Intercultural and Interdisciplinary Studies

Image Caption

College of Arts and Sciences

The Faculty of Arts & Letters

411 Normal Street

About the Program

The Department of Intercultural and Interdisciplinary Studies was established to highlight the study of diversity and the impact of gender, race, ethnicity, class, sexuality and physical ability on individual lives, culture, and society.

A minor in Interdisciplinary Studies will offer courses that will intentionally explore intercultural issues. This minor will connect and integrate several established disciplines, in order to engender an appreciation for the complexity of intercultural connections.

To inquire about courses in the department of Intercultural and Interdisciplinary Studies contact the department chairperson.

To inquire about the Women's Studies Minor contact the Coordinator of Women's Studies, Mollie Whalen.

Department Faculty


Patricia Graham, Chair (

Alfredo Ahumada (

Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science in Interdisciplinary Studies

  • 42 semester hours

    An interdisciplinary program of study can be arranged to satisfy an educational objective of an individual student. Such programs may involve either two or three departments. Normally a student must declare an interdisciplinary studies major before completing 60 credits (or before the completion of the first semester for students transferring in 60 or more credits). Exceptions may be approved in extraordinary circumstances. In any case, the student must complete 30 credits after officially declaring an interdisciplinary studies major.

    Application forms, available in the Center for Enrollment Services, require a student statement of the goals of the program and how it addresses the student's professional aspirations, a list of courses to be taken from each department, and dated signatures of the student, the chairperson of Intercultural and Interdisciplinary Studies, and the department chair of each cooperating department. The completed form will be filed in the Center for Enrollment Services and copied to the student and each adviser.

    Required Courses:

    • Two-department program - A minimum of 21 credits (at least nine at the 300 level or above) from each department - approved by student, department chair, deans, and chairperson of IIS department.
    • Three-department program - A minimum of 15 credits (at least six at the 300 level or above) from each of two departments and a minimum of 12 credits (at least three at the 300 level or above) from the third department - approved by student, department chair, deans, and chairperson of IIS department.
    • Note: Grades of A, B, or C must be earned in all 42 credits.
    • Please see the university requirements in this catalog.

Women's Studies Minor

  • 18 semester hours

    Mollie Whalen, Professor, Program Director (

    This is an interdisciplinary minor designed to enhance any degree program. Women's Studies seeks to recognize the diversity of human experience and examine the interplay of gender, race, class and sexuality by focusing on the experience of women, the concept of gender, and the cultural productions by and about women within different contexts and across various identities and academic disciplines.

Course Descriptions

  • Intercultural and Interdisciplinary Studies Courses

    • IIS 100 Introduction to Intercultural Perspectives (3)
      • This course provides a basic theoretical framework that will enable students to apply intercultural principles and concepts to individual and group interactions. Students will be introduced to strategies that will help them to develop positive working relations with diverse populations by being actively involved in cross-cultural interactions. Prerequisite: Completion of or concurrent enrollment in ENGL 103.

    • IIS 485 Independent Study In Intercultural Studies (Semester hours arranged)
      • This course consists of directed research or study on an individual basis. It is taken upon the initiative of a student who seeks to study with the guidance of a faculty member with expertise in intercultural studies. It is designed to provide in-depth coverage of subject matter not covered in courses offered by the department. The student must secure a faculty sponsor, submit a "Request for Independent Study" form, and obtain the approval of the Dean of Arts and Sciences. Prerequisites: IIS 100, 60 credits

  • Women's Studies Courses

    • WMST 150 Introduction to Women's Studies (3)
      • This course will provide an overview of the history, theories, and methodological approaches of Women's Studies; examine the implications of our cultural understandings of women, gender, race, and class; raise questions about the goals and direction of social change; and review the impact of Women's Studies on traditional disciplines and knowledge. Prerequisite: ENGL 103 (may be taken concurrently).

    • WMST 200 WS: Women of the African Diaspora (3)
      • This course will familiarize students with experiences of women of the African Diaspora, by focusing on Africana women in the United States, the Caribbean, South America, Britain, Canada, and France. The focus will center around phenomena of power, oppression, and control, as well as the creative and political contributions such women (and their female descendants) have made. Prerequisite: Completion of or concurrent enrollment in ENGL 103.

    • WMST 310 Queer Topics: Sex, Gender, and Sexuality (3)
      • This course examines the complex interrelationships and dilemmas associated with contemporary understandings of human biological sex determination, experiences of gender that cross biological sex categories (i.e., transgenders), and the range of sexual identities, orientations, and preferences. The term "queer" is intended as a synonym for odd, peculiar or anomalous, but is also appropriated as a term to challenge the "hardening of the categories" and dichotomies of male-female, masculine-feminine, and hetero-homosexuality. Prerequisite: WMST 150 or PSY 292.

    • WMST 350 Feminist Theories (3)
      • In this course, students will study the theories, conceptual developments, debates, and epistemological and methodological issues that chart the evolution of feminist theories. In particular, students will critically examine feminist theories such as liberal feminism, radical feminism, marxist feminism/socialist feminism, postmodern feminism, and postcolonial feminism. The course is interdisciplinary--highlighting theoretical contributions from scholars of different disciplinary backgrounds. Prerequisite: WMST 150.

    • WMST 486 Field Experience and Internship in Women's Studies (Semester hours arranged)
      • This course is designed to provide the student with practical experience and work in a feminist agency or organization. Written assignments will require students to analyze the connections between feminist theory and praxis and between Women's Studies curricula and social activism. Prerequisite: 9 credit hours of Women's Studies coursework, including WMST 150 and 350; Junior standing; minimum QPA of 2.0; permission of Coordinator of Women's Studies.

    • WMST 495 Seminar in Women's Studies (3)
      • This seminar is designed to enable students from various disciplines to analyze and synthesize data, ideas, and academic perspectives as they focus on the personal and societal dimensions of gender and roles as these differentiate and affect female experience and activities. Prerequisite: Completion of 9 credits of Women's Studies courses (WMST or co-requisite in other departments), including WMST 150.