The Individualized Studies program allows students to pursue individualized academic interests and personal or professional goals within the framework of an academically sound Bachelor of Arts degree program or minor. It is an excellent alternative for the mature student who wants to build on past experience and design his or her own degree program for current or future needs. It offers students a great deal of flexibility and allows for intellectual growth in a variety of academic areas.
The Individualized Studies degree program is especially applicable for:
- Students who wish to combine coursework from two or more disciplines around a thematic focus in order to design a degree that best aligns with their academic needs
- Adult students who may already be working in a profession and require the completion of a bachelor’s degree to achieve specific personal, professional or vocational goals
- Students who wish to create a custom minor in an academic area where a minor is not available
- Students who require greater flexibility in selecting course delivery and scheduling options that allow them to pursue a college degree while balancing family, work or other commitments
Individualized Studies may be pursued as a Bachelor of Arts degree or as a minor in conjunction with a different major. All Individualized Studies majors and minors are required to complete the CE 300 Academic Planning & Career Foundations course. It is recommended that students take this course in their first semester as an Individualized Studies major or minor. CE 300 is typically offered online every spring and fall semester.
Careers & Internships
Because it is a customized program, Individualized Studies degrees are as unique as the students who design them. In today’s job market, employers are interested in the knowledge, skills and competencies that a student has acquired through a degree program and related work and volunteer experience. Within the Individualized Studies major and minor, a student can build on his or her interests, past experience, intellectual strengths and career goals to design a program which encompasses many of the areas of competence that employers are seeking. These might include critical thinking, problem solving, communication skills, technology skills, and the ability to work well with others. Students in the Individualized Studies major or minor are encouraged to highlight those aspects of their degree program as they interview and seek employment.
Individualized Studies majors and minors should have a career goal in mind before declaring this program. Career and future educational goals will help shape the individualized program you create. Students are encouraged to work with WSU Career Services throughout their time as an Individualized Studies major or minor. WSU Career Services provides a comprehensive range of services to assist current students and graduates in achieving their employment goals and/or entrance into a graduate or professional program.
Individualized Studies majors have the option to complete an internship. The Individualized Studies internship may be taken for anywhere between 3 – 6 semester credits. A maximum of 3 internship credits may be taken for a letter grade. The remainder must be taken on a P/NC basis. The Individualized Studies internship is only available to be taken by Individualized Studies majors. Students pursing the Individualized Studies minor or other majors and minors are not eligible to take the Individualized Studies internship.
If you are interested in pursuing the Individualized Studies internship, please talk to your Individualized Studies advisor to obtain more information and to start the process. For general information on internships or to start the search process, visit the WSU Career Services Internship page.
Student Program Plan
An approved Individualized Studies Student Program Plan (PDF) is required to be on file for all Individualized Studies majors and minors. The Student Program Plan is an assignment in the required CE 300 Academic Planning and Career Foundations course but students are welcome to start working on their program plan before they start the CE 300 course.
The Student Program Plan is the tool you will use to document the rationale for your individualized major or minor. You will also identify all of the coursework that will comprise your major or minor, establish learning outcomes and indicate how your coursework will meet the desired learning outcomes.
Advising for Individualized Studies majors and minors is available on both the Winona & Rochester campuses.
Adult & Continuing Education
WSU-R Student & Campus Services