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.
Qualifications for the BLS Degree
To qualify for the BLS degree, you must have at least one of the following characteristics, and meet minimum GPA requirements:
- 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
- be financially self-supporting
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 one 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.