Interdisciplinary Studies

Interdisciplinary Studies Program

Master of Science - Interdisciplinary Studies

The graduate Interdisciplinary Studies (IS) degree is a multi-disciplinary, advanced program of study that provides the student with a broad perspective and foundational knowledge in more than one subject. Sometimes a focused graduate program is not sufficient to meet a student's unique career goal or a student simply has multiple interests; this program can be "customized" with a main anchor area and two supplemental disciplines. With this program students will develop an awareness of the perspectives and philosophies of various interest groups and contexts, and be encouraged to take a multi-disciplinary approach to problem-solving and workplace innovation. Students take an introductory course, IS 501 Interdisciplinary Studies Seminar (1 SCH), to devise a personal program of study, and learn the conceptual foundations of interdisciplinary study at the graduate level. The interrelatedness of the disciplines is important as students make decisions in degree planning and course selection. The alternative graduate teacher certification program can also be infused within the MSIS degree for those who desire both state certification and a graduate degree. 

In IS 501 the MSIS student is encouraged to create a strong intellectual, yet coherent holistic program that meets individual career goals. Independent thinking and the ability to plan is very important in this program as specific courses will not be prescribed on the degree plan initially. The student takes "ownership" of the plan and in marketing this degree following graduation.  Although an interdisciplinary program can be powerful in terms of career development, the student is encouraged to work with the Career Development center on resume development, interviewing skills, and career prospects that target graduates of multi-disciplinary programs. 

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Career Opportunities

  • Entry level management or supervisory positions
  • A variety of roles with social or community agencies
  • Public School Teaching positions for those with a baccalaureate degree in a content subject and state certification
  • Public Educator credentials for dual credit or AP courses at the secondary level - 18 SCH of graduate coursework can be obtained in a discipline with this degree, with complementary coursework in Education for professional development
  • General Upward mobility for those in established fields of practice
  • Sales and Marketing roles
  • Public Relations positions
  • Entrepreneurial goals
  • Community College Staff roles
  • Human Resources

What Students will Learn

Regardless of which disciplines a student chooses, a graduate of the program will be equipped with:

  1. A broad, interdisciplinary perspective of knowledge and the capacity to apply integrated knowledge to problem-solving, inquiry and innovation.
  2. Analytical skills that cross disciplinary boundaries.
  3. Sensitivity to perspectives of various interest groups and contexts, such as social, political, cultural and economic.
  4. Research and technical writing skills.

Anchor Disciplines

  • English
  • Biology
  • History
  • Communication
  • Educational Administration
  • Adult and Higher Education
  • Mathematics
  • Mathematics Education
  • Instructional Technology
  • Special Education
  • Education
  • Reading
  • A discipline transferred from an accredited institution (max. of 12 SCH may be transferred) - Disciplines not offered at the A&M-Texarkana campus can be obtained through the cross-enrollment program with A&M-Commerce. Examples: Criminal Justice, Public Administration, Sociology, Chemistry, etc.
  • NOTE:  Psychology, Counseling and Business cannot be used as the main anchor discipline but can be selected as supplemental, although restricted selection of courses applies.

Featured Courses


IS 595 - Research Literature and Techniques

This is a review of research studies produced by investigators in student's major field with emphasis on investigative and verification techniques employed. Students will demonstrate competence in using systematic research techniques by investigation and formal reporting of a problem.

AE 525 - History and Philosophy of Adult Education

This course is an exploration of adult education as a field of study, research, and practice in the United States. Leaders, movements and agencies, economic, social and philosophical factors which have contributed to the growth of adult education will be discussed.

AE 595 - Research Methods in Adult Education

This course is a required component for the Masters Degree in Adult Education. The purpose of the course is to introduce graduate students to the process of planning research, basic vocabulary, techniques to review the related literature, quantitative approaches to the study, concepts and methods of data collection and data analysis, and the process of writing scientific studies. 

AHED 513 - Overview of Human Resource Development

This course is an introduction and overview to the discipline of Human Resource Development. The course addresses the processes of planning and implementing organizational training systems, assessing educational and developmental needs of employees, and examines the various applications of the HRD field used to enhance employee performance.

AHED 515 - Organization Development

The field of Organization Development is one of three primary functions of the discipline of Human Resource Development, which is a focus area for the AHED program. This course presents an overview of how planned behavioral and socio-technical interventions, at the macro and micro levels, can improve the effectiveness of an organization as a whole. The role of the HRD professional, acting as change agent or facilitator, will be emphasized. Theoretical foundations and practical change strategies used in an OD process will be studied.