Degrees & Courses

BGS Degree - FAQ

Why are blended online courses better?

  • National research shows that online students complete their courses at a higher rate and earn better grades in a blended format.
  • NIU’s experience confirms that face-to-face class meetings build strong and lasting online learning communities.
  • Many courses use face-to-face meeting dates for student presentations or field trips to museums and live performances.
  • Courses prepare professionals for today’s workplace, which calls for combining efficient meetings with effective electronic communication.
  • The liberal arts tradition values individual and interpersonal learning.
  • The BGS online degree emphasizes both styles of learning.


Can anybody take an NIU online course?
You must be an NIU student. Visit NIU Admissions to begin your application process.

How much does an online course cost?
For more information on tuition and fees, contact the Bursar’s office at (815) 753-1885. Additional computer lab fees, material fees, and field trip fees may be levied on some courses.

What can I do with a BGS?
BGS graduates thrive in countless positions, attorney, youth counselor, police lieutenant, teacher, and customer service specialist, just to name a few. 

Can I start anytime?
NIU online courses coincide with fall, spring and summer terms. Forming an effective online community of learners means working with classmates and perhaps participating in real-time online discussions at designated times.

Do I have to take all my courses online?
No, you may combine any number of traditional courses with blended online courses. BGS courses meet on evenings and weekends to accommodate work and family schedules.

Which courses count toward which LA&S areas?

BEHAVIORAL AND SOCIAL SCIENCES consists of the following departments:
Anthropology, Economics, Geography, Political Science, Psychology, and Sociology.

PHYSICAL SCIENCES AND MATHEMATICS consists of the following:
Biology, Chemistry and Biochemistry, Computer Science, Geography, Geology and Environmental Geosciences, Mathematics, Physics and Statistics.

HUMANITIES consists of the following:
Communication Studies, English, Foreign Languages, History, Journalism, and Philosophy.

Note: Occasionally, courses may be counted toward more than one area, i.e. Brain and Behavior, a psychology course may count toward social studies or science.