The College of Arts & Sciences makes it possible for undergraduates to earn a bachelor’s degree in three (or fewer) years. The following questions and answers will help you decide if this option is right for you.

Frequently Asked Questions about Graduation in Three (or fewer) Years:

Q: Can I complete a CAS undergraduate degree in three years?

A: Yes, a little over three percent of students in each incoming class do so, and more students express interest in this.

Q: How do they do this?

A: Many choices help students achieve this goal: summer courses, Advanced Placement (AP) credit, International Baccalaureate (IB) or Advanced (A-level) credit, and transfer credit can all count toward your degree requirements. Many students who complete a CAS undergraduate degree in three or fewer years have course credit from a combination of the methods mentioned above. Working closely with an advisor will help you in completing your degree in the most efficient way.

Q: Is it a good idea to finish the BA/BS in three years?

A: For students who know exactly what they want to do after college, this might be a good route to take. Some of the advantages of graduating in three years include being able to begin the next step of your adventure, be it an advanced degree, an internship, or a research or career opportunity, sooner than usual. And, of course, a three-year degree might involve less tuition, room and board.

However, students who finish their degree in three years miss some of the opportunities of the four-year degree experience, such as the ability to develop a broader base of skills and knowledge, take interesting courses you might not have time for in a three-year degree, have other important experiences such as study abroad, internships, or participation in many of the great student activities on campus that help you develop interests, skills, and leadership.

If you’re considering this option, work with your advisor to plan your best strategy for your education. Be sure to take full advantage of the resources available through the Academic Advising Center (617-353-2400) as you begin to plan your degree program and path.