defend their research thesis (the BPhil thesis) before a faculty examining board that includes a visiting faculty member from outside the University; and
  • complete a second major in another academic discipline (note that only two courses from this major can overlap with the approved courses for the IAS major).


Students interested in the BPhil in IAS may complete one of the following tracks in UCIS:  Asian Studies, European Union Studies, Global Studies, Latin American Studies, or Russian and East European Studies


Politics and Philosophy

The politics and philosophy major, a major in the Kenneth P. Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences, advised through the University Honors College, provides students with interdisciplinary training in the conceptual, empirical, and normative foundations of various fields of public policy.  It enhances students’ understanding of the moral and political complexities of public life and it offers preparation in both theory and practice to students interested in pursuing careers in social and public affairs.


By combining course work from different disciplines -- political science, philosophy, and economics -- the program’s scope is broad, yet the structure of the curriculum also requires depth.  The thematic nature of the major allows for flexibility in course selection.  In collaboration with the major advisor, students design a cohesive program of study tailored to meet their individual post-graduate/career interests and needs.


The politics and philosophy major is a rigorous, but rewarding, program.  Upon graduation, an academic career is certainly a possible pursuit; the major also provides excellent preparation for careers in law, government, community organizations, and social action groups.


The major is comprised of elements from the political science, philosophy, and economics departments and involves a minimum of 51 credits distributed as follows: political science – 21 credits; philosophy – 21 credits; economics – 9 credits. A capstone, which may have associated credits, is also required.

Required courses for the Politics and Philosophy major

Political Science courses

Students must complete seven courses in political science. At least four of those courses must be upper level (numbered 1000 or above). One of the courses must be a W-course; the W-course may be either upper- or lower-level.

Philosophy courses

Students must complete seven courses in philosophy. At least four of those courses must be upper level (numbered 1000 or above). One of the courses must be a W-course; the W-course may be either upper- or lower-level.

Economics courses
  • ECON 0100 Introduction to Microeconomic Theory
  • ECON 0110 Introduction to Macroeconomic Theory
  • ECON XXXX any course (no course in the 0800 series may count toward this requirement)
Capstone requirement

In consultation with the major advisor, students may opt for one of the following.

  • completion of the Bachelor of Philosophy thesis through the University Honors College (UHC);
  • participation in a graduate-level seminar (with permission from the instructor); or
  • completion of a Directed Research Project, an Independent Study, or an Internship.

Grade requirements: A minimum GPA of 2.0 is required in those courses that count toward the major.

Satisfactory/No Credit option: There is no limit on the number of courses in the major that can be taken on an S/NC basis, but it is suggested that these courses be taken for a letter grade.

Writing (W) requirement: The W courses listed under the political science and philosophy requirements satisfy the W requirement for the major.

Related area: A related area is not required due to the interdisciplinary nature of the major.