CentreCyclopediaOld Main


Bachelor of Arts (B.A.)

Centre has awarded the Bachelor of Arts degree since the the first class graduated in 1824. For much of the nineteenth-century it was the only earned degree offered by the college.

Bachelor of Science (B.S.)

A scientific course, leading to the Bachelor of Science degree, was established in the 1883/84 academic year. The degree was first awarded in 1886

Bachelor of Law (B.L.)

Bachelor of Law degrees were awarded to graduates of Centre's Law School. The first degrees were awarded in 1895.

Master of Arts (M.A.) and Master of Science (M.S.)

In the 1890's Centre set up a program of graduate studies leading to an earned Master of Arts or Master of Science degree. The number of students enrolled in the program was never large, with many being graduates of Centre. The first M.A. was awarded in 1900, and the last in 1923. Only one person earned an M.S. degree, in 1904.

A.M. in Course

First offered in 1835, the A.M. in Course was not an earned degree but "conferred in course on every graduate of three years' standing, who shall have sustained a good moral character and pursued professional studies during the interval, and who shall have made application for the degree one day or more previous to the Annual Commencement." The A.M. in Course was last awarded in 1895.


The 1883-84 annual catalog describes the certificate as "... provided for those who for some reason do not wish to pursue the full Classical of Scientific Course.... To students who take this course a Certificate will be awarded at the end of not less than two years, stating what studies have been successfully pursued by the student." Throughout most of the nineteenth century the college enrolled students, variously called irregular, scientific, or special, who did not pursue a Bachelor's degree. The course of studies these students took became more structured later in the century, and with that came the Certificate award.

Honorary Degrees

Over the couse of its history, the college has awarded numerous people the honorary degrees of Master of Arts (M..A.), Doctor of Laws (LLD), Doctor of Divinity (D.D.), and Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.). The first honorary degrees were awarded in 1828. The first woman to receive an honorary degree was Leila McKee, awarded a Ph.D. in 1892.