Bachelor of Liberal Studies

Many people start a four-year degree and then step away for family, work, or financial reasons. Others complete an associate’s degree and enter the work world, to find later that a bachelor’s degree is necessary for further advancement in their field. Many current students, including students in the military, will find the flexibility of the Bachelor of Liberal Studies (BLS) allows them to choose courses that fit their schedule or can be completed online. Designed with the needs of a wide variety of students in mind, the BLS offers a structured, but flexible, path to a bachelor’s degree.


In addition to the General Education Curriculum of the University, students completing the BLS take 36 hours of coursework from three of the six colleges at The University of Southern Mississippi to design their own general studies degree. Students also choose an 18 hour concentration from among the minors offered at USM. Seniors complete a four (4) credit hour Capstone Experience by developing and implementing either an individual research project or an experiential learning project.

BLS Core Classes

All BLS students are required to complete the following core classes:

  • BLS 401 (3 hours): “Research Seminar” - Design and implement an independent research project in collaboration with peers. Taken in conjunction with BLS 402 for Capstone credit.
  • BLS 491 (3 hours): “Experiential Learning Experience” - Experiential or Service Learning experience. Taken in conjunction with BLS 402 for Capstone credit.
  • BLS 402 (1 hour): "Liberal Studies Capstone Supplement” - Assignments designed to enhance student pre-professional development and career preparation.

Degree Requirements