University Interdisciplinary Studies (UIS) is the University’s nationally recognized interdisciplinary general education program. UIS courses educate students broadly through engagement with fundamental areas of knowledge that challenge students to go beyond their chosen specializations. The curriculum is infused with classical and traditional knowledge that has value for today. It also incorporates knowledge in the social sciences, business, engineering, and technology necessary to prepare graduates for a contemporary world. All of these areas of study are integrated in interdisciplinary courses in which students examine in-depth problems, ideas, and issues from multiple perspectives. Since faculty from all schools and colleges of the University create these courses, the curriculum takes full advantage of the diverse resources of the institution.
In addition to providing students breadth of knowledge in their liberal education, University Interdisciplinary Studies makes clear the relationships among disciplinary areas of knowledge through integrative, cross-disciplinary courses that emphasize active learning, both within and outside of the classroom. By using creative and interactive teaching styles, the faculty encourage students to take responsibility for learning. The courses are intended to create a challenging and supportive community in which students and faculty join together in shared learning experiences.
All students in baccalaureate programs are required to take at least four University Interdisciplinary Studies courses over their four years as part of graduation requirements. An array of courses in all four categories are offered each semester. Students are required to take one course from each of the four breadth categories, for a minimum of 12 UIS credits. Each student must also take one Diversity (D) designated UIS course, which addresses complex issues of race, ethnicity, gender bias, sexual orientation, gender identity, class, disability, religion, human rights, freedom, empowerment, or the continuing struggles around the world for social equality. Students may take an additional UIS course as an elective.