Undergraduate Studies
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FAQ

 

What is the Post-Baccalaureate (Post-Bacc) Studies program?

Post-Baccalaureate (Post-Bacc) Studies is designed for individuals who have earned an undergraduate degree and wish to take undergraduate-level courses at Penn on a non-degree basis. Post-Bacc students may have completed undergraduate, masters, or doctoral degrees and are now seeking to register for undergraduate level Penn courses. Post-Baccalaureate Studies allows you access to School of Arts and Sciences daytime or evening courses that are offered through the 599-level in order to further your post undergraduate education.

What am I required to have completed prior to applying to the Post-Baccalaureate Studies program?

All applicants to the Post-Baccalaureate Studies program are required to have completed an undergraduate degree and have a 3.0 (B) cumulative grade point average. Although a 3.0 is usually sufficient to warrant serious consideration, it does not guarantee admission.

Is there a minimum GPA requirement for applicants to the Post-Baccalaureate Studies program?

Post-Baccalaureate Studies applicants should have a minimum of a 3.0 (B) cumulative grade point average.

Why do students participate in the Post-Baccalaureate Studies program?

There are several reasons why students participate in the Post-Baccalaureate (Post-Bacc) Studies program. The majority of Post-Bacc students are taking undergraduate-level courses that they did not have the opportunity to take while they were completing their undergraduate careers. Many Post-Bacc students are seeking to apply to a master’s or doctoral degree program and are in the Post-Bacc program to take any prerequisite courses that they need prior to applying to those graduate programs. A number of Post-Bacc students are taking courses purely out of academic interest in furthering their post baccalaureate undergraduate education. Many are using tuition benefits offered through their jobs and are typically taking courses that are beneficial to their professional careers.

If you are interested in specific post baccalaureate programs, LPS also offers a Pre-Health program and a Classical Studies program.

Is admission highly competitive for the Post-Baccalaureate Studies program?

Post-Baccalaureate Studies applicants are not competing with one another for a space within the program; rather, the admissions committee will review transcripts to verify that a 3.0 GPA was maintained throughout the previous college-level career and will review the essay responses for demonstrated proficient academic writing ability. Therefore, admission to the Post-Baccalaureate Studies program is considered selective admission as opposed to competitive admission.

 

What items are required for the Post-Baccalaureate Studies application?
  • Completed Online Application
  • Current résumé
  • $70 Application Fee
  • Application Essay Responses
  • Unofficial transcripts from each post-secondary school attended uploaded through the online application system (study abroad transcripts are not required)

The Post-Baccalaureate Studies application page and requirements can be found here.

Is the Post-Baccalaureate Studies application process completed online?

Yes – the majority of the application process is to be completed online. The Post-Baccalaureate Studies application, transcripts, essay responses, and résumé must all be submitted through the online application system.

The application fee can be paid through the online application system or it can be paid via check.  If paying the application fee by check please make the check payable to the Trustees of the University of Pennsylvania and mail to:

LPS Admissions
3440 Market Street
Suite 100
Philadelphia, PA 19104-3335

The PBUG application page can be found here.

Is there an option for submitting a paper-based application?

No – LPS does not offer the option of submitting a paper-based application. The Post-Baccalaureate Studies online application and all required materials can be found on this page.

Do I have to submit transcripts from all of the post-secondary institutions that I have attended?

All applicants are required to upload unofficial transcripts through the online application system. This includes any college-level course that has been taken for college-level grades and/or academic credits.

Transcripts for certification courses taken that do not issue college-level grades or academic credits – real estate licensure, medical technician certification, and so forth – are not required for the Post-Baccalaureate Studies application.

If offered admission, applicants will be required to provide official final transcripts of all previous academic work to verify the information provided. These transcripts should be sent to LPS directly by the issuing institution(s) by the end of the term to which applicants are applying.

Please visit our transcript page for more information.

Are high school transcripts required?

No, high school transcripts are not required for the Post-Baccalaureate Studies application.

How do I submit the $70 application fee?

The easiest and most expedient way to submit your application fee is through the online application system. Once you have completed all required fields within the online Post-Baccalaureate Studies application and have uploaded your essay responses and resume you will be directed to submit your application fee through the online system.

If you choose not to submit your application fee through the online system you can send a check to the LPS Admissions Office. Please make checks payable to the Trustees of the University of Pennsylvania. All application fee checks can be sent to:

LPS Admissions
3440 Market Street
Suite 100
Philadelphia, PA 19104-3335

Please note that all application fees are non-refundable. If you have submitted your online application but have not paid your application fee, your application will not be processed until the application fee has been received.

Are application fee waivers available?

No, LPS does not offer application fee waivers.

Are Letters of Recommendation required?

No, Letters of Recommendation are not required for the Post-Baccalaureate Studies program.

Are Standardized Test Scores required?

No, Standardized Test Scores are not required for the Post-Baccalaureate Studies program.

Will LPS read and review my application if I am missing supporting documents?

Applications will not be reviewed until they are complete. Once you have submitted the online portion of the application – including the transcripts, essay responses, résumé, and application fee – you will be able to log in to your online application to see which items have been received and which items are still pending.  It is up to each applicant to ensure that all documents are received on a timely basis to ensure that your application will be sent to the admissions committee.

When will I learn of my admission decision?

LPS accepts applications on a rolling basis. Once your application is complete, you should expect a decision within 2 weeks.

I received my admissions decision and was offered admission to the Post-Baccalaureate Studies program. What happens next?

If you are offered admission to the Post-Baccalaureate Studies program you will receive an electronic Intent to Enroll Form in your admission letter. You must complete the Intent to Enroll Form in order to have your student record created.

What courses can I take as a Post-Baccalaureate Studies student?

Post-Baccalaureate Studies students are given the opportunity to register for both daytime Undergraduate Arts and Sciences courses and LPS evening courses that are rostered through the 599-level. Please see this page to view the numerous course offerings available to Post-Baccalaureate Studies students.

Please note that tuition varies depending on whether the course is offered through the Undergraduate division or through LPS. Please see this page for up-to-date tuition grids for each academic year.

Is there a maximum or minimum number of courses required to take as a Post-Baccalaureate Studies student?

No – you may take as few or as many courses as you choose while you have an active Post-Baccalaureate Studies career. LPS requires that students hold an "active" status in order to enroll in classes. Any LPS student who allows four consecutive terms to pass without officially enrolling in a course is considered to be an “inactive” student. This policy includes spring, summer, and fall terms. After the course selection period of the fourth consecutive term has passed without enrolling in a course, your status will change to inactive and you will no longer be eligible to enroll in courses. Should you decide that you would like to take courses after becoming an inactive student, you must reapply to the program.

As part of the application process, if you have taken courses elsewhere in the period after you originally applied to LPS, you must submit transcripts. In addition, new essays, an updated résumé, and an application fee are required for the new application. You may also need to submit original transcripts.
 

What is a Course Unit (CU)?

Academic credit is defined by the University of Pennsylvania as a course unit (CU). Generally, a one-cu course at Penn is equivalent to a 3 or 4 semester hour course elsewhere. Credit earned through LPS is full University of Pennsylvania academic credit. In general, the average course offered at Penn is listed as being worth 1 CU; courses that include a lecture and a lab are often worth 1.5 CUs.

Can I register for both daytime and evening courses as a Post-Baccalaureate Studies student?

Yes – as a Post-Baccalaureate Studies student you are given the opportunity to register for both daytime Undergraduate Arts and Sciences courses and LPS evening courses. Please note that tuition varies depending on whether the course is offered through the Undergraduate division or through LPS. Please see this page for up-to-date tuition grids for each academic year.

LPS evening courses can be found here.

Daytime Penn courses can be found on the University Registrar’s website.

Please note that admission to the Post-Baccalaureate Studies program allows you to register for School of Arts and Sciences courses offered through the 599-level. Courses outside of the School of Arts and Sciences may or may not be available to you – that is determined by the specific department in which you are seeking to take courses. The majority of courses outside of the School of Arts and Sciences will likely require permits issued by the department offering that course. It is left to the discretion of those academic departments as to whether they will issue permits to students seeking to take their courses.

Can Post-Baccalaureate Studies students be enrolled at Penn full-time?

Yes – Post-Baccalaureate Studies students can take a part-time (less than 4 CUs) or full-time load (a minimum of 4 CUs).  LPS students are eligible for full or partial refunds if they drop a course within the LPS deadlines. A complete schedule for each semester, including deadlines, may be found on the LPS Academic Calendar page.

How is tuition determined for the Post-Baccalaureate Studies program?

Tuition is determined by the number of CUs that you register for and whether those courses are daytime Undergraduate Arts and Science courses or LPS evening courses. Daytime course tuition differs from evening course tuition. Please see this page for up-to-date tuition grids for each academic year.

Why do LPS courses cost less than day courses at Penn?

This is the case for several reasons. LPS was founded over a century ago as the School of Arts and Sciences' outreach division, and has a commitment to keeping tuition costs down for part-time students and to making Penn more accessible to the Philadelphia community. There is also less financial aid available for part-time students, an issue LPS seeks to address through lower tuition costs and specialized scholarships for part-time students. In addition, LPS hires individual instructors from Penn and elsewhere to teach its courses and so does not have the financial obligation and overhead of supporting entire departments.

When and how can I register?

You can register for courses after you have been formally admitted to the Post-Baccalaureate Studies program at LPS. You will register online through Penn InTouch.

Is there financial aid available for Post-Baccalaureate Studies students?

Students are encouraged to contact Penn’s Office of Student Registration and Financial Services (SRFS) to learn more information about loans and other forms of financial aid.

What is the refund policy?

LPS students are eligible for full or partial refunds if they drop a course within the LPS deadlines. A complete schedule for each semester, including deadlines, may be found on the LPS Academic Calendar page.

When will my bill arrive, and where will it be sent?

Penn.Pay is an electronic billing service that enables you to receive your Penn Monthly Student Account Billing Statements online, as well as providing an option to pay them electronically. During the months of July and August, paper statements are mailed to newly admitted Penn students; continuing students receive electronic billing only. Effective with September's bill, paper bills are discontinued, and Penn.Pay becomes the only way to receive your student account billing statements. The statements provided by Penn.Pay are in the same format as the paper statements, and you are notified by email each time a new statement becomes available.

For a current billing schedule, please visit this page of the SFS website.  Penn.Pay can be accessed from the Penn Student Portal.

How do I pay my bill?

Payment may be made in person to the University Cashier at the Franklin Building, 3451 Walnut Street, by mail, through wire transfer, or online through Penn.Pay. Bills should be paid in full by the due date to avoid a late penalty. The bill includes your charges for tuition, fees, room, board, and other expenses from a variety of offices across Penn in a central billing statement.  It may show both actual and "temporary credits" from a variety of sources. If you have questions about any transaction on your bill, please contact the office responsible for the transaction.

For complete information about how to pay your bill, please see this page on the SFS website.

Can I use tuition benefits from my employer for this program?

Interested applicants should check with their employer to see if they have tuition assistance/benefits and find out what courses their employer may cover. Some employers require that course work be related to current job position or industry.


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3440 Market Street, Suite 100
Philadelphia, PA 19104-3335

Telephone: 215.898.7326
Fax: 215.573.2053
Email: lps@sas.upenn.edu
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