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Interdisciplinary University Studies Major

If you have multiple interests, are highly engaged and learn best by doing, then an interdisciplinary university studies (IDSC) major is for you. As an IDSC major, you'll create a personalized academic program by customizing a curriculum that demonstrates proficiency in broad skills as well as discipline-specific knowledge.

You'll begin as a pre-IDSC major. To be admitted to the IDSC program you must successfully complete IDSC 1010: Life, Career, and Everything; IDSC 2190/2193: Foundations of Interdisciplinary University Studies; and complete an approved individualized curriculum plan. If you have more than 90 hours of coursework already, you must receive special permission to be admitted to the major.

For Honors College Students: Incoming Honors College students may declare IDSC as their major. Students must take IDSC 1010 and IDSC 2190 during their first or second semester and complete an approved plan of study before the start of their third semester. They will be required to take ENGL 1120 or 1127 as a co-requisite for IDSC 2190 if they do not have advanced placement credit for the first composition course. Honors College students who fail to pass IDSC 1010 or IDSC 2190 with a grade of C or better or who fail to submit a plan of study and essay will be required to declare a new major at the start of their third semester. The individual plan of study developed by an Honors College student will be reviewed by the IDSC academic advisor to determine if the plan meets the requirements of the major.

IDSC Degree Requirements

In addition to completion of the individually designed plan of study as approved by faculty members overseeing the undergraduate programs inside each emphasis, all majors must fulfill Auburn University’s general education requirements (Core Curriculum) and the following IDSC requirements:

  • IDSC 1010: Life, Career, and Everything (3 credits) 

If you don’t know exactly what you want to do as a career or how to get there, this is the course for you. You'll learn methods for discovering and creating career opportunities while you hone interview and presentation skills. You'll study personality types in order to better understand what drives you and learn how knowing your preferences and tendencies can empower your personal and professional choices. You will use techniques like career prototyping to explore potential careers and then design the best degree path for you. You will work with your IDSC advisor to develop a plan of of study that lays the groundwork for your career. A grade of C or better is required in this course to continue in the upper level IDSC courses.

  • IDSC 2190: Foundations of Interdisciplinary Studies (3 credits)

This course is your entry into the interconnected world of interdisciplinary studies. You'll learn to apply a number of different tools and methodologies to develop solutions to complex problems. You'll learn how to leverage your different interests and to work effectively in teams as part of this experience. A grade of C or better is required in this course to continue in the upper level IDSC courses.

  • IDSC 3210: Advanced Interdisciplinary Problem Solving (3 credits)

You'll learn the practical application of interdisciplinary methods to the solution of real-world problems. This course offers you opportunities to work as part of a team of scholars in service of society as a whole. You'll gain in-depth knowledge of research methods and their application. You'll practice using presentation and web design tools to create presentations that increase audience engagement and comprehension. To showcase your projects, you'll develop an ePortfolio, which you'll continue to build on in the final semesters of the program. You will research and write a pitch for your capstone thesis or internship. By the end of the semester, you'll have a focus for your interdisciplinary scholarship aka capstone.

  • IDSC 4920 or 4930: Interdisciplinary Capstone Experience (3–6 credits)

IDSC 4920 Capstone Internship: a Canvas-based capstone course. You'll have opportunities to strengthen your writing skills as you work on weekly writing assignments, culminating in a collection of writing reflections for your ePortfolio. You'll prepare a presentation demonstrating how your internship integrated your interdisciplinary research over the course of the program. At the end of the course, you'll submit a final ePortfolio, containing curated projects you've completed as part of the IDSC program.

IDSC 4930 Capstone Project/Thesis: Working as a single researcher in a classroom setting, this is the stage of scholarship where you will synthesize your learning by innovating new products or strategic solutions, and evaluating those innovations before revising your project for final submission. Prior to beginning the course, you'll work with a faculty member in one of your emphasis areas and receive feedback and direction for your research project. Throughout the semester, IDSC faculty will help you develop your research and refine your final presentation. Capstone presentations may take the form of an academic paper or lecture. At the end of the course, you'll submit a final ePortfolio, containing curated projects you've completed as part of the IDSC program.

For full curriculum details, see the Auburn Bulletin.