This program is designed for those capable and motivated students who wish to undertake a course of study that cannot be provided by any of the offered bachelor’s degree programs. The student will be responsible for submitting to the Academic Studies Committee no later than the first semester of the student’s junior year 1) an Individualized Studies request form and 2) a coherent written proposal for a specialized program of study. The Individualized Studies request form is available in the Office of the Registrar.
The proposal should articulate what the program of study is, why the existing structured degree programs do not fulfill the requirements of the specialized program of study, and how the student will make use of existing Wilkes courses to accomplish his or her degree requirements. The proposal may be composed solely by the student; the student should, however, seek the advice of his or her advisor in formulating the plan. The program of studies may incorporate courses offered by all departments at the University and must be of a duration to require, minimally, three additional semesters of full-time study for completion. NOTE: All prerequisites for courses included in the specialized program must be met.
The student’s record must demonstrate consistent excellence in academic achievements. In addition, with approval of the appropriate department chairperson and the Academic Standards Committee, academic credit may be assigned for Prior Learning Experience, that is, learning achieved by means of appropriate off-campus study, work, and travel, or for knowledge and skills developed prior to enrollment at the University. For information on Prior Learning Assessment Policies and Procedures at Wilkes University, contact the Prior Learning Assessment Coordinator in the University College.
The entire proposal must be submitted to and approved by the student’s advisor(s) and by the Academic Standards Committee before work is begun on the specialized program of study.
The minimal requirements for the baccalaureate degree in Individualized Studies are 1) the accumulation of at least 120 credits, 2) completion of the Wilkes University General Education Curriculum, including a capstone experience, and 3) the completion of an appropriate number of junior- and senior-level courses.
For examples of existing specialized and expanded degree programs, see descriptions of the following majors: Applied and Engineering Sciences; Biology with a minor in Earth and Environmental Sciences and a Marine Science option; Computer Information Systems; Criminology; Earth and Environmental Sciences with a Marine Science option; Health Sciences; Integrative Media; International Studies; Medical Technology; Musical Theatre; and Nursing.