Individualized Degree Programs

Individualized Degree Programs
16 Johnston Hall
101 Pleasant Street SE
Minneapolis, MN 55455
(612) 625-2020

8 AM - 4:30 PM, Monday - Friday (closed on University holidays) 
Drop-in Advising is available via email at Email with questions, and an IDP advisor will be happy to get back to you and either answer them or help you set up a remote advising appointment.

The bachelor of individualized studies (BIS) and the individually designed interdepartmental major (IDIM) are for College of Liberal Arts students who want to tailor their educational programs to their own interests and goals.

  • The bachelor of individualized studies (BIS) is a degree program in which you combine three areas of concentration rather than have a major. One concentration may be from another University of Minnesota college (non-College of Liberal Arts), and the concentrations may be unrelated to each other.
  • An individually designed interdepartmental major (IDIM) (for a bachelor of arts degree) enables you to focus on a unifying theme by combining courses from three or more CLA departments.

Information Sessions

The first step for students interested in the Bachelor of Individualized Studies (BIS) or the Individually Designed Interdepartmental Major (IDIM) is to complete the CLA Individualized Degree Programs Information Session Module. You can access the Information Session Module here:

Make sure to click the button at the bottom that says "Done" to indicate you have reviewed the material on each page (after the intro page). Once you have completed the module:

1. Email

2. Please give us:

  • your name
  • your University of Minnesota student ID number (if you have one)
  • a couple of times you would be available for an appointment

3. An advisor will respond to your email to set up an appointment to answer questions about the module and to discuss planning your individualized degree.

If you cannot access the module for any reason, then you are welcome to set up an individual information session by emailing

BIS/IDIM Deadlines

  • Meet with an advisor to go over a rough draft of your proposal and course worksheet: February 9, 2024
  • Final submission deadline: February 12, 2024 (the following final submission deadline is September 30, 2024)
  • You cannot submit a proposal if you haven't attended an information session, attended a planning session with an advisor, declared the BIS or IDIM, and reviewed a rough draft and course list with an advisor.

Advisors & Staff

Wendy Nicholson-Kotas

Wendy joined the Individualized Degree Programs staff in spring 2012 after serving as an academic advisor in the Social Sciences Community in the College of Liberal Arts. She received her BA at Bryn Mawr College and master's degree in the Winterthur Program in Early American Culture, an interdisciplinary program focusing on history, art history, and museum studies. She received a PhD in history at the University of California, Berkeley and then served as a faculty member at Lawrence University in Appleton, Wisconsin before coming to the University of Minnesota.

Kathryn Kluegel
Senior Advisor

Kathryn joined the Individualized Degree Programs staff in August 2004 as a full-time advisor. After graduating from CLA summa cum laude with an IDIM major incorporating human biology, cultural anthropology, and psychology; Kathryn worked in San Francisco with an advertising agency and the San Francisco Film Festival. She then went on to do graduate work at Rutgers University in New Jersey, where she taught courses in cultural anthropology and sex/gender studies.  In addition to her advising work with individualized degree and CLA students, she is also a freelance writer.