Brigham Young University Homepage

Undergraduate Catalog

2012 - 2013

Bachelor of General Studies Program (BGS)

Ellen Allred, Director
315 HCEB
(801) 422-4351, toll-free 888-298-3137

Brigham Young University's Bachelor of General Studies (BGS) Program offers former BYU students who are no longer able to attend BYU and have been away from the university for two or more years an opportunity to complete their bachelor's degree from home. Applicants must have already completed 30 credit hours (exam credit excluded) at the BYU campus in Provo as an admitted day student and must abide by the Church Educational System Honor Code and receive an annual ecclesiastical endorsement. This program is not available to current BYU students.


Admission to Degree Program

Applicants complete the admission procedure through the Bachelor of General Studies Office and pay a fee of $35. The BGS program is open to former students who meet all of the following criteria:

  • Have completed a minimum of 30 semester hours of BYU on-campus credit in Provo as an admitted day student (exam credit excluded).
  • Have not completed any courses as a BYU day continuing student in the last two years.
  • Have never completed a bachelor's or higher degree.
  • Are in good standing (academic, financial, etc.) at all universities attended.
  • Have a 2.0 or higher BYU and cumulative GPA. (If any academic disciplinary action—warning, probation, or suspension—has been taken against you, contact the BGS Office before proceeding with the application process.)
  • Will abide by the Church Educational System Honor Code and receive an annual ecclesiastical endorsement.
  • Have been approved by the BGS admissions committee.
  • Have successfully completed the StDev 100 course (1-credit-hour Independent Study course taken after provisional acceptance into program).

The Discipline

The bachelor of general studies degree is designed to help former BYU students utilize their previously earned credit as much as possible. The BGS uses the same BYU curriculum offered on campus and requires the same general education, religious education, and campus residency as on-campus degrees. Up to 90 of the required 120 credit hours may be earned through Independent Study. The major is general studies, with an emphasis in one of seven areas of study. The emphasis adds a measure of specialization and can be completed in one of the following areas: American studies, English, family history, family life, history, management, or psychology.

Students may earn only one emphasis and do not have the option of creating custom-made areas of study. However, within the number of general electives available, students can utilize credit previously earned in a former major or choose to take courses in a particular concentration.

The BGS is a fully accredited bachelor's degree from Brigham Young University. Students pursue this program for a variety of reasons. Some desire a sense of accomplishment—to complete a degree they began years ago. Others are looking for career advancement or to eventually pursue a postgraduate degree.


Graduation Requirements

To receive a BYU bachelor's degree a student must complete, in addition to all requirements for a specific major, the following university requirements:

  • The university core, consisting of requirements in general and religious education. (See University Core for details. For a complete listing of courses that meet university core requirements, see the current class schedule.)
  • At least 30 credit hours must be earned in residence on the BYU campus in Provo as an admitted day student
  • A minimum of 120 credit hours
  • A cumulative GPA of at least 2.0
  • Be in good standing with the Honor Code Office

Undergraduate Programs and Degrees

Students should see the BGS office for help or information concerning the undergraduate programs.


General Information

To earn a bachelor of general studies degree, students must complete the following requirements:

  1. A minimum of 120 semester hours of earned credit, which breaks down as follows:
      StDev 100 Independent Study course (1 hour)
      University core (30-70 hours)
      Religious Education (14 hours)
      Emphasis requirements (30 hours)
      StDev 490 Independent Study course (2 hours)
      General electives (3–43 hours)

  2. 30 hours of BYU campus residency

  3. 40 credit hours of 300- or 400-level courses, including 15 hours in the emphasis.

The following policies also apply:

  1. A minimum of 10 hours in the area of emphasis must be enrolled in and completed through BYU after formal admission to the BGS program.
  2. Students must earn a minimum 2.0 BYU, cumulative, and emphasis grade point average (management emphasis requires 2.25).
  3. All courses taken after admission to BGS must be BYU courses.
  4. The program must be completed in eight years (or fewer).

BGS course and credit requirements can be filled in the following ways:

Prior Courses and Credits Transferred into the Program

  1. Credits earned previously through BYU.
  2. Credits earned previously at accredited colleges and universities. All transfer credits must be completed at the time the application is submitted.

Courses and Credits Earned After Admission to the Program

Once admitted to the BGS program, it is expected that any remaining course work will be completed through BYU. This can be done in the following ways:

  1. Courses completed through BYU Independent Study.
  2. Courses completed at the BYU Salt Lake Center.
  3. Courses completed through BYU Evening Classes.
  4. Courses completed at BYU during spring and summer terms.