The Bachelor of Interdisciplinary Studies is an inquiry-centered degree for students who want to engage in extended study of a complex problem--one with multiple dimensions or interacting parts that cannot be adequately addressed fully within the confines of a single discipline (field of study). For example, a comprehensive answer to the question, “Can democracy work at a global scale?”, would need to combine insights from a mix of disciplines, such as political science, sociology, mass communications, psychology, geography, economics, philosophy, history, and literature. Addressing complex problems necessitates: 

  • depth of knowledge in multiple academic fields,
  • intellectual boundary-crossing in search of ideas, concepts, and techniques, and 
  • integration of these to produce a comprehensive solution or understanding. 

Thus, the BIS offers an academic pathway for students who want to work both within and across multiple academic disciplines while systematically developing the techniques and tools of interdisciplinary inquiry and problem-solving.


BIS PATHWAY OPTIONS 
Students in the BIS program have the option of two types of interdisciplinary pathway:

  • SELF-DESIGNED PATHWAY--Working with a BIS advisor and two disciplinary mentors, the student articulates a degree theme that reflects her or his intellectual and/or career interests and goals and develops a BIS Degree Plan around that theme.
  • PRE-DESIGNED PATHWAY--Choose among pathways designed by UWG faculty experts, including:
    • Film
    • Urban Studies.

 CONTACT: Dr. Andy Walter, Director, Center for Interdisciplinary Studies, awalter@westga.edu

A program brochure is available for download in the Courses tab below.

  • Overview

    Accreditation

    The University of West Georgia is accredited by The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC).

    Credit and transfer

    Total semester hours required:

  • Cost

    This program may be earned entirely face-to-face. However, depending on the courses chosen, a student may choose to take some partially or fully online courses.

    Save money

    UWG is often ranked as one of the most affordable accredited universities of its kind, regardless of the method of delivery chosen.

    Details

    • Total tuition costs and fees may vary, depending on the instructional method of the courses in which the student chooses to enroll.
    • The more courses a student takes in a single term, the more they will typically save in fees and total cost.
    • Face-to-face or partially online courses are charged at the general tuition rate and all mandatory campus fees, based on the student's residency (non-residents are charged at a higher rate).
    • Fully or entirely online course tuition rates and fees my vary depending on the program. Students enrolled in exclusively online courses do not pay non-Resident rates.
    • Together this means that GA residents pay about the same if they take all face-to-face or partially online courses as they do if they take only fully online courses exclusively; while non-residents save money by taking fully online courses.
    • One word of caution: If a student takes a combination of face-to-face and online courses in a single term, he/she will pay both all mandatory campus fees and the higher eTuition rate.
    • For cost information, as well as payment deadlines, see the Bursar's Office website

    There are a variety of financial assistance options for students, including scholarships and work study programs. Visit the Office of Financial Aid's website for more information.

  • Courses

    Coursework


    All BIS majors undertake a program of study that includes the following four elements:

    1) DEGREE THEME--A topic, question, problem, or phenomenon that serves as the organizing frame for the student’s program of study. In other words, the degree theme is the student’s object of study. BIS students have the option of either (1) designing an interdisciplinary pathway (a program of study) around a theme that they articulate or (2) selecting a pre-designed pathway. See "BIS Pathway Options" below.

    2) TWO DISCIPLINES--A set of upper-level courses from at least two different disciplines in which the student will develop an understanding of perspectives, concepts, and techniques from different fields of study that can be drawn upon to address the degree theme. Specifically, a BIS major is required to earn at least nine hours at the 3000/4000 in each of at least two disciplines (nine in each).

    3) INTERDISCIPLINARY COURSES
    --A sequence of interdisciplinary courses through which the student will learn about and apply concepts and tools for integrating insights from different disciplines to produce a comprehensive perspective or answer to her or his degree theme. These courses include:
    • XIDS 2000 Introduction to Interdisciplinary Studies

    • XIDS 3000 Interdisciplinary Methods

    • XIDS 4000 Interdisciplinary Capstone

    4) CAPSTONE PROJECT--A capstone project that reflects the student’s degree theme. The project, whether analytical, applied, creative, or service-oriented, is one that is summative and integrative. XIDS 3000 and 4000 are designed to provide scaffolding for the student’s capstone work. 

    BIS DEGREE PLAN 
    Each BIS student submits a BIS Degree Plan, which specifies each of the four elements above and thereby defines the student's interdisciplinary pathway. A degree plan must be finalized by the time the student earns 60 credit hours. If the the student declared the major after earning 60 hours toward a bachelor's degree, the degree plan must be finalized after one full semester as a BIS major.

    BIS PATHWAY OPTIONS
    Students in the BIS program have the option of two types of interdisciplinary pathway:
    • SELF-DESIGNED PATHWAY--Working with a BIS advisor and two disciplinary mentors, the student articulates a degree theme that reflects her or his intellectual and/or career interests and goals and develops a BIS Degree Plan around that theme.
    • PRE-DESIGNED PATHWAY--Choose among pathways designed by UWG faculty experts, including:
      • Film
      • Urban Studies.

    Downloads

  • Faculty

    No faculty members listed

  • Admissions
  • Dates
  • Objectives

    Objectives not available