2016-2017 Academic Bulletin 
    Jul 23, 2024  
2016-2017 Academic Bulletin [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Curricular Options


American Honors Program

Allegheny College is a partner with the American Honors program that facilitates the transfer of students from a selected group of outstanding community colleges to complete their bachelor’s degrees at Allegheny. American Honors advisors assist students in selecting community college courses that will prepare them for the rigor and the specific requirements of their intended programs at Allegheny. Interested students are encouraged to contact American Honors (https://americanhonors.org/) or Allegheny Admissions (admissions@allegheny.edu) for more information.


Undergraduate internships are available through academic departments for students with appropriate backgrounds. These internships are designed to serve two major purposes: first, to provide an opportunity for study and experience outside the traditional setting of classroom and laboratory, yet within the framework of disciplined inquiry; and second, to provide a special opportunity for the participants to refine their emerging professional/career interests. Some established internships are briefly described under sponsoring departments. Interested students should contact the listed faculty liaison for more information; not all internships are available each semester.

Registration for internships should be completed prior to participation in the internship; see Internship Registration  under “Course Registration ” for details. In order for an internship to be credit-bearing and, thus, listed on a student’s academic transcript, it must require a level of work comparable to a regular Allegheny course with the same number of credit hours. In particular, such an experience must involve academic research, regular reflection, and a final project or presentation evaluated by the supervising Allegheny faculty member.

Study Away Programs

Allegheny recognizes the enormous value of off-campus study and is proud to offer a variety of programs and services to its students in order to facilitate participation in such opportunities. Allegheny students have studied in almost every corner of the world through programs that lasted only two weeks to programs that lasted almost a year. Detailed information regarding all off-campus study programs is available from the International Education Office in the Allegheny Gateway.

Allegheny-Sponsored Programs

The term “Allegheny-sponsored program” indicates that Allegheny participants in these programs are charged Allegheny rates for program costs, and Allegheny financial aid, with the exception of work-study, can be applied to program costs. The program fee always includes Allegheny tuition; if the program fee includes room and board, students will be charged Allegheny room and board rates (the room charge is the double room rate, and the meal plan charge is for the Complete Plan). Depending on the program, students may pay room and board charges directly to the host institution.

International Programs

  • Al Akhawayn University in Ifrane, Morrocco
    Al Akhawayn is Morocco’s first English-language international university based on the American model. The spacious modern campus is located in an immense natural forest above Ifrane, in the heart of Morocco’s beautiful Middle Atlas mountains. Students select from a wide variety of courses taught in English as well as courses in the Arabic language.
  • Allegheny-in-Cologne, Germany (fall semester only)
    Students and faculty from Gettysburg College and Washington and Jefferson College join Allegheny students and faculty in this language and area studies program; college level German required; students live with host families.
  • Arava Institute for Environmental Studies at Kibbutz Ketura, Israel
    Students from an array of Middle Eastern countries study and work together; program taught in English focuses on environmental issues, including ecology, conservation, technology, politics, religion, art, psychology and economics.
  • Boston University, Paris Internship Program, France
    Program students take French area studies courses together for seven weeks, then engage in internships related to their major for seven weeks; college level French required.
  • CIEE Study Center at FLACSO in Buenos Aires, Argentina
    In this program, students take specialized courses at FLACSO in a variety of disciplines taught by experts in various academic fields and taught exclusively to CIEE students. In addition, students are required to enroll in direct enrollment courses within academic departments and faculties at the Universidad de Buenos Aires (UBA), the Pontificia Universidad Catolica Argentina (UCA), and the Instituto Universitario Nacional de Arte (IUNA). This arrangement allows CIEE students to combine the specialized, more personalized “think tank” atmosphere of FLACSO with the vibrant and challenging Argentine university life of UBA, UCA, and IUNA. Given the acknowledged excellence of the faculty and the wide range of course offerings, the CIEE program is suitable for students with very strong language skills. All courses are taught in Spanish.
  • CIEE Intensive Chinese Language Program in Beijing, China
    Students engage in intensive study of the Chinese language along with cultural excursion and extracurricular activities.
  • CIEE Chinese Language and Culture Program in Nanjing, China
    This program combines study of the Chinese language with cultural immersion experiences, field trips, and community involvement. Students improve their language proficiency while also developing cross-cultural competence.
  • CIEE Chinese Business, Language, and Culture Program in Shanghai, China
    Suitable for students with no previous background in the Chinese language, this program offers course options in Chinese language, economics, and political science and also includes visits to Chinese companies and an intership placement.
  • CIEE at the Monteverde Tropical Biology Institute, Costa Rica
    Program students engage in a structured curriculum and field experiences taught in English centered around tropical biology and ecology.
  • ITESM, Campus Querétaro, Mexico
    Students may enroll in language and area studies courses for foreign students or regular university courses in some majors offered at Allegheny; college level Spanish required; students live with host families.
  • James Cook University, Townsville, Australia
    Students enroll in regular university courses in all majors at Allegheny; housing is in on-campus residence halls.
  • Keio University in Tokyo, Japan
    Two different study tracks are available at the International Center at Keio University. Accepted students can choose to enroll in either the Keio University International Program or the Japanese Language Program. The Keio International program offers core courses taught in English in combination with Japanese Language courses intended to improve students’ speaking, listening, reading and writing skills. The Japanese Language Program is intended for those students interested in developing or improving their Japanese language skills while learning more about the society and culture of Japan.
  • Lancaster University, Lancaster, England
    Students enroll in regular university courses in all majors at Allegheny; housing is in on-campus residence halls.
  • L’Université Catholique de l’Ouest in Angers, France
    Program students may take intensive language courses, or enroll in both area studies courses for foreign students and/or regular university courses in some majors offered at Allegheny; college level French required; students live with host families.
  • Center for Sustainable Development (SFS), Costa Rica
    Program students live and work together; courses taught in English focus on ecological, social, and political aspects of sustainable development; one semester of Spanish required.
  • Minnesota Studies in International Development
    Field placement/internship programs in Quito (Ecuador), Jaipur (India), Nairobi (Kenya), Dakar (Senegal); program students enroll in language, area studies, international development courses for eight weeks, then participate in eight week (or additional semester) internships in grassroots organizations, local government, or field stations.
  • Spanish Studies Abroad in Seville, Spain
    Program students take area studies and language courses together; meet Spanish university students through translation program; college level Spanish required; students live with host families.
  • University of Cologne, Cologne, Germany
    Participants take intensive German language courses at the start of the program, then enroll in area studies for foreign students and/or regular university courses in most majors offered at Allegheny. Students live on campus in shared apartments with other students.

 National Programs

  • Duke University Marine Lab, Beaufort, North Carolina
    Through Allegheny’s membership in Duke University’s Marine Sciences Education Consortium (MSEC), juniors may spend fall semester at the Beaufort marine station and/or participate in the spring program split between Beaufort and the Bermuda Biological Laboratory. The major designation on student transcripts will be annotated “with an emphasis in the Marine Sciences” upon completion of at least 16 semester hours of coursework at Duke.
  • The Philadelphia Center
    This program is a unique and valuable 16-week program in the fall or spring semester that allows undergraduates to engage in critical investigations of their own abilities, objectives, and values in order to help discover their personal and professional direction in life. It combines city living seminars, academic electives, and internships
  • The NY Arts Program
    This program has two main goals: to provide advanced experience and knowledge in highly focused arts areas (primarily through apprenticeships) and to provide a broadened knowledge of all the arts as practiced in New York through the Area Studies program. It is a unique combination of seminars and internships based on the Visual, Performing, and Media Arts.
  • Oakridge Science Semester
    This is a Fall semester only program running from late August until Mid-December. The Oak Ridge Science Semester (ORSS) enables students to join ongoing investigations at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) in research areas as diverse as astrophysics, cell biology, DNA sequencing, genetic mutagenesis, parallel computing, robotics, toxicology, and much more.
  • Washington Semester at American University, Washington, D.C.
    Program students enroll in one of 12 tracks (e.g., politics, justice, law, journalism, economics) and also complete an internship relating to their academic focus.
  • Woods Hole Marine Biological Laboratory, Massachusetts
    Intensive studies in terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems in a premier research institution.

Off-Campus Study: Independent Programs

Students participating in “independent programs” will pay program costs (e.g., tuition) directly to the program in which they are participating. Allegheny financial aid is not applicable to independent programs; however, most state and federal aid may be applied. Students going on independent programs are responsible for notifying the Office of Financial Aid in order to make arrangements for the transfer of state and federal aid (e.g., student loans).

Each student who participates in an independent off-campus program will pay an $800 off-campus study fee per semester.

Application Process

The application process for fall and spring semester programs is as follows:

  1. Allegheny approval
    All students interested in off-campus study must file for approval by September 20 for the following spring and February 20 for the following fall. In order to be approved for off-campus study, the students must submit a letter of approval for program participation from their academic advisor, an application (including an essay closely relating the program of choice to the student’s major, minor or other academic goals), resumé, and unofficial transcripts. They must also meet specific program eligibility requirements and meet the filing deadline.
  2. Pre-departure orientations
    ALL students approved for off-campus study (national and international programs, Allegheny-sponsored and independent) must attend the pre-departure orientation meetings. Program applications are distributed, and information about issues such as credit transfer, travel, safety and responsibility, program goals, and cross-cultural learning is discussed.
  3. EXL 300 Cross-Cultural Learning: Theory and Practice
    Students on Allegheny-sponsored programs are required to enroll in EXL 300 - Cross-Cultural Learning: Theory and Practice , a one-credit course that comprises activities, readings, and assignments that are completed for the meetings prior to departure and upon return to campus. The focus of the course is cross-cultural learning and communication.

EL Seminars

Allegheny also offers faculty-led summer programs. These are generally three-week, for-credit courses that take place both domestically and internationally. The seminars offered during summer 2016 included destinations such as Central Europe, Nicaragua, Peru, the Rocky Mountains (U.S.), and Sri Lanka. Summer 2017 seminars will be announced in September 2016. Students must be approved by the faculty leaders and the International Education Office in order to participate. The application deadline is December 1. Detailed information is available from the International Education Office in the Allegheny Gateway: http://sites.allegheny.edu/elseminars/ .

Cooperative Programs

Cooperative programs (sometimes called 3-3, 3-2, or 3-1 programs) with other educational institutions enable Allegheny students to acquire a solid liberal arts background while accelerating their progress toward professional training and certification. Allegheny has formal agreements with several institutions to offer cooperative programs in Allied Health Professions, Engineering, and Public Policy and Management. Most of these require the successful completion of 98 semester credit hours at Allegheny before beginning course work at the cooperating institution. Students who want to participate in cooperative programs must complete Allegheny’s Graduation Requirements, including the minor outside the division of the major and the courses identified for an approved major; however, students who begin the cooperative program after three years of study at Allegheny are exempted from the requirement to complete a Senior Project. There are additional specific departmental course requirements for cooperative programs, and students should consult with the appropriate program liaison person about them when planning their course of study.

Satisfactory completion of the stated Allegheny requirements and the cooperating institution’s requirements earns the student the bachelor’s degree from Allegheny and the specified degree or certification from the cooperating institution.

A student enrolling in a cooperative program will be assessed a maintenance fee payable to Allegheny for each year in which the student is enrolled at a cooperating institution. This fee, payable before final processing of the application can be completed, is $50 for two years at a cooperating institution, or $25 for one year. The maintenance fee helps offset the costs of special record maintenance, correspondence, and transfer credit.

Students who elect to complete any of the programs that involve three years of work at Allegheny and additional years at a cooperating institution should schedule an exit interview with the Director of International Education early in their final semester at Allegheny. During the interview, the student will file an exit agreement in which the cooperating institution and the expected date of graduation are specified. Because work at the cooperating institution is evaluated as transfer credit, official transcripts showing that the student’s work at the second institution has been satisfactory must be received before the Allegheny degree is awarded.

The cooperative programs approved by the faculty are outlined below by interest area. Please contact the appropriate faculty advisor for information about the interest areas listed below.

Allied Health Professions

The following cooperative programs are available:

  • Nursing (3+3, 3+4) with the Frances Payne Bolton School of Nursing of Case Western Reserve University
  • Occupational Therapy (3+2) with Chatham University
  • Physical Therapy (4+2) with Chatham University
  • Physician Assistant Studies (3+2) with Chatham University

In all cases, students complete at least their first three years at Allegheny. In the case of physical therapy the degree is DPT and the undergraduate degree (including the Senior Project) must be completed prior to starting graduate studies.

Admission to all of the programs is competitive, and the existence of a cooperative agreement does not guarantee admission. The programs with Chatham University have specific criteria for guaranteed admission and guaranteed interview. Students are encouraged to see the Director of Pre-Professional Studies for these details as well as for the forms required of all students planning a cooperative program.

Students must complete the standard requirements of a major, a minor, FS courses, and distribution courses in order to obtain the Allegheny degree. Certain combinations of majors and minor work especially well to satisfy both Allegheny requirements and the prerequisite course work for the graduate program. Students are encouraged to consult with the Director of Pre-Professional Studies in their first year for this information. Careful planning is critical to success in these programs.


Five engineering programs entail three years at Allegheny and further study—usually two years—at a cooperating institution. At the conclusion of study, the student receives a bachelor’s degree from Allegheny and a Bachelor of Science in Engineering degree from the cooperating institution. Programs have been arranged with the following institutions:

  • Columbia University School of Engineering and Applied Science
  • Case Institute of Technology at Case Western Reserve University
  • University of Pittsburgh School of Engineering
  • Washington University School of Engineering

Most programs require that students maintain a “B” average overall and in the sciences. For these universities, acceptance to the cooperating institution is contingent upon the recommendation of the student’s major department at Allegheny. For some of the engineering departments, enrollment is limited by the engineering school. Similar arrangements may be made with engineering programs at other institutions with the approval of the faculty.

An alternative cooperative program with Columbia provides for earning the bachelor’s degree at Allegheny in the usual four years and the Master of Science in Engineering degree after two additional years at Columbia. This program requires substantial academic performance in Allegheny coursework and is available in most engineering fields. Students should consult with the advisor in their major field and with Professor Willey of the Physics Department for specific program requirements.

Public Policy and Management

The H. John Heinz III School of Public Policy and Management at Carnegie Mellon University offers an accelerated master’s program to qualified Allegheny College students. The program, structured as three years at Allegheny College followed by three to four semesters at the Heinz School (depending upon program), allows students to earn both a bachelor’s and a master’s degree in less time than is normally required.

The following cooperative programs are available:

  • Master of Science in Public Policy and Management (MSPPM)
  • Master of Science in Health Care Policy and Management (MSHCPM)
  • Master of Arts Management (MAM)
  • Master of Entertainment Industry Management (MEIM)
  • Master of Information Systems Management (MISM)
  • Master of Science in Information Security Policy & Management (MSISPM)

Students pay tuition and fees to Allegheny College from their freshman through junior years. They pay tuition and fees to Carnegie Mellon for their graduate program, either three or four semesters beyond the completion of the junior year, depending upon program. Allegheny students are also responsible for paying a maintenance fee to Allegheny while enrolled at Carnegie Mellon in their senior year.

Students will receive both the bachelor’s and master’s degrees upon completion of their graduate program at Carnegie Mellon. Allegheny College will count units taken during the master’s program toward the student’s bachelor’s degree according to its policies and procedures. The Heinz School will forward to Allegheny College transcripts and other necessary information on student academic performance. Students should consult with the advisor in their major field and with Professor Onyeiwu of the Economics Department for specific program requirements.

Allegheny College students are eligible for scholarship support from Allegheny College for their freshman through junior years. They will be eligible for scholarship support from the Heinz School for the length of their graduate program and can apply for any and all Heinz School scholarship funds for which they are eligible (based on program and the individual scholarship fund’s specific requirements).

Pre-Professional Programs and Advising

Pre-Health Professions

Allegheny students preparing for graduate programs in the health professions—medicine, dentistry, veterinary medicine, and allied health fields—use their major and elective courses to create precisely the programmatic balance that professional schools seek out, and that leads to success in professional school itself. Elements of such a program include: a strong foundation in the natural sciences (in or outside the selected major), highly developed communication skills, a solid background in the humanities and social sciences, study in depth (in any major field that is personally stimulating), and independent study and research (including the Senior Project).

Guidance in considering career options and preparing for professional school is just as important to undergraduates as the strength of the courses available. Consequently, Allegheny maintains an active Health Professions Advisory Committee, headed by the Director of Pre-Professional Studies. This advisor functions in addition to the student’s academic advisor and focuses specifically on pre-health concerns. Advising begins in the first year to assure that students are taking the appropriate courses in a timely fashion and are maintaining appropriate grades.

The Committee assists students with applying to professional schools through workshops, test preparations and interviews. A Committee Letter of Recommendation supplements the recommendations received from individual faculty members, and it carries special weight. Other Committee services include assistance in exploring the health professions through internships, externships, guest lectures, and campus visits by representatives of health professions schools.

Further information about the pre-health professions program is available from the Director of Pre-Professional Studies in the Allegheny Gateway and online at: http://sites.allegheny.edu/health/.

Drexel University College of Medicine Affiliation

Each year up to two Allegheny students are offered early assurance of admission to Drexel University College of Medicine if they meet certain criteria. These criteria include a GPA of 3.5 or better (with no grade less than a “C”) and the recommendation of the Health Professions Advisory Committee. The required MCAT scores will depend on the version of the test that is taken. Under the new scoring system the candidate must achieve a total minimum score of 506, with minimum subscores of 127 in the Chemical/Physical, Biological/Biochemical, and Critical Analysis sections of the test, and a minimum of 125 in the Foundations of Behavior section. Candidates who qualify will interview at the College of Medicine in June and gain early acceptance. Qualified students are encouraged to have early contact with the medical school and should see the Director of Pre-Professional Studies for further details.

Jefferson Medical College Affiliation

Under the Physicians Shortage Area Program (PSAP), certain Allegheny students who intend to practice in underserved rural areas may qualify for preferential admission to Jefferson Medical College in Philadelphia, as well as special premedical advising from Jefferson faculty. Qualifying students have rural or small-town backgrounds or family ties and intend to practice in non-metropolitan areas, preferably in Pennsylvania. Allegheny is one of six Pennsylvania colleges and universities whose students are afforded special consideration as PSAP applicants, of whom a maximum of 24 are admitted to the program each year.

Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine (LECOM) Affiliation

Early assurance programs are offered with LECOM in medicine, dentistry and pharmacy for students meeting the criteria. Viable candidates for the medical school program must have an overall GPA of at least 3.4 and a science GPA of at least a 3.2. The MCAT may be waived if certain academic criteria are met. Applicants must: interview at LECOM; have completed the pre-requisite courses; and have the support of the Health Professions Advisory Committee. Qualified candidates should meet with the Health Professions Advisor for further details.

Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine (PCOM) Affiliation

Each year up to three students are offered admittance to PCOM provided they meet certain criteria. These criteria include completion of the course requirements listed in the PCOM catalog, an overall GPA of at least 3.25, a minimum of fiftieth percentile scores in each section of the MCAT, and support of the Health Professions Advisory Committee. Applicants must interview at PCOM and are encouraged to submit their application as early as possible in the application cycle. Qualified candidates should meet with the Health Professions Advisor for further details.

Cooperative Programs in Health Professions

Cooperative programs with other educational institutions enable Allegheny students to acquire a solid liberal arts background while accelerating their progress toward professional training and certification. Allegheny has formal agreements with several institutions to offer cooperative programs in Physical Therapy, Nursing, Occupational Therapy, and Physician Assistant Studies. Please see the “Cooperative Programs” section for details.

Pre-Legal Studies

Allegheny students preparing for law school receive advice, information, and guidance from two Pre-Law Advisors (one a faculty member, the other a career services professional). The advisors sponsor programs, speakers and trips pertaining to legal careers and graduate study, and they assist in arranging internships as well as job shadowing opportunities. Annually, the advisors provide an information session on the Law School Admission Test (administered on campus two times per year) and help with the law school application process.

Allegheny’s curriculum is especially well suited to preparation for law school. Students may design the sort of broad-based program recommended by law schools themselves, with these crucial outcomes: ability to handle abstract ideas; strong analytic and reasoning skills; writing and speaking ability; and appreciation of the values of civilization. Especially important are the breadth of understanding and thinking skills developed in the First-Year/ Sophomore Seminars, the skills for in-depth study developed in the major of the student’s choice, and the capacities developed by the Senior Project, such as reasoning and expository skills and the ability to work independently.

Approximately two-thirds of Allegheny’s pre-law students major in one of three disciplines: Political Science, History or English. Next in popularity are Psychology and Economics, with other majors distributed evenly among the natural and social sciences and the humanities. Law school admissions committees encourage undergraduates to major in a discipline that interests and excites them.

Further information about the pre-law program is available from the Pre-Legal Advisor in the Gateway, Kristin Mook; from the faculty Pre-Legal Advisor, Professor Brian Harward of the Political Science Department, and online at: http://sites.allegheny.edu/prelaw/.

Business Administration

Allegheny has a direct admissions agreement with the William E. Simon Graduate School of Business Administration at the University of Rochester. Under this agreement, the Simon School gives selected Allegheny students preferred admission to the graduate school. Students are normally selected by the end of their junior year for admission the year following graduation.

Teacher Preparation

Allegheny students interested in pursuing a career in education can earn teacher certification and a Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT) degree through one of Allegheny’s partner institutions, Columbia University Teachers College or the University of Pittsburgh. Students may also earn an MEd through our partnership with the University of Pittsburgh and Xavier University. Under each program, students complete four years at Allegheny with a major and a minor in academic disciplines and then complete their teacher preparation at the graduate level in a streamlined program at one of the partner institutions. Applicants to the programs must maintain a 3.0 overall grade point average and meet the admission requirements of each graduate school.

Students who are interested in these programs should contact the Director of Pre-Professional Studies in the Gateway early in their academic careers in order to coordinate their Allegheny coursework with the partner institutions’ requirements. More information about teacher preparation and Allegheny’s Education Studies minor is available online at: http://sites.allegheny.edu/education/.