When you complete your LifeTrack program you will earn either a Bachelor of Arts (BA) or a Bachelor of Science (BS) degree from The University of Alabama. Students pursuing a BS degree will be required to complete Math 125 or higher.

LifeTrack Depth Studies

With LifeTrack, you do not have to choose a narrow major. With this program, you attain a broad base of knowledge in the area you want to study. This not only makes learning more fun, flexible and meaningful, but it also prepares you for many different career options.

You must complete a minimum of 30 hours in your depth study.

Literature, Art, and Society

With this depth study you will complete course work in the areas of English, Modern Languages, Comparative Literature, Fine Art (including studio art and art history), Music, American Studies, Philosophy, and cultural history. This is ideal for students who love creativity. You will learn and think about how human creativity relates to progress and community. Students should take at least 6 hours of coursework in non-Western arts and culture or U.S. minority traditions. Work in foreign languages is not required but encouraged. We recommend you take at least one course in literary criticism, aesthetics, historiography, music, or art criticism.

Science, Technology, and Culture

With this depth study, you will complete course work in basic and advanced natural sciences, mathematics, earth or environmental science, history of science, introductory or advanced computing, engineering and applied science, and interdisciplinary courses that deal with science and society. Emphasis is on a broad education in science and technology areas with special attention to the question of the impact of technology on culture and subsequent ethical dilemmas and challenges. A course in the history of science, mathematics, or technology is recommended.

Community Studies

With this depth study, you will complete course work in the core social science disciplines (sociology, anthropology, criminal justice, speech, and communicative disorders, psychology), education, social work, area studies, legal studies, economics, Women’s Studies, African American Studies, and related interdisciplinary fields. Emphasis is on the gathering of theories of human interaction and community formation with special attention to problem-solving and deliberative democracy. You are encouraged to complete at least one course with a service-learning or field placement component.  If you are interested in graduate work in the area of Community Studies or related fields, consider an introductory course in statistics.

Leadership Studies

With this depth study, you will complete course work in psychology, sociology, Criminal Justice, management, Philosophy, public relations, social work, advanced writing, communications, educational leadership, and related professional fields. Emphasis is on gaining experience in theories of motivation, organizational and group behavior, professional ethics, leadership styles, basic and advanced communication skills, theories of cultural differences, multicultural communication, non-profit management, budgeting, and advancement work. You are encouraged to take one course in introductory or professional ethics.

Self-Designed Concentration Option

Because LifeTrack is a flexible program that is designed to bring out a passion for learning, we allow students to design their own depth study. If you are interested in this option, consult with your advisor and the Director of New College.

Your self-designed Depth Study plan, which lists ALL courses you plan to take, must be submitted and approved in your first semester of joining the NCLT Program.  Contact your advisor for more specific information about this process.

Residence Requirement

“Residence” is defined as academic credit earned under the auspices of University of Alabama faculty members. A MINIMUM OF 30 SEMESTER HOURS MUST BE COMPLETED UNDER THE GUIDANCE OF THE UNIVERSITY OF ALABAMA NEW COLLEGE LIFETRACK PROGRAM. Residence hours include:

  • University of Alabama on-campus courses
  • LifeTrack Program learning contracts (either Faculty or Student-designed)
  • University of Alabama Online courses
  • Prior learning credit awarded through the LifeTrack Program and evaluated by UA faculty

Foundations of Adult Learning Seminar

Each new LifeTrack student is required to attend the on-campus, two-day Foundations of Adult Learning Seminar (FOALS). This is the only time attendance is required on campus. Seminars are conducted on the UA campus in Tuscaloosa, Alabama, several times each year. For this summer, students can register for a virtual meet-and-greet session May 29, from noon to 1 p.m. Central time, or May 30, 7:30-8:30 p.m. Central time. For Fall 2024, the on-campus FOALS session will be Sept. 12-13.

This seminar is a great way to meet your advisor in person and meet other students from around the country who will be undertaking this adventure just like you. You will learn about the advising system, the curriculum, and degree planning procedures. We’ll walk you through out-of-class learning contracts and prior learning assessment processes. Being here on campus and meeting the people who will help you along this journey goes a long way to launching a successful LifeTrack student.

Working with Your Advisor

Your advisor is your direct link to The University of Alabama. They are what makes LifeTrack a unique and flexible program that works for so many adults. You will be assigned to an academic advisor at the Learn On Adult Learning Seminar. After attending the seminar, you can contact your advisor by telephone or e-mail as needed.

The Curriculum Elements

A minimum of 120 semester hours are needed to graduate from The University of Alabama, including the following specified requirements:

The remaining semester hours may be distributed throughout the curriculum or as electives to meet individual goals. Students must complete at least 36 upper-level hours (courses at the 300 level or higher).

Because LifeTrack is a distance-learning, writing-intensive program, we highly recommend that you complete the 6-semester-hour “Communication Skills” requirement prior to seminar attendance. To fulfill this requirement you must have a grade of “C” or better in correspondence or on-campus courses in written and/or oral communication skills from a regionally accredited institution. In addition, all students are required to complete LifeTrack Writing Skills and Strategies contract within the first two semesters of enrollment. This class must be passed with a grade of “C” or better.


                                                       Requirements    Semester Hours
Foundations of Adult Learning Seminar (FOALS) 3 Semester Hours
LifeTrack Writing Skills and Strategies 3 Semester Hours
Research Writing 3 Semester Hours
Humanities 12 Semester Hours
Communication Skills 6 Semester Hours
Social Sciences 12 Semester Hours
Natural Science (2 hours of lab) 8 Semester Hours
Mathematics (Finite – Math 110 or higher unless seeking a BS, then Math 125 is required) 3 Semester Hours
Depth Study/Major 30 Semester Hours
Senior Project 6 Semester Hours

Credit Transfer

Work that you’ve completed at any regionally accredited college or university may be transferred as part of the degree plan. A maximum of 60 semester hours or 90 quarter hours may be transferred from 2-year colleges. Only those courses taught at 2-year colleges that are designated by those institutions as baccalaureate-oriented or college-parallel, or that are generally recognized as such, may be considered for transfer.

You may also earn credit by examination and credit for several types of out-of-class experiences. The maximum credit attainable through all programs by placement is 45 semester hours, including, but not limited to: College-Level Examination Program (CLEP) General and Subject Examinations, Defense Activity for Nontraditional Education Support (DANTES) examinations, credit for prior military service, and prior learning portfolio credit awarded through The University of Alabama.

Out-of-Class Learning Course Contracts

LifeTrack program is about the power and excitement of learning. We encourage all kinds and we realize that learning often does not need to take place in a classroom. You will have many opportunities to acquire learning through professional, civic, and personal experiences. The out-of-class learning contract is an educational tool that allows you to design courses to meet academic needs and while doing something about which you are passionate.

The course contract is a written agreement between the student, the faculty contract director, and the LifeTrack Program. Contracts may be applied to any area of the curriculum and are normally designed to allow learning outside the traditional classroom environment. You will learn how to design contracts while attending the Foundations of Adult Learning Seminar (FOALS). Credit for contract learning is considered to be UA residential credit.

Senior Project

The Senior Project is a distinctive feature of the LifeTrack Program. It is the culmination of the skills you have learned here. LifeTrack not only invigorates your love of learning but teaches you how to truly go in-depth on a subject. The project is designed by you and includes research, analysis, and synthesis of a particular subject. It is the final step in completing your undergraduate degree.

The Senior Project may be done for professional enhancement, development of personal interests, academic preparation for graduate school or a combination of these goals.

To create a Senior Project you will coordinate with a Senior Project Advisory Committee, comprised of faculty and advisors. Students are encouraged to come to the campus for the Senior Project Planning Meeting, but planning can also be conducted by a conference call.

Once completed, the Senior Project will earn 6 credit hours towards the 30 semester hours required to fulfill UA residence requirement. Students are required to complete the 3-hour Research Writing contract prior to beginning their senior project.

Credit for Prior Learning

You may be able to earn undergraduate credit for prior learning experiences, which are judged to be of college level and can be evaluated by UA faculty. The process involves the student’s development of an academic portfolio.

No more than 30 hours of a student’s curriculum may be earned through prior learning portfolio assessment credit.

Request for prior learning credit may not be submitted until students have completed 12 graded UA hours.

Honors and Graduation

Outstanding LifeTrack Program students, graduates, and faculty are recognized with special awards during The University’s Honors Week and Commencement.

You are eligible for The Dean’s List and The President’s List, both of which are compiled and published at the close of each semester. LifeTrack students who have completed a minimum of 45 semester hours of graded work under the auspices of The University of Alabama may qualify for honors designation at graduation: Cum Laude, Magna Cum Laude, Summa Cum Laude.

LifeTrack students are awarded a traditional diploma with all the rights and privileges appertaining to The University of Alabama graduates. University-wide commencement ceremonies are held each year in May, August, and December and LifeTrack graduates are encouraged to attend.

In addition to the formal cap-and-gown procession, the LifeTrack Program also hosts a private celebration for graduates and invited guests.

Every LifeTrack student dreams of having his or her name called by the university president and walking across that stage with their family and loved ones present. More than 2,000 already have. It’s your time now to get started toward that day. Learn On.