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Our Adult Degree Program (ADP) is an undergraduate degree completion program that allows you to create a personalized interdisciplinary concentration or focus of study to meet your educational and career objectives. You can complete your major in Individualized Study through online courses and/or courses on our main campus. The Individualized Study major also offers you the opportunity to integrate other college-level learning such as professional or military experiences into the completion of your degree.

You have the option to earn a:

  • Bachelor of Individualized Study
  • Bachelor of Arts in Individualized Study
  • Bachelor of Science in Individualized Study

Your Program of Study

As an Individualized Study major, you will work with ADP staff and advisors to develop a personalized Program of Study that focuses on your unique skills, interests, and career goals.

As an incoming ADP student, your first course will be IS 200: Orientation to Individualized Study. This course is a 3-credit online class that prepares you for college-level learning at James Madison and guides you through the process of building your Program of Study.

Course Tracks

Our tracks are a structured way of developing your personalized program plan. Each track offers a strong foundation in a subject area such as Entrepreneurship, Human Resource Development, Small Business Management & Entrepreneurship, Human Resource Development & Management, and Business & Information TechnologyYou can combine two or three tracks to create your Individualized Study major, and you can blend online and face-to-face classes if you are able to commute to campus. Click here for a list of currently available tracks.

Degree completion requirements

ADP students must complete required General Education courses as well as concentration-based courses. Depending on the particular courses you choose, you will earn one of three degrees:

Bachelor of Individualized Study

To earn a Bachelor of Individualized Study, you must complete the following course requirements:

  • Complete IS 200: Orientation to Individualized Study (3 credits)
  • General Education Cluster Model: 
    • Cluster One: Skills for the 21st Century (3 courses)
    • Cluster Two: Arts and Humanities (3 courses)
    • Cluster Three: The Natural World (3-4 courses)
    • Cluster Four: Social and Cultural Processes (2 courses)
    • Cluster Five: Individuals in the Human Community (2 courses)
  • Individualized Study Concentration: The concentration consists of courses from two or more areas of study offered by JMU. For example, a combination of courses from the Professional Workplace Communication track and the Business & Information Technology track could be used to form a concentration. The concentration must be a minimum of 30 credits, with at least 24 credits being taken at the 300-level or higher.
  • Electives: You’ll need 120 total credits to graduate, including transfer credits and credits earned at James Madison. You may take additional electives to reach the 120 credits. Here are examples.
  • Complete IS 498: Senior Research Project (3 or 6 credits) You can learn more about this project here

Bachelor of Arts in Individualized Study

To earn a Bachelor of Arts in Individualized Study, you must complete the requirements for the Bachelor of Individualized Study and the following additional credits:

  • Philosophy (3 credits) and Foreign Language (6 credits of 200-level or higher)

Bachelor of Science in Individualized Study

To earn a Bachelor of Science in Individualized Study, you must complete the requirements for the Bachelor of Individualized Study and the following additional credits:

  • Natural Science (3 credits) and Mathematics (3 credits)
Required Capstone Project

Online General Education Courses


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'I chose to complete my BIS degree because I wanted to add an area of study (Business Technology) onto my undergraduate degree without having to declare a second major and without having to push my graduation date back another semester or year.'

-Dillon Rice, ADP Class of 2019

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