Niagara University's curricula enable students to pursue their academic preferences and to complete courses that lead to proficiency in other academic areas. Courses that have been considered upper-division courses are available to all students. This provides students with the opportunity to avoid introductory and survey courses and permits motivated students to take advantage of more challenging courses early in their collegiate career. The honors program provides special academic opportunities that stimulate, encourage and challenge participants. In addition, an accelerated three-year degree program is offered to qualified students.
Students pursuing a bachelor’s degree must complete a total of 40 or 42 course units (120 or 126 credit hours) to meet graduation requirements. Niagara grants credit for successful scores on the Advanced Placement and the College-Level Examination Program and the International Baccalaureate tests.
Internships, research, independent study, study abroad and cooperative education are available in many academic programs. An Army-ROTC program is also offered.
NU is fully accredited by the Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools. Its programs in the respective areas are accredited by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education, AACSB International–The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business, and the Council on Social Work Education, and the chemistry department has the approval of the American Chemical Society. The travel, hotel and restaurant administration program is accredited by the Commission for Programs in Hospitality Administration.
Majors and Degrees Offered
The College of Arts and Sciences offers the bachelor of arts degree in art history with museum studies, chemistry, communication studies, English, French, gerontology, history, international studies, liberal arts, life sciences, mathematics, philosophy, political science, psychology, religious studies, social sciences, sociology, and Spanish. The bachelor of science degree is awarded in biochemistry (with a concentration in bioinformatics), biology (with concentrations in bioinformatics and biotechnology), chemistry (with a concentration in computational chemistry), computer and information sciences, criminal justice and criminology, mathematics, nursing, and social work. This division also offers the bachelor of fine arts degree in theatre studies (with concentrations in design technology, general theatre, and performance). Preprofessional programs are offered in dentistry, law, medicine, pharmacy, veterinary medicine, and Army-ROTC. An associate of arts degree is available in general studies. In addition, Niagara offers a coordinate major in environmental studies concentration to supplement a degree in biology, chemistry, or political science. Combined master's programs include a five-year program in criminal justice administration and a six-year program is clinical mental health counseling. The university also offers an accelerated nursing program for registered nurses seeking a baccalaureate degree and enrichment courses in fine arts and languages.
In addition to the programs listed above, NU offers a number of preprofessional partnerships. These include a 3+4 partnership in pharmacy with the State University of New York at Buffalo (SUNY), a 2+3 partnership in pharmacy with Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine (LECOM), a 3+4 partnership in medicine with LECOM, and a 3+4 partnership in dentistry with SUNY at Buffalo. Qualified premedical Niagara students are eligible to apply for the early assurance program sponsored by the SUNY at Buffalo.
Niagara University's College of Business Administration is accredited by AACSB International—The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business and offers a B.B.A. and a combination B.B.A./M.B.A. degree (five-year program) in accounting as well as an M.S. in finance. This division offers B.S. degrees in economics, finance, management (with concentrations in human resources, international business, and supply chain management), and marketing. In addition, an A.A.S. degree can be earned in business.
Business students can gain real-world learning experiences through internships, study abroad, cooperative education programs and research conducted in several business-focused campus centers. These centers include the Family Business Center, the Center for Supply Chain Management, the Technology Transfer Center, and the Center for International Accounting and Research.
Holding the highest accreditations possible in both the United States and Canada—the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (formerly NCATE) and Canada’s Ontario College of Teachers—Niagara University’s College of Education provides students with an option of earning dual certification to teach in both countries. The College of Education offers bachelor’s degree programs leading to New York state initial certification in early childhood (birth–grade 6), childhood (grades 1–6), childhood and middle childhood (grades 1–9), middle childhood and adolescence (grades 5–12), adolescence (grades 7–12), certification for teaching students with disabilities (grades 1–6 childhood and grades 7–12 adolescence), and in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL). All education majors pursue an academic concentration to establish expertise in one of the following subject areas: biology, business, chemistry, English, French, liberal arts, mathematics, social studies, and Spanish. Business education is offered only at grades 5–12. The academic concentration in liberal arts can only be pursued in the early childhood and childhood (birth–grade 6), and special education and childhood (grades 1–6). Most other states, and Puerto Rico, have reciprocity agreements with New York, meaning that an NU education would qualify education majors to teach in those states as well. In addition, the Canadian province of Ontario recognizes Niagara graduates as qualified for the Letter of Eligibility to teach in that province. Committed to working with individuals with special needs, NU offers bachelor’s degree programs in developmental disabilities and early childhood development and cognition. These programs prepare students for work in human service fields where opportunities are far-reaching.
The College of Hospitality and Tourism Management provides a career-oriented curriculum leading to a B.S. degree in three specific areas: hotel and restaurant management (with concentrations in food and beverage management; luxury hospitality operations; and hotel planning, development, and operations), sport management (with concentrations in sport operations and revenue management), and tourism and recreation management (with concentrations in event and meeting management and tourism destination management). The College of Hospitality and Tourism Management offered the world’s first bachelor’s degree in tourism. Meanwhile, NU’s hotel and restaurant program, the second-oldest in New York, has the distinction of being the seventh program nationally to be accredited by the Accreditation Commission for Programs in Hospitality Administration by the Council of Hotel, Restaurant, and Institutional Education. The college introduces students to a comprehensive body of knowledge about the hotel, restaurant, tourism, and recreational areas and applies this knowledge to current industry challenges. The college requires that its students accumulate 800 hours of industry-related experience. These and other practical experiences offer NU students the knowledge necessary to advance in the field. Students work with industry leaders in classroom projects, join academic clubs and professional organizations, and participate in special trips to trade shows and conventions and specially designed study-abroad experiences, making NU a national leader in the area.
For students who are undecided about which major to choose, Niagara University offers an award-winning Academic Exploration Program (AEP). AEP provides a structured opportunity for students to participate in a thorough, organized process of selecting a major that meets their academic talents and career goals, while meeting the requirements to graduate on time.