Format Credit Hours Tuition Entry Terms
100% Online 120 credits $308/cr. in-state and $385/cr. out-of-state* Fall/Spring/Summer

*This special e-tuition rate applies to out-of-state students enrolled in a UMaineOnline degree or certificate program.

Bachelor of University Studies (BUS)

The Bachelor of University Studies (B.U.S.) is UMaine’s degree completion program for busy adults. Many adults who have some higher-education experience but no bachelor’s degree find that life circumstances or interests make a traditional major and/or on-campus study difficult. Often family, job, and other responsibilities do not allow for full-time study. For these students, the B.U.S. program provides an excellent opportunity to develop a program of study that encompasses their interests and makes maximum use of their existing transfer credits. The program is also available in a part-time, online format to accommodate the needs of working adults.

The B.U.S. curriculum can be totally self-designed, or students may select one of three existing tracks (24 credit hours). The B.U.S. program offers the following track options:

With its multiple track options, the B.U.S. program provides an opportunity both for students who would benefit from an individually-designed interdisciplinary program of study, as well as for students who would prefer a more prescribed curriculum.

In their first semester, B.U.S. students take a required (online) one credit course – UST 100: Introduction to University Studies – in which they have a chance to explore their goals, refresh their knowledge about essential resources and college success skills, explore the UM curriculum, and draft a proposed plan of study, either self-designed using existing UMaine courses of with one of the existing tracks listed above.

Students work with an advisor to articulate their goals leading to specific educational outcomes that will work well with their current life circumstances. Maintenance of a 2.0 GPA is required to remain in good standing as a degree candidate. Students suspended from degree candidacy for failing to complete an approved plan (Self-Designed Track students) or falling below the required grade point average may be reinstated to degree candidacy after one semester upon approval of a plan and improved academic standing, as long as they meet all other requirements.

Visit the Bachelor of University Studies website to learn more about this exciting program!


In order to complete a degree from the University of Maine, students must earn a minimum of 30 credits originating from the University of Maine with at least 15 of those credits at the 300 level or higher.

Core Courses (7 credits)

  • UST 100: Introduction to the Bachelor of University Studies (1 credit)
    Offered in an online format in six-week sequences
  • UST 300: Core Course in University Studies (3 credits)
    Meets upper level Writing Intensive requirement in the major
  • UST 499: Senior Capstone (3 credits)
    Meets General Education Capstone requirement

Additional Courses (minimum 24 credits)

In addition to the above required courses, students must select and complete the self-designed option or one of the following tracks:

Students must also complete the university’s general education requirements, as well as all other UMaine graduation requirements.


UMaine makes it easy to apply — on your terms. Apply online, mail a downloadable application, or use the Common Application.

Request to Reactivate Admissions Application: for students who had previously applied to UMaine within the last 2 years, but did not enroll

University of Maine Online Application: for new applicants

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Contact Us

Have questions about earning your B.U.S. online with UMaine? Contact Tiffany Peterson, UMaineOnline Advisor, at 207.581.5858 or at

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Students’ Experience Earning Their B.U.S. Online

scholarships available - click here to learn about scholarship opportunities

What Faculty Have to Say About B.U.S. Students

“Students in the Bachelor of University Studies program bring to their studies a wonderful wealth of knowledge growing out of their broad range of experiences as Adult Learners. Their deep roots in Maine communities not only brings richly diverse perspectives to all University discussions but also grounds us firmly in our mission to the state. Every project the University Studies students have worked on with me has contributed to the state’s knowledge base, in photographic, written, and video documentaries of our historical foundations, current social conditions, and impressively varied, culturally rich environments, serving us all and generations to come.”

– Dr. Michael Grillo


The B.U.S. program prepares students for a number of opportunities and is intended to complement a student’s interests and career goals. If completing a self-designed track, students are encouraged to design their program around predetermined interests. Some students choose to complete independent studies (when appropriate) to further their knowledge in specific areas.

The Bachelor of University Studies offers career development and exploration through UST 100: Introduction to the Bachelor of University Studies. UST 100 is one of the first classes in which new students enroll. Not only do students complete a career aptitude survey, but they also use UMaine’s Mentor program which is a group of UMaine alums who will discuss their jobs and work-related questions with individual students. Students in UST 100 interview a mentor from a selected field of interest to gain additional knowledge of their intended career choice.

Occupations of B.U.S. graduates include:

  • attorneys
  • business owners
  • college professors
  • clergy
  • counselors
  • government employees
  • journalists
  • military personnel
  • professional athletes
  • public safety

Many students build their programs of study around their intended career, thus extending and creating skill sets that are useful in employment.