Twin Cities campus
 
Twin Cities Campus

Mortuary Science B.S.

Medical School - Adm
Medical School
  • Program Type: Baccalaureate
  • Requirements for this program are current for Spring 2023
  • Required credits to graduate with this degree: 120
  • Required credits within the major: 71
  • This program requires summer terms.
  • N/A
  • Degree: Bachelor of Science
The program of mortuary science at the University of Minnesota, established in 1908, was the first program of its kind to be organized at a state university. For detailed information, please visit the program's website (www.med.umn.edu/mortuaryscience), or contact the program office via email mortsci@umn.edu or phone 612-624-6464. ACCREDITATION: The Mortuary Science degree program at the University of Minnesota is accredited by the American Board of Funeral Service Education (ABFSE), 992 Mantua Pike, Suite 108, Woodbury Heights, New Jersey 08097 (816) 233-3747. Web: www.abfse.org. National Board Examination pass rates, graduation rates, and employment rates for this and other ABFSE-accredited programs are available at www.abfse.org in the Directory of Accredited Programs. OUR MISSION: Funeral directors are health care professionals who serve others during a time of loss, pain, and grief. The Program of Mortuary Science's mission is to skillfully combine the study of behavioral, physical, and applied sciences for the goal of preparing graduates for careers as knowledgeable, skilled, and innovative funeral service professionals. Program graduates will be prepared to serve bereaved members of their communities in a manner that is proficient, dignified, and caring. PROGRAM LEARNING OUTCOMES: The central objective of an ABFSE-accredited program must be to educate students in every phase of funeral service so that program graduates are prepared for entry-level employment in funeral service. Upon completion of an accredited program, students will be able to: -Explain the importance of funeral service professionals in developing relationships with the families and communities they serve. -Identify standards of ethical conduct in funeral service practice. -Interpret how federal, state, and local laws apply to funeral service in order to ensure compliance. -Apply principles of public health and safety in the handling and preparation of human remains. -Demonstrate technical skills in embalming and restorative art that are necessary for the preparation and handling of human remains. -Demonstrate skills required for conducting arrangement conferences, visitations, services, and ceremonies. -Describe the requirements and procedures for burial, cremation, and other accepted forms of final disposition of human remains. -Describe methods to address the grief-related needs of the bereaved. -Explain management skills associated with operating a funeral establishment. -Demonstrate verbal and written communication skills and research skills needed for funeral service practice. STATE-SPECIFIC ACADEMIC REQUIREMENTS FOR LICENSURE: Educational requirements for licensure vary across states. Before pursuing a funeral service education program, you are advised to contact the regulatory board(s) in the state(s) where you wish to become licensed for specific information about academic requirements for licensure. For more information see: https://theconferenceonline.org/licensing-requirements/ and also https://med.umn.edu/mortuaryscience/education-training/state-specific-academic-requirements-for-licensure
Program Delivery
This program is available:
  • via classroom (the majority of instruction is face-to-face)
Admission Requirements
Students must complete 26 credits before admission to the program.
Freshmen are usually admitted to pre-major status before admission to this major.
Applicants must provide the program with two letters of recommendation and a professional statement as part of the application process. Criteria for the letters of recommendation and professional statement are found on the program's Web site: www.med.umn.edu/mortuaryscience. Upon admission, students are required to submit proof of certain immunizations, vaccinations, and health insurance per Academic Health Sciences policy, https://healthsciedu.umn.edu/policies.
For information about University of Minnesota admission requirements, visit the Office of Admissions website.
Required prerequisites
Prerequisite Courses
The following courses, or equivalent courses as approved by the program, are prerequisites for program courses. Equivalent course substitutions may be approved by the program. Contact the program office for more information mortsci@umn.edu or 612-624-6464.
PSY 1001 - Introduction to Psychology [SOCS] (4.0 cr)
SOC 1001 - Introduction to Sociology [SOCS, DSJ] (4.0 cr)
COMM 3402 - Introduction to Interpersonal Communication (3.0 cr)
or COMM 3401 - Introduction to Communication Theory (3.0 cr)
or COMM 3411 - Introduction to Small Group Communication (3.0 cr)
or COMM 3441 - Introduction to Organizational Communication (3.0 cr)
or COMM 1101 - Introduction to Public Speaking [CIV] (3.0 cr)
General Requirements
All students in baccalaureate degree programs are required to complete general University and college requirements including writing and liberal education courses. For more information about University-wide requirements, see the liberal education requirements. Required courses for the major, minor or certificate in which a student receives a D grade (with or without plus or minus) do not count toward the major, minor or certificate (including transfer courses).
Program Requirements
Prior to being cleared for graduation, all students are required to take the National Board Examination (NBE) prepared by the International Conference of Funeral Service Examining Boards (i.e., “The Conference”). Students must take the NBE within 30 days of completing their degree requirements for a major in Mortuary Science, as part of required course MORT 3384. Students who do not take the NBE within 30 days of completing their degree requirements (including MORT 3384) will be required to retake MORT 3384 before they will be cleared by the Program to sit for the NBE. At least 28 upper division credits in the major must be taken at the University of Minnesota Twin Cities campus.
Public Health and Technical Courses
PHAR 1002 - Medical Terminology (2.0 cr)
MORT 2171 - Introductory Anatomy (3.0 cr)
MORT 3048 - Microbiology and Pathology for Funeral Service (4.0 cr)
MORT 3051 - Restorative Art (3.0 cr)
MORT 3061 - Embalming Theory (3.0 cr)
MORT 3065 - Embalming Chemistry (2.0 cr)
MORT 3151 - Restorative Art Laboratory (1.0 cr)
MORT 3161 - Embalming Laboratory (1.0 cr)
MORT 3171 - Human Anatomy Laboratory (2.0 cr)
Business Management and Professional Courses
MORT 3009 - Introductory Accounting (3.0 cr)
MORT 3012W - Organization and Management of Funeral Business [WI] (3.0 cr)
MORT 3016 - Funeral Service Marketing and Merchandising (3.0 cr)
MORT 3018 - Funeral Service Practice I (3.0 cr)
MORT 3019 - Funeral Service Practice II (3.0 cr)
MORT 3022W - Funeral Service Arrangements Laboratory [WI] (4.0 cr)
Social Science/Humanities Courses
MORT 3021W - Funeral Service Psychology and Arrangements Theory [WI] (3.0 cr)
MORT 3371 - Funeral Service Rites, Customs, and Ceremonies (3.0 cr)
Legal, Ethical, Regulatory Courses
MORT 3014 - Funeral Service Rules and Regulations (2.0 cr)
MORT 3025 - Business Law (3.0 cr)
MORT 3031 - Funeral Service Law (2.0 cr)
General Education
Determined in consultation with the Program’s Academic Advisor, in support of students’ personal learning goals and in accordance with the University’s Liberal Education requirements.
Upper Division Writing Intensive within the Major
Students are required to take one upper division writing intensive course within the major. If that requirement has not been satisfied within the core major requirements, students must choose one course from the following list. Some of these courses may also fulfill other major requirements.
Take 0 - 1 course(s) from the following:
· MORT 3012W - Organization and Management of Funeral Business [WI] (3.0 cr)
· MORT 3021W - Funeral Service Psychology and Arrangements Theory [WI] (3.0 cr)
· MORT 3022W - Funeral Service Arrangements Laboratory [WI] (4.0 cr)
Clinical Capstone and Certification Examination Requirements
Students are required to complete two clinical rotations totaling a minimum of 6 credits and no more than 12 credits. One rotation must be completed during May session*. The other rotation may be completed during a fall, spring, or summer term. Additionally, students are required to complete MORT 3384 during their final 15-week term. *Students enrolled in certain advanced standing degree completion cohorts shall complete their required three-week daily rotation at the start of spring term.
MORT 3379 - Clinical Funeral Service Rotation (1.0-6.0 cr)
MORT 3384 - Mortuary Science Practice in the US: An Integrative Capstone Course For Professional Practice (1.0 cr)
 
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PSY 1001 - Introduction to Psychology (SOCS)
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Course Equivalencies: PSTL 1281/Psy 1001/Psy 1001H
Typically offered: Every Fall, Spring & Summer
Scientific study of human behavior. Problems, methods, findings of modern psychology.
SOC 1001 - Introduction to Sociology (SOCS, DSJ)
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Course Equivalencies: Soc 1001/Soc 1011V/Soc 1012W
Typically offered: Every Fall, Spring & Summer
This course is designed to introduce you to the study of society and what sociologists call the "sociological imagination:" a way of viewing the events, relationships and social phenomena that shape our individual lives and much of our collective experience. Through the course we will examine some of the central concepts and problems that have preoccupied both classical and contemporary sociologists and gain a sense of how the sociological imagination can illuminate the social forces that have a concrete impact on our everyday lives. Throughout the course you will be asked to consider the ways in which society affects your life, and how you, in turn, affect society. prereq: Soc Majors/Minors must register A-F
COMM 3402 - Introduction to Interpersonal Communication
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Typically offered: Every Fall, Spring & Summer
Nature and function of communication between individuals in formal and informal relationships. Communicative interactions from theoretical and practical viewpoints.
COMM 3401 - Introduction to Communication Theory
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Typically offered: Every Fall, Spring & Summer
Social scientific theory in human communication. Logic of scientific communication theories in interpersonal, small group, organizational, intercultural, and mediated communication.
COMM 3411 - Introduction to Small Group Communication
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Typically offered: Every Fall, Spring & Summer
Cooperative thinking in task-oriented groups. Planning, preparing for, and participating in small groups in private and public contexts.
COMM 3441 - Introduction to Organizational Communication
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Typically offered: Every Fall, Spring & Summer
Functions of communication in work groups, in organizational hierarchies, and between organizations.
COMM 1101 - Introduction to Public Speaking (CIV)
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Course Equivalencies: Comm 1101/Comm 1101H/PSTL 1461
Typically offered: Every Fall, Spring & Summer
Public communication processes, elements, and ethics. Criticism of and response to public discourse. Practice in individual speaking designed to encourage civic participation.
PHAR 1002 - Medical Terminology
Credits: 2.0 [max 2.0]
Course Equivalencies: Phar 1002/Phar 5201
Typically offered: Every Fall, Spring & Summer
Interested in learning the difference between an antigen and an antibiotic? During this course, you will not only increase your medical vocabulary by more than 2500 words at your own pace, you will also learn to identify and articulately describe a wide variety of medical conditions and processes. Communication related to disease states, procedures, and diagnostics in health care can sometimes seem like another language. This course will help you recognize medical abbreviations, relate terms to procedures and diagnostics, and comprehend the meaning of medical terminology by using word elements. If you are interested in the health care field or would like to understand more about your own medical care, this course is a great place to start.
MORT 2171 - Introductory Anatomy
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: A-F only
Typically offered: Every Fall, Spring & Summer
Study of the human body systems and functions in a systemic approach with an emphasis placed on providing a foundation for funeral service preparation in the areas of embalming and restorative art. Systems covered include integumentary, skeletal, muscular, nervous, endocrine, cardiovascular, lymphatic, respiratory, digestive, urinary, and reproductive. Pre- / co-requisite: Medical Terminology
MORT 3048 - Microbiology and Pathology for Funeral Service
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Grading Basis: A-F only
Typically offered: Every Fall, Spring & Summer
Basic principles of microbiology/pathology for funeral service, including bacteriology, rickettsiology, virology, protozoology, mycology, methods of transmission of infectious disease. Control procedures for protection of public health as related to funeral practice. Scientific focus on causes of disease, mechanisms of disease development, pathways by which morphologic changes occur.
MORT 3051 - Restorative Art
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: A-F only
Typically offered: Every Fall & Spring
In Restorative Art 3051, we will consider the importance of, and techniques for, creating an acceptable physical appearance upon deceased persons for the benefit of the survivors. Over the semester, we will study a variety of topics for the purpose of building skills in the area of restorative art, including anatomical terminology; skeletal structures of the face and cranium; musculature of the face and neck; photographic interpretations; classical proportions of the face and cranium; physiognomy of the face and cranium; essential components of the nose, mouth, eyes, and ears; various modeling techniques; proper placement guides for the restoration of damaged structures and/or missing features; treatments and techniques for both general and specific injuries; color theory, and cosmetology related to the funeral profession. Pre / Co-requisite: MORT 3061 Embalming Theory Prerequisites: MORT 2171 Introductory Human Anatomy; MORT 3171 Human Anatomy Laboratory
MORT 3061 - Embalming Theory
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: A-F only
Typically offered: Every Fall & Spring
This is an introductory course which covers the phenomenon of death of the human body, and the fundamental procedures associated with the practice of the art and science of embalming. Embalming is the process of chemically treating the dead human body in order to: (1) reduce the presence and growth of microorganisms; (2) retard organic decomposition; and (3) restore an acceptable physical appearance to the decedent.1 The semester begins with such topics as personal and public health considerations, and government regulations that are applicable to the embalming process and the fundamentals of embalming. Next are the topics of terminology and identification of embalming instruments, the importance of embalming analysis, and the completion of embalming reports. We advance to vessel location and selection, and procedures for preparing the body before the embalming process begins. We move on to the subject of embalming chemicals, with our lectures and discussions focusing on the reasons why we use various quantities and types of chemicals for each individual case. The course continues with presentations focusing on treatments for embalming difficult cases, including discussion of traumatic and pathological conditions, infections, communicable diseases, autopsied bodies, organ and tissue donors, and other various conditions. Prerequisites: MORT 2171 Introductory Human Anatomy; MORT 3171 Human Anatomy Laboratory
MORT 3065 - Embalming Chemistry
Credits: 2.0 [max 2.0]
Grading Basis: A-F only
Typically offered: Every Fall, Spring & Summer
Fundamentals of inorganic/organic chemistry and biochemistry. Chemical changes in human body during life, after death, and during chemical preservation. Disinfection, toxicology, embalming fluids.
MORT 3151 - Restorative Art Laboratory
Credits: 1.0 [max 2.0]
Grading Basis: A-F only
Typically offered: Every Fall & Spring
Principles/techniques for restorative art. Modeling facial features with clay or wax. Use of restorative techniques. Cosmetic application on human remains. Mortuary Science Major Pre / Co-requisites: MORT 3051 Restorative Art
MORT 3161 - Embalming Laboratory
Credits: 1.0 [max 2.0]
Grading Basis: A-F only
Typically offered: Every Fall & Spring
Practices/procedures of chemically preserving/restoring human remains. Mortuary Science Major Pre / Co-requisites: MORT 3061 Embalming Lecture
MORT 3171 - Human Anatomy Laboratory
Credits: 2.0 [max 2.0]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Fall & Spring
Study of gross human anatomy using cadavers. Anatomical structures, post-mortem examination, embalming, pathology, restorative art, forensic science. Prerequisites: MORT 2171; PHAR 1002: Medical Terminology
MORT 3009 - Introductory Accounting
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: A-F only
Typically offered: Periodic Fall, Spring & Summer
This course is an introduction to the basic principles of financial and cost accounting with an emphasis on small business and funeral home operations. Accounting provides financial information about a business to owners, creditors, managers, and other interested parties that need to make various business decisions. This course covers the preparation and analysis of financial statements, accounting for sales and accounts receivable, accounting for purchases and accounts payable, cash flow and working capital management, payroll computations, inventory management, investment in fixed assets, debt and equity capital management, and valuation of business and assets, as well as an introduction to cost accounting concepts including cost behavior, basic budgeting, and cost-revenue analysis.
MORT 3012W - Organization and Management of Funeral Business (WI)
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: A-F only
Typically offered: Every Fall
How to create an entrepreneurial marketing strategy and business plan for a small funeral business. Various forms of ownership. Financial requirements, risk management, human resources management. Theory supplemented with practical information, real-life experiences. Prerequisites: Diversified Core Mathematical Thinking, ACCT 2050: Introduction to Financial Reporting
MORT 3016 - Funeral Service Marketing and Merchandising
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Spring
Introduction to key elements of funeral service merchandising/marketing. How to manage delivery process. Theory supplemented with contemporary product offerings, merchandising techniques.
MORT 3018 - Funeral Service Practice I
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: A-F only
Typically offered: Every Fall
A study of the practice of funeral service, the conduct of funerals in the diverse American society; various survivor benefits including Social Security, Veterans benefits, active military benefits, and others; private and National cemetery familiarization, including eligibility; merchandise familiarization
MORT 3019 - Funeral Service Practice II
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: A-F only
Typically offered: Every Spring
The purpose of this course is to provide students with a multidisciplinary perspective on information, issues and problems associated with, and relating to, the contemporary practice of funeral service. Building upon the foundational theories, definitions and activities presented in complementary mortuary science courses, this class is designed to deepen students' understanding of how funeral service is practiced in a variety of different contexts today from the perspectives of multiple stakeholders.
MORT 3022W - Funeral Service Arrangements Laboratory (WI)
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Grading Basis: A-F only
Typically offered: Every Fall & Spring
This course provides students with practical tools to conduct funeral arrangements with diverse client families. Coursework includes application of MORT 3021W material, group discussion, and laboratory-based application of skills. Each student will conduct a simulated arrangement with a community volunteer based on real-world arrangement scenarios. Delivery and assessment of coursework will be via readings, lectures, in-class role-playing, quizzes, tests, writing-to-learn activities, and reflective writing assignments. Prerequisites: MORT 3021W, MORT 3014
MORT 3021W - Funeral Service Psychology and Arrangements Theory (WI)
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: A-F only
Typically offered: Every Fall & Spring
This course instructs students in grief psychology principles as they relate to funeral service, as well as principles underlying successful funeral arrangements. Coursework includes psychology, counseling, and communication principles, as well as an introduction to helping skills, communication techniques, and other tools to conduct funeral arrangements with diverse client families. Particular emphasis is placed on adapting these tools to a variety of arrangement factors, including disposition type, family dynamics, veteran status, and religious affiliation. Coursework is delivered and assessed via readings, lectures, in-class role-playing, writing-to-learn activities, quizzes, tests, discussions, qualitative research, and reflective writing assignments. Prerequisites: WRIT 1301, PSY 1001, COMM 3401 or COMM 3402
MORT 3371 - Funeral Service Rites, Customs, and Ceremonies
Credits: 3.0 [max 6.0]
Grading Basis: A-F only
Typically offered: Every Fall & Spring
This course explores funeral and death-care customs of select faith, religious, and philosophical traditions, with emphasis on the role of the funeral director in caring for the deceased, in service to survivors. The course curriculum is based on the American Board of Funeral Service Education Student Learning Outcomes for mortuary science students. Mortuary customs to be studied will include Christian, Jewish, Islamic, Buddhist, and Hindu traditions, as well as secular rites and ceremonies.
MORT 3014 - Funeral Service Rules and Regulations
Credits: 2.0 [max 2.0]
Grading Basis: A-F only
Typically offered: Every Fall, Spring & Summer
Licensing/government regulations, compliance with regulations of state/federal regulatory agencies, cemetery and crematory rules and regulations, and Federal Trade Commission Funeral Practice Rule for the funeral industry.
MORT 3025 - Business Law
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: A-F only
Typically offered: Every Fall
Principles of business law relating to funeral service. U.S. judicial system. Contracts. Sales. Bailments (including carriers). Commercial paper. Agency. Employment. Business organization.
MORT 3031 - Funeral Service Law
Credits: 2.0 [max 2.0]
Grading Basis: A-F only
Typically offered: Every Spring
Duty of burial. Right to control funeral arrangements. Final disposition, liability for funeral expenses. Torts involving dead human body and the funeral director. Wills. Estates. Probate. Prerequisites: MORT 3025: Business Law
MORT 3012W - Organization and Management of Funeral Business (WI)
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: A-F only
Typically offered: Every Fall
How to create an entrepreneurial marketing strategy and business plan for a small funeral business. Various forms of ownership. Financial requirements, risk management, human resources management. Theory supplemented with practical information, real-life experiences. Prerequisites: Diversified Core Mathematical Thinking, ACCT 2050: Introduction to Financial Reporting
MORT 3021W - Funeral Service Psychology and Arrangements Theory (WI)
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: A-F only
Typically offered: Every Fall & Spring
This course instructs students in grief psychology principles as they relate to funeral service, as well as principles underlying successful funeral arrangements. Coursework includes psychology, counseling, and communication principles, as well as an introduction to helping skills, communication techniques, and other tools to conduct funeral arrangements with diverse client families. Particular emphasis is placed on adapting these tools to a variety of arrangement factors, including disposition type, family dynamics, veteran status, and religious affiliation. Coursework is delivered and assessed via readings, lectures, in-class role-playing, writing-to-learn activities, quizzes, tests, discussions, qualitative research, and reflective writing assignments. Prerequisites: WRIT 1301, PSY 1001, COMM 3401 or COMM 3402
MORT 3022W - Funeral Service Arrangements Laboratory (WI)
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Grading Basis: A-F only
Typically offered: Every Fall & Spring
This course provides students with practical tools to conduct funeral arrangements with diverse client families. Coursework includes application of MORT 3021W material, group discussion, and laboratory-based application of skills. Each student will conduct a simulated arrangement with a community volunteer based on real-world arrangement scenarios. Delivery and assessment of coursework will be via readings, lectures, in-class role-playing, quizzes, tests, writing-to-learn activities, and reflective writing assignments. Prerequisites: MORT 3021W, MORT 3014
MORT 3379 - Clinical Funeral Service Rotation
Credits: 1.0 -6.0 [max 18.0]
Grading Basis: A-F only
Typically offered: Every Fall, Spring & Summer
Practical experience working in clinical settings related to funeral service. What it means to be a funeral director in contemporary American society. Mortuary Science Major Pre / Co-requisite: 3021W Prerequisites: MORT 3051; 3061; 3151; 3161
MORT 3384 - Mortuary Science Practice in the US: An Integrative Capstone Course For Professional Practice
Credits: 1.0 [max 2.0]
Grading Basis: A-F only
Typically offered: Every Fall, Spring & Summer
The purpose of this course is to synthesize concepts relating to professional practice, culminating in the completion of the National Board Examination of the International Conference of Funeral Examining Boards (ICFSEB). The course will consider the application of mortuary science-related concepts to professional practice practice, and will include activities that integrate funeral service knowledge with problems as presented by the National Funeral Service Task Analysis of the ICFSEB. In the course we will explore issues related to licensure, continuing professional education and development, and the application of mortuary science principles to professional practice. The course will integrate key theories relating to the practice of mortuary science for the goal of ensuring competency in professional practice upon graduation. Note: This course will be taken during the student's last semester of enrollment in the program.