The objective of the graduate Interdisciplinary Studies degree with a Native American Studies focus is to emphasize the development of indigenous (i.e., American Indian and Alaskan Native) leadership and communication skills, and would be tailored, in an interdisciplinary manner, to meet the specific professional needs of the student’s own aspirations and home community.
Examples of disciplinary areas could include Anthropology, English, Fishery Resources, Forest Resources, Geography, Geology, History, Music, Natural Resources, Philosophy, Plant Sciences, Political Science, Psychology, Range Ecology and Management, Recreation, Theatre and Film, and Wildlife Resources. Please note that this is a graduate degree offered through the College of Graduate Studies, with academic advice and support from the faculty of the American Indian Studies Program.
ADMISSION TO THE PROGRAM AND FINANCIAL AID
- Regular enrollment for graduate study leading toward an M.A in Interdisciplinary Studies may be granted to a student who (1) has received a bachelor’s degree from a college or university accredited by a recognized accrediting association, and (2) has an undergraduate cumulative grade point average of 3.0 or higher. The necessary forms and procedures for admission are available through the Graduate Admissions Office. You can apply On-Line.
- The GRE General Test is required by the Graduate School. For more information on the GRE.
- With the application for admission, the student must submit a written personal statement specifically describing the interdisciplinary proposal and outlining his or her reasons for undertaking an interdisciplinary program.
- Two sources of financial assistance available to graduate students include the Federal Direct Graduate PLUS Loans and General Graduate Study Awards (apply through the Financial Aid Office). We currently do not have Teaching Assistantships (TA) or Research Assistantships (RA) opportunities, or other forms of graduate scholarships for students in our Interdisciplinary Studies Graduate program.
CONTENT AND PROCEDURES
- A student admitted to an interdisciplinary degree program should contact the associate dean of the College of Graduate Studies to discuss his or her proposed course of study.
- The student chooses a major professor among the American Indian Studies Program Faculty (who must also be a member of the Graduate Faculty), who will counsel the student in his or her program. The major professor will be a faculty member from one of the disciplines of the program. If the student chooses the thesis option, the major professor will be the thesis director.
- The student and major professor nominate a program committee; the committee must have at least four members, including the major professor; at least one from each of the principal departments or disciplines involved in the student’s program; one from outside the two disciplines; at least half of the committee members must be members of the Graduate Faculty.
- After preliminary discussion and planning with the major professor, the student and the committee members develop a list of courses (a study plan) that the student will take. The study plan must fulfill all of the general university requirements for the M.A. (as outlined in the Graduate section of the U of I Catalog-30 credit minimum, including at least 18 credits at the 500 level), and must place major emphasis on courses offered by two or more departments. This study plan must receive unanimous approval of the committee members and graduate dean. While 300 and 400 level courses can be taken to fulfill the 30 credit requirement for the degree, 300 level courses can not be used in one of the major focus areas of study.
- Both thesis and non-thesis options require a comprehensive report to evaluate the student's ability to integrate all disciplines included in the program. A non-thesis report form is filed with the Graduate College by the major professor. For a thesis option, the student must complete 6 credits in INTR 500, as part of the 30 credits required for the M.A. degree.
- The student, the major professor, and the other committee members must agree early in the student’s program on the nature of any examinations to be administered and, where applicable, on the nature of the thesis and the number of credits to be awarded.