Bachelor of Science (BS): Interdisciplinary Studies Degree Overview

Read about a Bachelor of Science degree program in interdisciplinary studies. Explore some of the numerous potential courses of study, and gather information about possible careers and employment outlook statistics. Review continuing education options for students who want graduate degrees.

Essential Information

Bachelor's degree programs in interdisciplinary studies give students the freedom to design courses of study tailored to their goals and interests. Students can combine elements from various majors and, under the guidance of program advisors, design personalized programs of study in two or three concentrations.

In the 4-year program, students are encouraged to improve their critical thinking, problem solving and research skills. Students may be required to complete a capstone or culminating project to highlight what they've learned. A high school diploma or the equivalent is generally required for admission. Although not always a requirement, some programs are designed for students with previous college credit.

Course Topics

Bachelor of Science degree programs in interdisciplinary studies offers customizable academic options to students who are seeking an education in liberal arts. Students can choose concentrations or combined concentrations in a variety of areas, such as psychology, English, public relations, multicultural studies, computers, business, communication, education, information technology and various others. Some programs place emphasis on providing a versatile liberal arts education in oral and written communication, literature, history, philosophy and social sciences. Course topics usually revolve around students' selected concentrations, and could include:

  • Management
  • Diversity
  • Social psychology
  • Politics
  • Mass media
  • Organizational communication
  • Psychology of personalities
  • International law
  • Public relations writing

Popular Career Options

Graduates have the professional philosophies and diverse experiences to qualify for a wide variety of careers. Specific job titles available to an interdisciplinary studies graduate include:

  • Librarian
  • Administrator
  • Educator
  • Social worker
  • Business manager

Employment Outlook and Salary Information

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), many of these occupations will experience some level of employment growth over the 2012-2022 time period. For instance, librarians are projected to see a seven percent increase in job opportunities and social workers 19% (www.bls.gov). In areas of business, administrative services managers could experience 12% employment growth, human resources managers 13% and sales managers eight percent over the same period. Salary information provided by the BLS shows that as of May 2012 the median annual salary for librarians is $55,370, social workers $54,560, administrative services managers $81,080, human resource managers $99,720 and sales managers $105,260.

This information for educators varies depending on the grade level being taught. The BLS states that elementary and middle school teachers could see 12% employment growth and high school teachers six percent between 2012 and 2022. In May 2012, the BLS reported that elementary teachers earned a median annual wage of $53,400, middle school teachers $53,430 and high school teachers $55,050.

Continuing Education

Because of the broad academic scope of this degree program, graduates are often able to advance their education through a wide range of degree programs. Students can apply to master's degree programs in their respective concentrations. A Master of Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies is also available to students interested in creating a tailored curriculum.

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