1.  All students must fulfill the “Difference and Justice” requirement. 


Courses fulfilling this distribution requirement have a primary focus on the study of difference in the context of larger social dynamics such as globalization, nationalism, and social justice. They will address differences that may include but are not limited to ability/disability, age, body size, citizenship status, class, color, ethnicity, gender, gender expression, geography, nationality, political affiliation, religion, race, sexual orientation, or socio-economic background, and will engage critically with issues of difference, diversity, inequality, and inclusivity.


2  Additionally,  students are required to take four-credits in each of the nine categories listed below.  Non-native speakers of English may be exempted from the Foreign Language and Literature requirement.  A course may be cross-listed in different programs, but can fulfill only one of the nine distribution areas.


The analysis of arts distribution requirement teaches students to interpret both the form and content of creative works, including visual and performing arts. The requirement further aims to help students understand how works of visual art, music, film, theater, and dance shape, or are shaped by, social, political, and historical circumstances and contexts.


The study of another language involves not just the process of internalizing new linguistic forms but also attention to the various cultural manifestations of that language. The goal of this requirement is to gain a critical appreciation of non-Anglophone languages and to question the assumption of an underlying uniformity across cultures and literary traditions. To satisfy this requirement, students may take any course in a foreign language, a course in a foreign literature, or a course in the theory and practice of translation.


A course focused on analysis of change over time in society, or the distinctiveness of a past era, using written or physical evidence. The course should alert students to the differences and similarities of contemporary experience from past modes of life, as well as suggest that present categories of experience are themselves shaped historically and can be analyzed by imaginatively investigating past institutions, texts, and worldviews.


What distinguishes poetry, fiction, or drama from other kinds of discourse? Foregrounding the practice of close reading to investigate the relationship between form and content, these courses invite students to explore not only the “what” or “why” of literary representation, but also the “how.” The goal of the requirement is to engage critically the multiple ways in which language shapes thought and makes meaning by considering the cultural, historical, and formal dimensions of literary texts.


In courses satisfying the Laboratory Science requirement, students will actively participate in data collection and analysis using technology and methodology appropriate to the particular field of study. Students will develop analytical, modeling, and quantitative skills in the process of comparing theory and data. Laboratory Science students will develop an understanding of statistical and other uncertainties in the process of constructing and interpreting scientific evidence.


This distribution area addresses how humans conceptualize the nature of knowledge and belief, construct systems of value, and interpret the nature of what is real. Such courses may also focus on questions pertaining to the human moral condition, human society and culture, and humanity’s place in the cosmos, or on the ways in which civilizations have dealt with those questions. All MBV courses will pay special attention to analysis and interpretation of texts and practices, as well as seek to cultivate skills of argument development and the open-minded consideration of counter-argument.


Courses satisfying the Mathematics and Computation requirement challenge students to model and reason about the world logically and quantitatively, explicitly grappling with ambiguity and precision. Students will learn and practice discipline-specific techniques and, in doing so, represent and communicate ideas through mathematical arguments, computer programs, or data analysis.


The practicing arts distribution requirement emphasizes making or performing as an educational process. Courses develop students’ creative and imaginative faculties by focusing upon a set of artistic skills or working methods. Fields of study include dance, theater, music performance and composition, film production, creative writing, and the visual arts. Students will learn through experiential practices in order to cultivate the self as a primary agent of expression, cultural reflection, and creativity.


Courses in this area approach the study of people and society at a variety of levels of analysis, ranging from the individual to large social institutions and structures. Consideration is given to how people relate to and are shaped by social structures, divisions, and groups, such as politics, economics, family, and culture, as well as their past experiences and immediate situations. The goal of this distribution requirement is to understand one's own or others' place within a wider social world, and thus these courses are central to discussions about citizenship, ethics, and the possibilities and limits of social change.






(1) A minimum of 128 credits, at least 64 of which must be taken at Bard’s Annandale campus.

(2) A minimum of 40 credits outside the division of major. FYSEM counts for 8 of these 40 credits.

(3) Completion of two semesters of First-Year Seminar. Transfer students may be exempt.

(4) Completion of the Language & Thinking and Citizen Science programs.

(5) Promotion to the Upper College by passing moderation.

(6) Completion of the requirements of the program into which the student moderates.

(7) Completion of an acceptable senior project.

(8) Distribution requirements: 4 credits from each of the distribution areas. (Transferred classes may vary.)



(B. Music and B.A.)


1 A minimum of 160 credits, at least 64 of which must be taken at Bard.
            (for classes entering prior to 2011 a minimum of 156 credits; at least 64 of which must be taken at Bard)

2. A minimum of 40 credits outside the division of B.A. major.

3. Every student must take two semesters of First-Year Seminar.  Transfer students may be exempt.

4. Every student must be promoted to the Upper College by passing moderation.

5. Every student must complete an acceptable B.A. senior project in a field other than music.

6. Distribution requirements: one course from each of the appropriate distribution areas.

7. Studio instruction (CNSV 100) in every semester of enrollment for performance majors.  Composition tutorial (CNSV 102) in every semester of enrollment for composition majors.

8. Orchestra (CNSV 112) in every semester of enrollment for performance majors.

9. Chamber music (CNSV 110) in every semester of enrollment for performance majors.

10. Conservatory Seminar (CNSV 140, 240, 330, 332) four semesters.

11. Aural Skills (CNSV 308, 309) two semesters. [Does not apply to students who enrolled before Fall, 2010.  Also, students admitted before Fall, 2012 may satisfy this requirement through CNSV 108 and CNSV 109.]

12. Music History (MUS 264-265).

13. Conservatory Senior Project (CNSV 401) - includes recital. [Does not apply to students who enrolled before Fall, 2011.]





            Single major - Students moderate in one program, complete the course requirements, and complete one Senior Project.


Single major with a concentration - Students moderate in both a program and a concentration, complete the course requirements for both, and complete one Senior Project that combines the interdisciplinary theories and methods of both the program and the concentration.


Double major - Students moderate in two separate programs, complete the course requirements for both programs, and complete two Senior Projects.


            Joint major - A joint major allows students to achieve depth in two related fields of study without requiring two separate Senior Projects (as with a double major).  Students complete the course requirements for two programs of study and produce one unified, integrated Senior Project involving ideas from both disciplines.  Students moderate into two programs, ideally in a joint moderation, with members from each program on the moderation board and on the Senior Project board.  This option requires a grade point average of 3.0 or higher and approval by the Executive Committee.        


Multidisciplinary Studies major - The Multidisciplinary Studies Program allows a student to select an area of study or develop an individual approach to an area and then design a program that integrates material from different programs and divisions in order to pursue that study.  In order to major in the Multidisciplinary Studies Program, a student must submit a proposal to the Executive Committee requesting approval for such a program.  The ideal time for the proposal is in the second semester of the sophomore year, as a substitute for moderation into an existing program during that semester.  For a proposal to be approved, the student must have a cumulative grade point average of 3.0 or higher, the proposed list of courses must include in-depth study in two or more disciplines, and the proposed adviser and moderation board members must have the expertise to supervise the proposed plan of study.