Interdisciplinary Studies, Liberal Arts (BAS)

Degree: Bachelor of Applied Science
Major: Interdisciplinary Studies
Program Code: 3050

About This Major . . .

The Bachelor of Applied Science in Interdisciplinary Studies builds upon a technical specialty to hone the critical thinking, communication, and problem-solving skills necessary to move into leadership positions in any industry. By completing the full Essential Learning curriculum, including the Essential Learning Capstone, students will gain exposure to multiple disciplines and ways of approaching problems. Students will work with an advisor to identify upper-division courses that will best meet their interests and career goals.  The BAS in Interdisciplinary Studies is a path for two-year technical degree graduates to earn a 4-year degree in approximately four additional full-time semesters, depending upon prior coursework. Upon completion of the program, students will be technically and academically prepared for leadership positions in their chosen field.

Important information about this degree:

  • Formal admission to a BAS program requires completion of the appropriate AAS degree from an accredited institution.
  • In order to pursue the BAS: Interdisciplinary Studies, a student must first provide to the Office of Academic Affairs a signed letter from a faculty member in her or his chosen focus area indicating a course sequencing for the focus area as well as a broad description of the student’s summative project. Upon approval by an Assistant Vice-President for Academic Affairs, the student will be declared a BAS: Interdisciplinary Studies major, and the faculty recommender will be assigned as academic advisor. Changes to the course sequencing provided in the letter will require approval by the academic advisor.

For more information on what you can do with this major, visit Career Services’ What to Do with a Major? resource. 

All CMU baccalaureate graduates are expected to demonstrate proficiency in specialized knowledge/applied learning, quantitative fluency, communication fluency, critical thinking, personal and social responsibility, and information literacy. In addition to these campus-wide student learning outcomes, graduates of this major will be able to:

  1. Construct a summative project, paper or practiced-based performance that draws on current research, scholarship and/or techniques, and specialized knowledge in a discipline (communication; specialized knowledge/applied learning).
  2. Integrate knowledge between their applied field and one other discipline (critical thinking).
  3. Describe reasoned conclusions that articulate the implications and consequences for a particular decision by synthesizing information and methodologies (critical thinking).

Each section below contains details about the requirements for this program. Select a header to expand the information/requirements for that particular section of the program's requirements. 

To print or save an overview of this program's information, including the program description, learning outcomes, requirements, suggested course sequencing (if applicable), and advising and graduation information, scroll to the bottom of the left-hand navigation menu and select "Print Options." This will give you the options to either "Send Page to Printer" or "Download PDF of This Page." The "Download PDF of This Page" option prepares a much more concise presentation of all program information. The PDF is also printable and may be preferable due to its brevity. 

Institutional Degree Requirements

The following institutional degree requirements apply to all CMU Bachelor of Applied Science (BAS) degrees. Specific programs may have different requirements that must be met in addition to institutional requirements.

  • 120 semester hours minimum.
  • Students must complete a minimum of 30 of the last 60 hours of credit at CMU, with at least 15 semester hours in major discipline courses numbered 300 or higher.
  • 33 upper-division credits.
  • 2.00 cumulative GPA or higher in all CMU coursework.
  • A course may only be used to fulfill one requirement for each degree/certificate.
  • No more than six semester hours of independent study courses can be used toward the degree.
  • Non-traditional credit, such as advanced placement, credit by examination, credit for prior learning, cooperative education and internships, cannot exceed 30 semester credit hours for a baccalaureate degree. A maximum of 15 of the 30 credits may be for cooperative education, internships, and practica.
  • Pre-collegiate courses (usually numbered below 100) cannot be used for graduation.
  • Capstone exit assessment/projects (e.g., Major Field Achievement Test) requirements are identified under Program-Specific Degree Requirements. The Catalog Year determines which program sheet and degree requirements a student must fulfill in order to graduate. Visit with your advisor or academic department to determine which catalog year and program requirements you should follow.
  • See “Requirements for Undergraduate Degrees and Certificates” in the catalog for a complete list of graduation requirements.

Essential Learning Requirements

(31 semester hours)

See the current catalog for a list of courses that fulfill the requirements below. If a course is an Essential Learning option and a requirement for your major, you must use it to fulfill the major requirement and make a different selection for the Essential Learning requirement.

English 1
ENGL 111English Composition I-GTCO13
ENGL 112English Composition II-GTCO23
Mathematics 1
MATH 110Mathematical Investigations-GTMA13
Select one History course3
Select one Humanities course3
Social and Behavioral Sciences
Select one Social and Behavioral Sciences course3
Select one Social and Behavioral Sciences course3
Fine Arts
Select one Fine Arts course3
Natural Sciences 2
Select one Natural Sciences course3
Select one Natural Sciences course with a lab4
Total Semester Credit Hours31

Must receive a grade of “C” or better and must be completed by the time the student has 60 semester hours.


One course must include a lab.

Other Lower Division Requirements

Wellness Requirement
KINE 100Health and Wellness1
Select one Activity course1
Essential Learning Capstone 1
ESSL 290Maverick Milestone3
ESSL 200Essential Speech1
Total Semester Credit Hours6

Essential Learning Capstone must be taken after completion of the Essential Learning English and Mathematics requirements, and when a student has earned between 45 and 75 hours.

Program Specific Degree Requirements

(69 semester hours)

Associate of Applied Science Technical Coursework

To be admitted to the BAS, a student must have earned an Associate of Applied Science (AAS) degree. Thirty-six (36) hours from the technical coursework of that AAS degree transfer into the BAS as a block of courses.

Credits from prior qualifying AAS36


Focus Area
Select 12 upper-division credits from one field of study 112
Summative Experience
An upper-division internship, practicum, independent study or coursework that connects the focus area with the technical coursework 13
Upper Division Electives
Select 18 credits of upper division electives18
Total Semester Credit Hours33

As approved by a faculty advisor.

General Electives

All college level courses appearing on your final transcript, not listed above that will bring your total semester hours to 120 hours. 14 semester hours.

Select electives14
Total Semester Credit Hours14

Advising Process and DegreeWorks

Documentation on the pages related to this program is intended for informational purposes to help determine what courses and associated requirements are needed to earn a degree. Some courses are critical to complete in specific semesters while others may be moved around. Meeting with an academic advisor is essential in planning courses and developing a suggested course sequencing. It is ultimately the student’s responsibility to understand and fulfill the requirements for her/his intended degree(s).

DegreeWorks is an online degree audit tool available in MAVzone. It is the official record used by the Registrar’s Office to evaluate progress towards a degree and determine eligibility for graduation. Students are responsible for reviewing their DegreeWorks audits on a regular basis and should discuss questions or concerns with their advisors or academic department heads. Discrepancies in requirements should be reported to the Registrar’s Office.

Graduation Process

Students must complete the following in the first two months of the semester prior to completing their degree requirements:

  • Review their DegreeWorks audit and create a plan that outlines how unmet requirements will be met in the final semester.
  • Meet with their advisor and modify their plan as needed. The advisor must approve the final plan.
  • Submit the “Intent to Graduate” form to the Registrar’s Office to officially declare the intended graduation date and commencement ceremony plans.
  • Register for all needed courses and complete all requirements for each degree sought.

Submission deadlines and commencement details can be found at

If a student’s petition for graduation is denied, it will be her/his responsibility to consult the Registrar’s Office regarding next steps.