Answers to our most Frequently Asked Questions.

Transfer students, particularly junior-year transfers, should be aware that they may not be able to fulfill all College and Liberal & Civic Studies requirements on a schedule that will enable them to graduate “on time.” Many transfer students arrive at Saint Mary’s College needing to complete specific lower-division requirements before they can take the required number (17) of upper-division courses by their hoped-for graduation date. Transfer students can often make up requirements by taking summer-session courses.

  • What kinds of requirements might delay my graduation? Because the Liberal & Civic Studies Program requires 4 levels of a foreign language, students who are admitted with fewer than 2 levels of a language may need to take summer courses in a language. It is also possible that students may be missing pre-requisites for the Mathematics 1 requirement, or other minor requirements.
  • Can Sign Language fulfill the language requirement? American Sign language fulfills the requirement, but transfer students must plan to take these courses off-campus, which can pose additional scheduling difficulties.
  • When should I enroll in the L&CS core courses? Transfer students entering Saint Mary’s College in their junior year should enroll in Forum 1 immediately, in their first semester on campus. Because of required spacing of the Program’s sequence (121, 122, 123, 124, 130/31), transfer students who have fewer than 2 full years (4 semesters) to complete for graduation will not be admitted to the Liberal & Civic Studies Program unless they plan to postpone their graduation date.
  • Which course requirements can transfer students most easily take during the summer? Students can generally satisfy the first 3 levels of their language requirement at community colleges during the summer. The fourth level may be available at a 4-year college, or at Saint Mary’s. A physical science course that includes a lab is also a good choice for summer, as well as a biological science course that includes a lab. However, SMP students are required to take the equivalent of our Biology 50-51, “General Biology.”
  • How can I learn about Liberal & Civic Studies course requirements?  You should meet with the L&CS Program Director Shawny Anderson ( or Administrative Assistant Elaine Kahn ( as soon as possible to determine accurately what requirements you must still complete and to complete a careful program leading to a timely graduation.
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Saint Mary's College of California
1928 Saint Mary's Road
Moraga, CA 94575
(925) 631-4000
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