Curriculum: Bachelor of Arts in Professional Studies

Curriculum: Bachelor of Arts in Professional Studies
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curriculum icon Curriculum at a Glance

The Only Customizable Curriculum is the Bachelor of Arts in Professional Studies

All coursework for the Bachelor of Arts in Professional Studies will be completed online. There are 120 total credit hours needed to complete this degree, and each student’s curriculum track will be uniquely designed around their career goals.

BAPS Full Curriculum Breakdown by classes: PD4030, PD2180, and the Core Professional Development

Professional Studies Core Courses

While this program is highly customizable, there are core courses that every professional studies student will be required to take. These courses help determine the rest of your education track by defining your goals and exploring your past life experience. They include: the Professional Studies Foundation Courses, six Professional Development Core Courses, and a Capstone Course.

The entire professional studies foundation courses core

Co-Op Learning and Life Experience Credits

From the core courses, your path through the Bachelor’s in Professional Studies is outlined based on your goals and life experience. “Life experience” can refer to:

  • Professional work history
  • Volunteer experience
  • Military service (either active duty or veteran)
  • Leadership experience

There are six competencies that can qualify life experience toward your co-op credits. These competencies have been identified as essential for the modern working environment. These include:

  1. Taking initiative, personal responsibility, and exhibiting professional integrity
  2. Managing projects, tasks, and time
  3. Managing conflict and interpersonal communications
  4. Exhibiting emotional intelligence, empathy, and inclusion in the workplace
  5. Using professional networking strategies and digital technologies
  6. Adapting to organizational change and emphasizing personal growth.

Chances are, with at least four years already in the job market, you may be able to illustrate these competencies through your past experience and bypass the Co-Op section of the Professional Studies curriculum! If not, you will need to complete the Co-Op Courses that are still required for graduation.

Transfer Credits

Fast-tracking your education doesn’t stop at Co-Op learning! Through the Bachelor’s in Professional Studies, your previous school credits will also be counted toward the other core areas of the curriculum, including: Electives and General Education. Refer to the Admission Requirements page for additional details on which credits are accepted.

This means that you’ll only be responsible for courses that are either part of your unique education track or are courses that genuinely interest you for further learning. No other program at the University of Cincinnati allows for this level of education track customization!

We are here to support you!

The process of mapping an education track based on life experience can take months at other institutions. Through this program, the process will likely be completed in a single semester. Our world-class faculty and staff will guide you throughout the process to ensure that you are on the right path and will accomplish your career goals.

The University of Cincinnati wants to give you the chance to graduate as efficiently as possible. What you bring with you will determine your journey, so reach out now to get started!


Professional Development Foundation's Course

Course Title / Description Credit
Professional Development Foundations
Course: PD2180
Credit: 6
This foundational course is designed to lead students through an in-depth process of self-evaluation, skill assessment, and career research resulting in knowledge which they will directly apply in the creation of their unique academic and professional development/career plans. Students will gain a better understanding of themselves as both a learner and professional and will sharpen their career focus by becoming familiar with the array of professional opportunities available to them. They will become familiar with the general skills and competencies which all professionals in the future workplace will be expected to have and begin taking the requisite steps to attain professional success as they choose to define it. Additionally, during this course students will create/enhance the professional documents (resume/CV) and profiles (LinkedIn) required of all professionals and will participate in the co-op job search process and/or prepare a professional portfolio and submit it for Prior Learning Assessment (PLA). This course is tailored for students participating in the BA Professional Studies program.
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Professional Development Core Courses

Course Title / Description Credit
Team Building
Course: AIS3010
Credit: 3
Facilitation skills, group roles, team performance assessment, stages of team development, dysfunctional teams, autonomous work teams. Class will function in teams to accomplish a project and numerous exercises/activities.
Diversity in Professional Settings
Course: AIS4075
Credit: 3
Students will understand basic gender and diversity theories. The course will examine the effects of gender and diversity in the workplace and how to balance these issues.
Business Communication
Course: COMM2081
Credit: 3
This course introduces foundational business communication principles and practices. Students will learn to analyze different communication situations; to plan and design oral and written communications; to communicate effectively using appropriate formats, styles, and technologies; and to apply critical thinking and problem-solving skills in order to achieve desired communication objectives.
Fundamental Data Skills for the Future Workplace
Course: PD3030
Credit: 3
Through this course, students will develop foundational digital literacy that will result in the ability to be conversant with data they may encounter in the workplace. Students will also build competence to contribute to teams that often include technical teammates such as software engineers and data scientists. Upon completing this course, they will have a fundamental understanding of applying digital methods to problem-solving and organizational decisions.
Conflict Resolution and the Human Factor
Course: PD3070
Credit: 3
This course will provide students with the knowledge and skills used to manage conflicts in various settings. It explores why conflict exists and the history of conflict resolution. Students will examine the human factors involved in conflict and practice communication skills unique to managing conflict, including in the workplace. The course will also explore the impact of different strategies and techniques for resolving conflicts.
Group Decision-Making and Problem-Solving
Course: PD4050
Credit: 3
This culminating course requires that students apply their broad knowledge and the skills and competencies acquired through BPS coursework and co-op to the deliberate process of group problem-solving. Students will learn the steps involved in the group problem-solving process from problem identification and analysis through the creative process of generating and evaluating potential solutions and ethically and persuasively communicating them to stakeholders to build consensus. Through working in groups, students will apply this process to a real organizational problem. The final project requires participants to articulate the process in detail, reflect on what was learned, and present a solution proposal.
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Professional Development Capstone

Course Title / Description Credit
Advanced Professional Development
Course: PD5001
Credit: 3
This course will help students develop the interpersonal skills, emotional intelligence, and cultural humility to thrive in the workplace and get them started on their post-graduation journey. Students will assess their own cultural perceptions, become familiar with organizational diversity and inclusion practices and policies, and examine cross-cultural differences in communication and behavior in the global workforce. Additionally, students will showcase their professional identity through the creation of a comprehensive professional portfolio in which they will articulate the value of their skills, competencies, and professional experiences. This portfolio will serve as the foundation for their post-graduation plans. Finally, upon completion of this course, students will be prepared to practice strategies to achieve professional wellness through successful stress management and setting professional boundaries.
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