By now, you already know that BU is a top-ranked university. But what defines the academic experience here?
- At BU, academic flexibility allows you to take coursework across schools and colleges, combine your passions through Dual Degree programs or combined BA/MA programs, and choose from more than 250 programs of study.
- The coursework here is challenging, but at BU you’re encouraged to combine it with research. And you don’t have to be majoring in the sciences to participate in research. Whatever your interest, you’ll be expected to form your own questions and seek the answers (as early as your freshman year).
- The academics here are infused with global perspectives – from sitting next to classmates from around the world to studying global topics or researching alongside a professor while studying abroad.
You may also visit the Course Bulletin for more information on academics and course requirements for your area of study.
Many students are eligible for advanced credit from examinations such as the International Baccalaureate and AP exams. Learn more about how to receive advanced credit at BU.
Here are many of the reasons why the school or college you’ve been admitted to is a leader within your area of interest:
College of Arts & Sciences
- A number of CAS departments offer joint BA/MA programs for students looking to get a head start on their postgraduate education. You can also choose a course of study that will allow you to graduate with honors in a chosen major or minor.
- The four divisions of CAS – Humanities, Computational Sciences, Natural Sciences, and Social Sciences – encompass 23 academic departments and more than 60 programs of study. You’ll have the freedom to take courses at the BU College of Communication, College of Fine Arts, and other schools or colleges on campus.
- Whatever your discipline, CAS faculty strongly encourage the development of professional research skills. You’ll have the rare opportunity to participate in hands-on research as early as your freshman year.
- You’ll have the chance to study with thought leaders in a wide range of fields. Our faculty includes two Nobel Laureates, a MacArthur Fellow, a former U.S. Poet Laureate, members of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, a National Book Award winner and many Guggenheim Fellows.
- As Boston University’s largest academic division, CAS is the heart of the BU experience. You’ll develop the intellectual and social skills you need to tackle the complex problems that life and career will present to you.
- A learning community unique to CAS, the CORE program connects students with co-curricular events and provides a foundation in the classic texts and fundamental ideas that have shaped our world. The community connects students across many disciplines throughout their time at BU and beyond.
- The Frederick S. Pardee School of Global Studies aims to advance global human progress through groundbreaking research and education that weaves together the social and natural sciences and humanities.
- Quacquarelli Symonds (QS) ranked two CAS programs – Economics and Psychology – in the world’s top 50 of their kind. The annual rankings are based on a program’s academic reputation, student employability after graduation, and research citations.
College of Communication
- At COM, students are inspired by top journalists, Emmy award winners, authors, playwrights and filmmakers. The college has produced 19 Pulitzer Prize-winning graduates and offers you the chance to intern everywhere from LA to
- You’ll gain a global perspective through opportunities such as the London Internship Program, Global Student Newsroom, or covering world-class events like the Olympics.
- By studying in the vibrant city of Boston, one of the largest media markets in the US, you’ll have access to impressive internships with organizations such as the Boston Globe, National Geographic magazine, and 20th Century Fox.
- You’ll choose from our four majors—Cinema & Media Studies, Communication, Film & Television, or Journalism—and pick from more than 10 areas of specialization such as public relations, advertising, broadcast journalism, and writing for film and television.
- You’ll gain hands-on experience at butv10, our on-campus TV station; WTBU, a student-run radio station; and the Daily Free Press, an independently run student newspaper. Additional activity groups—which span all academic focuses—include the Public Relations Student Society of America (PRSSA), Unleashed PR, AdClub, the Redstone Film Festival, and the COMmunicator.
- Speaking of student programs, many of ours were recently recognized. BUTV10, our campus television station, was awarded three New England Associated Press Awards and two New England Emmy awards last year. In addition, our student-produced Boston University News Service won two Online News Association awards; WTBU won its second consecutive College Music Journal “College Station of the Year” award; and our web series, COMlife, was named a Blue Ribbon finalist at the College Television Emmys.
- Our COM Ambassador program will help you adjust to life at Boston University and the great city of Boston. Check out our COM Ambassador profiles.
College of Engineering
- ENG has more than 100 tenured faculty including three National Academy of Inventors Charter Fellows and members of several nationally prominent engineering societies.
- ENG has received $47 million in sponsored research awards and our biomedical engineering graduate program is ranked among the best in the country (U.S. News & World Report 2016).
- The Imagineering Laboratory offers 1,400 square feet of lab space where you can pursue your interests in extracurricular design and innovation projects.
- Boston University is one of the first schools in the nation to offer formally acknowledged concentrations in energy technologies, nanotechnology and technology innovation.
- BU is located right in Boston, a hub for biomedical and engineering industry leaders. You’ll intern with companies such as IBM, Raytheon, Genzyme, and EMC.
- The Engineering Product Innovation Center (EPIC) offers hands-on exposure to the complete product design-to-deployment process through flexible teaching space, demonstration areas, labs and a fabrication facility.
College of Fine Arts
- Home to a vibrant art scene, Boston offers a myriad of world-class galleries and museums right near CFA.
- CFA provides the best of both worlds: a broad liberal arts education with focused programs. Plus, we are the only school in Boston to combine the professional study of music, theatre, and visual arts.
- You’ll have access to all of the resources at Boston University and can participate in the Double Degree, Dual Degree, and Kilachand Honors College programs. You can also minor in areas across the University.
- You’ll complete impressive internships at places such as YouTube, the Institute of Contemporary Art, Boston Lyric Opera, Cambridge Arts Council, the Boston Symphony Orchestra, Boston Center for the Arts, Williamstown Theatre Festival, National Geographic, and Hearst Corporation International Division.
- School of Music students study with world-class faculty, including 30 Boston Symphony Orchestra members.
- School of Visual Arts students may spend a semester abroad studying art at Boston University’s Santa Marghareta space in the heart of Venice, which includes painting studios and classrooms for Italian studies, art history and drawing.
- School of Theatre students take part in the BU Professional Theatre Initiative, which offers opportunities for creative interactions with professional theatre ventures.
College of General Studies
- CGS is a small liberal arts college within a large research university. The two-year interdisciplinary curriculum allows you to explore different majors through an elective of your choosing each semester.
- After your two years at CGS, you’ll continue on to one of BU’s other eight schools and colleges to complete your degree during your junior and senior years.
- From day one, you’ll partner with a full-time CGS academic advisor who will also work with your professors to provide one-on-one assistance in academic and career choices.
- You’ll collaborate in tight-knit cohorts that create a cohesive academic community and opportunities to work closely with CGS’s distinguished faculty (all PhDs).
- The CGS curriculum is carefully designed to cover the humanities, social sciences, natural sciences, and rhetoric for the most comprehensive liberal arts foundation possible. You might discover the philosophy of Nietzsche in modern films or explore the social issues raised by the Human Genome Project.
- CGS encourages global and experiential learning by offering CGS-specific Study Abroad programs in places like London or Shanghai. You’ll be eligible as early as the summer after your freshman year.
The CGS January Boston-London Program begins in the culturally rich city of Boston in the spring semester and is followed by six weeks of rigorous academics in London, providing an unmatched interdisciplinary, global approach to freshman year.
College of Health & Rehabilitation Sciences: Sargent College
- Sargent College’s programs tracked by U.S. News & World Report all rank in the top 8 percent in their respective fields with Occupational Therapy rated #1 in the country.
- Backed by more than $11 million in research funding—among the highest of any health and rehabilitation sciences college in the U.S.—you’ll participate in research in faculty labs, at BU’s Boston Medical Center and Boston-area hospitals, and through our Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program (UROP).
- The Health Science Program offers a global focus with courses such as “Qualitative Research Strategies in Global Health” and “Global Health: Beyond Germs and Genes” in an innovative curriculum. For example, students participated in the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation’s Records for Life Contest as part of their course requirements.
- We’ll highly encourage you to pursue minors (public health, biology, and psychology are popular options) and to study abroad; there are several study abroad experiences tailored for Sargent programs, such as Sydney, Auckland, Dublin, Dresden, Grenoble, London, Madrid, and Geneva.
- Learning extends beyond the classroom. Fieldwork is a key component of all degree programs, and we have a network of more than 1,400 hospitals, clinics, rehabilitation centers, schools, and community agencies across the US and around the world.
- You’ll get involved in unique learning experiences including university-sponsored community outreach programs, like the International Service Learning (ISL) Program. Recent ISL experiences include spending spring break in Belize to raise Diabetes awareness and traveling to Costa Rica.
Frederick S. Pardee School of Global Studies
- Weaving together the social sciences, natural sciences, and humanities the Pardee School offers a broad interdisciplinary approach to global studies.
- By bringing all of the College of Arts & Sciences’ diverse international and regional studies offerings under one roof, the Pardee School will prepare you to become a globally competent citizen ready to take on the world’s greatest challenges.
- Not only will you take courses on our Charles River Campus in Boston; you’ll also have the opportunity to study abroad through one of the more than 40 programs offered on six continents.
- Representing studies across myriad departments and centers, and access to almost 200 faculty members, our International Relations majors can claim membership not only in one of the largest schools of global studies in the country, but one of the most active, with new partnerships around the world.
- Like our alumni, you’ll be ready to work in organizations as varied as the United Nations, the U.S. Department of State, Fortune 500 Companies, the Environmental Protection Agency, and more.
Questrom School of Business
- With a distinctive global focus, our curriculum emphasizes cultural differences in business practices and addresses the role of ethics in business.
- Questrom courses enable you to gain a working knowledge of the fastest-growing industries: health and life sciences, digital technology, and social enterprise and sustainability.
- Many of our students study abroad in more than 30 locations, including Sydney, Shanghai, and London; others take part in an entertainment management program in Los Angeles or a leadership and public policy program in Washington, D.C.
- The student body comes from nearly 100 countries, providing a distinctive global learning community.
- You’ll gain summer internships with industry-leading companies in Boston, the metro area, and around the world, including Fidelity Investments, Staples, EMC, the TJX Companies, and PricewaterhouseCoopers.
- The Questrom School of Business Feld Career Center Services partners with you to help insure that you’re market-ready and able to identify the best match for your talents and career objectives.
School of Education
- BU has a unique, 30-year collaboration with the Boston Public Schools and city of Boston, offering you a chance to improve the community through teaching, tutoring, and programs such as COACH, Step UP, Upward Bound, and BUILD.
- You may participate in BU’s Dual Degree program to earn a second bachelor’s degree in areas that will complement your SED degree, such as art education (CFA) or psychology (CAS) (with the exception of Deaf Studies majors.)
- Beginning your first semester, you’ll gain classroom experience. Throughout the undergraduate program, you’ll also have both urban and suburban classroom experiences, and even teach in classrooms abroad, such as in London, Quito, or Sydney.
- SED is home to an Early Childhood Learning Laboratory, which provides you with the opportunity to study and observe an actual early childhood classroom.
- Ninety-eight percent of recent graduates found employment.
- Located in the birthplace of public education in the U.S., SED publishes the oldest continuously published educational journal in the United States, the Journal of Education, founded in 1875.
- You can earn dual liscensure in different subject areas.
School of Hospitality Administration
- Located in a city that caters to the sophisticated traveler and fine dining enthusiast, SHA offers a hospitality-focused management degree in a world-class hub for hospitality and tourism.
- Industry executives assisted in the development of our innovative curriculum focused on service management, work experiences, and technology.
- We were one of the first hospitality schools in the nation to require an international experience at no additional tuition cost. Programs are offered in more than two dozen cities, including in the U.K., China, France, Ireland, Australia, New Zealand, Spain, and even in Washington, D.C., and Los Angeles.
- Members of our distinguished Dean’s Advisory Board include presidents, CEOs, founders, and COOs of companies such as Marriott International, Hilton Global, Hyatt, Four Seasons Hotels, Planet Hollywood, ARAMARK, and Pyramid Advisors, Inc. – just to name a few.
- The hospitality and tourism industry is the #1 employer worldwide, which is great news for our globally aware students, more than 91 percent of whom find employment shortly after graduation each year.
Whether it’s academic counseling or career guidance, one thing is certain: the school or college you’ve been admitted to is here to give you the best advice out there. Learn more about specific advising centers.
- College of Arts & Sciences (CAS)
- College of Communication (COM)
- College of Engineering (ENG)
- College of Fine Arts (CFA)
- College of General Studies (CGS)
- College of Health & Rehabilitation Sciences: Sargent College (SAR)
- Questrom School of Business (Questrom)
- School of Education (SED)
- School of Hospitality Administration (SHA)