The BLS Office has Moved out of Lee Hall, visit our New Location Combs Hall 108

Effective August 9th, 2017

The Bachelor of Liberal Studies Degree

The Bachelor of Liberal Studies (BLS) degree is designed for adults who want to major in a traditional arts and science discipline; but unlike a traditional baccalaureate degree, the BLS degree offers greater flexibility in the timetable leading to graduation because it does not require full-time study, extended residence at the University, or a foreign language (unless one majors in a foreign language, or International Relations). Regardless of the major you select, as a BLS student you will receive a broad, well-rounded education, including subjects in the arts, natural sciences, humanities, and social sciences. BLS students do not differ in any way from other students on campus, aside from the vast life experiences that they bring to the student body.

Qualifications for the BLS Degree

To qualify for the BLS degree, you must meet at least one of the following criteria, and the minimum GPA requirements:

  • 24 years of age or older, OR have graduated from high school six or more years ago
  • be a veteran or active-duty member of the U.S. armed services
  • be married
  • have legal dependents other than a spouse

BA/BS students wishing to transfer programs within their first year of attendance, are only eligible for the BLS degree if they meet the above criteria AND the following criteria as well:

  • must have been eligible for BLS degree program at time of initial application to UMW
  • have completed fewer than 30 credits at UMW
  • have a GPA of 2.5

Transfer Credits

The BLS degree is flexible in the acceptance of credits for prior college-level learning, and can use transfer courses to satisfy general education requirements. A maximum of 90 semester hours of transfer credit may be used to fulfill the requirements for the BLS degree. This includes not only traditional college courses, but also credit-by-exam, CLEP, military (ACE) credits (up to 30), and experiential learning documented in a life/work portfolio (up to 30 credits).

Majors and Minors

BLS students may choose to major in any of the more than 35 majors available in the College of Arts and Sciences. The Leadership and Management major  has been designed specifically for BLS students, and all major classes are offered in the evenings at our Stafford Campus. Additionally, the BLS program is pleased to offer exclusive majors in Cybersecurity and Criminal Justice.

The UMW curriculum also provides the flexibility of creating your own major. Special majors allow a student to design a major, with a assistance of a faculty mentor, that meets their own specific interests and/or career goals.

Students who wish to select a complimentary minor from any of the available choices are free to do so. Most minors do not require Department Chair approval, and can be added at any time during the academic year.