General Studies

About the BGS Degree

A broader, multidisciplinary course of study rather than a traditional major/minor, the General Studies degree prepares students to think critically and analytically across a wide range of disciplines or fields of study. Students take the majority of their courses in a Focus which requires 36 units. The remaining courses are taken in 3 different Concentrations, with 9 units required in each Concentration. The Focus and the Concentration themes are discussed in more depth on the Themes page.

General Studies is the right major for you if:

  • You prefer a broader, multidisciplinary course of study rather than a traditional major/minor.
  • You have completed courses towards a specific major, but are no longer pursuing that path.
  • You have completed a diversity of coursework and want to apply those courses to a degree program.
  • You want a flexible degree program that lets you choose classes that are interesting and meaningful to you.
  • You are interested in career fields that do not require a specific academic major or certification.

What Our Students Say

"I knew that I would have more leeway with what classes I could take, and that interested me a lot because there were classes in different departments that I really wanted to take..."  —Courtney Berman, BGS Graduate

"Great course flexibility and met all my requirements."  —Philip Morehouse, BGS Graduate

"I was simply at a dead end, and BGS provided me with a way to complete my degree without having to essentially start over.  It allowed me to use courses I had already taken, as well as enroll in courses I wanted to take."  —Julian Dull, BGS Graduate

The BGS degree is designed to serve a specific population at the University of Arizona and beyond.

Target populations include:

  • Students who wish to have a multidisciplinary degree rather than a single-discipline degree or an interdisciplinary degree.
  • Transfer students who enter without a major, especially non-traditional students who have completed general education courses and/or associate degrees.
  • Students who began as pre-majors in a particular area but have been unable to gain admission to their desired degree program.
  • Students who have not declared a major but are close to, or over the 60 units/time to declare a major policy.

What can I do with a General Studies Degree?

General Studies

General Studies Student Spotlight

Crista Butler

Global and Intercultural Understanding
I chose the Bachelor of General Studies major with an emphasis in Global and Intercultural Understanding because of my high interest in how nations of the world are economically and socially interdependent. I love how flexible the program is and how I’m actually taking classes I’m genuinely...