Bachelor of Arts in Applied Studies

The Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) in Applied Studies is designed to accommodate the varied educational and professional backgrounds of students by teaching competencies that are relevant for a broad range of career and work settings. Students apply to their academic studies the knowledge and skills they have acquired in work, educational, and community environments; and in turn, students apply to their professional work the skills and competencies from their academic coursework. This is a degree completion program especially suited for police officers, EMS workers, firefighters, and other professionals seeking a college degree for career growth and advancement.

While a traditional degree provides depth within a single discipline, the B.A. in Applied Studies offers a learning experience that is trans-disciplinary. Students complete a set of core courses and choose electives or themed concentrations that are suited to their personal interests and career goals. In their capstone course, students produce a portfolio that showcases the synthesis of their academic and professional work for current and future employers.  

Program Mission Statement

The Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) in Applied Studies offers a clear and attainable path to degree for students pursuing their careers and whose previous college level credits may not be easily applied to a single discipline or major. The degree integrates upper-division academic study in areas such as organizational and written communication, diversity, and ethics with students’ professional experience, preparing them to achieve their goals for professional advancement and/or to pursue graduate education.

Program Learning Outcomes

  • Communication: Communicate effectively through a variety of mediums.
  • Diversity: Demonstrate an understanding of intercultural complexities.
  • Ethics: Apply ethical principles to personal and professional contexts.
  • Applied Learning: Create a professional portfolio linking knowledge or skills acquired in work or community with knowledge acquired in academic study.

Degree Requirements

In addition to the University General Education and elective requirements, the BAAS has a foundation requirement of 15 credits and a degree concentration of 21 credit hours at the upper division level.  All courses taken in the major program must be passed with a letter grade of “C” or higher. 

Courses may be used to fulfill both major and general education requirements.

Foundation Courses
LBSU 306Transition to Applied Studies3
COMU 315Intercultural Communication3
COMU 375Media Ethics3
ENGU 380Professional Writing3
LBSU 487Applied Studies Capstone3
Select one of the concentrations21
Total Credits36


Select among the three concentrations below or select 21 credits of elective, upper division courses (which may be satisfied in transfer) to fulfill the 36 credit requirement for this program.

Applied Communication

COMU 300Communications and Media: Challenges and Opportunities3
COMU 301Advanced Public Speaking3
or COMU 370 Principles of Public Relations
COMU 330History of Communication and Technological Revolutions3
COMU 420Strategic Social Media3
ENGU 348Writing and Producing for New Media in the 21st Century3
HUMU 345Art, Media Technology, and Culture3
Select upper division course (three credits) from Communications, English, or Psychology3
Total Credits21

Applied Humanities

ENGU 348Writing and Producing for New Media in the 21st Century3
ENGU 350Ethical Leadership through Literature3
HISU 319Modern European History3
HISU 330America and Its Revolution: The Bonfires of Change3
HUMU 250Humanities in a Digital Culture3
HUMU 345Art, Media Technology, and Culture3
Select one upper division course from Humanities, English, Philosophy, History or Liberal Studies 13
Total Credits21

1Except LBSU 302 Information Fluency and Academic Integrity and LBSU 304 Liberal Arts Core Foundations


COMU 301Advanced Public Speaking3
ENGU 350Ethical Leadership through Literature3
OLCU 414Team Building3
OLCU 425Leadership in Diverse and Multicultural Organizations3
PSYU 481Organizational Psychology3
OLCU 300Organizational Behavior3
or OLCU 303 Organizational Development and Change
Select one upper division course from Communication, Entrepreneurship, Human Resources, and/or Organizational Leadership3
Total Credits21