General Studies

Resource Center

Contact Us:

Director
Julie Fellers Hook, Ed. D. | 260-481-6828 | hook@ipfw.edu

Academic Advisor
Sandy McMurtrie | 260-481-6828 | mcmurts@ipfw.edu

Academic Advisor
Crystal Milton | 260-481-6828 | miltonc@ipfw.edu

Administrative Assistant
Amanda Seilheimer | 260-481-6828 | seilheia@ipfw.edu

Student Records Manager
J. Mark Whinery| 260-481-6828 | whineryj@ipfw.edu



Follow us:

  1. What can I do with a general studies degree?
  2. Can I choose a speciality with in the General Studies degree program?
  3. What are the requirements for the Bachelor of General Studies degree (B.G.S.)?
  4. Do I have to take a placement test?
  5. What are fundamental skills competencies and which courses must I take to fulfill them?
  6. How can I find out who my advisor is?
  7. Must I go to an Indiana University campus to fulfill any course requirements?
  8. May I transfer previously earned credits to B.G.S.?
  9. How many previously earned college or university credits may I apply toward the degree?
  10. May I receive credit based on my life experiences?
  11. How long does it take to earn a general studies degree?
  12. Can I use any military service credit toward the general studies degree?
  13. Can I apply Advanced Placement Credit or CLEP credits to a general studies degree?
  14. What is general education and why is there a requirement?
  15. How do I apply for admission to IPFW and the general studies program?
  16. Can I receive financial assistance for my tuition and fees?
  17. How much will I have to pay for my tuition and fees at IPFW?
  18. What if I have to “stop out” for a semester or more?
  19. What are the important dates I need to know each semester?
  20. How do I register, drop, or add courses?
  21. How can I change my major?
  22. Can I be admitted if I have been dismissed from the university in a previous semester?
  23. How can I find information about academic programs, certificates, and minors?
  24. Where can I obtain a copy of my transcript?
  25. Can I have extra time to complete coursework?
  26. What does a “hold” do to my records?
  27. How do I apply for graduation?
  28. What kind of help can I find on campus as a student?

1. What can I do with a general studies degree?

Graduates have used their degrees to pursue further study and careers in areas such as business, public relations, medicine, law, education, and social work. Earning your degree can help you advance in your professional or military career, receive certification, expand your employment options, take the first step toward advanced studies, and build your confidence.
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2. Can I choose a speciality with General Studies degree program?

Yes, you can.  See the areas of study available.

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3. What are the requirements for the Bachelor of General Studies degree (B.G.S.)?

A minimum of 120 credit hours is required. Specific information including residency requirements (20 semester hours after admission) and course distribution can be found on the B.G.S. requirements page. In addition you must remain a student in good standing by earning a GPA of 2.0 while a student in the general studies program as well as a cumulative GPA of 2.0

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4. Do I have to take a placement test?

All regularly admitted first-year students must take the English, reading, and math placement tests before registering for these courses. If you are transferring academic credit to a major, you may want to check with your advisor to see if your transfer credit will meet department requirements before taking a placement test. Test results are valid for only two years from the date the tests are taken. If your scores indicate a need for critical inquiry COAS 111, you must satisfactorily complete this course within your first two enrollment periods.

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5. What are fundamental skills competencies and which courses must I take to fulfill them?

You must meet fundamental skills competency requirements that demonstrate college-level competence in six areas: two written communication (ENG W131) and one other composition course, oral communications (COM 114), computer literacy  and quantitative reasoning (MA 153, 168, or STAT 125) and a diversity course. Contact a general studies advisor for other specific course numbers and titles brought in through transfer credit or taken at another Indiana University campus.

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6. How can I find out who my advisor is?

Unless you request to see a specific advisor you have established a relationship with, student files are shared by three advisors in the general studies program. This method assures your access to advising when you need assistance. You may call 260-481-6828 to set up an appointment, email us, or stop by our advising office in Kettler 144 if you have a quick question or an emergency situation.

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7. Must I go to an Indiana University campus to fulfill course requirements?

You have many options for completing your B.G.S. You may enroll in a campus based program, like IPFW, or take online learning courses through IPFW, or a combination of the two.

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8. May I transfer previously earned credits to the B.G.S.?

Consideration is given to all previously earned college credit from other accredited institutions. Transfer credit or credit earned at Indiana University, or Purdue University Fort Wayne will be distributed into the B.G.S. based on the rules governing the local campus.

Once we’ve received your credentials and Admissions has evaluated your transcripts, the Admissions office will send you a report specifying how your previous college or university courses will transfer to IPFW. You may then schedule an appointment to see how previously earned credit will meet degree requirements in your specific situation.

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9. How many previously earned college or university credits may I apply toward the degree?

When pursing the B.G.S. you may apply up to 88 transfer credit hours toward your degree. Transfer credit hours are only applied if they fit into the general studies degree plan.  You may only apply a total of 64 community college credits.

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10. Can I receive credit based on my life experiences?

Credit may be awarded for college-level learning acquired through work experiences, travels, licenses, and certificates. Due to the individuality of self-acquired competency, general studies majors need to meet with the director to determine if this experience would be appropriate.

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11. How long does it take to earn a general studies degree?

The amount of time depends on the number of credit hours you’ve already earned and applied toward the degree, the type of general studies degree you are pursuing, and the amount of time you devote to your course work. Your advisor can work with you to plan a course of study that suits your schedule.

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12. Can I use any military service credit toward the general studies degree?

Yes, to receive credit for military service, you must submit copies to the Admissions office of your official discharge (DD214), or official active duty (DD295) or an official Community College of the Air Force transcript.

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13. Can I apply Advanced Placement Credit or CLEP credits to a general studies degree?

IPFW awards credit for Advanced Placement Examinations (AP), and College-Level Examination Programs (CLEP) on the basis of policy established by the department accepting the credit. Consult with your general studies advisor for specific scores and tests that will apply to your degree program.  Please consult the IPFW Admissions website for a list of specific exams IPFW will accept. 

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14. What is general education and why is there a requirement?

The overall purpose of General Education is to broaden your learning experience through courses outside your major. Some General Education courses will test your creative energies and challenge your critical thinking, while others will allow you to explore previously unknown territories. On a more practical note, general education skills are important for success in academic subjects as well as in your personal and professional life. Students should work with their advisors in meeting the general education area requirements for specific majors as well as in using transfer credit to apply to these areas.

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15. How do I apply for admission to IPFW and the General Studies program?

You may apply or complete a re-entry application with the IPFW Admissions Office via the Internet or by contacting them directly at 260-481-6812.

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16. Can I receive financial assistance for my tuition and fees?

Yes, the IPFW Financial Aid Office has application information for federal and state grants and loans, and information on various scholarships available at IPFW.

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17. How much will I have to pay for my tuition and fees at IPFW?

Tuition and fees can vary depending upon your admission date and if you decide to enroll in online education courses. You can find specific information about your account and issues regarding payment of fees and tuition by contacting the IPFW Bursar’s Office at 260-481-6824.

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18. What if I have to “stop out” for a semester or more?

Indiana University designed the General Studies Degree Program to meet the needs of non-traditional students as well as traditional students, taking into consideration that college-level learning is ageless in its application if the learning meets the criteria of transfer credit at the campus of admissions.

If you are “stopping out” (for reasons other than being academically dismissed) and are out more than one full fall/spring cycle, you will need to complete a re-entry application with Admissions to begin where you left off with the General Studies Degree Program.

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19. What are the important dates I need to know each semester?

See “Registration Dates” at the Registrar’s Office website

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20. How do I register, drop, or add courses?

After you are admitted you may access myIPFW, the student information system, to process your registration, financial aid, fee payments, and view grades, transcripts, and other student-related records. You may also contact your advisor or the General Studies advising office to assist you in processing this information.

Classes can be dropped without financial or academic penalty through the first week of classes. Classes can be dropped without academic penalty through the first nine weeks of classes.

Students in emergency situations after the deadline should contact their advisor for a Petition for Late Withdrawal to prevent serious academic penalties.

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21. How can I change my major?

You may change your major to General Studies by presenting a copy of your transcript to the General Studies department and scheduling an appointment with an advisor to review the distribution of credits. To meet residency requirements for your first semester, a student must be admitted to the department by the Pass/No Pass deadline.

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22. Can I be admitted if I have been dismissed from the university in a previous semester?

You must be a student in good standing, with a minimum GPA of 2.0. If you have been dismissed from the university you must sit out at least one semester before completing a re-admission application and paying a re-admission fee of $100.00.  Please contact the Mastodon Advising Center for information regarding re-admission.

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23. How can I find information about academic programs, certificates, and minors?

The current IPFW Bulletin provides specific information and a list of course requirements for each major. The bulletin is available online.

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24. Where can I obtain a copy of my transcript?

The Registrar’s Office in Kettler 107 provides unofficial transcripts to all IPFW students free of cost. This type of transcript is suitable for a visit with your academic advisor. Official transcripts are also available for a fee in the Registar's office.

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25. Can I have extra time to complete coursework?

A grade of Incomplete (I) may be granted to students who (1) are unable to complete specific course requirements for clearly unavoidable, non-academic reasons (such as extended illness or relocation) and (2) whose work has been of passing quality up to that time. The process is a contract between the student and the professor for time to complete the requirements and change the grade. The instructor must report the (I) on a specific form to the Registrar’s office and change the grade in the same manner when requirements are completed.  Schools or departments can also determine (I) policy also.

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26. What does a “hold” do to my records?

If you owe money to IPFW, have a parking fine, library fine, or other obligation to the university, a “hold” may be put on your records. You will be prohibited from registering, requesting copies of transcripts, doing a reentry if you’ve not attended in over a year, nor receive your diploma at graduation. Contact the Bursar’s office or your academic department for specific information if you encounter a “hold” on your records.

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27. How do I apply for graduation?

As a student you have the responsibility to meet the requirements of the degree you are seeking and notify our office of your intentions to graduate. You may set an appointment to review these requirements or give advance notice of that intention by submitting the graduation application online.

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28. What kind of help can I find on campus as a student?

In an effort to better serve all students, IPFW is offering more assistance online. The student resources list is especially helpful to the distance learner or prospective students seeking new information who may never need or want to come to campus. Review the list to get a sense of what is available.  Please consult with our academic advisor for more resources. 

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