Serve Those Who Need It Most

Earn a degree that lets you follow your passion for helping others.

The only program of its kind in the region, the fully online Bachelor of Science in Behavioral and Social Science degree at Bethel University successfully prepares those working in this crucial sector to advance their careers.

Designed for individuals currently employed in the field, our online bachelor’s of behavioral and social science equips you to increase your earning potential and advance in your place of employment. A comprehensive core curriculum is supplemented with the opportunity to customize your course of study. Choose 12-13 hours of cognates in the areas of mental health, marriage and family, addictions, and criminal justice.

Additionally, our unique format combines the convenience of an online classroom with the practicality of hands-on learning where you’ll practice group facilitation, crisis intervention, interviewing and people-helping skills, participate in an internship, and gain other valuable real-world experiences. Courses are offered digitally, allowing you to attend class at a time that works around your schedule. All courses align with Indiana laws of the profession, and are taught by quality licensed instructors dedicated to your academic and personal success. With six start dates to choose from, you can complete the online bachelor’s of social science program in as little as two years.

After you graduate, you’ll be poised to work for any number of organizations. Some include social service agencies, crisis centers, mental health agencies, religious organizations, extended care facilities and substance abuse centers. The online bachelor’s of social science also prepares you for further graduate study.


Bethel University is regionally accredited by the Higher Learning Commission to grant bachelor’s and master’s degrees. The Higher Learning Commission is one of six regional accrediting agencies in the United States. Institutional accreditation evaluates an entire institution and accredits it as a whole.


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Program Details

Next Start Date: 06/27/2021
Credit Hours: 120
Cost/Credit: $415
Transfer Credits: Up to 90
Est. Completion Time: 2-4 Years
Accreditation: HLC

Course Requirements

Bethel’s online Behavioral and Social Science degree program features a customizable curriculum grounded in faith-based values. The degree requires 36 credit hours of general education classes, 36 elective credits, and 48-49 credits in your major.

General education courses offer an introduction to the arts and sciences within a college setting. Through this comprehensive course of study, students will gain appreciation for a broad range of subjects and build the skills necessary to succeed in higher education. 36 credit hours are required of general education courses.

Electives allow students to dive deeper into a wide range of subjects, and provide the opportunity to tailor a course of study based on interests and academic goals. Students are required to earn 36 credit hours of electives.

  • Students may transfer credit from other accredited institutions, provided the courses are equivalent to required Bethel courses and the student earned a grade of C or better.
  • CLEP testing available for select courses.
  • BSS 278: Introduction to the Human Service Profession (3)
  • BSS 279: Introduction to Research (3)
  • BSS 280: Introduction to Counseling Theories (3)
  • BSS 302: Casework Methods and Writing in the Human Services Profession (3)
  • BSS 371: Interviewing & People Helping Skills (3)
  • BSS 375: Crisis Intervention (3)
  • BSS 380: Group Facilitation in the Human Services Profession (3)
  • BSS 410: Administration of Human Service Agencies (3)
  • BSS 420: Research & Program Evaluation (3)
  • BSS 498: Internship in Human Services (3)
  • PSYC 288: Life Span Development (3)
  • SOC 202: Racial & Cultural Minorities (3)
Select 12-13 hours from the courses below:
  • ADC 301: Principles of Addiction (3)
  • ADC 320: Motivational Intervention & Cognitive Behavior Therapy (3)
  • ADC 330: Theories of Addiction Treatment (3)
  • CRMJ 101: Introduction to the American Criminal Justice System (3)
  • CRMJ 201: Juvenile Justice System (3)
  • CRMJ 301: Criminal Law (3)
  • MF 301: Family Systems & Family Development (3)
  • MH 301: Principles of Mental Health (3)
  • PSYC 386: Personality Theories (3)
  • PSYC 481: Abnormal Psychology (4)
  • SOC 252: Marriage & Family (3)
  • SOC 305: Parenting (3)

Admission Requirements

Undergraduate programs require:
  • Online undergraduate application
  • Submit your official transcripts (directly from the institution to Bethel) from all undergraduate work. If you have completed less than 30 credit hours, also submit your official high school or GED transcript
  • Show proficiency by either submitting your official SAT or ACT scores, completing a college-level English or math course or taking Bethel’s placement tests

Tuition and Fees

Bethel has long been touted for its value. We were ranked No. 2 on Washington Monthly’s Best Bang for the Buck-Midwest list, listed as one of the 50 Best Value Christian Colleges, and have made it to the top tier of U.S. News & World Report’s “Best Regional Universities- Midwest” list  for 14 consecutive years.

*Fees are charged per semester unless otherwise noted. This program takes an estimated six to eight semesters to complete, excluding transfer credits.

Payment Plan:

The college has a monthly installment plan available through Nelnet Campus Commerce. Enrollment can be completed online by accessing the student billing link through MyBethel or by calling 800.609.8056. Students will be charged an enrollment fee of $40.

Financial Aid

Bethel University is committed to ensuring that all our students receive an affordable education.

We offer financial aid based on need, and military benefits and are proud to offer extraordinarily competitive tuition rates.

FAFSA Information

To learn more about your financial aid options or submit a FAFSA, please see our Financial Aid page.

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Transfer Credits

Bethel is committed to helping you make the most of your previous educational experiences. Visit our Transfer Credits page to learn more.

Transfer Your Credits

Career Outcomes

An online social science degree can prepare students to work in a host of exciting careers. Career information taken from

Substance abuse counselors are responsible for helping clients recover from drug and alcohol addiction. They may be responsible for providing one-on-one support, managing caseloads, evaluating patients, facilitating interventions and treatment plans, and other relevant duties. These individuals earn a median annual salary of $38,146.

Criminologists are responsible for analyzing and researching criminal justice issues in order to learn about the causes of criminal behavior. Often working for law enforcement agencies, government agencies, or social psychology labs, these individuals conduct research and report their findings to policymakers. Those who work as criminologists earn a median annual salary of $41,992.

Social services managers plan, coordinate, and direct outreach programs for their organizations. They are responsible for evaluating candidates in order to analyze their needs, building ways for clients to receive necessities such as food and shelter, overseeing program budgets, and other relevant duties.These individuals earn a median annual salary of $54,239.

Benefits of Learning Online

An online degree can open doors to your career while allowing you to study in a convenient, affordable format.

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Request Information

Learn more about this program and other online academic opportunities at Bethel. Once you complete this form, here’s what you can expect from us:

  • A friendly phone call. We’ll contact you within 24 hours, ready to answer all of your questions.
  • Personalized treatment. You’ll get immediate access to your own dedicated and knowledgeable enrollment counselor. They’ll ask you more about your goals at Bethel, and walk you through everything you need to know to apply.

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