IDSC Degree Requirements

In addition to completion of the individually designed plan of study as approved by faculty members overseeing the undergraduate programs inside each emphasis, all majors must fulfill Auburn University’s general education requirements (Core Curriculum) and the following specific IDSC requirements:

IDSC 2190, Foundations of Interdisciplinary University Studies (3 credit hours)

This introductory course examines the fundamental concepts of interdisciplinary theory with a strong emphasis on career exploration. Students will be taught basic theories of interdisciplinary thinking and will conceptualize their own interdisciplinary goals. In addition to completing personal career assessments, students will also produce a written prospectus as a primary product of the course.

The written prospectus (detailed plan of study) defines the intended major and outlines the curriculum. The student must demonstrate the relationship between the chosen fields and how the combination relates to the student’s intended educational and career goals. With the assistance of a Career Development Services counselor, each student is required to design a unique program of study and identify how he or she plans to assess the plan in order for it to be approved. Students are also required to demonstrate that their proposed plan is a feasible method of entry into an established job field or graduate program of study.

IDSC 4930 or 4980, Interdisciplinary Capstone Experience (3 - 6 credit hours)

Students must complete a capstone course in which they apply their knowledge of the interdisciplinary discipline to a service-learning, professional internship or thesis project. The capstone project should adequately recognize all academic areas and concentrations the student has completed as part of the degree. Prior approval is required from the Faculty Oversight Committee. IDSC 4930 is composed of an academic research project/paper. IDSC 4980 is an internship or service learning project with a final paper assessing the project. IDSC students are required to locate a supervising faculty member from one of their emphasis areas. The faculty supervisor must be a full-time member of the Auburn University faculty with a rank of Assistant, Associate, or Full Professor. In the case of UNIV 4930, the faculty member will assist in the development of the research project/paper and will evaluate the outcome of the project. In the case of IDSC 4980, the faculty member will evaluate the project experience paper.

Students must complete a 3-hour capstone course and may elect to earn up to 6 hours of capstone credit. Students who chose to complete a second 3-hour capstone may take either IDSC 4930 or 4980. The process of capstone approval will be the same for the additional capstone course as for the required course. Students will use elective hours if they chose to take a second capstone course.

Interdisciplinary Studies Degree Components Required Hours
Auburn University Core Curriculum (old or new core curriculum) 41-42
Introductory Course to Interdisciplinary Studies1
      IDSC 2190-Foundations of Interdisciplinary University Studies 3
Oral Communication1,2 3
Interdisciplinary Supporting Coursework
Advanced Written Communication1 3
Select one of the following: (each course is 3 hours) 3
     ENGL3040-Technical Writing
     ENGL 3080-Business Writing
     ENGL 4000-Advanced Composition
Capstone Experience1 3
      IDSC 4930--Interdisciplinary Capstone Experience or
      IDSC 4980--Interdisciplinary Capston Experience
 Major Course Hours3,4 45
 Prerequisites/Major Supporting Courses/Electives Varies
Minimum Number of Required Hours 120


  1. Must have a grade of C or better (S in IDSC 4980).
  2. Oral Communication (COMM 1000) may be used to satisfy 3 hours of Humanities in the University Core Curriculum.
  3. Major courses are used to calculate the GPA in the major.
  4. Total of 45 hours selected across two emphases (at least 21 hours in one emphasis and no more than 24 hours in the second emphasis) or across three emphases (each with 15 hours). Emphases must be selected from at least two different Schools or Colleges. Approval of specified departmental representative for courses in each emphasis is required. Students may use existing minors for emphases. The Director of the IDSC Program must approve the application for admission to the degree program. Students with >90 earned hours must have their application approved by the IDSC Faculty Advisory Committee before being accepted into the major.
  5. Total number of prerequisite/major supporting course/elective hours varies depending on choices made. Students who elect to use existing minors with more than 15 hours must use elective hours to complete the minor; students who elect to take a second Capstone must use elective hours for the second course; students who elect not to use COMM 1000 to satisfy three hours of Humanities in the Core must use elective hours for COMM 1000. Elective hours may also be used to allow the student to complete a minor outside of their areas of emphasis and must be used to bring the total number of hours in the student’s degree plan to 120. The minors used as emphases become part of the Interdisciplinary Studies degree and will not be listed on the official transcripts or diploma.

In addition to the required major and Interdisciplinary coursework, students must also complete the following:

  • 3 hours of Oral Communication and Students can satisfy this requirement with COMM 1000, Introduction to Public Speaking or an additional upper-level course with an emphasis on oral communication. If an oral communication course is used to satisfy both the AU Core Curriculum requirement and the Interdisciplinary Studies requirement it must be COMM 1000 or an approved upper level communications course.
  • 3 hours of Written Communication Students can satisfy this requirement with ENGL 3040, ENGL 3080 or ENGL 4000.

Students desiring an IDSC degree must get approval of their individual degree plan of study from the minor advisors or other designated faculty members in the concentrated areas selected.
At least 25 of the 45 hours in the major must be at the 3000 level or higher. Courses in the major that are outside the College or School of the concentration areas must be at the 3000 level or higher.