May 21, 2024  
2010-2011 Undergraduate Catalog 
2010-2011 Undergraduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Integrative Studies, B.I.S.

520 O’Dowd (248) 370-3229

Director: Scott L. Crabill, special instructor, Communication and Journalism

Faculty Council for Integrative Studies: Deborah Blair, assistant professor, Music Education; Thomas Blume, associate professor, Education; Jacob Cayanus, assistant professor, Communication; Douglas Creighton, assistant professor, Physical Therapy; Michael Long, associate professor, Human Resource Development; Jerry Marsh, special instructor, Computer Science; Mildred Merz, associate professor, Kresge Library; Kevin Murphy, professor, Economics; Barbara Penprase, associate professor, Nursing; Subbaiah Perla, professor, Mathematics and Statistics; Ann Pogany, assistant professor, Kresge Library; Marilyn Beim, student; Sandy Nickerson, student

The Bachelor of Integrative Studies degree (B.I.S.) (formerly the Bachelor of General Studies) is a university-wide baccalaureate program that offers maximum flexibility and opportunity for student decision making about courses of study at Oakland University. The degree is primarily intended for students wishing to create a program to meet their individual goals by integrating courses of study from across the university.

Students entering the Integrative Studies program design a course of study utilizing courses from many departments to prepare them for a particular job or career choice. Students may select courses from any field of study offered by an academic department, subject to prerequisites and policies set by the individual departments. This program offers students the opportunity to plan a unique and challenging academic program in cooperation with an Integrative Studies faculty mentor.

Students changing their majors to Integrative Studies must meet the program requirements described in the catalog extant at the time of the change, or they may meet program requirements described in a subsequent catalog. Any catalog that students are following must not be more than six years old at the time of graduation.

Frequently, students seeking the degree have earned academic credits from other colleges or universities and have been encouraged by their employers to pursue a baccalaureate degree. The Integrative Studies program has flexible policies on transfer credits from other institutions, and it provides a personalized program to meet the educational needs of individuals.

Students applying to the Integrative Studies program are first admitted to pre-Integrative Studies status. Students will be granted major standing upon approval of their plan of study and application essay by the Integrative Studies Admissions Committee.

The Integrative Studies program is administered by the Department of Integrative Studies, 520 O’Dowd Hall, (248) 370-3229,

Because the Bachelor of Integrative Studies is an alternative to a traditional degree, it is not permissible to seek a double degree with the Bachelor of Integrative Studies serving as one of those degrees.

Requirements for the degree in bachelor of integrative studies

To earn the Bachelor of Integrative Studies degree, students must meet the following requirements:

  1. Successfully complete at least 28 credits from an approved plan of study (including the required capstone course) at Oakland University as an admitted candidate for the Bachelor of Integrative Studies degree, excluding courses used to meet the general education requirement. Candidacy is authorized by the university and the Faculty Council for Integrative Studies when a student’s plan of study has been approved by the Integrative Studies Faculty Admissions Committee. If the plan of study is not submitted in a timely manner, the credits in any current semester may be excluded from the plan of study. (See Advising below for additional information.)
  2. Complete the general education requirements that correspond with the student’s admission date and transfer credit situation. (See Undergraduate degree requirements.)
  3. Complete a minimum of 124 semester credits.
  4. Complete 32 of those credits at the 300 or 400 levels.
  5. Complete 32 credits at Oakland University; complete the last 4 credits toward the degree at Oakland University.
  6. Complete the General Education capstone course HS 402 . Students entering the university prior to this catalog may be eligible to complete the previous General Education program described in the 2004-2005 catalog (consult with the BIS counselor for clarification).


Advising is central to the program as students design an individualized and unique course of study based upon their interests and needs. Students must follow a specific advising procedure as follows:

  1. Complete the online advising tutorial.
  2. Meet with an Integrative Studies counselor in a preliminary appointment. The BIS counselor will explore the suitability of the program to student needs and interests. The BIS counselor will also discuss student eligibility to enter the program.  Students entering the program through a change of major or through the readmission process must have a cumulative grade point average of at least 2.00. Students on academic probation will not be considered for the program.
  3. Be assigned a faculty mentor. When pre-Integrative Studies has been declared as a program of study, students will follow up with the counselor to finalize the plan of study form. Students and the BIS counselor will collaboratively select a faculty mentor.
  4. Develop a plan of study and application essay for the faculty mentor to review. Students will initiate a meeting with the faculty mentor to discuss their goals and the courses that may help achieve those goals.
  5. Obtain committee approval. After the faculty mentor approves the plan of study and application essay, by signing the final plan, the plan of study and application essay are returned to the Integrative Studies office and sent to the Admissions Committee for approval. When the plan of study has been approved by the Committee, students will be granted major standing.
  6. Make substitutions as needed to the plan of study. Students who want to take courses other than those listed on their approved plan of study must have the consent of the BIS Curriculum Committee. Plan of Study substitution forms are available  online and must be submitted through the program’s website. Course substitutions must be submitted after the student has registered for the class and before the semester in which the substituted course is taken.

Two-Plus-Two program for associate degree holders

The Integrative Studies program allows students to combine broad liberal arts and professional courses from the university curriculum with associate degrees from Michigan community colleges. The two-plus-two program provides for transfer of up to 62 semester credits from accredited two-year community colleges in Michigan. Students with associate degrees in any area except nursing may qualify for the two-plus-two Integrative Studies program. Holders of associate degrees in nursing are subject to a course by course evaluation.

The program requires that courses accepted for transfer must have a grade of C or above, that at least 12 semester credits have been earned in liberal arts courses, and that all course work has been taken at accredited institutions. Certain developmental courses may be subject to individual evaluation. For additional information, see the Transfer student information section of the catalog.

Concentrations or minors

Integrative Studies students may wish to develop programs that include concentrations or minors offered by other academic schools or departments within the university. Approximately 65 minors and concentrations are available to Integrative Studies students; a complete listing is available in the index of the undergraduate catalog under “minors” and “concentrations” respectively. Forms for written approval of concentrations or minors are also available online and in the Integrative Studies office (520 O’Dowd Hall).

Students should consult with an Integrative Studies counselor to determine policies and procedures on seeking minors or concentrations.

Conciliar honors

Conciliar honors are awarded to Integrative Studies students by the Faculty Council for Integrative Studies. There are two ways in which students may earn conciliar honors. Students who have cumulative grade point averages of 3.60 or better are automatically eligible for conciliar honors. Students may be nominated for honors if they have cumulative grade point averages between 3.30 and 3.59; students may nominate themselves or be nominated by a faculty mentor. Written nominations, accompanied by faculty recommendations, should be made on the basis of excellence in scholarship, appropriate community and university experience, and/or achievement of academic distinction while overcoming extreme adversity. Nominations will be considered by the Curriculum Committee and will be forwarded to the BIS Faculty Council for final approval.

Major capstone and writing intensive course for integrative studies

All students admitted to the university beginning Fall 2008 and after are required to complete the Integrative Studies capstone course, HS 402 , to satisfy the university general education requirements. The course is offered through the School of Health Sciences. Specific offerings of the course for each term may be found in the Schedule of Classes.