The Bachelor of Interdisciplinary Studies degree (B.I.S.) provides a flexible, individualized program of study for the self-directed adult learner. The area of study is developed by each student with advisement by faculty.
Oversight of the B.I.S. degree is the responsibility of the Interdisciplinary Studies committee, composed of faculty Arts and Sciences (Humanities, Social Sciences, and Natural Sciences), Business, Education, Engineering, Fine Arts and Communication, and Nursing. The Interdisciplinary Studies Committee will be convened and supported by the Office of the Provost.
Admission Requirements for the B.I.S. Program
Candidates for the B.I.S. degree must complete an application for admission to the program. Applications must be approved by the Interdisciplinary Studies Committee. The appropriate College to grant the student’s degree will be determined by the Interdisciplinary Studies Committee.
- Students must have well-designed, coherent programs of study that are structured to meet the student’s unique educational goals, and should not be readily available under any other UMSL degree program.
- Students must have demonstrated the equivalent of academic proficiency required for any other undergraduate degree at UMSL.
Degree Requirements for the B.I.S. ProgramGeneral Education Requirements
Students must complete the university’s general education requirements. For details refer to the general education requirements section of this Bulletin.
Area of Study
In consultation with faculty and staff advisers, students will carry out an area of study of at least 36 advanced semester hours of graded credit that meets their educational goals. Graded credit consists of degree credit courses in which the student received a letter grade of A, A-, B+, B, B-, C+, C, C-, D+, D, D-.
Regardless of the focus, theme, or purpose, the area of study should contribute to an advanced level of academic competence and achievement.
The program must be approved by the faculty adviser, and Interdisciplinary Studies Committee. Students and advisers will periodically review the program and make appropriate modifications when necessary.
Hour and Grade Requirements
The degree requires completion of 120 semester hours with a 2.0 campus grade point average overall and in the area of study. No more than 30 hours must be taken in one department. At least 45 hours must be earned in courses beyond the introductory level. A minimum of 24 hours of graded credit must be completed in residence at UMSL, of which 18 hours must be in the area of study and completed after admission to the B.I.S. program. No more than 18 hours may be taken on a satisfactory/unsatisfactory basis. Each candidate must be in residence for 24 of the last 30 hours of graded credit (exclusive of courses taken on a satisfactory/unsatisfactory basis).
Supervised Professional or Service Internship and Independent Research
Credit not exceeding 6 hours may be earned for department-approved professional internship, service internship, or independent research. The projects or activities must be formulated by the student and carried out under the supervision of a faculty member with the approval of the adviser. Students must submit a written report approved by the supervisor upon completion of the projects or activities.