Frequently Asked Questions
What does an education at Birmingham-Southern cost?
Tuition and FeesEstimated Cost Summary 2011-12
Books & Supplies (approximate)
Automobile Registration $60
Birmingham-Southern has wonderful opportunities for scholarships, loans, grants, and work-study programs to help students fulfill their dreams of a college education. In fact, 98 percent of students at BSC receive some sort of financial aid.
How will Birmingham-Southern help my son or daughter adjust to college life?
BSC offers extensive new student orientation activities at the start of each fall term. The peer counselors/orientation staff at BSC, “Students Offering Support,” is a group of 30 upper-class students who volunteer to be available throughout the year to students for any personal issues which may arise, as well as to help them find their niche here at BSC. Support services also are in place through Counseling & Health Services, which include programs on time/stress management, study skills, dealing with responsible decision-making in college, as well as on-going personal counseling with professional staff members. Academic success seminars are offered during the year for students who want to further develop their learning potential at BSC. Additionally, new students are paired with a faculty advisor who serves as an academic resource to your son or daughter throughout their BSC career. These and many other services are available to your student.
What can my son or daughter study at Birmingham-Southern College?
Birmingham-Southern has five bachelor's degrees in more than 50 programs of study, in addition to interdisciplinary and specially individualized majors, and master's degrees in public and private management and in music. More ...
What is the student-faculty ratio?
BSC has a 13:1 student-to-professor ratio, allowing for small class sizes and personal interactions with the faculty.
What is the Greek population at BSC and what do students who are not Greek do?
The Greek population at BSC is just under 50 percent. In student satisfaction surveys, students, whether Greek or independent, repeatedly state that they are satisfied with their current campus involvement. Whether students choose to be Greek or not, all students enjoy a wide variety of campus activities within more than 80 student organizations, service learning, intramurals, and more.
Is BSC a safe campus?
Yes. BSC employs its own Campus Police Department that patrols the campus 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. In a biennial survey of student satisfaction, BSC consistently ranks above the national average in terms of its Campus Police.
What is the alcohol policy at Birmingham-Southern College?
Students that are legally of age (Alabama State Law stated 21 years) are allowed to have a personally responsible amount of alcohol for consumption in designated campus locations.
Public displays of alcohol (i.e., original containers) are prohibited on BSC's campus, and high risk drinking behaviors are always confronted, regardless of age.
Students who are under 21 who violate the BSC Alcohol Policy are subject to disciplinary action.
For more information related to the Birmingham-Southern Alcohol Policy as well as the Alcohol Education Initiative please click here.
Do I have access to my son or daughter's academic records?
You can access your son or daughter's academic records through TheSIS, the college's student information site, at www.bsc.edu, but only if your student gives you his or her login and password.
The federal legislation “Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act” (FERPA) prevents the college from giving grades to parents, so you won't be receiving by mail mid-term assessments or final-term grades. All grades are posted online at TheSIS, BSC's student information system. Each student gets a password for access to TheSIS to check grades. Your student can log-on to TheSIS and show you the grades.
Your student can waive his or her academic privacy rights by completing a waiver form, and FERPA does allow academic information to be shared with parents who certify their student is claimed as a dependent. The Academic Privacy Rights waiver form is available online. But rather than going this legalistic route, make this a time for you and your student to have a conversation about your expectations for grades and discuss how your student will keep you informed about his or her academic progress.
Is my son or daughter at a disadvantage without a car on campus?
Not to a significant degree. Personal transportation certainly provides a student with the greatest amount of travel freedom, but the combination of Campus Police, Student Development, and most often friends, offers adequate transportation to students without personal vehicles. In addition to the various locations to purchase food or snacks on campus, the BSC Campus Store—located on the residential quadrangle—offers items such as those found in a typical convenience store. There are also many venues for entertainment on the Hilltop so that students do not have to leave campus to find enjoyable social activities.
How do students make up an Interim term?
The unique Interim term at BSC is where students concentrate on one area of interest from Birmingham to Zimbabwe. If a student is unable to complete a project during the Interim term, he or she may contract an Interim project during the summer term. Please note, however, that students will be charged tuition for Interim projects contracted during the summer.
Is there a separate tuition charge for the Interim term?
No, Interim is included in the tuition for the regular term. There may, however, be costs associated with some projects, and study-travel costs are not included.
What is the advantage of study abroad?
Study abroad is one of the most important experiences of a student's college career. Study abroad is an integral part of the academic program at BSC and gives a student the chance to see another part of the world and to understand how people live, and how they view their world. Study abroad also offers BSC students the chance to learn their academic discipline from another perspective and to develop their skills as mature, independent and resourceful men and women. From a professional perspective, study abroad makes a student stand out as a person who has knowledge about another place, another language, another people and the ability to successfully navigate a new environment. The benefits of international study can be seen throughout a student's life.
Is study abroad safe?
Study abroad at BSC is a process that is carefully monitored throughout a student's experience abroad. All programs that students are eligible to attend for academic credit have been carefully reviewed and are considered safe. Students are expected to make wise decisions and use caution where appropriate. However, students are prepared to navigate their host country through the careful study abroad preparatory course required of all students who study abroad independently of a faculty member.
Is study abroad affordable?
All BSC students have the opportunity to study abroad for academic credit, and financial need does not prevent a student from the opportunity to study internationally. The college provides need and merit-based scholarships to students who qualify. For more information about study abroad and international programs at Birmingham-Southern, review the Office of International Programs Web site.
What career services programs do you offer to students as they get closer to graduation?
The Career Counseling Office assists students with the development of individual career plans, which include self-assessment, information gathering, decision-making, and the school-to-work process. Individual and group counseling is available by appointment. Additionally, students may participate in other career services offerings such as career seminars and workshops, mock interviews, the mentor program, on-campus interviews, résumé writing, interview skills, job search skills assistance, and the administration and interpretation of interview assessments.