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Graduation Requirements

The graduation requirements for the baccalaureate degree in Statesmanship are comprised of work in the following areas:

Core Curriculum
Foreign Language
Field Experience
Comprehensive Oral Examination

Core Curriculum & Schedule

The entire undergraduate curriculum is available online, including course descriptions and readings.  Specific syllabi are provided upon enrollment, on or before the first day of class.  You may view the curriculum and course availability at the following links:

On and off-campus students use the same curriculum. 

Standard Four-Year Graduation Trajectory

Graduating on time (within four years) requires 15 hours of core classes each semester, plus Field Experience and Foreign Language requirements being completed during the summer. Simulation credits are earned during the Winter Semester in addition to the standard 15 core class credits. 

Students who choose to attend part-time naturally increase the number of years to graduate.

Foreign Language

Each undergraduate student must complete twelve credits of foreign language study, broken down as follows:

  • 2 credits in Philology, Etymology or Linguistics - in which Greek and Latin roots are explored while examining the common historical roots and structure of English and the broader family of Indo-European languages. (Ideally taken during the first summer.)
  • 2 credits in Latin. (Ideally taken during the first summer.)
  • 8 credits in any spoken and written non-English language. (Ideally taken during the final two summers.)

Upon evaluation and approval, GWU also accepts these credits when transferred from other institutions of higher education. We also accept examination results from qualified language examination centers (provided at many colleges and universities).

Otherwise, language courses may be taught by GWU faculty members or through Rosetta Stone, with whom the University has partnered to provide online language training.  Rosetta Stone courses are available year-round for part time students.

View available languages »

Field Experience

Each undergraduate student must complete two field experiences (internships worth two credits each) related in some way to the advancement of the cause of liberty. One internship must contribute to a student's development of leadership in shaping public policy or government, and the other in shaping public opinion. Whether in the public or private sector, it must be carried out in the spheres of law, government, politics, and/or public policy; elementary, secondary or higher education; or mass media, journalism, communications, public relations. It should also provide substantial work in administrative, research, office, strategic planning or technical capacities. It must also rise to the dignity and purpose of the mission of the University.

The student must enroll in a Field Experience class and the internship must be approved in advance by GWU administration. Students typically complete the field experiences during the summer months, but they maybe completed at any time.

More details about field experiences »

View a list of potential field experience opportunities »


Each undergraduate student must complete three simulation credits. Each Spring, GWU hosts a week-long, stand-alone simulation for one credit. These credits are in addition to regular simulations held throughout each semester as part of other courses.

Learn more about simulations »

View simulations on the academic calendar »


Comprehensive Oral Examination

All students must pass the comprehensive oral exam administered by the Graduation Committee at the conclusion of their degree program.

This final exam is a comprehensive oral defense. It is conducted only after all other requirements have been satisfactorily completed for graduation at the end of the senior year.

The final oral defense exam is usually conducted during the month prior to the graduation ceremonies.  Students register for this exam at the beginning of their final semester while registering for their regular courses.

Students are not awarded course credit to complete the exam.  There is a $300 charge for the Comprehensive Oral Exam.  In the even that the student fails the exam, they may retake it at a time that they and the rest of their board agree on.  The student does, however, pay a re-take fee if they fail either exam.


"I have always been a serious student, but have never been challenged to the extent I am being challenged now."

-Cassie Minert, Freshman


* An asterisk next to a course's credit hours indicates that this course may be "swapped" for elective or transfer credit. Click here for more information on elective and transfer credit.

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