Penn State launches new degree-completion program

April 21, 2016

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Penn State is offering a new social sciences degree program aimed at helping adults complete their college education online.

The new degree, a bachelor of science in integrated social sciences, is being offered by the Penn State College of the Liberal Arts exclusively online through Penn State World Campus. Students can transfer credits from six social science fields — anthropology, communication arts and sciences, economics, political science, psychology and sociology — and apply them toward the degree.

“This course of study allows a student to build upon a myriad of coursework and apply it to complete an unfinished degree,” said Diana Gruendler, the lead faculty member of the new program. “In the best tradition of a liberal arts education, the approach encourages students to appreciate and demonstrate the interrelationships between the social sciences.”

The program was developed after a University task force recommended the creation of programs that would make completing a degree easier for adults with some college credits. To graduate, students must complete 120 credits, including 30 in the social sciences.

As many as 90 credits can be transferred to Penn State. Students must complete at least 36 credits through Penn State to graduate.

“This degree represents a new frontier for us,” said Karen Pollack, the assistant vice provost for online and blended programs at Penn State World Campus. “The integrated social sciences degree offers students who want a Penn State degree the best way to leverage their previous education and educational experiences toward the completion of a college degree.”

Penn State World Campus, which has been offering degree programs online since 1998, was ranked No. 1 by U.S. News for the best online undergraduate programs in the country in 2015 and 2016.

The University is accepting applications for the new degree for admission in the fall 2016 semester, which begins in August.

Visit the Penn State World Campus website to learn more about the new bachelor’s degree in integrated social sciences.

Last Updated April 21, 2016