Bachelor's–Accelerated Master's (BAM) Programs

 
Effective Date: July 1, 2019
 

Overview

Bachelor's-Accelerated Master's programs (BAMs) offer currently enrolled CU Boulder undergraduate students the opportunity to receive a bachelor's and master's degree in a shorter period of time. Students receive the bachelor's degree first, but begin taking graduate coursework as undergraduates, typically in their senior year. Because some courses are allowed to double count for both the bachelor's and the master's degrees, students receive a master's degree in less time and at a lower cost than if they were to enroll in a stand-alone master's degree program after completion of their baccalaureate degree. In addition, staying at CU Boulder to pursue a Bachelor's-Accelerated Master's program enables students to continue working with their established faculty mentors.

The Bachelor's-Accelerated Master's program is administered jointly by the Graduate School and the respective undergraduate school or college. The major department assumes primary administrative authority and responsibility, reflecting the full authority and standards of both the undergraduate and graduate degrees (including any minimum standards which may be unique to departmental BAMs).

Initial Acceptance

Initial acceptance to the Bachelor's-Accelerated Master's program typically occurs during the junior year with an intent application. Minimum standards for acceptance require a cumulative GPA of 3.00 and completion of all MAPS deficiencies. Additional acceptance criteria are determined by the individual departments in conjunction with the appropriate school or college deans and the Graduate School. An approved intent application enables the student to begin taking graduate courses as an undergraduate and to double-count select courses toward the bachelor's and master's degrees, in accordance with the requirements listed below. Students interested in a BAM program should contact the relevant department for advising and intent application information.

Bachelor's Degree Award

BAM students must apply online to graduate with their bachelor's degree for the semester in which degree requirements will be completed. They will be verified for graduation by their respective undergraduate dean's office.

Admission for Continuation to Master's Program

During the semester in which students are enrolled in the remaining requirements for the undergraduate degree, they must apply to be formally admitted to continue with the accelerated master's program. Students will be matriculated into the master's program without additional departmental review, provided they meet the basic continuation requirement of 3.0 cumulative GPA. International students must have approval from International Student and Scholar Services (ISSS) prior to matriculation.

Students must begin the master's program within one year of completing their baccalaureate degree (three semesters, including summer, and depending on the program), and must select their term of admission upon applying.

Financial Information

Prior to completing the baccalaureate degree, students are assessed undergraduate tuition rates. Once admitted to the master's program, students are assessed graduate tuition rates. (In-state graduate students are assessed resident graduate tuition, but do not receive COF.) In addition, graduate students receiving financial aid are considered for different types and amounts of aid. Graduate students are primarily offered student loans.

BAM Program Student Pathway

Eligibility

  • Student is a currently enrolled CU Boulder undergraduate who meets BAM GPA and other eligibility requirements.

Initial Acceptance with Intent Application

  • Student fills out an intent application, typically during the junior year.
  • Approved intent application enables undergraduate student to take up to and including 12 hours of coursework (as an undergraduate and at undergraduate tuition rates) which can later be applied to the accelerated master's program.
  • The number of credits that can double-count for both the undergraduate and the graduate degrees as part of a BAM program is determined by the department's approved program proposal.

Conferral of Bachelor's Degree; Formal Admission to Master's Program

  • BAM student must apply to graduate for their bachelor's degree in the semester in which degree requirements will be completed.
  • During the semester in which student is enrolled in the remaining requirements for the undergraduate degree, they also apply for formal admission/continuation to the master's program within one academic year. The student is admitted provided they meet the basic continuation requirement of 3.0 GPA. International students must have approval from International Student and Scholar Services (ISSS) prior to formal admission.

Master's Coursework and Conferral of Master's Degree

  • The student has graduate status and completes remaining graduate coursework, with tuiton assessed at graduate tuition rates. Graduate students receiving financial aid are considered "independent" and are eligible for aid and awards available to students at graduate status.
  • Once degree requirements are met, student applies to gradaute with the master's degree.

Basic Requirements and Minimum Standards for Bachelor's-Accelerated Master's Programs

  1. Only currently enrolled University of Colorado Boulder undergraduate students may be considered for acceptance to Bachelor's-Accelerated Master's (BAM) programs.

  2. Prior to earning the baccalaureate degree, students are subject to undergraduate academic rules and full-time/part-time standards in effect in their school or college, unless otherwise noted below. Students are expected to be full-time (with an average of 24 credits per year), remain continuously enrolled, and they must maintain a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.00.

  3. Once formally admitted to and enrolled in the Accelerated Master's program, students are subject to Graduate School rules, policies, and standards for full-time/part-time status.

  4. With the permission of their school or college and the Graduate School, departments may set academic standards higher than school/college or Graduate School minimums. In such cases, academic departments are responsible for monitoring the progress of the students within their program, including procedures for probation or dismissal from the BAM, issues of satisfactory academic progress, petitions/appeals, transfer credit, grievances and minimum standards of achievement.

  5. Students may withdraw from the Bachelor's-Accelerated Master's program at any time and pursue only the bachelor's degree. Students who wish to pursue a master's degree or a doctoral degree after withdrawing from or completing a Bachelor's-Accelerated Master's program must apply separately through the standard admissions process and be admitted to the Graduate School. In this case, courses may not be double-counted.

  6. The Dean of the Graduate School will consider appeals and review standards regarding Graduate School or University requirements and will confer with college deans as appropriate for issues that cross undergraduate/graduate or school/college lines of authority.

  7. An intent application for each BAM student will be electronically submitted to the Graduate School by the department, typically during the student's junior year. An identifying academic subplan and hold will be placed on the student's record once approved, and an expected graduation term provided by the student will be added to the student's record.

  8. Students must apply online to graduate with their bachelor’s degree for the semester in which degree requirements will be completed. They will be verified for graduation by their respective undergraduate dean's office and awarded the baccalaureate degree. Deadlines to apply to graduate: February 1st (students graduating in May), March 1st (students graduating in August) and October 1st (students graduating in December). These dates ensure that students can register along with continuing graduate students. However, students may apply to graduate until the published graduation deadlines for bachelor's degree students.

  9. Students pursuing double degrees or additional majors/minors at the undergraduate level are subject to college/school/program policies. This may result in a student choosing to discontinue the additional undergraduate degree, major or minor, or delaying formal admission into the graduation portion of the BAM program in order to complete the additional degree, major, or minor, or fulfilling the remaining requirements for the additional undergraduate credentials while at graduate status (graduate tuition, enrollment status, etc.). Students should discuss these options with their advisor.

  10. During the final semester of enrollment for the baccalaureate degree, students must submit a master's continuation form to formally continue with the accelerated master's program. Students will be matriculated into the master's program without additional departmental review, provided they meet the continuation requirement of 3.0 cumulative GPA. Students must meet the GPA requirement to move forward; there is no provisional admission for the accelerated master's degree. International students must have approval from International Student and Scholar Services (ISSS) prior to matriculation.

    Students must begin the master's program within one academic year (three semesters, including summer, and depending on the graduate program), and must select their term of admission on the intent application.

    Once enrolled in the master's program, students are assessed graduate tuition rates. (In-state graduate students are assessed resident graduate tuition, but do not receive COF.) In addition, graduate students receiving financial aid are considered "independent" and are no longer eligible for aid requiring undergraduate status.

    Deadlines to submit the master's continuation form to continue with the master's degree: February 1st (students graduating in May), March 1st (students graduating in August) and October 1st (students graduating in December). These dates ensure that students can register along with continuing graduate students. However, forms will be accepted until the end of the semester in which the student is graduating.

  11. Students may take up to and including 12 hours of coursework (as an undergraduate and at undergraduate tuition rates) which can later be applied to the accelerated master's degree. (This would typically be graduate level credit, but in select programs, six hours 3000/4000 level is allowed to double-count toward both the bachelor's and master’s degrees (as part of the 12 total credits). Credits taken by the student as an undergraduate in excess of 12 hours will not be allowed to count toward the accelerated master's degree. The number of credits that can double-count for both the undergraduate and the graduate portions of a BAM is determined by the department's approved program proposal. Double-counted courses may not be used toward a subsequent doctoral program (or additional master’s program) at CU Boulder.

  12. Students who are not admitted to the Bachelor's-Accelerated Master's program with the intent application before receiving the undergraduate degree are not eligible to double-count courses between degrees. In addition, students who do not begin the master's program within one academic year, or who discontinue their graduate studies for more than one academic year once matriculated, may not double-count courses if they return to their graduate studies at a later date.

  13. The minimum cumulative GPA for all students formally admitted to an accelerated master's degree must be maintained at 3.00 for the duration of the program. The cumulative GPA of the courses being used toward the master's degree must also be 3.00 or higher. Once students transition to graduate status, the Graduate School will be responsible for monitoring the minimum standard and notifying students who are placed on probation. Departments will be responsible for establishing a procedure for probation or dismissal from the BAM if their departmental standard is higher than the minimum.

  14. Students whose bachelor's degrees have been conferred and who are admitted to an accelerated master's degree are eligible, at the discretion of their department, for RA/TA appointments, scholarships, fellowships, or other types of support or recognition for graduate students. Professional masters students are eligible for hourly student assistant work, but not positions with tuition remission such as RA/TA/GPTI.

  15. International students must maintain full-time status throughout the program. Full-time standards are based upon the undergraduate or graduate status of the student, not upon the level of courses being taken. Upon applying to the accelerated master's degree, students must work with International Student and Scholar Services (ISSS) to complete all requirements for a change of level, including providing proof of funding, etc.

  16. Students may participate in university-wide commencement ceremonies in the respective semester/year for each degree. Students should check with individual colleges, schools, and departments for information related to participation in those recognition ceremonies.

  17. Students who wish to withdraw from the program should first notify their department. Students at undergraduate status may ask their department to submit to the Office of the Registrar a graduate program change/discontinuation form. Students at graduate status may withdraw using the Office of the Registrar withdrawal procedures.