U.S. News and World Report ranked Boise State Online’s bachelor’s degree programs in the top 16% in the nation. One of these nationally-ranked degree programs, the Bachelor of Arts in Multidisciplinary Studies, will be known as the Bachelor of Arts in Interdisciplinary Professional Studies starting in fall 2022.
“Last fall, we reexamined our degree title. We wanted to make sure it aligned with our curriculum and resonated with employers across industries and professions,” said Jon Schneider, director of the Interdisciplinary Professional Studies and Bachelor of Applied Science programs. “We analyzed extensive job posting data and surveyed a wide range of stakeholders. Our student survey, in particular, overwhelmingly supported a name change to Interdisciplinary Professional Studies.”
The newly named Interdisciplinary Professional Studies degree reflects the experiences of the program’s students. Not only do students have the opportunity to integrate knowledge from multiple disciplines, but they are able to design a degree track that intentionally combines a variety of workforce- and industry-relevant skill sets.
Building customized degree plans
The Bachelor of Arts in Interdisciplinary Professional Studies offers students a rare level of creative ownership and educational freedom. The program is available to both traditional first-time college students and individuals who have completed college credits but have not yet earned a bachelor’s degree.
The program begins with required Interdisciplinary Professional Studies courses that focus on integrative learning, evaluating different perspectives, and articulating the breadth and complexity of different problems. From there, students can choose between three different tracks to either build an individualized degree plan or select a pre-designed emphasis area.
The Flex Track allows students to take in-person, hybrid and online courses. These flexible course delivery options allow students to have a traditional campus experience with the option of adding online courses. Students work with an advisor to create an individualized degree plan, select a minor or certificate option or stack two or more minors or certificates.
The Online Track provides access to a growing catalog of online courses and credentials. Offered fully online, this track accommodates students who may live beyond the Boise metropolitan area and have primary life roles outside of pursuing a degree. Similar to the Flex Track, students create an individualized degree plan and can choose an online minor or certificate option or stack two or more online minors or certificates.
The new Online Professional Studies Emphases Track targets workforce- and industry-relevant skill sets and adds career-focused certificates to students’ degrees. Offered entirely online, this track allows students to choose from three in-demand emphasis areas: Community and Social Impact Emphasis, Cyber Operations Management Emphasis and Design and Media Management Emphasis.
Each Interdisciplinary Professional Studies track option provides a clear pathway for students who need the flexibility of fitting classes into their current lifestyle and desire the freedom to create a custom path to earning their bachelor’s degree.
Transforming students’ lives
Student Jessi Boyer is already experiencing the power of education in transforming her life as she completes her Bachelor of Arts in Interdisciplinary Professional Studies. After building a career managing local political campaigns, Boyer decided to go back to school and earn a degree that would allow her to leave seasonal work. She chose to add the User Experience (UX) Research Certificate to her degree plan and, since completing the certificate, has started to see her life transform as she makes steps towards a new career.
“I absolutely love this idea of transformation and, in my case, it’s totally true,” said Boyer. “I have already, before graduation, set up an LLC and I’m starting to do consulting work in UX and I have clients. It’s so amazing to have the stability and to know that, in the future, your life is going to be stable, your family is going to be supported, and whatever comes I’ve made the right decision to go back and go through the effort — because it is a sheer effort of will to go back and get your bachelor’s as an adult.”
Boyer’s story reflects the Interdisciplinary Professional Studies mission to support students in crafting a meaningful, relevant degree plan. She also credits the support she received from her student success coach, advisor and professors with helping her succeed in the program.
Learn more about the program
Are you looking for a flexible and customizable way to earn your bachelor’s degree? Contact the program to learn more.