The great benefit of any Interdisciplinary Major is the relative degree of freedom it affords students as they develop (to a large extent) their own personalized curriculum of study, especially during their third and fourth year of program study.
There are 3 components to a Interdisciplinary Liberal Arts Degree Program: (1) AUCC requirements, (2) a second field and (3) open electives (i.e., Course Clusters) in Liberal Arts.
All University Core Curriculum: Students should focus on their All-University Core Curriculum (AUCC) early, finishing the requirements within their first 60 credits. The AUCC requirements are a set of core concentrations (Basic Competencies, Advanced Writing, Foundations/Perspectives & Depth/Integration) that each baccalaureate Program of Study must incorporate, which contribute to shared learning experience in common. It is highly recommended and advantageous to finish the Math and Composition requirements within the first 30 credits. Please see the AUCC Requirements Page for a complete explanation of the AUCC requirements.
Second Field: Beginning Spring, 2015 we have expanded the minor requirement into a second field requirement. We thought it key that we allow our students the greatest flexibility possible so as to make your academic experience truly interdisciplinary in scope. Interdisciplinary Liberal Arts students now complete either (a) a minor (any available minor at CSU) or (b) a second major or (c) 21 credits in a same foreign language (6 credits, upper division).
Open Electives (Course Clustering or Open Approach): Within the Interdisciplinary Liberal Arts major, students have at least 30 credits (at least 18 must be upper division) with which to they are free to choose courses from any of the disciplines within the College of Liberal Arts (CLA). Often, upon completing their AUCC requirements, students opt for an “open” approach in which they select courses from the College of Liberal Arts semester by semester that simply strike them as fascinating and useful. This way, the plan of study naturally evolves as their interests do. Students are free (and encouraged) to design their own personalized program of study and we encourage every student to consult with his or her academic coordinator and either a faculty mentor or the Program Director.
For a more focused and creative approach, some students build a cluster of courses from various disciplines within the CLA that share a common theme, allowing them to then study a concept or topic through the lenses of multiple disciplines. Different from minors, course clusters are simply one useful way to help focus the major. Students are free to design their own personalized, “Course Cluster” program of study. Students are free (and encouraged) explore the possibility of identifying/developing a course cluster unique to their interests and future career course. Course clustering allows students a chance to be creative while providing a topic of focus for their major.
- Perhaps you are interested in a broad theme that is not an official major, such as Culture or Creativity but do not wish to confine your studies to a single discipline;
- or perhaps you are interested in an area more specific that currently is not offered as a major at CSU, such as Social Change and Advocacy, Leadership Studies, or Human Rights.
You can study and apply such a theme through the lenses of several different disciplines within the College of Liberal Arts, essentially building your own major customized to suit your individual passions. Pair your elective credits with a minor for more extensive study. For examples of course clusters students have considered or utilized already, click Sample Course Clusters with CLA Discipline Descriptions .
We encourage every student to consult with his or her academic support coordinator and either a faculty mentor or the Program Director.
All students with the Interdisciplinary Liberal Arts major will receive a Bachelor of Arts degree in Interdisciplinary Liberal Arts.