College of General Studies

Majors

Academics header image

The College of General Studies has 12 practical, results-oriented academic majors designed for adults who want to continue or complete their education and earn the credentials they need to stand out in a competitive hiring market.  We offer classes in a variety of formats and locations so you have choices about how, where, when, and at what pace you complete your degree.  We know that you are busy.  Most of our students balance their coursework with a job and family obligations.  That is why we work closely with each student we admit to develop an individualized plan for success—so you can learn on your terms.

To learn more, schedule a preadmission counseling appointment with Director of Recruitment and Enrollment by calling 412-624-6600. Request more information today! 

Our Majors  

All of our degree programs combine general education courses, such as history and literature, with specific areas of study.  This means that our graduates not only achieve mastery in their chosen subject areas, but gain confidence and essential skills in written and verbal communication as well as strategic thinking and planning.  At CGS, we will help you prepare for a career, not just a job.

Administration of Justice (BA)

Develop your understanding of the evolution, theory, structure, functioning, and process of change in the system of American criminal justice. Choose one of these three specialized areas: Adult and Juvenile Corrections, Law Enforcement Practice, or Forensics. Courses in the administration of justice major are all taught by full-time and adjunct faculty members of the Graduate School of Public and International Affairs (GSPIA) . Participating faculty members include attorneys, prison administrators, judges, law enforcement officials, and criminal justice researchers. GSPIA also offers a five-year BA/MA program to students who qualify.

Transfer Credit Agreements have been established between criminal justice programs at many of the community colleges within the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and the Administration of Justice program at the University of Pittsburgh.

Dental Hygiene (BS)

If you have graduated from an accredited dental hygiene program, this major provides you with the opportunity to complete a bachelor of science degree. 

Articulation Agreements have been established between the College of General Studies and the Dental Hygiene Certificate Program with five area community colleges for degree completion for licensed dental hygenists.

Health Services (BA) 

Our health services major is designed to build communication, management, analytical, and leadership skills, while relating all to the health services field. You can choose one of two tracks in this is interdisciplinary course of study:

  • Managing Health Services Programs and Projects gives students key administrative and business skills with an emphasis on grant and research project management.
  • Community Health Assessment provides an understanding of the physical, social, and behavioral factors influencing health.

Health Services (BS)

Our health services bachelor of science major is a degree completion option for students who have an associate's degree in select allied health fields, or are licensed diagnostic medical sonographers, radiologic technologists, or respiratory therapists.
This flexible program provides students with communication and management skills as well as broadening students' understanding of health-related issues. 

Humanities (BA)

Choose courses from three of the following departments: Africana studies, classics, communication, English, German, history of art and architecture, linguistics, music, philosophy, religious studies, Spanish, studio arts, theatre arts.

Pre-education Option

This major can incorporate all of the prerequisite coursework needed for admission into the certificate program in Comprehensive English Education in Pitt's School of Education. This option may be used by students interested in the Professional Year or the Master of Arts in teaching programs offered in the School of Education. Completion of the prerequisites does not guarantee acceptance.

Legal Studies (BA)

This interdisciplinary course of study combines the theories and methods of several social science disciplines and law. It is not designed as a pre-law program; its goal is to enable you to develop an understanding of the nature, content, and operation of American law and legal institutions. Courses in the legal studies major are all taught by full-time and adjunct faculty members of the Graduate School of Public and International Affairs (GSPIA). Participating faculty members include attorneys practicing in fields of law ranging from criminal prosecution and defense, to environmental law, consumer law, and family law.
Students with QPA of 3.5 or better planning to pursue graduate work may want to consider one of the following early admission options. To students who qualify, the Graduate School of Public and International Affairs offers the five-year BA/MA program. Students pursuing a legal studies major may obtain the Master of Studies in Law (MSL) degree in a joint program in which credits obtained in the MSL program also count toward the bachelor's degree. Learn more about this program.

Media and Professional Communications (BA)

This major features a dual emphasis on providing students with a rigorous education in the theories of mass media process, history, and ethics, as well as the opportunity to specialize in one of three professional practice areas: Corporate/Community Relations, Writing for the Professions, or Digital Media. The three tracks are designed to strengthen both the knowledge base and proficiencies of students pursuing careers in communications fields, such as print, television, radio, film, new media, or corporate/organizational communications. This program will also benefit students pursuing careers in a variety of industries in which communication with internal and external publics is critical.

Natural Sciences (BS)

Choose courses from three of the following departments: anthropology, astronomy, biological sciences, chemistry, geology and planetary science, history and philosophy of science, neuroscience, physics, psychology.

Pre-education Option

This major can incorporate all of the prerequisite coursework needed for admission into the certificate programs in Earth and Space Science and General Science. This option may be used by students interested in the Professional Year or the Master of Arts in teaching programs offered in the School of Education. Completion of the prerequisites does not guarantee acceptance.

Pre Medicine Option

The natural sciences concentration incorporates the course work needed for admission to most medical and dental programs.  Completion does not guarantee acceptance into graduate study.  

Public Service (BA)

This major prepares students for careers that are focused on the resolution of public problems or the delivery of public services at the local, state, national, or international level. Students take a common core and then choose one of three concentration areas: Public Administration, Nonprofit Management, or a self-designed concentration. Courses in the Public Service major are all taught by full-time and adjunct faculty members of the Graduate School of Public and International Affairs(GSPIA). GSPIA also offers a five-year BA/MA program to students who qualify.

Self-Designed (BA or BS)

The Self-Designed major enables highly motivated nontraditional students to pursue a unique program of studies for compelling professional or academic reasons. The self-designed major must be multidisciplinary, including courses from more than two departments or schools. It must have the same academic quality as existing College of General Studies majors, and it must be substantially different from current majors. Faculty approval is required. 

Social Sciences (BA)   

This major can be customized to meet your personal interests and career goals. Choose courses from three of the following departments: Africana studies, anthropology, economics, history, Jewish studies, legal studies, political science, psychology, religious studies, sociology, urban studies, women's studies.