General Studies


Judy Miles, Advisor

Tom Bunch, Advisor

Aim of the Department

The General Studies program at Southwestern Adventist University is designed for students whose main goal is to earn a college degree without specializing in a major or minor field of emphasis. Students will be able to choose from a wide selection of classes and yet meet the requirements of the General Education Program within a liberal arts curriculum.

The Interdisciplinary Studies program allows students, with planning, to enhance their education program by including an area of emphasis not offered on campus.


  • A.S. General Studies
  • B.S. General Studies
  • B.S. Interdisciplinary Studies

A.S. in General Studies

The A.S. in General Studies requires completion of 64 hours and a minimum GPA of 2.0, with at least 24 hours taken in residence. The last 12 hours before graduation must be taken in residence at SWAU. This degree includes all General Education courses required for a Bachelor's degree, with the following exception: 6 hours of religion instead of 12 will be required.

The Associate of Science degree is considered a terminal degree and is available only for students who do not plan to pursue a Bachelor's degree at Southwestern Adventist University.

B.S. in General Studies

The B.S. in General Studies requires the following:

  1. Meet the general education, residency and upper division requirements.
  2. Complete one area of emphasis of 30 hours (12 hours upper division in residence) or two areas of emphasis with 18 hours each (6 hours upper division in residence in each emphasis). Areas of emphasis will typically be determined by course prefix, and will include only classes that would be applicable to a major. No course with a grade below C may apply toward an emphasis.
  3. Earn a minimum GPA of 2.25 in upper division emphasis course work. No course with a grade below C may apply towards an area of emphasis.
  4. After earning a Bachelor of Science in General Studies, a student may return to earn a second Bachelor's degree. However, an area of emphasis may only be used as a major in the second degree if there are 30 additional hours available in the major. A minimum of 158 cumulative semester hours is required to earn the second degree.

B.A./B.S. in Interdisciplinary Studies

A student who has a specific career goal not included in the list of majors and minors may counsel with the Academic Vice President about a Bachelor of Science degree in Interdisciplinary Studies. Since this is a planned course of study, which may include courses not offered on our campus, approval must be sought and granted before completion of 64 semester hours. The development of this plan is done in consultation with a selected faculty advisor and with one or more selected faculty members from separate academic disciplines who then comprise the faculty committee for the program. A degree proposal must be submitted to the Records Office which includes the following:

  1. A short essay which explains the proposed course of study.
  2. An abstract which can be included with the student's transcript.
  3. Two areas of emphasis which include a minimum of 24 hours each (9 hours upper division from each emphasis) or three areas of emphasis which include a minimum of 18 hours each (6 hours upper division from each emphasis). Areas of emphasis will typically be determined by course prefix, and require a minimum grade of C in all classes.
  4. Courses must be grouped by general education, areas of emphasis, and electives under the headings of Courses Completed, Courses In-progress and Proposed Courses.
  5. Upper division courses should be identified with an asterik (*) and must total a minimum of 40 hours.
  6. All courses taken or planned to be taken off-campus must be identified as such.
  7. Signatures by each faculty member of the committee.

The approved program will become the student's major, and the Registrar will determine the student's readiness for graduation by checking compliance with all components of the degree.