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IDST 490 Exploring Interdisciplinary Projects

This faculty designed independent study introduces the major concepts in the field of interdisciplinary studies. Students learn the historical drivers and definitions of a variety of approaches across the spectrum of interdisciplinary, multidisciplinary, and transdisciplinary work. Students have options to individualize their coursework to best suit to their area(s) of interest. The course emphasizes an inquiry or problem-posing approach and includes exploration of multiple professions and disciplines.


4 Undergraduate credits

Effective January 10, 2016 to present

Learning outcomes


  • Understand the drivers of interdisciplinarity, its assumptions, its critique of the disciplines, and its role in contemporary scholarship and professional practice
  • Knows and can apply multiple disciplinary or professional perspectives, including their formation, subject matter, concepts, epistemologies, methods of inquiry, standards of evidence, and relationship to each other
  • Knows and can apply key interdisciplinary concepts and methods, such as perspective-taking, structural analysis of complex problems, and creating common ground between conflicting insights
  • Knows and can apply a decision-making interdisciplinary inquiry process that is heuristic, iterative, and reflexive