Give Now

Phi Beta Kappa

Eligibility for Phi Beta Kappa

To be considered for election to Phi Beta Kappa:

A senior1 student needs

  • A major within either Dedman College or Art History;

  • A SMU GPA within the top 20% of students. Most electees will be in the top 5%;

  • To be completing at least 80 hours in liberal studies2 (including graded transfer credits); preference is given to students with at least 90 hours;

  • To be completing an intermediate-level proficiency in a foreign language3 and mathematics4; at least one is required. Preference is given to students who have both foreign language and math competence.

A junior1 student needs

  • A major within either Dedman College or Art History;

  • A reasonable probability of completing 90 hours in liberal studies2 prior to graduation (including graded transfer credits);

  • A SMU GPA within the top 10% of students;

  • To be completing an intermediate-level proficiency in a foreign language3 and mathematics4.


1 Senior/Junior students: For Spring induction, students planning to graduate in May are considered “seniors,” while students planning to graduate either later in the current year or in the following year are considered “juniors.” For Winter induction, only students graduating in August or December of the current year are considered for induction as “senior” candidates.

2 Liberal studies are defined to be courses taken in Dedman College (any division) or in the Art History Department in the Meadows School of the Arts, or transfer credits of the same equivalency. No practicums or internships are counted.

3 Intermediate proficiency in foreign languages means obtaining a grade of C or better in two 2000-level or above foreign language courses (in the same language) at SMU, or a transfer course that is equivalent, or if you have intermediate written/oral proficiency in a foreign language acquired by other means (if so, please notify us of this directly).

4 Intermediate proficiency in mathematics means obtaining a grade of C or better in MATH 1309 or above, STAT 2000 or above, PHIL 1301 or CSE 1342, or a transfer course that is equivalent.


For general information about Phi Beta Kappa, see the PBK National video introduction.