Jun 21, 2024  
2016-2017 Undergraduate Catalog 
2016-2017 Undergraduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

University Studies

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Minimum number of credits required to graduate: 120 (30 credits are required for the major)

Minimum Grade requirements for courses to count toward major: C or better

GPA requirements to graduate: 2.0

Required Course(s) for fulfilling Capstone Experience: UST 499

Contact Information: Barbara Howard, Director, 122 Chadbourne Hall, (207)581-3143; howard@maine.edu

The Bachelor of University Studies (B.U.S.) is UMaine’s degree completion program for busy adults. Many adults who have some higher-education experience but no bachelor’s degree find that life circumstances or interests make a traditional major and/or on-campus study difficult. Often family, job, and other responsibilities do not allow for full-time study. For these students, the B.U.S. program provides an excellent opportunity to develop a program of study that encompasses their interests and makes maximum use of their existing transfer credits. The program is also available in a part-time, online format to accommodate the needs of working adults.

The B.U.S. curriculum can be totally self-designed, or students may select one of four existing tracks (24 credit hours). The B.U.S. program offers the following track options:

  • Self-Designed Track
  • Labor Studies Track
  • Leadership Studies Track
  • Maine Studies Track
  • Peace and Reconciliation Studies Track.

With its multiple track options, the B.U.S. program provides an opportunity both for students who would benefit from an individually-designed interdisciplinary program of study, as well as for students who would prefer a more prescribed curriculum.

Admission to the B.U.S. program is offered to adults with at least 18 college credits from regionally accredited institutions with a grade point average of C or better who wish to develop a flexible and accessible degree program to advance their goals.  Potential candidates are encouraged to discuss with the program director how their educational background may be evaluated through transfer evaluation and the Prior Learning Assessment policy of the University.  After they confirm their admission to the degree program, students with relevant prior learning experience will be connected with appropriate evaluators, and discuss the possibility of converting such experience to college credit.

In their first semester, B.U.S. students take a required (on-line) one credit course-UST 100: Introduction to University Studies-in which they have a chance to explore their goals, refresh their knowledge about essential resources and college success skills, explore the UM curriculum, and draft a proposed plan of study, either self-designed using existing UMaine courses of with one of the existing tracks listed above.

Students work with an advisor to articulate their goals  leading to specific educational outcomes that will work well with their current life circumstances.  Maintenance of a 2.0 GPA is required to remain in good standing as a degree candidate.  Students suspended from degree candidacy for failing to complete an approved plan (Self-Designed Track students) or falling below the required grade point average may be reinstated to degree candidacy after one semester upon approval of a plan and improved academic standing, as long as they meet all other requirements.

For an appointment or for further information, call (207) 581-3143 or visit the web page.

BUS Residency Policy

Matriculated students in the Bachelor of University Studies may meet their residency requirement in one of two ways:

  1. earn a minimum of 30 credits originating from the University of Maine at the 300 level or higher over any year of study.
  2. complete 30 of their final 45 credits from the University of Maine.

Appropriate UMaine Domestic Study Away paperwork must be completed for all coursework taken outside of the University of Maine to ensure academic and financial approval.

Required courses:

Optional General Education Core Sequence (recommended):

CLAS Pathway

Bachelor of University Studies, CLAS Pathway information regarding this pathway is located under the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences

Self-Designed Track

The Bachelor of University Studies Self-Designed Track provides an opportunity for students to benefit from a custom tailored, interdisciplinary program of study. Many students with interests in an interdisciplinary approach to professional, personal, or civic goals are looking for a focus that encourages them to develop a program of study that encompasses their interests. B.U.S. students in the individualized track have the option to pursue an academic minor in a variety of academic subjects.

Self-Designed Tracks must be approved by an interdisciplinary faculty committee. Approval of the plan within two semesters of admission and maintenance of a 2.0 GPA is required to remain in good standing as a degree candidate.

Labor Studies Track (24 credits)*

The Labor Studies Track (24 credit hours) is structured to be taught online with a focus on creating dialog with students about the theories, ideologies, and beliefs that support, and are interwoven within the framework of, the labor movement and the practical skills involved in running labor organizations and representing employees. Students develop an understanding of these foundational pieces and build upon them using an interdisciplinary approach.

Faculty Coordinator: Marc Cryer

Electives (15 credits - select 5 courses from the list below)

Leadership Studies Track (24 credits)*

The interdisciplinary Leadership Studies Track consists of 24 credit hours and provides students with in-depth knowledge of leadership theory, ethics, skills, and context-based issues, as well as practical, experiential training applicable to nearly any area of study or social setting. The track prepares students for diverse, real-life experiences as citizen leaders in local, state, national, and global communities.

Faculty Coordinator: Richard Powell

Leadership in Communities/Groups/Orgs Elective (9 credits)

Select three courses from the following list:

Maine Studies Track (24 credits)*

The Maine Studies Track (24 credit hours) offers students the opportunity to pursue the study of Maine through courses in history, literature, women’s studies, and Native-American studies. The program recognizes the value of interdisciplinary and multidisciplinary approaches to understanding historical and contemporary issues such as developing Maine’s economy, protecting its environment, and appreciating the cultures of the state’s diverse population.

Required Courses (9 credits):


15 credits- select 5 courses from the list below:

Peace and Reconciliation Studies Track (24 credits)*

The Peace and Reconciliation Studies Track (24 credit hours) focuses on education for peace, justice, human rights, nonviolence, tolerance, global understanding, interdependence and mutuality, and environmental responsibility. Peace Studies’ mission is to guide students to an understanding of the underlying spiritual processes involved in the creation of the individual who is a peacemaker and in the creation of a culture of peace. In every age, there have been efforts for the creation of a sustainable peace, including the development of ethics, great literature and art, and the appearance of great figures that have led us forward to this point in human development.

Faculty Coordinator: Barbara Blazej

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