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What Is Multidisciplinary Studies?

Dec 11, 2017

Many colleges and universities offer multidisciplinary studies programs for students who want to design a major that suits their particular educational and career needs. There are many multidisciplinary studies degree programs and several job options suited to graduates. View article »

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  • 0:00 Multidisciplinary Studies
  • 0:40 Choosing…
  • 2:01 Applying to a Program
  • 2:30 Career Options

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Video Transcript

Multidisciplinary Studies

Multidisciplinary studies majors have the chance to design their educational programs to suit their own interests and career goals. When considering a multidisciplinary studies major, it can be helpful to consider the curriculum, application requirements, and career possibilities.

Multidisciplinary studies programs do not involve a pre-determined set of courses like most degree programs, but instead consist of a unique combination of courses chosen by a student based upon his or her specific educational and career interests. Students may pursue these programs at the associate's, bachelor's, and master's degree levels.

Choosing Multidisciplinary Studies

A student might choose a multidisciplinary studies program if his or her specific goals and interests cannot be met through a school's existing majors, minors, and electives. Multidisciplinary studies is also an option for students who wish to combine completed coursework from various disciplines into a single degree program. Some programs are even available entirely online. Students who seek an education in multidisciplinary studies typically combine courses from up to three disciplines. Some schools require students to complete a certain amount of coursework in each discipline, and they may be required to take slightly more coursework in one discipline than the others. It is important to note that there may be some courses that are not available for credit toward a multidisciplinary studies major. Possible focus areas for multidisciplinary studies majors vary widely, but options include:

  • Biology
  • Criminal justice
  • History
  • Public administration
  • Political science
  • Spanish
  • Sociology

Although students are free to build their own course of study, a set of required classes is common among most multidisciplinary studies degree programs. These courses could include general education courses in the following subject areas:

  • Natural sciences
  • Social sciences
  • English
  • Mathematics
  • Communications
  • Humanities

Applying to a Program

Admission into a multidisciplinary studies program may require prospective students to consult with the multidisciplinary studies director and faculty members in the appropriate disciplines to choose their courses. Applicants typically must present an outline of their proposed plan of study and submit an essay on their educational and career objectives. Students who are applying to a multidisciplinary studies master's degree program also need a bachelor's degree with a minimum GPA, and they may need to complete an interview.

Career Options

The purpose of a multidisciplinary studies curriculum is for students to design a program that suits a specific career path. Therefore, job possibilities are potentially available in many areas, such as education, science, humanities, and business.

Students interested in pursuing a multidisciplinary studies degree may consider a multitude of focuses, ranging from Spanish to criminal justice, preparing them for whatever career path best suits their interests.


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