General studies

Bachelor of general studies University of Missouri-Columbia
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Courses for this program are 100 percent online: no campus visits are required.

Your degree requires 120 credit hours, which may include transfer credits from other regionally accredited institutions.

The courses you take will include:

Transfer students

The number of credits you need to take will depend on the type of previous credit earned and the institutions' accreditation and transfer equivalencies. The admissions office will determine your transfer credit once they receive your official transcripts and application. Visit the University of Missouri Course Equivalency site to determine credit equivalencies from courses taken at other Missouri institutions.

Sample plan of study

See a sample bachelor of general studies “Semester Plan” of study. Personal degree plans will be developed with your academic adviser.

General studies major (components), minimum 45 credit hours

  • Three fields of study, each including a minimum of 15 credit hours of course work, make up the core of the components.
  • You may select component courses from any department or program at MU (if the department permits), but at least 18 credit hours must be composed of courses from an A&S department.
  • Of the 15 credit hours required for each component, 6 credit hours in each must be numbered 3000 or higher. While you may bring in upper-level transfer course work, a minimum of 12 credit hours of MU course work numbered 3000 level or above is required in the three components.
  • If you are a transfer student, you may construct one component solely with courses taken at other institutions. Where appropriate, the requirement of 3000-level work in this one component may be waived, but in such cases, you must include 9 credit hours of MU course work at the 3000 level or above in each of your two remaining components.
  • No grades below C- will be accepted in the major.
  • No more than 6 credit hours of special projects or directed readings may be included in any one component; the combined total for such work is limited to 12 credit hours.
  • You must complete an approved 3-credit-hour capstone course in one of the component areas.


Any courses ordinarily accepted by the College of Arts and Science may be applied toward the minimum of 120 credit hours required for graduation.

State authorization

States require that the University of Missouri-Columbia be authorized to deliver university-level distance/online education to their residents. Each state handles this process differently.

Please see our state authorization page for more information.

  • Program authorized


Students residing in all states are eligible to enroll in this program.

Learn more about this program

This program is administered by the College of Arts & Science