Degree Requirements

I.   Degree Requirements
II.  Core Curriculum
III. Language Proficiency
IV. Majors & Certificates
V.  Honors in the Major
VI. Advanced/Transfer Credit
VII. Accelerated BSFS/Master's Degrees

I. Degree Requirements

Students who successfully complete all of the following requirements will earn a Bachelor of Science in Foreign Service (BSFS) upon graduation:

Students who transfer to the School of Foreign Service in Qatar must complete a minimum of half of the degree program (20 courses and 60 credit hours) at Georgetown, in addition to meeting the residency requirement.

Students may track their progress towards their degree using the online degree audit.

II. Core Curriculum
The School of Foreign Service's interdisciplinary core curriculum consists of the following requirements:

  • Proseminar (INAF 100)
  • Two Philosophy courses
    • Political & Social Thought (PHIL 099)
    • A second course offered by the Philosophy Department
  • Two Theology courses
    • The Problem of God (THEO 001) or Introduction to Biblical Literature (THEO 011)
    • A second course offered by the Theology Department
  • Two Humanities and Writing courses
    • Critical Reading and Writing Seminar (WRIT 014) or Writing and Culture Seminar (WRIT 015)
    • Writing and Culture Seminar (WRIT 015) for students who took WRIT 014 or a Humanities: Art, Literature, Culture (HALC) course for students who took WRIT 015 (offerings will vary by semester).
  • Two Government courses
    • Introduction to International Relations (GOVT 060)
    • Comparative Political Systems (GOVT 040)
  • Three History courses
    • Introductory History - Early or Modern (HIST 007 or HIST 008)
    • An approved Regional History I
    • An approved Regional History II
      Note: Students who have not taken American History in secondary school may take US History to 1865 (HIST 180) or US History since 1865 (HIST 181) for the Regional History I and/or II requirement.
  • Four Economics courses
    • Principles of Microeconomic (ECON 001)
    • Principles of Macroeconomic (ECON 002)
    • International Trade (ECON 243)
    • International Finance (ECON 244)
  • Map of the Modern World (INAF 008)
  • Proficiency in a Modern Foreign Language

Students may track their progress towards their degree using MyDegree, an online degree audit system that is available through MyAccess, or by completing a core curriculum worksheet. 

III. Foreign Language Proficiency

In order to earn the BSFS degree, every student in the School of Foreign Service must demonstrate that he or she has the minimum skills necessary to complete academic or professional work in a modern language other than English.

SFS-Q students must plan carefully in advance to complete the proficiency requirement. For students beginning language instruction, preparation for language proficiency will take seven semesters. Students should review the language proficiency guidelines published by the School of Foreign Service and meet with their advisory dean in order to formulate a comprehensive plan of study.

SFS-Qatar students must pass a language proficiency examination administered by Georgetown University faculty. Students need the equivalent of seven semesters of university study in a foreign language in order to qualify for the examination (this includes six semesters of language instruction plus a post-advanced course).

The proficiency exam is evaluated on a pass/fail basis. Students who pass the proficiency exam are able to sustain a discussion dealing with current events and demonstrate familiarity with relevant historical, cultural, political, and economic information. Students are also able to satisfy routine social needs and to discuss themselves, their studies, and their plans for the future.

A “pass” on the proficiency exam is comparable to achieving, depending on the language, an Intermediate high to Advanced mid on the American Council for the Teaching of Foreign Languages Proficiency Guidelines (ACTFL) rating, or a B1/low B2 in the Common European Framework of Reference.