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Students share a laugh in one of USM's specialized learning environments.

Interdisciplinary Studies

In the Bachelor of Interdisciplinary Studies program, you take charge of your own learning.

How Can a Degree in Interdisciplinary Studies Help Me?

Graduates with a degree in Interdisciplinary Studies develop the ability to view complex problems from multiple points of view. To that end, graduates have a broad spectrum of employability.

In the Bachelor of Interdisciplinary Studies, students can design an academic path that incorporates their interests and skills. Students may:

  • select two concentrations from minors offered at USM
  • or select one 36-hour concentration
  • or design their own approved concentration

The Bachelor of Interdisciplinary Studies is unique in that the student can choose from a variety of concentration areas. The faculty members in this program are committed to engaged learning opportunities, and we encourage projects that involve service learning and applying knowledge in real-life settings.

Coursework

After completing the general curriculum, a student may select two concentrations from the many minors offered across campus; may select one 36-hour concentration; or may design their own approved concentration in IDS 201.

These concentrations can be related in numerous ways. Once you have established your concentrations, you will develop a research project that incorporates (and often redefines) knowledge from your concentrations. Over a three-course research design process, you will design, implement, and present your research, while also honing writing and speaking skills.

Degree Options

There are two Bachelor of Interdisciplinary Studies (BIS) degrees available with this major.

More about this Major

Outcomes

Graduates may choose to continue their education in graduate programs, medical school, law school, or other pre-professional programs. Graduates may choose careers in academia, advocacy, social services, ministry, media and arts, politics and government, and business.

The BIS provides students with tools needed to make sense of our fast-paced world. The program emphasizes portable skills, preparing graduates to be adaptive to changing circumstances. This program prepares graduates to have a broad spectrum of employability, but also allows for focused study.

• 454: Active enrolled students in the department
• 89: Approved concentrations to choose from
• 13: Faculty and staff across USM
We are the only Department of Interdisciplinary Studies in the state of Mississippi. The department sponsors collaborative faculty research through its annual Interdisciplinary Investigations series.

Courses You Might Take

IDS 201: Interdisciplinary Studies Seminar

This one-credit hour class, taken during the student’s first semester in the major, introduces core interdisciplinary principles and culminates in the creation of the student’s Bachelor of Interdisciplinary Studies degree plan.

IDS 301: Foundations of Interdisciplinary Inquiry

This variable-themed class introduces students to the nature of interdisciplinary theory and interdisciplinary research methods. (Prerequisites: IDS 201 and IDS 350)

IDS 350: Topics in Interdisciplinary Studies

Taught by faculty members from across the curriculum, this class gives students the opportunity to explore various topics from an interdisciplinary point of view. Can be taken concurrently with IDS 201.

IDS 401: Integrative Research Methods and Design

In this course, students design a research project that integrates their concentration coursework. (Prerequisite: IDS 301.)

IDS 402: Integrative Capstone Experience

In this course, students execute and present the substantial integrative research project designed in IDS 401. (Prerequisite: IDS 401).

Meet Some of Your Professors

Marcus Coleman

Assistant Professor

Favorite Course: IDS 401: Integrative Research Methods and Design

Expertise: Political communication and cultural studies

Kevin Greene

Assistant Professor

Favorite Course: IDS 350: Topics in Interdisciplinary Studies

Expertise: U.S. history, African American history, vernacular music, and transnational history

Katie James

Assistant Professor
 
Favorite Course: IDS 301: Interdisciplinary Foundations

Expertise: Gender, justice, and unpaid labor

Allan Eickelmann

Instructor
 
Favorite Course: IDS 402: Integrative Capstone Experience

Expertise: Philosophy and religion

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