The General Studies Program is specifically designed for community college graduates who want to further their education and pursue another degree while maximizing the transfer of previous coursework.

As of March 2017, we are not enrolling students into this program. Please check back later in the year.

The program leads to the Bachelor of General Studies (BGS) degree. To be eligible to pursue General Studies students must have previously earned an Associate degree. General Studies is designed for students who desire a flexible, individualized course of study, and wish to tailor their coursework to career goals and workplace requirements. Students create their own curriculum path, choosing three individual areas of focus, or minors, instead of a traditional major.  Students may further customize their degree by enrolling in internships or cooperative education. BGS students also have the option of completing one of six professional specializations: Applied Data Analysis; Consumer Behavior; Health Administration; Human Resources; Human Services; or Organizational Writing. A professional specialization is not required however it is a way to give your degree more of a career focus.

Degree Requirements & Program Goals

  • General Education Requirements: are a minimum of 24 hours

    12-15 upper-division (300 or above) credit hours in each of three areas of focus with a GPA of at least 2.00 in each area of focus

    A minimum of 48 upper-division credit hours, 30 of which must be from the College of Arts, Sciences, and Letters

    A minimum of 120 total credit hours (including transfer credit) with a cumulative GPA of at least 2.00

    1. Be able to think critically across disciplinary lines and demonstrate a creative breadth of knowledge drawn from diverse perspectives.
    2. Be able to demonstrate fundamental knowledge of each chosen focus area.
    3. Be able to take responsibility for life-long educational and career planning which integrates varied approaches in education and a multidisciplinary curriculum.
    4. Be able to compare and contrast related concepts.

Professional Specializations and Areas of Focus

General Studies students must select three areas of focus. You may choose one of the professional specializations, each of which consists of three pre-selected areas of focus, or you may choose from three groups of focus areas:

    • Human Resources (Management, Psychology, Communications)
    • Consumer Behavior (Management, Communications, and Psychology or Economics or Sociology)
    • Human Services (Psychology, Sociology, and Anthropology or Communications or Health Policy Studies or Political Science or Women’s and Gender Studies)
    • Applied Data Analysis (Applied Statistics, Management, and any other CASL area of focus)
    • Organizational Writing (Communications, English, Management)
    • Health Administration (Health Policy Studies, Management, and Communications or Psychology)
  • (12 hours at the 300-400 level required in each area chosen. You may choose one, two, or all three areas of focus from Group I.)

    Anthropology, Applied Statistics, Art History, Biochemistry, Biological Sciences, Chemistry, Comparative Literature, Computer and Computational Math, Economics, English, Environmental Science, French Studies, Geology, German, Hispanic Studies, History, Humanities, Linguistics, Mathematics, Microbiology, Music, Philosophy, Physics, Political Science, Psychology*, Sociology

    * courses available online

  • (15 hours required in each area chosen. You may choose one, two, or all three areas of focus from Group II.)

    African and African American Studies, Communications, Criminal Justice Studies, Earth Science, Environmental Studies, Film Studies, Health Policy Studies, Law and Society, Leadership & Communication in Organizations, Medieval and Renaissance Studies, Organizational Change in a Global Environment*, Religious Studies, Science and Technology Studies*, Social Science Research Methodology, Society and Technological Change*, Urban and Regional Studies, Women’s and Gender Studies

    * courses available online

  • (You may choose only one area of focus from Group III.)

    Management (12 hours at the 300-400 level)

    Computer and Information Science (12 hours at the 100-200 level + 12 hours at the 300-400 level)

    * courses available online

Internship, Co-op, and Research Opportunities

General Studies student are able to participate in CASL internships and cooperative education. BGS students have found wide-ranging opportunities, including employment in human resources, marketing, underwriting, legal investigation, project management, and information systems. Our students recognize that BGS and experiential education go hand-in-hand, as do the BGS degree and positive career prospects.

I found that my BGS degree was very marketable in Co-op and in my search for a permanent job. With BGS, you have more flexibility since you have three different areas of study. Employers are very enthusiastic about the degree. It gave me more insight than I would have had if I only had one area of study.

Research Opportunities

General Studies students may pursue opportunities for conducting independent research under the direction of a faculty member in any of their areas of focus.

Student Services & Facilities

Specialized services and facilities available to General Studies students will depend on their chosen areas of focus. General Studies students are especially encouraged to consult regularly with their academic advisor in CASL Records and Advising to make sure they are planning their program efficiently and effectively.


  • Are online courses at UM-D as good as courses taught on campus?

    Our online courses are the same quality courses taught by the same faculty who teach our on-campus courses.


  • Can I complete a degree completely online? 

    No, but you can complete a fair amount of upper level course work online, if you select the following three areas of focus within your BGS degree: Psychology, Organizational Change in a Global Environment, and Society and Technological Change.   Keep in mind, some online classes require testing on campus.


  • Can I take online classes from UM-Flint for my UM-Dearborn degree?

    Yes, UM-Dearborn and UM-Flint have an agreement in place, allowing your enrollment at both campuses in one semester.  Online classes fill quickly so it is important to register early.  Taking a class at UM-Flint requires you to complete both a Michigan Undergraduate Guest Application Form and a Request to Elect Off-Campus Form ( which must be approved by the CASL Advising and Records Office before you register for classes.  If you are on Financial Aid please check with that office too.