Bachelor of Integrative Studies and Innovation

Liberal Arts and Integrative Studies
University Advisement and Enrichment Center, Suite 180
MSC06 3680
1 University of New Mexico
Albuquerque, NM 87131-0001
(505) 277-0122

Degree Offered

  • Bachelor of Integrative Studies and Innovation (B.I.S.I.)
    Concentration: Global and National Security.

The faculty of The University of New Mexico offers the degree of Bachelor of Integrative Studies and Innovation (B.I.S.I.). This program, approved in 2013, is administered through University College.

The focused nature of the B.I.S.I. degree specifically engages students who have a particular creative solution they are seeking within a degree plan not offered by any singular discipline. Students are encouraged to design an individualized program that will prepare them for unique or advanced learning experiences with international, cooperative or professional schools. The B.I.S.I. may be used as part of a dual degree program or as a second degree. Students will be required to select areas of study under three disciplines, and also have the option to complete a departmental minor.

Strict compliance with B.I.S.I. requirements is mandatory for admission to and continuation in the program. Changes to approved Plans of Study may be made only in consultation with a program advisor. Students in the program must meet the general academic regulations of the University for admission, academic standing, and graduation found under the University Catalog headings of Admissions and Undergraduate Programs. Students who have not been continuously enrolled for three consecutive terms must follow the program requirements of the current UNM Catalog upon readmission.

Questions regarding any aspect of the program should be addressed to an advisor in the Liberal Arts and Integrative Studies office.

Courses for Which Degree Credit Is and Is Not Given

Credit toward a degree is given for:

  1. Up to 4 credit hours of physical education (PENP, PHED); and up to 4 credit hours of music ensemble.
  2. Up to 30 credit hours of correspondence coursework.
  3. Any approved coursework from an accepted Baccalaureate degree program.

Credit toward a degree is not given for:

  1. Any course numbered below 101.
  2. Any credit hours in a course that exceed the maximum number of credit hours the originating department stipulates for that course in this Catalog.

Grade Point Average

The B.I.S.I. grade point average is based on all attempted University of New Mexico courses that are acceptable to the program, as defined above.

Admission Requirements

Admission to the program for the current term must take place before the end of the third week of classes. After that deadline, admission is for the following term (Fall, Spring or Summer). See a program advisor for more information on admission requirements.

Minimum requirements to transfer into the B.I.S.I. program are as follows:

  1. Completion of General Education Curriculum: Communication.
  2. A minimum cumulative grade point average of 2.50 or higher.
  3. LAIS 150 Foundations of Integrative Thought
  4. A minimum of 26 earned credit hours applicable to the program.

Application Process

The application process to the B.I.S.I. program includes:

  1. Preliminary Advisement Meeting: Application begins with an advisement session with a program advisor. The meeting provides applicants with an opportunity to discuss ideas, goals, and requirements for the degree, and to learn about resources that will help with the rest of the admission process.
  2. Statement of Purpose: This document should describe how participation in the B.I.S.I. program will help the student meet his or her educational and career goals, and must be comprised of a minimum of 250 words. 
  3. Plan of Study: This comprehensive Plan of Study includes identification of three disciplines of the student's choosing for completion of the degree. The Plan of Study must list all coursework taken (including transfer work) and remaining courses that the student intends to take to complete the degree. Any additional courses necessary for advanced study preparation may be included. No more than 30 credit hours from one subject are allowed. Students must consult departmental sections of this Catalog to find courses and minors (if applicable) appropriate for the Plan of Study.

Note: Application is not accepted unless the Statement of Purpose and Plan of Study are signed by both the student and faculty mentor and submitted together.

Graduation Requirements

Students must see an advisor in the program office to apply for graduation one year prior to that in which they plan to graduate. An “apply to graduate” hold appears on students' accounts after 100 credit hours are earned as a reminder of the requirement. At that time, students and the advisor view a LoboTrax Degree Audit specifying the remaining requirements to be completed for graduation. It should be noted that students are solely responsible for knowing and completing all requirements for graduation from the B.I.S.I. program. Students must know how to run and read their LoboTrax Degree Audits in order to check progress to graduation. It is recommended that students run and save (or print) an audit each time a change is made to their schedule as audits are not saved in LoboWeb.

In addition to adherence to approved plans of study, specific graduation requirements are as follows:

  1. Completion of the General Education curriculum. Refer to the Undergraduate Program section of this Catalog for information on courses that meet General Education curriculum and U.S. and Global Diversity and Inclusion requirements.
  2. A minimum of 120 credit hours of earned credit acceptable to the program as defined above.
  3. A minimum cumulative UNM grade point average of 2.00.
  4. A minimum of 45 credit hours earned in courses at the upper-division level (courses numbered 300–499). Transfer courses in which credit hours were earned at a lower-division designation cannot be transferred as upper-division to count towards a B.I.S.I. degree.
  5. A minimum grade-point average of 2.00 on all upper-division coursework completed at The University of New Mexico.
  6. A minimum of 36 credit hours of academic work earned while enrolled in the B.I.S.I. program (department residency requirement). These may not include: credit by exam, transfer credit and/or concurrent enrollment, nonprofessional-physical education and/or music ensemble, or independent study/problems courses unless specifically approved by a program advisor.) They must include the final 36 credit hours of enrollment prior to graduation from the program.
  7. A minimum of 9 credit hours of program core courses.
  8. Completion of a capstone project (LAIS 499 Senior Seminar) approved by the faculty mentor. The capstone project proposal should identify the faculty mentor, explain the student's goals and rationale for the project, as well as a timeframe for completion, discuss the project's intellectual and problem-solving merits, and demonstrate the project's feasibility towards necessary resources and qualifications.
  9. Completion of areas of study under three disciplines at UNM. A statement of how the chosen disciplines create a singular experience for the student is required.
  10. Fulfillment of the University residency requirement (30 credit hours, including the "15 after 92 rule").

Major Study 

The student's approved Plan of Study as described above identifies courses taken to complete areas of study in three disciplines.


Core Courses
LAIS 150 Foundations of Integrative Thought 3
LAIS 311 Experiential Learning and Research 3
LAIS 499 Senior Seminar 3
Subtotal 9
Additional Requirements  
Courses chosen to fulfill Discipline I varies
Courses chosen to fulfill Discipline II varies
Courses chosen to fulfill Discipline III varies
 Approved Degree Plan Total (minimum) 45


Concentration in Global and National Security

The B.I.S.I. concentration in Global and National Security is designed for students who wish to focus on analysis of global and national security issues and to their potential solutions. An understanding of the policy and technical elements of global and national trends is essential to being able to analyze issues and threats related to global and national security. To complete this concentration, students must take: basic critical thinking and quantitative analysis courses, a foreign (non-English) language sequence, a foundational course that introduces concepts of global and national security, as well as electives in global and national security, as described below:

Basic Critical Thinking and Quantitative Analysis
Any course in computer science except for BCIS 1110. 3
MATH 1350
Introduction to Statistics
a MATH or STAT course above MATH 1250 or MATH 1350.
PHIL 1120 Logic, Reasoning, and Critical Thinking 3
9 additional credit hours. Select one course from three of the following groups:
AMST 1140; PH 102; SOCI 2340. 3
ANTH 1140, 1155; LING 2110; MLNG 1110. 3
ENG 200; GEOG 217; ME 217. 3
GEOG 1150, 1165, 1175, 181. 3
PHIL 1115; RELG 1110, 2110, 2120. 3
POLS 2110, 2120. 3
Subtotal 18
Foreign Language
Completion or testing equivalent of second-semester intermediate non-English language courses.
Subtotal 12
Foundational Course
LAIS 340 Introduction to Global and National Security 3
Subtotal 3
Global and National Security Electives
21 credit hours comprised of upper-division courses, with no more than 9 credit hours from any one area. Visit the program Web site for an approved course list.
Subtotal 21
Total 54

Concentration in Military Studies

The B.I.S.I concentration in Military Studies provides the opportunity for students to develop a unique program of study combining courses from three or more University of New Mexico departments and/or colleges including at least two ROTC branches. This concentration is available to all students and does not necessarily lead to a military commission. No official minor is required to be declared with this concentration, but the use of an existing departmental minor is encouraged (excluding the Military Studies minor options).

Graduation Requirements
Students must receive a grade of “C” or higher in all the following requirements:

1. Completion of 10 courses selected from the following with at least 15 hours completed at the upper-division level:
    • AFAS: 120, 121, 250, 251, 300, 301, 400, 401
    • MLSL: 101, 102, 201, 202, *301, 302, *401, *402
    • NVSC: 101, 105, 201, 300, 303, 304, 331, 401, 407, 431
All courses cannot come from the same subject.

2. Completion of 6 additional hours from the following:
    • AFAS 325 Air Force ROTC Directed Studies
    • AMST 350 T: US War on Terror
    • ENGL 2210 Professional and Technical Communication
      or ENGL 2220 Introduction to Professional Writing
    • GEOG 1165 People and Place
    • HIST 309 The French Revolution and Napoleon, 1789-1815
    • HIST 311 World War I, 1914-1918
    • HIST 313 World War II and Reconstruction in Europe
    • HIST 331 The American Revolution, 1763-1789
    • HIST 334 The Civil War Era
    • HIST 349 Military History of the United States to 1900
    • HIST 350 Modern U.S. Military History, 1900 to Present
    • HIST 440 Atomic America
    • HLED 2996 T: Introduction to Emergency Management and Preparedness
    • MLSL 303 Military History of the United States
    • PCST 1110 Introduction to Peace Studies
    • PCST 306 Peace and Conflict
    • PCST 307 Nonviolent Alternatives
    • POLS 441 Civil Wars
    • RELG 1110 Introduction to World Religions
    • SUST *418 Nuclear New Mexico: Environmental and Social Impacts
    • UHON 401 Honors Seminar: Post War Studies: Iraq
Or other courses approved by the Advisor such as topics.

3. Completion of one of the following five options:

I. Completion of 12 or more additional hours from requirement 2 above.

II. Completion of a second (non-English) language at the 4th semester-level or the ACTFL Intermediate-mid equivalent.
    • Suggested: Arabic, Chinese, French, or Russian

III. Completion of 12 hours from the following:
    • GEOG **381L Introduction to Geographic Information Systems
    • GEOG *481L Map Design and Geovisualization
    • GEOG 483L Remote Sensing Fundamentals
    • GEOG 484L Applications of Remote Sensing
    • GEOG 485L Internet Mapping
    • GEOG 486L Applications of GIS
    • GEOG 487L Spatial Analysis and Modeling
    • GEOG 488L GIS Concepts and Techniques

IV. Completion of 12 hours in Computer Science

V. Completion of 12 hours of college level courses from the following departments: Physics & Astronomy (PHYS/PHYC 1230 or above, or any ASTR course), Chemistry (1120C or above), Mathematics & Statistics (MATH 1220 or above, or any STAT course)

Minor Study

The minor in Integrative Studies and Innovation allows creative students who are not in an interdisciplinary major to broaden their academic experience while obtaining a bachelor’s degree in their chosen discipline.


Completion of 18 credit hours in courses approved by a program advisor including:

  • Statement of focus of study and rationale for course selection of the minor;
  • LAIS 150 Foundations of Integrative Thought (3 credit hours);
  • a minimum of 6 credit hours at the 300- or 400-level.

Departmental Honors

A separate departmental honors designation is not available for a B.I.S.I. degree. However, students who meet all requirements may receive baccalaureate honors as specified in the Undergraduate Program section of this Catalog.


LAIS 150. Foundations of Integrative Thought. (3)

LAIS 199. Customized Curriculum: The Future of Degrees. (3)

LAIS 309. Topics in Integrative Studies. (1-3 to a maximum of 12 Δ)

LAIS 311. Experiential Learning and Research. (3, may be repeated three times Δ)

LAIS 340. Elements of Global and National Security [Introduction to Global and National Security]. (3)

LAIS 341. innovationAcademy. (3)

LAIS 342. Disney College Program Internship. (3)

LAIS 343. Create Sell Bank I. (3)

LAIS 344. Student Athlete Identity. (3)

LAIS 345. Elements of Community Safety and Human Security [Introduction to Community Safety and Human Security]. (3)

LAIS 409. Individual Study. (1-3 to a maximum of 15 Δ)

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