Interdivisional Majors and Courses

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Interdivisional Course Descriptions

There are occasions when existing departmental majors at the University are not sufficient to meet students’ interests or educational goals.  Interdivisional majors allow students to explore coursework and field experience in multiple disciplines, typically in a more customizable fashion than would be found in a double-major or major-minor combination.  There are several different ways a student can accomplish this:

-        Interdisciplinary Studies Major—a student selects upper-level coursework from multiple academic divisions across several departments, and has an interdisciplinary studies advisor.
-        Special/Creative/Area Major (see “Alternate Major Programs”)—with the help of an advisory committee, the student develops a highly individualized program of study by selecting particular courses to meet targeted objectives.
-        Honors Program (see “Honors Program”)—students complete a series of special courses, each course using an interdisciplinary approach to address problems with multi-disciplinary implications.

Also, several departments offer majors or minors with course requirements from multiple divisions.  Students are encouraged to seek advice from faculty in some of their areas of interest to determine which degree program would best suit the student’s academic needs.

Interdisciplinary Studies Major 45-48hrs

Chair – Dr. Steve Hoekstra

The Interdisciplinary Studies program provides students with eclectic interests to plan their own flexible interdisciplinary/integrated program. An Interdisciplinary Studies major develops the ability to analyze and synthesize diverse theory and practice to an identified area of interest.  It is particularly good for fields where a strong liberal arts background is desired; for example, graduate studies in traditional liberal arts disciplines, law, business, government, and teaching.  Most first jobs for graduates do not require a specific degree, employers merely are looking for an ability to think, communicate, learn, analyze and solve problems, work with people, and be, above all, adaptable.  An Interdisciplinary Studies major allows the student to do this by providing a broad base of advanced studies in a variety of disciplines.

Admittance into the major – To maintain the integrity of the program, students must declare this major prior to completing 75 hours toward graduation, and must have achieved Cs or higher in ENGL120, ENGL121, and SCTH130

Core 42-45 hours - Concentrations are chosen from among the following five areas:

Natural Sciences – BIOL, CHEM, PHYS, MATH, COMP
Humanities – HIST, ENGL, REPH, Languages
Social Sciences – BUSA/ECON/ACCT, SOCI, POLI, PSYC, BSHS, EDUC
Fine Arts – ARTS, MUSI, SCTH, COMM
Physical Health – SPES, NURS

Depth option – 21 credit hours in each of 2 areas.  All courses must be at the 200 level or higher, and 12 of the 21 hours in each area must be at the 300 level or higher.
Breadth option – 15 credit hours in each of 3 areas.  All courses must be at the 200 level or higher, and 9 of the 15 in each area must be at the 300 level or higher.

Senior Experience3 hours

In addition, students will each complete an Independent Studies course in one of the departments in one of their focal areas (****490).  It is expected that this course would result in an interdisciplinary capstone paper or project.

Caveats:

  1.  No courses used for the major may be used to meet requirements in Liberal Studies. (exception to the double-dipping rule)
  2. For graduation, a student may not earn less than a C in a course used to meet requirements for the Interdisciplinary Studies major.
  3. The student is responsible for meeting any necessary prerequisites for the courses used to meet requirements in the Interdisciplinary Studies major.
  4. No courses used for the Interdisciplinary Studies major may be used to meet requirements for any other major (i.e. you can’t double major in something else and IS).

Interdivisional Courses