Join Date: Nov 2012
Hi, as a current LPS student in the BA program, I can tell you that is *extremely* rare for an LPS student to transfer into the College of Arts and Sciences (CAS). As stated in the online LPS handbook:
"Since LPS offers the same degree as the College of Arts and Sciences, the College
does not consider LPS students for admission."
Now, with that being said, if you're looking for the full-time residential college experience of the 18-22yr old student population at UPENN, you have two choices-
1: Apply for transfer admission directly to the College of Arts and Sciences (CAS)
2: Enroll in the College of Liberal and Professional Studies (LPS) as a full-time student (4 course units/semester), which renders you eligible for housing and a more robust financial aid package.
Some people who don't even attend Penn LPS post a lot of inaccurate "stuff" (trying to keep it clean..lol) on here, so my advice to you would be to fully explore the Penn LPS website. Pretty much most of the information you need can be found somewhere on there (including an online student manual).
If you're someone who needs, for whatever reason, to work a full-time job, LPS is much more suited to/for the non-traditional student than is CAS. In CAS, it is expected that you will be enrolled as a full-time student. This is not feasible for many who hold down demanding full-time jobs while trying to balance coursework on top of that. With the non-traditional student in mind, all LPS classes begin at 4:30pm or later.
If you attend LPS as a full-time, residential student, you'll be able to be fully integrated into the "traditional" college scene at Penn, especially if you're 21-22yrs old. If you're in your late 20s and up, that probably does not appeal to you.
Again, you have to dig for information on your own, but I'll share my experience at Penn.
Academics - In the 30 courses I've completed at Penn, I can count on one hand the # of classes that have been complete duds. Most have been incredibly amazing, to the point I've lost count of how many times I've thought, "Wow, how privileged I am to go to Penn." This whole thing about LPS being some inferior night school filled with adjunct professors is bogus. Out of the 30 courses I've completed, maybe 5 of them were taught by 5th and 6th year doctoral students from whatever department my class fell under. My American Foreign Policy course was taught by a professor from Swarthmore....other than that, the remainder of my courses were taught by full time faculty from the School of Arts and Sciences. In LPS, you fulfill the same requirements for the BA as CAS students do with the exception of the foreign language requirement. LPS student are permitted (though discouraged) to take their foreign language courses as "Pass/Fail", but CAS students must take their language classes for a letter grade.
Classes are hard and it helps to really like your major. I'm a foreign affairs junkie, so my double major in in History (Diplomatic History concentration) and Political Science (International Relations concentration) has allowed me to take everything from courses on World War II, American Diplomatic History, 3rd World Politics, Human Rights in International Law, European International Relations, African Politics, Comparative History of Genocide, etc....and many of these courses were LPS courses taught by regular, full-time PENN professors. As I wind up my Penn academic stint, I have to say, in all honesty, that hardest thing about Penn is choosing which courses to take because there are so many incredible ones from which to choose!
Again, ask yourself what do you hope to gain from attending Penn and whether that goal can be met either through LPS or CAS. If your goal is a BA degree, LPS will get you the same degree as one granted by CAS, and at a much cheaper price. As an LPS student, you can take day courses, and if the course is *required* for your major and generally not offered through LPS in the evening (the LPS office is a stickler for this), then you can take the course for the LPS tuition rate (currently about $2900 for one course versus $5200 for one course in CAS). Otherwise, you pay the day school rate. This is something to consider if you're paying your own way through school with personal resources and financial aid. I've gotten tuition assistance from my employer, paid some directly out of my own pocket, and I've taken out some loans as well to pay for my education. Sure, it's been hard, but totally worth it in my opinion.
LPS or CAS--> at the end of the day, your degree will be granted from the SCHOOL OF ARTS & SCIENCES at the University of Pennsylvania. Good luck on your journey!