Bachelor of Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies
Southern offers a B.A. in Interdisciplinary Studies for students whose learning objectives are not met by the University’s established liberal arts majors. Students earn a B.A. in Interdisciplinary Studies by concentrating in two subject areas rather than majoring in a single subject area.
The B.A. in Interdisciplinary Studies may be especially attractive to:
- Students interested in designing their own degree program
- Students with strong interests in subject areas without majors (i.e., Criminal Justice + Forensic Science; Marine Studies + Environmental Studies) and
- Students who have enjoyed interdisciplinary and/or team-taught courses (i.e., Honors College)
- Elementary Education majors, including those in the Special Education collaborative, who are required to declare a second major. These students are strongly encouraged to declare a B.A. in Interdisciplinary Studies that combines an English or Math concentration with an interdisciplinary STEM or Social Studies concentration. These students are also assigned an EDU advisor.
Students are strongly encouraged to submit their Selection of Degree Program form declaring their intent to pursue a B.A. Interdisciplinary Studies degree program as freshmen or sophomores. Students who enter the B.A. Interdisciplinary Studies degree program with more than 60 credits (75 credits for transfer students) are advised that more than 120 credits may be required to complete the degree.
- A minimum 2.0 GPA
Graduation Requirements for the B.A. in Interdisciplinary Studies
- All Liberal Education Program (LEP) general education requirements.
- Completion of two 18-credit concentrations.
- A minimum 2.0 GPA in each concentration.
- A minimum of 36 credits overall at the 300 or 400 level.
- Passing grades in three writing intensive (W) courses. Students who transfer to SCSU with 60 to 89 credits are required to pass two W courses. Students who transfer to SCSU with 90 credits or more must pass one W course.
- An overall minimum 2.0 GPA.
- A minimum of 120 credits.
General Education Requirements for the B.A. in Interdisciplinary Studies
Like all students at the University, B.A. Interdisciplinary Studies degree earners must also satisfy all Liberal Education Program requirements for the B.A. degree.
General Education credits used to satisfy tier 1 or tier 2 LEP requirements may not also be counted towards a concentration. An exception to this rule is made only for students completing BA-IDS degree requirements as part of the second major required by their EDU program.
IDS 401W: Interdisciplinary Investigations of Globalization is the required capstone course for the B.A. in Interdisciplinary Studies. IDS 401W satisfies the tier 3 LEP requirement. IDS 401W also counts as a Writing Intensive (W) course.
With approval, students may substitute a 300- or 400-level writing intensive (W) or tier 3 LEP capstone course in one of their concentrations for IDS 401W. The approved substitute course would be in addition to the required 18 credits in the concentration. In the case of a non-W tier 3 LEP course approved as a IDS 401W substitution, students must still fulfill all W course requirements for graduation.
Concentration Requirements for the B.A. in Interdisciplinary Studies
Concentrations are 18-credit areas of specialization identical to minors with one difference: courses used to satisfy LEP general education requirements may not also be counted towards a concentration that is part of a B.A. Interdisciplinary Studies degree program. An exception to this rule is made only for students completing BA-IDS degree requirements as part of the second major required by their EDU program.
To create a BA-IDS degree students may combine:
- Two existing concentrations (click here to see the existing minors that may be used as concentrations in a BA-IDS degree), or
- An existing concentration with an approved self-designed 18-credit interdisciplinary concentration.
Students should note the following restrictions:
- Students may not select more than one existing concentration from the same discipline.
- Students in the B.A Interdisciplinary Studies program may take more than the minimum 18 credits required for a concentration; in a discipline with an established concentration, however, the University will count toward the 120 credits needed to graduate no more than 24 credits, not including those taken as LEP requirements. Students who want to take more than 24 credits in any single area should major in that area.
- In the case of a self-designed interdisciplinary concentration, the Liberal Studies Program Director and the Liberal Studies Academic Advising Coordinator will determine what courses will be accepted in consultation with the Liberal Studies Committee.
- A self-designed interdisciplinary concentration must be approved by the Liberal Studies Program Director and the Liberal Studies Academic Advising Coordinator in consultation with the Liberal Studies Committee prior to the completion of more than 9 credits in the proposed concentration and the completion of 60 credits overall (75 credits for transfer students). Students who have earned more than 60 credits (75 credits for transfer students) may file a written appeal with the Liberal Studies Committee for waiver of this requirement detailing the reasons which would warrant an exception to the policy.
Students interested in the B.A. Interdisciplinary Studies degree can obtain further information by contacting the Academic Advisement Center, Wintergreen Building, (203) 392-5367.