Academic FAQs

What are PLNU's Institutional Learning Outcomes?

The Institutional Learning Outcomes (ILO) are institutional expectations for graduates. At PLNU, the three ILO are that each student experiences and demonstrates:

1. Learning, informed by our faith in Christ

2. Growing, in a Christ-centered faith community

3. Serving, in a context of Christian faith

How will I know what courses to take this fall?

PLNU uses a research-based prescriptive model of course registration for all incoming new students. Using the personal profile you submitted earlier this year, your interests and preferences were matched with the requirements for the academic major you have selected. Because the faculty has prescribed your first semester courses, you have the optimal schedule for completing educational goals and degree requirements in a timely manner. Later this fall, you will meet with your faculty advisor and plan your course schedule for the spring semester.    

Academics1.jpg When will I receive my class schedule?

 You will receive your class schedule, along with your Statement of Account, in the next NSO mailing around July 1. If you have any questions about your schedule, call the Academic Support Hotline at (619) 849-3333. You can also access your financial information and class schedule through your student portal.

 What can I major in at Point Loma?

 Point Loma Nazarene University offers more than 59 majors, some with concentrations, from accounting to theatre. Normally, students select a major no later than their sophomore year. For a list of majors, concentrations and minors, please visit the PLNU Catalog.

 Can I earn a minor in a different academic program?

 Yes. Though not a requirement for the baccalaureate degree, academic minors are offered in several departments and schools. 

 What about special placement questions?

 PLNU requires students to meet minimum standards in mathematics, writing and foreign language, and also makes it possible for advancement in your program through the College Board's Advanced Placement (AP) program, the International Baccalaureate (IB) and the College-Level Examination Program (CLEP). More information is available at the PLNU Catalog under "Transfer Information."

How do I receive credit for advanced placement?

Students who have completed an Advanced Placement exam at the high school level should request submission of these scores early so that appropriate decisions may be made for the first semester. Details regarding other placement issues are discussed in the current university catalog.

The 2013-14 Undergraduate Catalog will be available in early summer at or at on your smart phone.

Do you have to take math at PLNU?

All students who attend PLNU have a general education mathematics requirement. Students who have passed the AP Calculus AB exam or BC exam with a score of 3, 4, or 5 have already satisfied this requirement. To avoid students enrolling in a course with material that they have already mastered, we require each student who has not passed an AP Calculus exam to take a one-hour online mathematics exam via the PLNU portal.

The results of this exam will be used by academics advisors to place students in the appropriate mathematics course for their programs of study. Calculators are allowed on this exam. Further information about the exam can he found at:

What is Point Loma's writing requirement?

PLNU requires five units of composition as the standard writing component of the general education curriculum. Most freshmen will be scheduled to take WRI 110 College Composition based on the results of their SAT verbal scores. WRI 110 is a five-unit, one-semester course that covers both essay and research writing.

Students scoring less than 470 on the SATB II Writing and/or 43% or lower on the ACT English will co-enroll in WRI 097 and WRI 110.

Students scoring above 670 on the SAT BII Writing and/or 94% or higher on the ACT English qualify for WRI 120, a three-unit course which will satisfy the five-unit course which will satisfy the five-unit GE writing requirements for these qualifying students.

Do I need a foreign language to graduate?

Yes, foreign language through the elementary level is required. Normally, students with two years of high school foreign language are placed at the elementary university level. Students with three or four years of study in high school should contact the Department of Literature, Journalism and Modern Languages for placement information.

What does PLNU offer to help me with my studies?

The Tutorial Center collaborates with faculty to provide qualified tutors and offers a variety of services that assist students in their academic work, free of charge. Services include: tutoring by appointment, paper editing, review sessions, study skill aids, computers and assistive software, and scheduled workshops. To make an appointment, call (619) 849-2953.

For more information about academics at PLNU, including details about the General Education program, visit PLNU Catalog.

For Students with Disabilities

Disability Resource Center (DRC) serves students with disabilities. To determine eligibility for services and appropriate accommodations, current and comprehensive documentation of the disability from the diagnosing physician or other appropriate professional is required.

In order to facilitate a smooth transition into the university, new students disclosing a disability are encouraged to fill out and return the disability form by clicking here as soon as possible. A  Documentation Provider form that may be submitted by your healthy professional is available on our website at, along with other helpful information.