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Effective Date: February 2023

PURPOSE

This memorandum lists the approved degrees, and the majors in each degree, awarded by each of the schools and colleges on this campus and the code numbers assigned to each degree and major. The list contains the Classification of Instructional Program Code (CIP) assigned by the Office of the President. The CIP codes are reported to the National Center for Educational Statistics (NCES) by UNC system General Administration to meet national reporting needs.

In 2007-2008 Provost Bernadette Gray-Little named a Task Force to review the degree and major inventories as well as the conventions used for printing the degrees and majors on transcripts and diplomas. The recommendations of the Task Force were approved by the Provost and are reflected in this document.

In 2023 provisions were formalized for awarding an earned degree posthumously or a memorial degree of achievement to the next of kin of a deceased student. This information is at the end of the document.

General Provisions

The UNC system General Administration publishes an Inventory of Approved Degree Programs with codes and program titles used in the Classification of Instructional Programs (CIP).

Degrees awarded in majors listed in this publication must have been approved by the General Administration and appear in the UNC System inventory. The appropriate major is indicated on a student’s diploma (with some exceptions) and transcript for each degree received.

The University relies on automatic data processing requiring that both UNC Major Codes and CIP Codes be assigned to each degree and each major field in order that accurate statistical data is generated for reports used on our own campus, by the University System offices and NCES.

Schools and departments that have questions about any degree, major field or code shown herein are urged to contact the Office of the University Registrar.

Organization of the Inventory of Approved Degree Programs

It should be noted that the list is organized into three major groups.

  • The first group includes Undergraduates.
  • The second group lists all the Graduate Degrees which are awarded jointly by the Graduate School and the Professional Schools. You will note, for example, that the Master of Arts, Master of Science, and Doctor of Philosophy degrees appear in several different professional schools, but with different majors.
  • The third group contains the first professional degrees (i.e. JD degree in Law, MD degree in Medicine, DDS in Dentistry, and PharmD in Pharmacy).

Note:  Certificates offered by the University are under review at this time and will be listed as soon as that process is completed.

Data Collection and Data Entry

The student database is programmed to receive only the data which has been approved. Likewise, schools and colleges may award degrees and with major fields of study only as listed herein.

The “Application for Degree” must use the degrees and majors as approved.

Revisions to the Inventory of Approved Degree Programs

This table will be revised periodically. Any errors, additions, or deletions should be reported to the University Registrar.

List of Undergraduate, Post Baccalaureate, Professional and Graduate Degrees

Click to download a Undergraduate, Post Baccalaureate, Professional and Graduate Degrees at UNC-Chapel Hill.

Posthumous and Memorial Degrees

In the unfortunate event of a recently enrolled student death, the University may award a degree posthumously or a memorial degree of achievement to the next of kin of the decedent. The following criteria are used to determine awarding a degree posthumously.

Undergraduate Students

Upon the recommendation of the Dean of Students Office in conjunction with the Dean’s Office of the student’s academic college/school, a posthumous degree may be awarded to a deceased undergraduate student if the student was in good academic standing and at least 90% of academic requirements for earning the degree are already completed. This is typically in the last two semesters or year of study for undergraduate degrees.

Graduate and Professional Students

Upon the recommendation of the Dean of Students Office in conjunction with the Dean’s Office(s) of the student’s academic college/school(s), a posthumous degree may be awarded to a deceased graduate or professional student if the student was in good academic standing and significant progress had been made toward academic requirements for earning the degree. For graduate and professional degrees this can vary but generally the following considerations apply:

  • For degrees requiring a research or other creative/practicum activity, the student must have completed all course and other requirements pursuant to the degree and must have been near completion of the dissertation/thesis/substitute product; and the student’s committee must have determined the scholarship to be substantial work and worthy of the degree.
  • For degrees requiring primarily coursework, at least 90% of academic requirements for earning the degree are already completed. This is typically in the last two semesters or year of study.

In cases where requirements for awarding a doctorate have not been met, a master’s degree could be awarded if those requirements have been satisfied and if supported by the student’s committee.

Memorial Degree of Achievement

If requirements for awarding the degree posthumously are not met, the University may issue a memorial degree of achievement. The Dean of Students office, in conjunction with the academic college/school of the student, issues this memorial degree of achievement to honor the memory of the deceased student’s contributions to the UNC–Chapel Hill academic community.

Certificate of Achievement

In circumstances when awarding a degree is not appropriate, the University can issue a certificate of achievement recognizing a former student. The Dean of Students office determines if a situation warrants issuing this recognition.