What makes the BID Unique?

The Bachelor of Interdisciplinary Studies (BID) degree is an online and on campus degree program presented by the Department of Interdisciplinary Studies in Emporia State University's College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. This accredited alternative to conventional degree programs provides students a quality multi-disciplinary program of study that fulfills traditional university requirements and is designed to meet the student's individual interests and goals. Working closely with an academic advisor, each student develops a program of study according to his/her interests. Students may choose to study either full or part-time and may take course online and in the classroom.

How does the BID compare to a BS or BA degree?

The BID is a regular four year baccalaureate degree that has requirements similar to any BS or BA in terms of total credit hours needed (124), upper division course requirements (45 credit hours at the 300 level or above) and the university's general education requirements. All courses eligible for the BID online or on-campus degree are offered as part of other institutional degree programs.

What is the program of study?

Your major, Interdisciplinary Studies, is your program of study. It is an individualized plan for the courses you choose to fulfill your educational/employment goals.

Who is eligible for admission?

All students interested in pursuing an undergraduate degree at ESU. Distance students should have completed all or most of their general education courses. Students must have a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.0. Please note that it is possible to be admitted into the program while concurrently working on meeting the general education requirements.

Do I need to come to the ESU campus?

NO. You can complete the BID by taking only online classes. You can also complete the degree on campus, taking online and face-to-face classes. You design your degree to fit your interests and your preferred location.

What steps do I take to apply to ESU and the BID program?

  • Send in application forms and fees. Visit BID Admissions for details.

  • Have each post-secondary institution you have attended send official transcripts to ESU.

  • Contact the BID Advisor at ESU.

What are the BID degree requirements?

What are the General Education Requirements?

Students must meet the same general education requirements (48 hours) as other ESU students, in basic skills, cultural literacy, science, and graduation requirements.

See the university's General Education Requirements here.

What if I lack some general education requirements?

Some general education courses are offered by ESU online. In addition, for distance students, ESU has agreements with many two-year and four-year colleges that offer general education courses online or near where you live. Please contact the BID Advisor to discuss the best way to complete any remaining general education courses you still need.

Does this program give credit for life experience?

Not directly. However, the capstone course, a project or research paper that is often related to the student's employment or community work, may directly draw upon the student's previously acquired skills and experience, as well as his/her formal education and employment.

How long will it take to complete the program?

How long it takes to complete the program depends on how many courses you have prior to beginning the program, and how many courses you take each semester. The introductory course, ID 302, is prerequisite to the capstone project, ID 490, and students take 24 credit hours after declaring the BID as their degree program. So at a minimum, students will require two semesters to complete the program.

How competitive is tuition?

Course costs are very competitive. Emporia State University tuition and fees are lower than similar programs across the United States. For current tuition and fee costs, click here.

What determines success in an online course?

  • Personal responsibility

  • Commitment and discipline to keep up with the flow of the course process, including communication with the instructor

  • Motivation to learn independently

  • Access to and ability to use appropriate equipment

What is the class portal?

ESU uses Canvas as its portal for online classes. You can access Canvas directly through BuzzIn or at Canvas.

Am I required to take ESU Competency Exams?

YES. All students earning a baccalaureate degree from ESU currently are required to pass these exams in their junior or senior year. The exams can be administered at an educational center near you. Find more information about the competency exams at the website of the Office of Institutional Research and Assessment: CAAP exam.

What student services are available?

 How do I buy my books?

As with other on-campus and online programs, books for courses in the BID programare purchased from ESU's Memorial Union Bookstore (a subsidiary of Barnes & Noble) by mail, phone, or online and shipped directly to students. For more details, please visit the bookstore's website.

What if I have more questions? Who can I contact? 

Please contact the Department of Interdisciplinary Studies:

  • By email: DIS@emporia.edu
  • By telephone: (620) 341-5583 - Adam Koci, Advisor, or Dr. Ellen Hansen, Chair