Apr 24, 2024  
University Catalog 2016-2017 
University Catalog 2016-2017 [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Academic Programs

Student Academic Success Office

“Retention is the Outcome….Graduation is the Goal!” The mission of the Student Academic Success Office (SASO) is to improve retention and graduation rates of Xavier students, particularly by providing support and programs that focus on new freshmen and students who are academically at risk. This is accomplished through academic advising and support programs that include:

  1. designing and implementing academic programs to improve retention and graduation rates;
  2. providing academic advising to Deciding Majors and students who are on strict probation;
  3. monitoring the academic progress of probationary students;
  4. providing academic enhancement resources;
  5. providing academic support through the coordination, enhancement and support of peer tutoring and supplemental instruction through the resource centers (reading, writing, mathematics, biology, physics and chemistry); and
  6. coordinating a system of monitoring and mentoring of new freshmen.

All members of the University - academic and non-academic, faculty and staff, students and administrators - are stakeholders in these efforts. More importantly, all stakeholders must work together in a positive and cooperative way in order to achieve the goals of the Student Academic Success Office.

SASO Academic Programs and Advising

The purpose of SASO Academic Programs and Advising is to provide a support system to increase academic development and progress through a nurturing/mentoring environment. This environment fosters a sense of hope and pride in all students, particularly academically high-risk students. SASO stimulates intellectual growth by empowering students with the tools needed to reach academic excellence. The programs include:

  • A Meet and Greet for Freshmen participating in the Student Success Academy;
  • Academic Recovery - Program for students on Strict Probation;
  • Keys to Success Workshops - Workshops that provide practical strategies for success;
  • Supplemental Instruction for historically difficult courses - Academic assistance program that utilizes peer-led teaching and study sessions;
  • Academic Support - Freshman and other students enrolled in entry-level Mathematics, Writing, Reading, Biology, Physics, and Chemistry courses are provided free tutoring through the Academic Resource Centers, and
  • Academic Counseling for Deciding Majors and students on Strict Probation.

Deciding Majors

The Student Academic Success Office has developed a system of academic advising and mentoring for Deciding majors that includes academic advising and support by the SASO Advising Team for courses, career assessment and planning and academic monitoring.

Students are provided an Academic Success Plan to guide their academic achievement throughout the semester. Being a Deciding major also ensures students are making satisfactory progress towards their degrees. Students in this area are classified as either Deciding or Deciding Non-Science Majors. Deciding Majors are students who have not yet chosen their official majors. Students can choose to be a Deciding Major or could be placed in Deciding. Students are declared Deciding Non-Science Majors by the Academic Standing Committee.  Deciding Non-Science Majors MUST select a major other than the following majors (all majors that fall under Chemistry, Biology, Public Health Sciences, Physics, Psychology Premed, Mathematics, and Computer Science) after they have earned a 2.0 cumulative GPA or better.

Students are allowed to remain a Deciding or Deciding Non-Science major for two semesters. An additional semester is allowed for students who have a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.0 and realistically need one more semester to meet the required GPA to be admitted to another department. Permission to remain as a Deciding or Deciding Non-Science major after two semesters may be granted by the Executuve Director of SASO. After the maximum of three (3) semesters, students who have not been admitted into an academic department will ordinarily be dismissed from the University.

Student Success Academy

The Student Success Academy is a year-long program designed to support, coach, mentor, and nurture high-risk first year students as they transition to college.  The mission of the Student Success Academy (SSA) is to offer support by aligning academically high-risk first-year students with the SASO where they are provided a positive mentoring environment, free tutoring in the academic resource centers, and workshops that lead to greater academic success.  SSA also extends to first-time freshmen who do not meet academic expectations during their first semester.  Those students begin participating during the spring semester of their first year.  SSA is a partnership between the Student Academic Success Office and the Freshman Seminar (FRSM) program.

Freshman Seminar Program

The Freshman Seminar Program at Xavier University of Louisiana lays the foundation for what it means to be a Xavierite.  In the Freshman Seminar course, students work togeter as a cohort, with one Instructor who mentors them through their transition from high school to college.  The Shared Reading Program links all first year students together in exploring the themes of one common book.  Through Service Learning, first year students engage in experiential learning and gain a deeper understanding of community service in New Orleans.  In addition, Alpha Lambda Delta, the Freshman Honor Society, gives first year students the opportunity to practice excellence and to inspire their peers to aspire to the same. 

Freshman Seminar I and II is a first-year, required, two credit hour course that serves as the foundation of the Xavier academic experience.  The course connects students to the Xavier and New Orleans communities and prepares them for success in college.  Freshmen at Xavier participate in service learning projects that challenge them to engage with the Mission of the University and to see social justice as an integral part of a liberal arts education. 

Honors in Women’s Studies

Students with a minor in Women’s Studies may apply for an “Honors in Women’s Studies” designation by meeting the following criteria in the Women’s Studies program:

  1. A student must complete a minimum of 9 credit hours in the field
  2. A student must have at least a B in each course with a cumulative GPA (in women’s studies) of at least a 3.3, and
  3. A student must take a 1000 level and two upper level courses from among the list of 2000 and 3000 level courses. WMST 1030  and WMST 3990  are strongly recommended.


PreProfessional Support

Xavier is committed to providing support for students who aspire to enter and succeed in graduate and professional schools after they leave XU. To this end Xavier provides each student an academic advisor in his/her major area, preprofessional advisors in Pre-Engineering, Pre-Law, Premedicine/Pre-Dentistry, and Prepharmacy, and comprehensive programs designed to help facilitate a student’s entry into post-graduate study. Xavier’s success in placing students into these programs is a direct result of the distribution of the advising process and the close cooperation of all advisory programs.

Engineering Professions

Pre-Engineering is coordinated by the Director of Dual Degree Engineering Programs. The Director provides information and advice concerning engineering school admissions and coordinates Xavier’s Dual Degree Engineering programs.

Dual Degree Engineering Programs

The Xavier University Dual Degree Engineering Program is designed to give a solid academic background in the sciences and mathematics that are essential to persons who are interested in becoming engineers. At Xavier, students take three years of basic science, mathematics, engineering, and liberal arts courses. The Dual Degree Engineering curriculum consists of a number of curriculum options. For more information about these options, students should consult with the Director of Dual Degree Engineering Programs. When the three-year program is completed successfully, students transfer to an Engineering School to complete training in a specialized area of engineering. It is expected that students will, with normal course loads, be able to complete their undergraduate training in two years at the Engineering School. Xavier has current agreements with the following Engineering Schools: Georgia Institute of Technology, Tulane University, North Carolina A&T State University, Notre Dame, and the University of New Orleans. These agreements do not, however, preclude students from choosing and attending other Engineering Schools.

Students in the Dual Degree Engineering Program should submit the application for a degree from Xavier at least one semester prior to their graduation from the Engineering school. In instances where the engineering degree program is not completed, Xavier will, upon petition by the individual student, evaluate this student’s total academic record for consideration of this student’s eligibility for a B.A. or B.S. Degree in Physics, Biology, Computer Science, or Chemistry from Xavier.

The objectives of the Dual Degree Engineering Program (DDEP) are to:

  1. provide all students admitted to the program with the counseling, academic, and other support services that will maximize their opportunity for completion of the first three years of the program;
  2. offer a curriculum that will provide students with the optimum set of courses essential to the pursuit of a variety of engineering programs they might choose upon entry into an Engineering School;
  3. provide the academic preparation in essential engineering background courses to ensure that students will be maximally prepared to successfully complete the last two years of the dual degree program at the engineering school of their choice; and
  4. assist students in the identification of financial assistance (e.g., scholarships, internships, etc.) during their matriculation at Xavier and during their transition to engineering school.

Law Profession

The Center for Pre-Law Advising provides information regarding:

  • course selection, potential minors, internships, course electives and summer study programs to enhance a student’s chances for law school admission
  • the law school application process, including: the Law School Admission Test (LSAT) preparation strategies; Law School Data Assembly Service (LSDAS) procedure; law school selection; application preparation; law school visitation and financial aid information.

In addition, the Director of the Pre-Law Advising Center works in conjunction with the GradStar Program to assist students in preparing for law school.

In its Pre-Law Handbook, the Law School Admissions Council recommends no particular undergraduate program as the ideal preparation for law school. Any undergraduate program which encourages the development of skills in reasoning, critical reading, writing, and oral communication provides an excellent background for law school.

The Director of the Pre-Law Advising Center does, however, suggest specific courses which prelaw students may find helpful. Thus, it is recommended that a student use his/her Core Curriculum requirements, minor, and free electives to take courses. Pre-Law students eligible for honors English and History courses are strongly advised to take advantage of these opportunities. For course selections, students should consult the Center Director and the academic advisor.

Premedical Program

Xavier’s Premedical Program is designed to help the maximum number of qualified students gain entry into and succeed in schools of medicine, osteopathic medicine, dentistry, veterinary, optometry, and podiatry. The program is designed to complement, not supplant, support provided by academic advisers within the student’s major department. The Premedical Program provides a variety of information, motivational activities, advice, and individual assistance throughout a student’s enrollment at the University. The program begins with an intense series of group workshops for students during the freshman year. In subsequent years, group activities gradually decrease and are replaced by an increasing number of one-on-one advising sessions, step-by-step assistance in preparing applications for summer programs and/or health professions schools, and assistance in preparing for the entrance exams required for admission into health professions schools. Materials used in both group workshops and individual advising sessions are readily available in the Premedical Office and on the premedical website at http://www.xula.edu/premed for students who missed activities or would like a reminder. Xavier students (regardless of major) who hope to enter medical, osteopathic medical, dental, veterinary, optometry, and podiatry schools are encouraged to sign-in with the Premedical Office during their first Xavier registration. After doing so, students receive weekly premed advising emails and are encouraged to participate in group and individual premed meetings that are designed to maximize competitiveness for admission into health professions schools.

Pre-Health Professions Coursework

Students interested in preparing to enter a health profession such as dentistry, medicine, optometry, osteopathic medicine, podiatric medicine, and veterinary medicine are not required to major in biology, chemistry, or any other academic discipline. Most health professions schools do not require that applicants complete an undergraduate degree but many prefer that they do so.

The information below is only an overview of pre-health professions requirements. Students interested in enrolling in a health professions school, except pharmacy, should express this intention to their academic advisers and the Premedical Office during their first Xavier registration. Those interested in pharmacy should contact Xavier University’s Chemistry Prepharmacy Advisor.

Basic Requirements: Most medical, osteopathic medical, dental, veterinary, optometry, and podiatry schools require one year of:

  • General Biology with laboratory,
  • General Chemistry with laboratory,
  • Organic Chemistry with laboratory,
  • General Physics with laboratory,
  • Biochemistry (required by some schools),
  • College mathematics, (a statistics course is required by some schools), and
  • English composition at the college level.

In addition to the basic course requirements listed above, there may be additional courses required by individual health professions schools. Students should also be aware that not all health professions schools accept required courses that are completed online, at a community college, or through Advanced Placement (AP), even if such courses are accepted as transfer credit by Xavier University. Therefore, it is imperative that students regularly review the requirements for each of the health professions schools to which they plan to apply.

Although calculus may be required for some degrees at Xavier, it is generally not required for admission into health professions schools. A number of health professions schools, however, do require a course in statistics; additionally, entrance exams like the revised Medical College Admission Test (MCAT) list statistics as a necessary competency. Again, it is imperative that students regularly review school-specific (and entrance exam-specific) requirements to ensure that all requirements are satisfied in a timely fashion.

Some health professions schools may also require/recommend one or more advanced courses in science, one or more courses in the social sciences, or specialized courses such as General Zoology (for veterinary school), Optics (optometry school) or a ceramics or sculpture course to help cultivate manual dexterity skills (for dental school).  Students interested in applying to medical, dental, and other health professions schools should refer to up-to-date publications that provide detailed information regarding entry requirements for individual medical, dental, etc. schools [e.g. Medical School Admissions Requirements (MSAR), the official online resource made available by the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC); ADEA Official Guide to Dental Schools, the official book published by the American Dental Education Association (ADEA), etc.].

Additional Courses Recommended: It is strongly recommended that students interested in the health professions take at least two of the following advanced courses while at Xavier:

  • Comparative Vertebrate Anatomy with laboratory,
  • Introduction to Embryology with laboratory,
  • Histology with laboratory, and
  • Anatomy and Physiology with laboratory.

Health Professions Schools Entrance Exams: It is strongly recommended that students interested in the health professions carefully review the entrance exam requirements for the schools to which they plan on applying.  Further, students should regularly review the ever-changing content and competencies of entrance exams such as the Medical College Admission Test (MCAT), Dental Admission Test (DAT), Optometry Admission Test (OAT), Graduate Record Exam (GRE), etc. to ensure that they complete the necessary courses prior to taking these entrance exams at the end of junior year (which is highly recommended for application to most health professions schools).

Recommended Scheduling of Science Courses: The Departments of Biology, Chemistry, and Psychology have special degree programs for students interested in the health professions. Students in those departments should follow their department’s program of study designated as “Premedical” or “Preprofessional.” Please note that students in the program get a degree in the subject area, i.e., in Biology, Chemistry, or Psychology, not in “Premed.”

Students interested in medicine, dentistry, or another health profession who major in disciplines other than Biology, Chemistry, or Psychology “Premed” should follow the schedule of courses in the following table. Students in most majors at Xavier can follow the schedule by choosing a chemistry minor (General Chemistry, Organic Chemistry, and Biochemistry), using free electives and natural science Core Curriculum requirements for the other science courses, and making slight adjustments in the scheduling of courses in existing degree programs. As mentioned previously, students who are interested in applying to health professions school, regardless of major, should sign-in with the Premedical Office during their first Xavier registration and actively engage in premed advising activities throughout enrollment at the University.


Accelerated Pre-Health Professions Curricula

Superior students interested in a health professions career may shorten by one year the total time required to complete both the bachelor’s degree and the professional degree by participating in approved 3+1 programs. These programs are currently offered by the Departments of Biology and Chemistry. In a 3+1 plan, the student completes three years at Xavier and spends his or her senior year at a professional school. After successfully completing 24-31 semester hours at the professional school, the student transfers these credits to Xavier and receives the bachelor’s degree. Thus, after four years, the student will have completed all the requirements for graduation from Xavier and have successfully finished the first year of medical, dental, etc. school.

Note: Students interested in the 3+1 program should not apply to schools that require an undergraduate degree for matriculation; additionally, students should refer to up-to-date catalogs that provide detailed information regarding entry requirements for individual medical, dental, etc. schools [e.g. Medical School Admissions Requirements (MSAR), the official online resource made available by the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC); ADEA Official Guide to Dental Schools, the official book published by the American Dental Education Association (ADEA), etc.].

The accelerated programs do not assure a student’s acceptance into the professional school. Admission to the professional school is the responsibility of the student. The student who is interested in an accelerated pre-health program should express this intention to his/her academic advisor at his or her first registration at Xavier. To ensure that the student receives the appropriate application advice and support from the Premedical Office in a timely fashion, he/she should consult with the University Premedical Advisor at the student’s first Xavier registration.

Early Medical School Acceptance Programs

Tulane University School of Medicine, the University of Rochester School of Medicine, St. Louis University School of Medicine, and Geisel School of Medicine all have special programs that allow Xavier students to gain conditional acceptance into medical school during their junior year of undergraduate work. Eligible students apply to these programs during the second semester of their sophomore year and are notified of their acceptance status during the fall term of the junior year. Students who are granted conditional acceptance through early medical school acceptance programs will be expected to complete their undergraduate education at Xavier University prior to matriculation and to maintain satisfactory academic and behavioral progress as articulated by each early acceptance institution. Students who are granted conditional acceptance into the University of Rochester program are not required to take the Medical College Admission Test (MCAT). The MCAT is, however, a requirement for the other early medical school acceptance programs. Detailed requirements for each early medical school acceptance program are available at: http://www.xula.edu/premed/PMInfo/PMIndex.htm. Early medical school acceptance programs are also discussed in detail at group and individual premed meetings held during freshman and sophomore years.

Additionally, the University of South Alabama (USA) College of Medicine encourages highly qualified freshman and sophomore premeds at Xavier to consider the South Prep Med Scholars Program for early acceptance.  For more information about this program, interested students should attend the USA Medical School information session during freshman and/or sophpomore year.

NOTE:  There are very specific major, GPA, and coursework requirements that must be met by the end of the spring semester of the sophomore year in order to be eligible for application to most early medical school acceptance programs.  As a result, students must begin to satisfy the requirements in the fall semester of the freshman year.

The five (5) early medical school acceptance programs detailed above are not the only such programs that may be available to undergraduate students.  For example, the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai offers the FlexMed Program for early acceptance to which eligible undergraduate students may apply in the fall of the sophomore year.  Visit http://icahn.mssm.edu/education/medical/admissions/flexmed for more details and meet with program representatives when they visit Xavier.

ROTC Programs

Xavier students may participate in ROTC at Xavier through a joint agreement with Tulane University. Students register for ROTC courses at Xavier and usually pursue these courses at Tulane or other local campuses. Students may enroll in the Air Force, Army, or Navy ROTC programs at Tulane. Through these programs, it is possible for the student to earn an appointment as a commissioned officer while working for a degree at Xavier. For more information, contact the appropriate ROTC program office at Tulane University.


The Dillard/Loyola/Notre Dame Seminary/Tulane/Xavier Partnership is a cooperative arrangement among the named Universities. Among other opportunities, the arrangement allows Xavier students to take courses at the other institutions while paying Xavier tuition for all courses taken.

Under the cross-registration agreement, a full-time Xavier student may, with the permission of his/her chair, register for a maximum of six total hours at member institutions of the consortium. Full-time status (minimum of 9 hours) is determined by adding the number of hours of Xavier courses and those taken at member institutions. However, at least nine hours must be taken at Xavier. The agreement also applies to evening divisions at Tulane and Loyola.

Consortium credits will be treated as Xavier courses, and students will receive letter grades on their transcripts. This agreement is only valid during Fall and Spring semesters.

Career Advancement Center

The Career Advancement Center (CAC) includes the Office of Career Services and the Office of Graduate Placement and University Summer Programs.  The CAC’s primary goal is to share resources and expertise in order to provide efficient and effective post-graduate preparation for all Xavier students. The CAC provides Xavier students with the opportunity to engage in a comprehensive career planning process that includes the: administration of career interest assessments, identification of graduate programs and preparation for a job search. The CAC also stresses the importance of obtaining research opportunities and internships to gain valuable workplace skills and provide practical application of curricular theory. The sections below provide details of the offices that comprise the CAC.

Career Services

The goal of the Career Services Office is to help all students become well-informed and well-prepared to make rewarding career choices. Students may receive assistance in exploring career options through materials and information, job search preparation, and preprofessional experiences which enhance their ability to secure satisfying career employment. Students are assisted through career counseling, various career related programs, and on-campus interviews.

Career Services staff works with each student to help identify and successfully develop a career path that is in alignment with skills, values, and interests. Through individual advising, career development programs, internships/Co-op opportunities, and online career exploration resources, the Career Services staff helps students learn more about themselves and the career development process.

Cooperative Education And Internships

Xavier offers two means for students to obtain preprofessional experience prior to graduation. Cooperative Education (Co-op) is an experiential learning program which provides students exposure to the business and professional world as part of their academic preparation. Co-op allows students the opportunity to work with employers while still pursuing their degrees and offers invaluable experience for future full-time employment.

Cooperative Education (Co-ops)

Two forms of Cooperative Education (Co-op) are offered. The first, called Alternating Co-op, involves alternating semesters of full-time on-campus study with semesters of full-time employment. Students successfully completing one semester of Alternating Co-op receive three semester hours of academic credit. Under the alternative plan, called Parallel Co-op, students may work part time while attending formal classes. Students successfully completing two semesters of Parallel Co-op receive three semester hours of academic credit. Under both plans, the student’s work is monitored by the Xavier Office of Career Services. Students who wish to participate must obtain approval from their departmental faculty advisor and the Office of Career Services.

To be accepted into the program the student must:

  1. have attained sophomore standing,
  2. have a cumulative grade point average of 2.0 or better, and
  3. be able to demonstrate that he or she will profit from participating in cooperative assignments.

In most cases, participation in an alternating Co-op assignment will lengthen the student’s stay in school and students should anticipate this extension of the usual time for completion of degree requirements.


An internship is any short-term, supervised work experience usually related to a student’s field of study, for which the student may or may not earn academic credit. In addition to Cooperative Education, the Office of Career Services coordinates formalized internships. Students who wish to participate must obtain approval from their department head and the Office of Career Services prior to the experience. Internships are also available through the Graduate Placement Office and the academic departments.

Graduate Placement and University Summer Programs

The primary goals of the Office of Graduate Placement and University Summer Programs are increasing graduate and professional school enrollment and targeted recruitment of prospective students in non-science disciplines. In order to accomplish these goals, the Office facilitates the following: GradStar, the McNair Post- Baccalaureate Achievement Program, and SuperScholar/EXCEL.

GradStar prepares Xavier students for admission into graduate, business. and law schools. The Director and Assistant Director advise students on their respective programs and provide assistance with the entire application process. Faculty from each academic department serve as GradStar liaisons and recommend students to the program. GradStar coordinates a GRE workshop in the fall and spring semesters. In addition, the Office of Graduate Placement hosts recruiters from across the nation during its annual Grad Fair. All GradStar students may participate in seminars and receive individual counseling; select students participate in campus visitations.

Xavier’s Ronald E. McNair Post-Baccalaureate Achievement Program is funded by the U.S. Department of Education to prepare low-income/first-generation and underrepresented students for Ph.D. programs. McNair scholars participate in semi-monthly seminars, visit graduate programs, conduct research internships in the summer and present their findings at conferences.

Xavier University of Louisiana hosts excellent opportunities for pre-collegiate and college students during the summer. Xavier University’s summer programs are available for high school students interested in a variety of disciplines. These programs have formed a valuable pipeline for the many students who then attend Xavier. The Office of Graduate Placement and University Summer Programs coordinates the operation of all Xavier summer programs. The office is directly responsible for ensuring that all summer programs are properly aligned to the University Mission and administered in a manner that is consistent with all Xavier University campus policies. In addition, the Office of Graduate  Placement and University Summer Programs is directly responsible for the daily management and delivery of the Xavier Summer Science Academy and Super Scholar/EXCEL programs.

Center for Intercultural and International Programs

The Xavier Center for Intercultural and International Programs (CIIP) was established to:

  1. promote global awareness on campus;
  2. expand study abroad opportunities for students across the curriculum;
  3. provide leadership in globalizing the curriculum;
  4. support faculty development in the intercultural and international arena;
  5. provide assistance to international students; and
  6. coordinate exchange programs with college and universities within the United States.

CIIP also coordinates exchange programs with colleges and universities within the United States. The University has agreements with other institutions that allow student exchanges for one semester. These exchanges usually occur in the spring semester and are open to students of all majors. Qualifying students must have a minimum cumulative grade point average of 3.00. Students interested in student exchange programs should contact the Director of CIIP.

Students interested in incorporating a study abroad experience or a domestic exchange into their academic career at Xavier are encouraged to visit the Center for Intercultural and International Programs.

Center for Undergraduate Research

The primary goal of Xavier University’s Center for Undergraduate Research (CUR) is to encourage and support undergraduate research.  CUR connects students in all disciplines to information and opportunities for both on-campus and off-campus research experiences.  The Center also funds a limited number of travel awards for students to present their research at national and international conferences.  CUR sponsors annual campus-wide exhibitions of research and creative work in the spring (Festival of Scholars) and summer (Summer Symposium).  CUR also holds workhops to assist students with writing proposals and applications for competitive research opportunities.

CUR also sponsors two student peer-reviewed publications, Pathways and XULAneXUS, with funding support from the Andrew Mellon FoundationPathways is a freshman journal comprised of essays that focus on students’ personal experiences and reflect the diversity of background and perspective in our student body.  XULAneXUS, Xavier’s online undergraduate research journal, publishes the outstanding scholarship of undergraduates in every academic discipline through bi-annual issues available online at: http://xulanexus.xula.edu.  The online journal supports a wide range of submissions, including traditional research manuscripts, scholarly essays, visual and audio representations of creative scholarship, and multimedia components embedded within manuscripts.  Service learning analyses allow students to also publish on the theoretical intersection of experiential and academic learning from service-learning courses.

Confucius Institute

In 2012, Xavier established a Confucius Institute through a partnership with the Chinese national government and Hebei University, a major university near Beijing. Named after Confucius (551-479 BC), the most prominent educator and philosopher of early China, the Institute aims to teach Xavier students courses in Mandarin Chinese as well as sponsor workshops and programs that highlight Chinese culture and business practices. The Institute also reaches out to the community through a variety of festivals and audience-centered presentations.

As the first Confucius Institute among the nation’s more than 100  HBCUs and in Louisiana, the Institute has enjoyed steady increases in Mandarin enrollment on campus and in the community, hosted frequent faculty and student exchanges with Chinese universities, and received extensive coverage from the mainstream media.  The Institute also organizes the travel for up to 20 students to China in the summer in order to learn Mandarin Chinese in an intensive setting and gain more exposure to Chinese culture.  While in China, costs of group activities, including food, hotel, admissions, and ground transportation are free of charge to the students. 

Speech and Hearing Center

The Xavier Speech and Hearing Center, which is operated in conjunction with the Speech Pathology academic program, offers evaluations and/or treatment for a variety of speech-language-hearing disorders. Any individual from the community, including infants and seniors, may be evaluated and treated. Instructors may also refer any student who appears to have a speech-language-hearing problem to the Center for evaluation. Xavier students, faculty, and staff members may seek services at the Center free of charge. For more information regarding services, please contact the clinic at (504) 520-5087.

Service Learning

Service-Learning is a teaching and learning method that connects meaningful community service with academic learning, personal growth, community involvement, and civic responsibility. It is a method by which students can learn and develop through active participation in thoughtfully organized service experiences connected with an academic course. Coupling service with other teaching methods can transform a course, and deepen students’ understanding of course themes and achievement of course objectives.

Through Service-Learning, students not only have an opportunity to learn academic concepts and skills, they begin to understand the relevance of those concepts and skills in the real world, contribute to efforts that strengthen communities, and positively impact peoples’ lives by building capacity and addressing immediate and long-term issues identified by the local community. This strategy prepares students to fulfill the mission of Xavier by broadening theirunderstanding of the complexities of social injustice and developing their leadership skills to contribute to the promotion of a more just and humane society.

There are opportunities for participation in Service-Learning across disciplines and university departments. Service-Learning is a joint effort between the Offices of Student Services and Academic Affairs.

Honors Programs and Awards

The Dean’s Honor Roll

A student who earns at least 12 hours of degree credit in a semester with a grade-point average of at least 3.3 with no grades of F, U or I is entitled to placement on the dean’s honor roll for that semester. Members of the honor roll will be published in University publications and released to the news media unless a student has a written request on file in the Office of the Registrar not to have his or her name used.

Graduation Honors

A candidate with a cumulative average of at least 3.3 graduates cum laude; one whose average is at least 3.6 graduates magna cum laude; one whose average is 3.8 or higher graduates summa cum laude.

Students may also receive honors recognition at graduation in Biology, Business, Chemistry, Computer Information Systems, Computer Science, English, History, Mathematics, Music Theory, Philosophy, Sociology, Theology, and Women’s Studies by satisfying certain departmental or programs requirements.

Honors in Biology - Each spring the department will select a limited number of students for possible graduation “with Honors in Biology.” Students who achieve this distinction will have maintained at least a 3.50 grade point average in Biology and 3.30 grade point average overall, with no grade of “C” or lower in any Biology course, throughout their undergraduate careers. Biology and Biology Premed majors who satisfy these minimum requirements and who wish to be considered for the program are asked to apply by letter early in the spring semester of their junior year. Students will be notified of the outcome of their application in writing. Successful applicants will be required to register for BIOL 4011S /BIOL 4020S - Honors Seminar , rather than BIOL 4210 , during their senior year. This course carries one hour of academic credit which will be awarded only after successful completion of both semesters. Students will be required to submit a paper on their seminar topic to their seminar mentor during the semester in which the seminar is given. Students will be dropped from the program if they fail to continue to meet the academic requirements given above.

Honors in Business - Students either majoring or minoring in any academic program in the Division of Business qualify for the distinction of “Honors in Business” by having an overall GPA of at least 3.3 and earning a minimum of 18 hours in business taken at Xavier. In addition, majors must earn a GPA of at least a 3.5 in their concentration courses, and minors must earn a GPA of at least a 3.5 in their minor coursework.

Honors in Chemistry - Students majoring in Chemistry may apply for the distinction “Honors in Chemistry” by completing their course of study with a 3.5 overall cumulative average and a 3.5 cumulative average in Chemistry. Students who minor in chemistry must have a 3.5 overall average and a 3.7 average in their chemistry courses to earn this distinction. At least 18 hours of chemistry credits must be earned at Xavier.

Honors in Computer Information Systems - Computer Information Systems majors with (1) a 3.5 grade point average in all computer science and business courses accepted for credit, and (2) a cumulative 3.3 grade point average overall will earn the graduation distinction of “Honors in Computer Information Systems”. Students must meet the academic requirements throughout their tenure in the Computer Science Department.

Honors in Computer Science - Computer Science majors with (1) a 3.5 grade point average in all computer science and mathematics courses accepted for credit, and (2) a cumulative 3.3 grade point average overall will earn the graduation distinction of “Honors in Computer Science”. Students must meet the academic requirements throughout their tenure in the Computer Science Department.

Honors in English - ENGL 1023H  and ENGL 2011H  satisfy the core curriculum requirements in English composition, introduction to literature, and world literature (the equivalent of ENGL 1010 , ENGL 1020 , and ENGL 2010 ). Upon receiving a grade of “C” or better in the Freshman Honors English Sequence (ENGL 1023H  and ENGL 2011H ), the student will receive 3 semester hours of credit for ENGL 1010 . ENGL 1020  and ENGL 2010  cannot be substituted for the Freshman Honors English Sequence; if the student elects to take either of those, he/she forfeits his/her placement in the Honors sequence.

Students may receive Honors in English in four different ways.

  1. For initial placement in the Honors in English program, students must meet criteria that include ACT or SAT scores and high school transcript. The English Department determines final placement. To receive an honors distinction in English, students so chosen must take ENGL 1023H , ENGL 2011H , and an additional 3 semester hours with a 3000 or 4000 level English course of their choice and receive a cumulative average of 3.0 or higher for all three courses (or their equivalent).
  2. Students with Advanced Placement credit may take the sequence with ENGL 2011H  and one more English course at the 3000 or 4000 level. A cumulative average of 3.0 or higher in these two courses will earn them Honors in English.
  3. A student who earns an “A” in ENGL 1010  may also qualify for the honors sequence. A student with credit in programs other than AP should consult the English department head for honors consideration.
  4. Students need not be placed in the Freshman English Honors Sequence outlined above to qualify for “Honors in English.” Students majoring or minoring in English may also earn the honors distinction by completing their courses of study with a 3.5 cumulative average in English. At least eighteen semester hours of English must be earned at Xavier.

Students may use the AP or CLEP examinations as equivalencies for ENGL 1010  or ENGL 1020 . Students must have taken the essay portion of the exam as well as the objective portion and must meet with the department head for advising no later than the last day of registration to determine from which course(s) they may be exempt.

Honors in History - Students selected by the placement process of the Admissions Office will be awarded honors in history if they earn at least a “B” each in a 1000-level course with a designation of “H”, any 2000-level course, and any 3000- or 4000-level course. Students may also take two 2000-level courses and one 3000-/4000-level course to fulfill the honors requirement, again provided they earn at least a “B” in each class. Other students may be considered for Honors in History with the approval of the department head.

Honors in Mathematics - For placement in the Honors in Mathematics Program, students should apply to the Mathematics Department. To receive the distinction “Honors in Mathematics,” students must satisfy one of the following two criteria:

  1. Students must take MATH 1070H  and MATH 2070H  and at least four (4) additional hours of mathematics or statistics at the 2000 level or above. Examples of additional course work that satisfy these requirements are third semester calculus (MATH 2080 ); basic statistics with a technology lab (STAT 2010  and STAT 2150L ); MATH 2030  or MATH 2530  or MATH 2550  together with a technology lab (MATH 2160L ). Students must receive a cumulative grade point average of 3.3 or higher in all mathematics and statistics courses taken with no grade of “C” or below.
  2. Students must take MATH 1070  (or MATH 1070H ) and MATH 2070 , and at least six (6) additional hours of mathematics or statistics at the 2000 level or above. Students must receive a cumulative grade point average of 3.3 or higher in all mathematics and statistics courses taken with no grade of “C” or below.

Honors in Music Theory - Students who are eligible for this honor are music majors who have completed 20 hours in music theory with a minimum GPA in theory of 3.5 by the first half of the senior year. The student who elects to complete this program must apply to the department head who will review that student’s record, give final approval for admission into the program, and assist the student in obtaining a faculty member to supervise the final project. In the final semester of the senior year, the student must register for MUST 4500H , complete one of the three honors theory projects prescribed for this course, and receive a pass endorsement from the theory faculty who will give the final evaluation of the student’s project.

Honors in Philosophy - Students are eligible to graduate with an honors distinction in Philosophy. To do so, the student must complete a minimum of four Philosophy courses (12 credit hours) with an overall philosophy GPA of 3.5.

Honors in Sociology - Students with a cumulative GPA of at least 3.0 will graduate with an honors distinction in Sociology by completing a minimum of any three Sociology courses with a total of nine credit hours with a combined GPA in all sociology courses of 3.5 or higher. This distinction and its criterion of a 3.5 GPA in Sociology applies to all students, including students majoring and minoring in Sociology. To be eligible, students must have an overall GPA of 3.0.

Honors in Theology - Students are eligible to graduate with an honors distinction in Theology by completing a minimum of any three Theology courses with a total of 9 credit hours and a grade of a “B” or higher in each of the courses.

Honors in Women’s Studies - Students with a minor in Women’s Studies may apply for an “Honors in Women’s Studies” designation by meeting the following criteria in the Women’s Studies program:

  1. A student must complete a minimum of 9 credit hours in the field,
  2. A student must have at least a B in each course with a cumulative GPA (in Women’s Studies) of at least a 3.3; and
  3. A student must take a 1000 level and two upper level courses from among the list of 2000 and 3000 level courses. WMST 1030  and WMST 3990  are strongly recommended.

Xavier University Awards

Leadership Awards
THE SAINT KATHARINE DREXEL AWARD. The sum of $2,000 is awarded to the senior who, throughout his/her years at Xavier University, has shown the most outstanding spirit of cooperation in the varied interests of the University. Enrollment for at least three years at Xavier is a prerequisite. This award, in memory of Saint Katharine Drexel, Sister of the Blessed Sacrament, is in honor of the life of service and religious dedication of Xavier’s foundress. This is the highest award given to a student by the University.

THE MOTHER M. AGATHA RYAN AWARD. The sum of $1,500 is awarded to a senior who during his/her years at Xavier University has shown a high appreciation for the spirit and standards of his/her Alma Mater through reverence, personal integrity, loyalty, service, and scholarship. Enrollment for at least three years at Xavier is a prerequisite. This award is in memory of Mother M. Agatha Ryan, Sister of the Blessed Sacrament and former president of Xavier University.

THE XAVIER UNIVERSITY SERVICE AWARDS. The X.U. Service Key is awarded to those seniors who deserve recognition and commendation for generous and loyal service in their cooperation with the University in its varied activities.

THE WILLIAM H. MITCHELL CHRISTIAN LEADERSHIP AWARD. A plaque is awarded to a senior who has been outstanding in scholarship and cooperation with the activities of the University.

THE VICTOR H. LABAT SERVICE AWARD. A plaque is awarded to a senior who has worked diligently for the general welfare of students and the University.

The National Council, Knights of Peter Claver Awards
THE GILBERT FAUSTINA AWARD. A monetary award is made to the senior who has demonstrated throughout his/her years at Xavier University exceptional leadership and organizing ability among fellow students. This award is in memory of the late Gilbert Faustina, first Supreme Knight of the Knights of Peter Claver.

THE LOUIS ISRAEL AWARD. A monetary award is made to the senior who throughout his/her years at Xavier University has shown an outstanding spirit of self-sacrifice in the service of his/her neighbor. This award is in memory of the late Louis Israel, second Supreme Knight of the Knights of Peter Claver.

THE ALPHONSE PIERRE AUGUSTE AWARD. A monetary award is made to the senior who throughout his/her years at Xavier University has given the finest exemplification of Christian social concern. This award is in memory of the late Alphonse Pierre Auguste, third Supreme Knight of the Knights of Peter Claver.

Awards in the College of Pharmacy
THE LILLY ACHIEVEMENT AWARD. An award, provided by the Eli Lilly Company, is presented to a graduating pharmacy student for superior scholarship and personal achievement. Also considered are leadership qualities and professional attitude.

THE XAVIER UNIVERSITY COLLEGE OF PHARMACY BOWL OF HYGEIA AWARD FOR OUTSTANDING LEADERSHIP The College of Pharmacy awards a commemorative plaque to the graduating student who has exemplified the highest standards of leadership, student advocacy and concern for the welfare and development of his fellow students and the advancement of the College and its programs.

THE XAVIER UNIVERSITY COLLEGE OF PHARMACY AWARD FOR EXCELLENCE. A plaque is awarded to the graduating pharmacy student who has the highest cumulative average in the professional curriculum and has taken the equivalent of at least four semesters at Xavier

Honor Societies

Alpha Epsilon Delta. AED is the international health preprofessional honor society with more than 150 chapters in the U.S. and Canada. The Louisiana Eta chapter at  Xavier considers students for membership during the spring of each  year provided that the student has completed at least 45 semester hours at Xavier and meets additional requirements that are listed on the AED page of the premedical website, http://www.xula.edu/premed/PMInfo/a.AED/AED.htm.

Alpha Kappa Mu. This national society is a multi-discipline honor society that was established at Xavier in 1941 to:

  • promote scholarship;
  • encourage sincere and zealous endeavor in all fields of knowledge and service;
  • cultivate strong values in personal living; and,
  • develop an appreciation for scholarship and scholarly endeavors in others.

Election to membership in Alpha Kappa Mu is limited to students of junior or senior status who have earned a minimum of thirty hours at Xavier with a cumulative grade point average of 3.3 or higher.

Beta Beta Beta Biological Honor Society. This national honor society is designed to stimulate interest, scholarly attainment, and investigation in the biological sciences, and to promote the dissemination of information and new interpretations among students of the life sciences. Eligibility for membership is restricted to undergraduate students who are in good academic standing with the University and have:

  • completed at least one semester of the sophomore year;
  • maintained a cumulative grade point average of 3.0 with no grade of “C” or lower in ANY biology course; and
  • achieved at least a 3.3 grade point average in three biological science courses, at least one of which is not an introductory course

Chi Sigma Iota. Chi Sigma Iota was established in 1985 as the international honor society for counselors-in-training, counselor educators, and professional counselors. Its mission is to promote scholarship, research, professionalism, leadership and excellence in counseling, and to recognize high attainment in the pursuit of academic and clinical excellence in the field of counseling. Candidates are eligible for membership in the society if they are enrolled in the graduate counseling program and have completed at least 12 hours of graduate credits. They must have maintained an overall grade point average of at least 3.5.

Delta Mu Delta. Delta Mu Delta is the International Honor Society for business programs accredited by ACBSP at the baccalaureate/graduate level. The Greek letters in the Society’s name stand for Dia Mathessos Dynamis, signifying Delta Mu Delta’s motto: Through Knowledge, Power, the power to manage creatively for social and economic good. Becoming a member of Delta Mu Delta is an honor indicative of earnest, intelligent purpose and rewarding achievement. To be eligible for membership, the academic ranking of those being considered must place them in the upper 20 percent or higher in their respective class in business: junior or senior.

Kappa Gamma Pi. Kappa Gamma Pi is a national Catholic College Graduate Honor Society. Xavier first became affiliated with the Society in 1941. Prospective members may be nominated upon receipt of either a baccalaureate or an advanced degree. To be eligible, a student must have a 3.3 GPA accompanied by demonstration of outstanding service and leadership.

Kappa Delta Pi International Honor Society in Education. Kappa Delta Pi International Honor Society in Education fosters excellence in education and promotes fellowship among those dedicated to teaching. Students who are eligible for this honor are 1) undergraduate teacher education majors with no less than 30 semester hours earned prior to initiation, at least 12 hours in professional education courses, and a 3.0 GPA; and 2) graduate education majors who have completed at least 6 semester hours of graduate work at Xavier, have at least 12 hours of professional education courses, and a 3.25 GPA. All candidates who qualify must also be recommended by at least two faculty members in the Division of Education and Counseling.

Kappa Phi Kappa Honor Fraternity. Kappa Phi Kappa is a national professional fraternity in education devoted to the professional development of its members. The Gamma Eta Chapter was reactivated at Xavier in 1994. Kappa Phi Kappa’s intent is to recognize and bring together those individuals who are making significant contributions to the field of education, or who show promise of providing outstanding leadership in education. The purpose of the fraternity is to develop and foster in interested persons a systematic study of educational issues. To qualify for membership a student in the initial program must have a 3.5 GPA; and a student in the advanced program must have a GPA of 4.0. Students fulfilling the requirements receive a written invitation for membership.

Phi Alpha Delta Law Fraternity International. Phi Alpha Delta (PAD) is an international association organized to promote competency and achievement within the legal profession through developing and upholding the highest standards of professional ethics. Xavier’s chapter is part of a 114,000 member worldwide network of attorneys, judges, educators, and students. Membership in PAD qualifies students for participation in a wide array of professional programs, reception of quality reading materials, LSAT study guides and law school information, valuable contacts, and, career planning assistance. Locally, the Xavier PAD chapter is active in promoting community service, law-related speakers and forums, law school application seminars, and networking with local legal professionals. Membership is open to students of any major who are considering law as their career choice.

Phi Alpha Theta. Xavier University’s Alpha Mu Pi chapter of Phi Alpha Theta, the national History Honor Society, was founded in 2006. The mission of the society is “to promote the study of history through the encouragement of research, good teaching, publication and the exchange of learning and ideas among historians.” Membership (not limited to history majors) is open to any Xavier undergraduate in good standing who has completed the following requirements:

  • At least 12 semester hours in history, with a minimum GPA average of 3.1 in these courses (these 12 hours may include up to 3 hours of transfer credit, online course credit, either from Xavier or as transfer, may not be counted towards fulfillment of the requirement);
  • An overall GPA of 3.0 or better; and
  • Be in the top 35% of his or her class.

Phi Lambda Sigma Pharmacy Leadership Society. Phi Lambda Sigma has as its purpose the promotion of leadership qualities among pharmacy students. The society selects its members by peer recognition on the basis of their demonstration of dedication, service and leadership in the advancement of pharmacy. Eligibility requirements include high moral and ethical character, successful completion of at least one year of the professional curriculum and a  cumulative College of Pharmacy grade point average of at least 2.5

Phi Lambda Upsilon National Chemistry Honor Society. The Beta Xi chapter at Xavier was the first chapter at a historically Black university. To be eligible for membership a student must:

  • Be majoring in a curriculum leading to a career in chemistry, chemical engineering, the health professions, or other field of applied chemistry;
  • Have a 3.0 overall grade point average and be at least a junior or first year student in the College of Pharmacy; and
  • Have completed 20 semester hours of chemistry with a grade point average of 3.0 in these courses. (Summer research programs or other programs involving chemistry may be used to fulfill this last requirement.)

Phi Sigma Iota International Foreign Language Honor Society. Phi Sigma Iota is an international foreign language honor society that welcomes high achievers into the diverse global linguistic and literary communities of scholarship. It is centered around the ancient classical languages of Latin, Greek, Sanskrit, and Hebrew; focuses on the romance languages of French, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese and Romanian; and currently includes all languages of the modern world. Founded in 1922, it expanded into the international arena in 1982, initiating its first international chapter in Monterrey, Mexico, and then in Paris, France. The words PHI SIGMA IOTA represent Philotes [friendship], Spoude [zeal for languages], and Idioma [research and individuality]. In 1949, Phi Sigma Iota was voted membership into the US Association of College Honor Societies, the first language society to receive that honor. Currently there are about 250 chapters worldwide.

Its mantra is: “To understand others is to understand yourself.” The establishment of the Xavier University chapter, Lambda Beta, was initiated in 2011 by senior language students who appreciated the need for Xavier students to learn more about other languages and cultures and to be part of a worldwide connection of multicultural and multilingual opportunities. Membership requires a minimum of 3.0 GPA, a minimum 3.3 language GPA, and a planned or completed literature or culture course as part of the curriculum. The society offers scholarships and other awards, small project grants, publishing opportunities, online resources, and references for language teaching skills. Upper level language students who repeat or take lower level language courses are automatically ineligible for membership. See www.phisigmaiota.org.

Phi Sigma Tau Philosophy Honor Society. Founded in 1930, this international honor society in philosophy offers students the distinction of membership, a network of over 180 chapters, a forum to interact with other students interested in philosophy, the opportunity to publish in the society’s journal and present papers at its conferences, and receipt of the society’s publications including its careers bulletin. To be eligible for membership in Xavier’s chapter of the society, a student must have completed at least three semesters of college courses, have completed at least two philosophy courses and be enrolled in a third (all at Xavier), have an overall Xavier GPA of at least 2.85, and have a philosophy GPA of at least 3.2.

Pi Gamma Mu. Pi Gamma Mu is one the oldest and preeminent honor societies in the social sciences. The organization was founded in 1924 by the deans of Southwestern College in Kansas and the College of William and Mary in Virginia. There are over 150 active chapters in the United States and overseas. The Louisiana Lambda chapter at Xavier was established in 2014 to encourage and recognize superior scholarship in social science disciplines and to foster cooperation and social service among its members. Application for membership is open to students who meet the following criteria:

  • Must be a junior or senior by standards of Xavier University of Louisiana;
  • Must have completed at least 20 semester hours in any combination of social science courses. Pi Gamma Mu’s constitution defines the social sciences to include the disciplines of history, political science, sociology, anthropology, economics, international relations, criminal justice, social work, psychology, social philosophy, history of education, and human geography;
  • Must have a minimum G.P.A. in the aggregate of those courses of at least 3.0; and,
  • Students need not be majoring or minoring in a social science field in order to qualify, but merely demonstrate an interest in the social sciences by virtue of completing the requisite number of courses.

Psi Chi. Psi Chi, the national honor society in psychology, was founded in 1929 for the purposes of encouraging, stimulating, and maintaining excellence in scholarship, and advancing the science of psychology. Application for membership is open to Psychology majors who have completed 42 degree credit hours, including 9 in psychology, and have achieved a 3.0 cumulative GPA and a 3.4 GPA in Psychology. Students who meet these criteria and are interested in membership may apply annually for membership.

Rho Chi. Rho Chi society is the academic honor society in pharmacy. The mission of Rho Chi society is to encourage and recognize excellence in intellectual achievement and foster fellowship among its members. Further, the Society encourages high standards of conduct and character, and advocates critical inquiry in all aspects of pharmacy. Pharmacy majors are eligible for membership if they have at least 3.0 grade point average (GPA) and rank in the highest 20 percent of their class. In addition, pharmacy majors must have also completed no less than one-half of the required professional didactic course work to be eligible.

Sigma Tau Delta English Honor Society. The purposes of Sigma Tau Delta national honor society are to:

  • Confer distinction for high achievement in English language and literature in undergraduate, graduate, and professional studies;
  • Provide, through its local chapters, cultural stimulation on college campuses and to promote interest in literature and the English language in the surrounding communities;
  • Foster the discipline of English in all its aspects, including creative and critical writing;
  • Promote good citizenship among its members; and,
  • Exhibit high standards of academic excellence.

To be eligible for membership, a student must

  • Have completed at least two college courses in English language or literature beyond ENGL 1020 ;
  • Have at least a B average in English courses;
  • Rank at least in the highest 35% of his/her class in general scholarship; and
  • Have completed at least three semesters of college course work.