Bachelor of Interdisciplinary Studies Curriculum

A total of 120 credits are required to complete the BIS degree: at least 60 credits are completed at UVA and are combined with transferable credits at admission from other regionally accredited institutions. 

On average, students take two courses a term, including the summer, and take three to four years to complete the degree. Many, however, are able to finish sooner or choose to move more slowly, taking up to seven years. Here is a sample of what a typical plan might look like, given satisfactory progress to degree and no leaves of absence. 

Required Seminars

Liberal Studies Seminars 

Liberal Studies Seminars provide students with opportunities to develop a set of core skills early in the BIS program. All first-term BIS students are required to take ISLS 3000 Transformations: Reading, Thinking, and Communicating in the Liberal Arts, which addresses academic writing, critical thinking, and research fundamentals. Students also take one more ISLS, and then two ISINs for all concentrations.

6 Credits

ISLS 3000 

Conduct of Inquiry Seminars 

Conduct of Inquiry Seminars build upon the skills developed in the Liberal Studies Seminars and introduce students to analytical and research fundamentals in various disciplines.

6 Credits

ISIN 4510 - Social Sciences focus
ISIN 4520 - Humanities focus

Note: These seminars must be completed within the first four consecutive terms of BIS matriculation with a grade of C or better. At least one 3000-level Liberal Studies Seminar must be completed with a C or better before enrolling in one at the 4000-level. 


Individualized Concentration
With permission of the BIS Director and with guidance of an academic advisor,  a student may propose a concentration comprised of 18 credits of upper-level UVA courses tailored to his/her academic interests. 

Capstone Project

6 credits
The required Capstone Project is a two-semester, two-course process providing students with an opportunity to integrate academic accomplishments and professional interests. The project builds on the student’s course work, research, and writing skills, as well as on current professional involvement and/or aspirations. 

Capstone I is a three-credit course that provides students an opportunity to strengthen their analytical and critical thinking skills while exploring further the process of basic research and project design.  Over the course of the semester, students will develop a proposal for their Capstone Project. 

Successful completion of Capstone I with a grade of C or better and an approved proposal are required prior to registering for Capstone II. Learn about the Capstone Project.

Elective Courses

18-39 Credits (depending on concentration and credits at admission)
In consultation with their advisors, students in all concentrations will distribute their degree hours beyond the Liberal Studies Seminars, Conduct of Inquiry courses, Concentrations, and Capstone Project in courses that will complement their academic, professional, and personal goals. 


60+ Credits (depending on credits at admission)

The information contained on this web site is for informational purposes only. The Undergraduate Record and Graduate Record represent the official repository for academic program requirements. 


* The information contained on this website is for informational purposes only. The Undergraduate Record and Graduate Record represent the official repository for academic program requirements.

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