UW-Stout's Bachelor of Science in Industrial Management: An Articulation Agreement between UW-Stout and the Wisconsin Technical College System (WTCS) Allows for the Transfer of Up to 40 Technical Credits, Plus Appropriate General Education Credits, for the Bachelor of Science in Industrial Management

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For Greg Brinkman, the decision to pursue a bachelor's degree in industrial management from the University of Wisconsin-Stout (UW-Stout) was made easy thanks to its distance learning program specially designed for technical college graduates with work experience. Brinkman graduated with an associate of applied science degree in residential design in 1982 from Northcentral Technical College in Wausau, Wisconsin. He was employed as a drafter, then designer, for 18 years. In 2001 he made the decision to earn a bachelor of science in industrial management (BSIM) from UW-Stout--Wisconsin's polytechnic university--120 miles from his home.

The BSIM was designed for people just like Brinkman because the institution recognized a need among adult students with technical college degrees. The program was developed to provide these students with an opportunity to earn baccalaureate degrees by building on their technical education. According to the program authorization, the BSIM degree was intended to meet industry's need for skilled professionals who have the ability to deal with both technical and managerial issues. Graduates were expected to recognize and apply personnel and industrial management principles benefiting themselves, their employers and the state.

Surveys Conducted to Determine Impact of BSIM

BSIM's director surveyed the program's 177 graduates to determine if the degree benefited them professionally and economically as envisioned. UW-Stout systematically surveys for the impact of graduates' education on their personal development and satisfaction. one- and three-year graduate follow-up studies determine student satisfaction and educational effectiveness as well as job placement and salary data.

The BSIM was offered by the university from 2000-2006, It has since been redesigned and is now delivered as a B.S, in management with concentrations in business, industrial or service management. The median age of graduates falls between 36 and 40 years old. Survey respondents were predominately male (79 percent), with females being represented slightly higher than the 18 percent of their representation as graduates,

The program proved successful in serving its target population--83 percent of the BSIM graduates had completed a technical college program. Approximately 50 percent of those who had attended a technical college continued in the BSIM degree within three years, while one-fifth of the respondents had a gap of 10 years or more between the two institutions. Supporting the idea of lifelong learning, 70 percent of respondents brought credits from institutions other than technical colleges. More than 50 percent of the respondents transferred in more than 20 credits from other universities and colleges,

The BSIM is atypical of the degree programs at UW-Stout in that it is designed as a baccalaureate degree completion program for the place-bound technical professional who has earned a two-year technical college degree. Students are not admitted as freshmen, but transfer into the program with junior standing after completing a program at a technical college or with significant technical work experience. The program is typical of UW-Stout's programs because it meets the definition of having a societal need. has a core of professional courses, and meet, general education requirements of the university.

Easy Access, Seamless Transfers

The BSIM curriculum consists of three areas: general education, professional studies and technical emphasis. The general education and professional studies components each consist of 42 credits, while the technical emphasis consists of 40 credits, An applied associate of science (AAS) degree from any Wisconsin technical college includes both general education and technical credits. An articulation agreement between UW-Stout and the Wisconsin Technical College System (WTCS) exists allowing for the transfer of up to 40 technical credits plus appropriate general education credits. …