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Bachelor of General Studies

At a glance

  • Credential: degree
  • Credits: 90
  • Next start: monthly

Welcome to Athabasca University's Bachelor of General Studies (BGS), a program that celebrates your individual learning journey!

  • 37

    Average age

  • 95%

    Employment rate

  • $79k

    Median income

  • 98%

    Student satisfaction

Source: 2023 AU institutional data and 2022 Graduate Outcomes Survey (GOS)

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About Bachelor of General Studies

The Bachelor of General Studies is a multidisciplinary degree program that provides a framework of individualized study within an Arts and Science or Applied Studies designation that offers you the freedom to choose courses to meet your specific goals.

With the BGS, you're not confined to one subject—you have the flexibility to mix and match online courses to align with your personal and career aspirations. And the best part? The BGS program doesn't have a residency requirement, which means you have the opportunity to transfer credits from other institutions, making your educational journey even more tailored and efficient.

Admission requirements

There are no formal admission requirements for this program. If you are 16 or older, you are eligible to enrol in the BGS. You can enrol anytime and start right away, regardless of your previous education.

Program details


The Bachelor of General Studies (BGS) degree is one of the most popular programs at Athabasca University. Unlike the other degrees offered by Athabasca University, the BGS does not have a residency requirement, and courses that make up the degree requirements may be completed at institutions other than Athabasca University.

Through your chosen program of studies, you will be supported to develop scholarly research and writing skills, learn how to integrate evidence and insights from several disciplinary areas, and achieve the learning outcomes that are meaningful for your desired education.

Because there are so many potential options, we provide help to make sure the BGS meets your career or personal needs. Our counsellors are available to assist you to define your educational, professional, and career goals. Our academic advisors are available to discuss your program plan.

Routes and options

There are two designations available: Arts and Science and Applied Studies. Your degree program must consist of at least 45 credits in your chosen designation.

Arts and Science Designation

Arts includes courses in the humanities and social science areas of study.

Science includes the natural sciences such as biology, chemistry and physics as well as computer science, information systems and management systems.

Applied Studies Designation

Applied studies includes courses in business and administrative studies.

Students in this route may receive transfer credit for courses in education, engineering, and physical education, as well as other coursework completed at recognized post-secondary institutions.

Completion times

Students can complete this program in 3 years or less of full-time study, depending on the amount of transfer credit awarded, and how quickly the student completes each course. There is no time limit for completing the degree. The program may be completed faster if transfer credit is applied toward your degree.

How to apply

You can apply to AU online, anytime. Once you’ve completed the online application form and paid the one-time general application fee (and transfer credit evaluation fee, if applicable), you’re officially an AU student and can start registering in courses.

How to enrol in an undergraduate program

Transfer and advanced credit

If you have previous post-secondary education you may be eligible for transfer credit. If you have learning drawn from life and work experience that relates to this program you may wish to consider Prior Learning Assessment and Recognition (PLAR). These process could result in your having fewer courses to complete en route to your AU degree.

More about transfer and advanced credit at AU

Request and send your transcripts if you want us to consider your previous post-secondary education for transfer credit.

Learn more about MyCreds

Resources and links

Additional information that you need to know about AU and this program.

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