Eligibility for election to membership in course shall be contingent
upon fulfillment of the following minimum requirements. Chapters are
expected to determine the specific application of standards stated in
The Stipulations Concerning Eligibility for Membership in Course were
adopted by the Phi Beta Kappa Council in 1952. Chapters founded since
1952 are required, and others are requested, to observe the
Stipulations, which, as printed above, incorporate revisions made by
the Twenty-Ninth Council in September 1970, and amendments adopted by
written vote of the chapters in July 1991.
- Eligible students shall be candidates for a bachelor's degree in
a College of Arts and Sciences or its institutional equivalent.
- They shall be majoring in an area of the liberal arts or
sciences. If departments of economics, music, political science, or
other subjects normally offered in a College of Arts and Sciences are
classified in another division of the institution, students majoring in
these subjects may be considered if they are candidates for a
bachelor's degree in a College of Arts and Sciences.
- They shall include not less than 90 semester hours (or the
equivalent) of liberal work among the 120 hours ordinarily required for
the degree, exclusive of required courses in physical education and any
- Students electing a combined curriculum in such fields as law,
medicine, dentistry, or engineering may be considered if they take at
least 90 semester hours or the equivalent of liberal work in a College
of Arts and Sciences, complete at least half of the requirements for a
liberal major, and meet all of the other requirements defined in these
- Grades earned in applied or professional work shall not be
counted in computing the grade-point average for purposes of
eligibility. Applied and professional work shall be understood to
include those courses intended primarily to develop skills or
vocational techniques in such fields as business administration,
education, engineering, home economics, journalism, library science,
military science, physical education, communications, secretarial
studies, speech, and applied art and music.
- Weight shall be given to the breadth and proportion of the
program of each candidate as shown by the number and variety of courses
taken outside the major.
- Candidates shall have demonstrated, by successful work in high
school or college, or in the two together, a knowledge of mathematics
and of a foreign language at least minimally appropriate for a liberal
education. In no case shall this mean less than the completion of the
intermediate college level in a foreign language, or its equivalent,
and the equivalent of two years of college preparatory secondary school
mathematics. Either requirement may be met by a proficiency test.