Interdisciplinary Studies, B.S.I.S. (College of Arts and Sciences)
New freshmen who meet University admissions standards are eligible for admission to degree programs offered by the college. A student who wishes to enter the College of Arts and Sciences from another college on the Columbia campus must be in good standing and have a cumulative GPA of 2.00 or higher. A student who wishes to enter the College of Arts and Sciences from another USC campus must fulfill one of the following requirements:
- Be in good standing, meet the admission requirements for a baccalaureate degree on the Columbia campus, and have a cumulative GPA of 2.00 or higher.
- Be in good standing and have completed 30 semester hours with a GPA of 2.00 or higher on a USC campus.
Some programs in the College of Arts and Sciences have special admission requirements established by the department or committee that supervises the specific degree program, for example, Cardiovascular Technology, Biological Sciences, Chemistry, Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Economics, Environmental Science, the Bachelor of Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies, and the Bachelor of Science in Interdisciplinary Studies. These requirements are listed in the sections of this bulletin that describe department and special degree programs.
Degree Requirements (120 hours)
|1. Carolina Core||34-46|
|2. College Requirements||15-18|
|3. Program Requirements||20-35|
|4. Major Requirements||36|
Founding Documents Requirement
All undergraduate students must take a 3-credit course or its equivalent with a passing grade in the subject areas of History, Political Science, or African American Studies that covers the founding documents including the United State Constitution, the Declaration of Independence, the Emancipation Proclamation and one or more documents that are foundational to the African American Freedom struggle, and a minimum of five essays from the Federalist papers. This course may count as a requirement in any part of the program of study including the Carolina Core, the major, minor or cognate, or as a general elective. Courses that meet this requirement are listed here.
1. Carolina Core Requirements (34-46 hours)
CMW – Effective, Engaged, and Persuasive Communication: Written (6 hours)
must be passed with a grade of C or higher
- any CC-CMW courses
ARP – Analytical Reasoning and Problem Solving (6-8 hours)
SCI – Scientific Literacy (8 hours)
- Two 4-credit hour CC-SCI courses
GFL – Global Citizenship and Multicultural Understanding: Foreign Language (0-6 hours)
Demonstration of proficiency in one foreign language equivalent to the minimal passing grade on the exit examination in the 122 course is required. Students can demonstrate this proficiency by successfully completing Phase II of the Proficiency Test or by successfully completing the 122 course, including the exit exam administered as part of that course.
It is strongly recommended that students continuing the study of a foreign language begin college-level study of that language in their first semester and continue in that language until their particular foreign language requirement is completed.
GHS – Global Citizenship and Multicultural Understanding: Historical Thinking (3 hours)
- any CC-GHS course
GSS – Global Citizenship and Multicultural Understanding: Social Sciences (3 hours)
- any CC-GSS course
AIU – Aesthetic and Interpretive Understanding (3 hours)
- any CC-AIU course
CMS – Effective, Engaged, and Persuasive Communication: Spoken Component1 (0-3 hours)
- any overlay or stand-alone CC-CMS course
INF – Information Literacy1 (0-3 hours)
- any overlay or stand-alone CC-INF course
VSR – Values, Ethics, and Social Responsibility1 (0-3 hours)
- any overlay or stand-alone CC-VSR course
Carolina Core Stand Alone or Overlay Eligible Requirements — Overlay-approved courses offer students the option of meeting two Carolina Core components in a single course. A maximum of two overlays is allowed. The total Carolina Core credit hours must add up to a minimum of 31 hours. Some programs may have a higher number of minimum Carolina Core hours due to specified requirements.
2. College Requirements (15-18 hours)
Foreign Language (0-3 hours)
- only if needed to meet 122-level proficiency
Analytical Reasoning (6 hours)
|STAT 201||Elementary Statistics (*)||3|
|CSCE 102||General Applications Programming (*)||3|
|Total Credit Hours||6|
History (3 hours)
The College of Arts and Sciences requires one additional GHS course beyond the Carolina Core GHS requirement.
- If the Carolina Core GHS requirement is fulfilled by a U.S. history course, the College of Arts and Sciences history requirement must be fulfilled by a non-U.S. history course.
- If the Carolina Core GHS requirement is fulfilled by a non-U.S. history course, the College of Arts and Sciences history requirement must be fulfilled by a U.S. history course.
Please select the College of Arts and Sciences history requirement from the approved list of U.S. and non-U.S. history courses.
Social Science and Fine Arts or Humanities (6 hours)
- Social Science (3 hours)
- The College of Arts and Science requires one 3- hour Social Science Course
- Fine Arts/Humanities (3 Hours)
- A Bachelor of Science from the College of Arts and Sciences requires one 3-hour Fine Arts/Humanities Course
3. Program Requirements (20-35 hours)
Cognate or Minor (12-18 hours)
Students must complete a cognate (12 hours) or a minor as part of this program. In lieu of a cognate or minor, an additional major may be added to a student’s program of study. Additional majors must include all major courses as well as any prescribed courses noted (*) in the bulletin. Prescribed courses noted in the bulletin may be shared with Carolina Core, College requirements, and Program requirements in the primary program.
Cognate (12 hours)
The cognate must consist of twelve (12) hours of courses at the advanced level, outside of but related to the major. The cognate may be taken in one or more departments or programs.
Courses offered by departments and programs that are acceptable for cognate credit are outlined in the section titled Courses Acceptable for Cognate Credit in Degree Programs in the College of Arts and Sciences. Some major programs have specific cognate requirements. It should be emphasized that the cognate is not a second set of elective courses to be chosen at random by the student. Students are urged to consult their major advisors for specific requirements in their major.
Unless otherwise noted, for Bachelor of Science degrees, cognate courses passed with a grade of D or higher are acceptable.
Minor (18 hours)
In place of the cognate a student in the College of Arts and Sciences may choose a minor consisting of at least 18 credit hours of prescribed courses.
The minor is intended to develop a coherent basic preparation in a second area of study. It differs from the cognate inasmuch as the courses must follow a structured sequence.
Courses applied toward general education requirements cannot be counted toward the minor. No course may satisfy both major and minor requirements. All minor courses must be passed with a grade of C or higher. At least half of the courses in the minor must be completed in residence at the University.
A list of minor programs of study can be found at Programs A-Z.
Electives (2-23 hours)
120 (or 128) degree applicable credits are required to complete any degree at UofSC. After the cognate, minor or second major is complete, any additional credits needed to reach 120 (or 128) total credits can be fulfilled by electives. No courses of a remedial, developmental, skill-acquiring, or vocational nature may apply as credit toward degrees in the College of Arts and Sciences. The College of Arts and Sciences allows the use of the Pass-Fail option on elective courses. Further clarification on inapplicable courses can be obtained from the College of Arts and Sciences.
4. Major Requirements (36 hours)
A minimum grade of C is required in all major courses.
Each student must complete a program of studies designed by an interdisciplinary program committee appointed by the College Academic Affairs and Advising Office. The program shall include a minimum of 36 semester hours of credit in major eligible courses in two or more fields. No course submitted in fulfillment of the general education requirements may be included in the program requirements. A maximum of 15 semester hours of independent study courses may be applied to the interdisciplinary studies program requirement.
The following procedures shall be followed in designing a program of interdisciplinary studies:
- The candidate shall apply to the College Academic Affairs and Advising Office for declaration of an interdisciplinary studies program.
- The candidate must submit to the College Academic Affairs and Advising Office a written statement of goals concerning a potential interdisciplinary studies program.
- The College Academic Affairs and Advising Office will help the candidate formulate an interdisciplinary program committee, which shall consist of faculty members from the student’s areas of interdisciplinary interest. The members of the interdisciplinary program committee shall be appointed by the College Academic Affairs and Advising Office, who will designate one member as chair and as the student’s academic advisor.
- The interdisciplinary program committee shall meet with the student and prepare a program of studies leading to the Bachelor of Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies. This program shall include a written justification for the specific program of studies designed with the student. The program of study must be approved by the committee prior to the completion of 75 hours. The committee and College Academic Affairs and Advising Office must approve any subsequent changes in the student’s program.
- The candidate’s academic advisor shall advise the student each semester and shall sign the necessary registration and other advisor’s forms. Advising shall adhere to the student’s approved program of studies. The academic advisor shall consult with the interdisciplinary program committee for approval should deviation from the original program become necessary or advisable. All changes shall be registered with the College Academic Affairs and Advising Office.
Bachelor of Science in Interdisciplinary Studies Degree After Completion of One Year of Medical or Dental School
Upon application to the College Academic Affairs and Advising Office, a student who has completed 90 hours or more of degree-applicable undergraduate work at the University of South Carolina (with the last 30 hours in residence at the University) with a grade point average of 2.00 or higher, will be granted the BSIS degree provided the following:
- The applicant has satisfied all graduation requirements for the BSIS degree in the College of Arts and Sciences, except for the final 30 hours.
- The applicant has not applied these University of South Carolina credits to obtaining a baccalaureate degree from any institution.
- The applicant submits documents from an accredited medical or dental school demonstrating satisfactory completion of the first year of study leading to a post-baccalaureate degree.
- The applicant has the program of study approved by the College Academic Affairs and Advising Office.
- The College Academic Affairs and Advising Office certifies that the requirements prescribed for the degree have been met.
Interested students enrolled at the University should consult the College Academic Affairs and Advising Office for details concerning this option.
A major map is a layout of required courses in a given program of study, including critical courses and suggested course sequences to ensure a clear path to graduation.
Major maps are only a suggested or recommended sequence of courses required in a program of study. Please contact your academic advisor for assistance in the application of specific coursework to a program of study and course selection and planning for upcoming semesters.