Inver Hills' Individualized Professional Studies program offers adult learners a personalized degree option
Individualized Professional Studies

You can use previously earned college credits and earn college credit for the knowledge and skills you've gained through your work and life experiences. Credit for prior learning allows you to save time and money earning your degree.

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Individualized Professional Studies

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This degree program was designed for you, the adult learner. If you have five or more years of work/life experience past high school and are working toward career advancement, this is for you. The Associate of Science program is intended to provide you with the opportunity to develop a specific focus in an area that is related to your world of work.

In addition, the degree option allows you to use previously earned credits along with the ability to earn college credit for the knowledge and skills you have gained through your work and life experiences. These options allow you, the adult learner to earn your degree in a more cost effective and expedient manner.

Program Information

The IPS degree was developed in consultation with leadership from corporate, non-profit, and educational organizations. These leaders helped shape the program and are in agreement that this type of program is needed in all facets of the world of work. Their direction validated the program’s credibility.

IPS Features

  • Save time and money by earning credit for prior learning
  • Faster degree completion
  • Maximum use of previously earned credits
  • Seamless Transferability to four year college of choice
  • Educational degree planning with personal attention and support
  • Be with other adult learners like yourself. The average age of the students in this program is 41.
  • Military/Veterans – Learn how to utilize Military College Credits in your degree plan
  • Become a member of ASAP- Adult Success through Accelerated Programs.


Associate of Science (A.S.) in Individualized Professional Studies – 60 credits

Coursework   Program Planning Guide

Individualized Professional Studies – 30 credits

All courses must support stated degree objectives, but may come from any discipline including liberal arts.

Course Number Title Credits
Planning courses - highly recommended (0-4 cr)
INTS 1010 Educational Planning and Assessment 3 cr
INTS 1011 Prior Learning Assessment Development 1 cr

Liberal Arts – 30 credits

Course Number Title Credits
ENG 1108 Writing and Research Skills 4 cr
COMM 1100 OR
COMM 1110 OR
COMM 2230
Interpersonal Communication OR
Public Speaking OR
Small Group Communication
3 cr
Math or Lab Science (MnTC Goals 3 or 4) 3 cr
History/Social Science/Behavioral Science (MnTC Goal 5) 3 cr
Humanities/Fine Arts/Literature (MnTC Goal 6) 3 cr
MnTC Goals 7-10 any course 3 cr
Liberal Arts Electives (MnTC courses only) 11 cr
Total Credits: 30

What You Will Do In INTS 1010 (Educational Planning And Assessment) And INTS 1011 (Prior Learning Assessment Development)

  • Learn how to be an educated consumer of higher education. Research careers, two year and four year degree options as well as what knowledge and skills you have that can translate into college credits.
  • Make sense of your prior college credits, national certifications, military experience, and other training you have received for creating your educational plan.
  • Develop your individual two and/or four year degree plan with strategic course selection to validate your current career, prepare for a new career, and ensure easy transfer to a four year college.
  • Your program area courses in the IPS degree are created with an area of focus/concentration. Specific student examples include:
    • Human Resource Management
    • Sales and Marketing
    • Youth Advocacy
    • IT Communication
  • Learn how to translate your knowledge and skills to earn college credits through Prior Learning Assessment.

Prior Learning Assessment (PLA) Program

It’s real college learning that you have accomplished on your own. Combine your practical application and bridge that knowledge with new learning on concepts and theory in the subject area. Whether your knowledge was learned through work, volunteer or personal experiences, they are valuable and should be validated. You can do this via the PLA program and this will save you time and money towards achieving your academic and professional goals. PLAs are commonly completed in (but not limited to) Business, Communication, Computers, Office Systems, Human Services, Sociology and Interdisciplinary Studies.

PLA Benefits

  • Prior Learning Assessments can be utilized in your liberal arts curriculum, major and core curriculum, and/or additional credits for transfer purposes.
  • You will save money and time by earning college credit for your knowledge. You can cut your time for degree completion (two and four year) by 75% compared to students who do not take advantage of this opportunity developed especially for adult learners.
  • There is no limit to the number of credits you can earn through prior learning. It all depends on your knowledge and skill base.
  • Prior learning credits are transferable to four year colleges like Metropolitan State University, Saint Mary’s University, Concordia University, and The College of St. Scholastica.

Reasons To Choose An IPS Degree

  • Job Validation: Have your focus area of your plan mimic what you truly do in your job/career.
  • Promotion: If you cannot move forward without an achieved degree, this is for you.
  • Career Attainment: Use your current skills in combination with new courses that lead you to a change in your career.
  • Personal Reasons: Did you always want to complete your degree, but life got in the way? Do you want to be a role model for your children to prove how important education is at any age? Are you inspired to accomplish a life goal? This is for you.
  • Transferability: Build your degree plan to prepare for transfer.

Common Transfer Options

The A.S. in Individualized Professional Studies is intended for transfer to all four year colleges with accelerated adult degree completion programs for earning a bachelor’s degree. These include, but are not limited to:

  • Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota
  • Concordia University – St. Paul
  • The College of St. Scholastica
  • Augsburg College
  • Metropolitan State University

Adult Success through Accelerated Programs (ASAP)

For more information call, e-mail or visit:


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Skip Navigation LinksHome > Degrees and Programs > Individualized Professional Studies
Common Transfer Options

The A.S. in Individualized Professional Studies at Inver Hills transfers to four-year colleges and universities with accelerated bachelor's degree completion programs. Below are a few examples of potential transfer schools:

  • Saint Mary's University of Minnesota
  • Concordia University, St. Paul
  • The College of St. Scholastica
  • Augsburg College
  • Metropolitan State University
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Employment Information

With new career fields evolving in a fluctuating job market, employers frequently seek talented, experienced employees with skill and knowledge sets that span more than one discipline. Employers also require workforce members to take on more schooling to increase performance and open doors for advancement. The Individualized Professional Studies A.S. degree allows you to tailor your education to meet your specific career goals while saving you time and money in the process.

Career possibilities with an IPS degree
  • Art and life science
  • Art therapy
  • Medical ethics
  • Bioethics
  • Business in a changing society
  • Non-governmental organizations
  • Creative writing and performance art
  • Outdoor education and leadership
  • Economic development and micro-financing
  • Photography and journalism
  • Ecotourism
  • Poverty studies and social work
  • Pre-law and public accountability
  • Entrepreneurship and minority-owned businesses
  • Environmental awareness and education
  • Public health and indigenous populations
  • Environmental justice and politics
  • Science and art
  • Culture and human services
  • Science and faith
  • Feminist perspectives in advertising
  • Social entrepreneurship
  • Film and globalization
  • Social problems and the law
  • Gender and society
  • Special education and the built environment
  • Geochemistry and lake chemistry
  • Theater for social change
  • Human rights, ethnic policy, political reform
  • Youth subcultures and education
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Why Inver Hills?

Completing your A.S. in Individualized Professional Studies degree obligations at Inver Hills is smart on several key levels:

  1. Design a degree that fits your unique interests and professional goals
  2. Save time and money by turning your experiences into college credits
  3. Accelerate your career alongside expert faculty
  4. Receive an excellent education with one-on-one interactions with Inver Hills faculty and student support staff
  5. Work and study with students your own age with comparable experience sets
  6. Continue your academic and professional careers with less student debt *

* On a national scale, student loan debt has mushroomed to $1.2 trillion, which is greater than credit card debt and auto loan debt combined. In Minnesota, the average debt for four-year grads tops $30,000; 70 percent carry a student debt load.

Tuition and fees for one year at Inver Hills costs a little less than $5,300. Compare that to $15,000 to $20,000 at a for-profit college, or $40,000 to $50,000 at a private college or university. You can complete your first two years at Inver getting a topflight education firsthand from Ph.D. instructors and then transfer to a four-year as a junior all while saving thousands of dollars. It's a no-brainer.

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