Master of Arts/Master of Science in Interdisciplinary StudiesThe Interdisciplinary Studies Major: The Interdisciplinary Studies major at Cal State L.A. is a highly restricted program designed for students whose professional/academic objectives are unique and cannot be met by existing master's degree offerings. Each student admitted to the IS major creates a unique program that comprises course offerings from at least two departments/divisions in related disciplines. Some recent examples of IS programs include American Cultural Studies (Departments of Communication Studies, History, and Anthropology), Scenography (Departments of Theatre Arts and Technology), and Biomathematics (Departments of Biology & Microbiology and Mathematics). In each case, the IS program is prepared with the assistance and approval of faculty and administrative advisers who evaluate the student's proposal and academic qualifications.
This highly restrictive major was begun at Cal State L.A. in 1969, at the same time as the Special Major baccalaureate program. These programs were created in response to a Chancellor's Office request that each campus "develop specific requirements and/or restrictions to a special major." The CO's request further advised that the special major's purpose was "to provide for exceptional cases of individual students a carefully controlled opportunity for a specially designed course of study leading to a degree when legitimate academic and professional aims are not adequately accommodated by standard degree majors" (AP 69-52; July 16, 1969). The IS program at Cal State L.A. is administered through the Office of Graduate Studies and Research.
The goals of the IS program are:
1) To provide opportunities and appropriate advisement for students who choose to develop individualized programs of study to serve their unique career and professional development needs.
2) To provide the means through which the campus' academic community can experiment with new and emerging fields of inquiry.
Graduate students that wish to pursue a Master of Arts or Master of Science degree in Interdisciplinary Studies fall into one of two categories: Those wishing to pursue a master's degree combining programs from two departments within one college must make formal written application to the appropriate college graduate dean. Those wishing to pursue a master's degree combining programs from two different colleges must make formal written application to the Dean of Graduate Studies. The following section details the steps that must be followed in completing the Interdisciplinary Studies major.
Contact the Office of Graduate Studies and Research
Division of Academic Affairs
Office: Adm 710
Phone: (323) 343-3820 | FAX: (323) 343-5653