Multidisciplinary Studies

http://mds.wvu.edu/

Degree Offered

  • Bachelor of Multidisciplinary Studies (B.MdS.)

The Eberly College Multidisciplinary Studies program (MDS) offers two degree options, the Bachelor of Multidisciplinary Studies degree (B.MdS.) and the Bachelor of Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies (B.A.).  Both the Multidisciplinary Studies and Interdisciplinary Studies degree programs are comprised of three related minors.  The program does not limit students to courses of study in a particular college or school, but rather stresses the importance of breadth of knowledge and cross-disciplinary communication.  The MDS and IDS degrees emphasize flexibility and problem solving.  Students will learn to use specialized knowledge from individual disciplines to analyze problems from divergent perspectives.  Students will also apply multidisciplinary and interdisciplinary techniques to communicate the strengths of their self-chosen course of study.

MDS and IDS students choose three minor areas and must demonstrate how these fields of study work together toward his/her educational and/or career goals.  For example, a student may choose the areas of business administration, sport and exercise psychology, and professional writing and editing, with the goal of a career in sports and special events or marketing/coordinating.  MDS and IDS students participate in a capstone during their final semester, incorporating their three disciplines into a senior project, presentation, and paper.

Students who earn a degree in the Eberly College of Arts and Sciences must complete the University requirements, the College requirements for their specific degree program, and their major requirements.

Minors

All students have the possibility of earning one or more minors; view a list of all available minors and their requirements here. Please note that students may not earn a minor in their major field.  MDS students may add a fourth minor to complement their three core minors.

Certificate of Global Engagement

Students in the Eberly College, regardless of their major, can earn a Certificate of Global Engagement. Completion of the Certificate demonstrates the student’s knowledge of diverse cultures, as well as the ability to communicate and interact effectively with people of different cultural backgrounds.  Students will be required to apply their knowledge of contemporary issues and global social contexts to their course work and their broader citizenship.  For details regarding Certificate requirements, please visit the Eberly College page.

MDS Graduates

The breadth of study available to Multi- and Interdisciplinary students empowers them to be successful in any field they choose.  MDS and IDS degree holders are flourishing in business, teaching, entrepreneurial endeavors, health professions, and public and health administration.  They are earning advanced degrees in social work, business administration, and law. The flexibility of the IDS and MDS degrees ensure that students are prepared for success in today's rapidly changing workforce.

Admission

Admission to the Multidisciplinary Studies degree program (B.MdS.) is possible after completion of twenty-nine credit hours with a cumulative grade point average of at least 2.0.  Students may not declare the Multidisciplinary Studies degree before completing twenty-nine credit hours. Students may enroll in MDS 199 before they are admitted to the degree program. 

Once students are admitted to the Multidisciplinary Studies program, they should declare their three minors.

The Interdisciplinary Studies degree program (B.A.) direct admits selected incoming freshmen based on high school GPA and the results of standardized tests.  Students may also join the program if they have a GPA 3.0 or better at West Virginia University.  Please contact a program advisor for details.

In MDS, advisors are assigned to students by last name.  MDS students keep the same adviser until they graduate from the program.

  • Last name begins with A-CO, Andrea Soccorsi, room 441 Stansbury Hall.
  • Last name begins with CP-HI, Cheyenne Luzynski, room 443 Stansbury Hall.
  • Last name begins with HJ-MC, Carol Zwickel, room 458 Stansbury Hall.
  • Last name begins with MD-SE, Renee Nicholson, room 456 Standbury Hall.
  • Last name begins with SF-Z, Evan Widders, room 466 Stansbury Hall.
  • MDS Pathways students should contact Rishira Dille <Rishira.Dille@mail.wvu.edu>

Benchmark Expectations

Students in the MDS program must maintain a 2.0 GPA. MDS 199 must be completed by the 2nd semester in the program. Students should make progress toward their plan of study, reviewed each semester. All majors must meet with an MDS program adviser each semester.  Students who do not meet these benchmarks may be removed from their major.

Students in the IDS program must maintain a 2.5 GPA. MDS 199 must be completed by the 2nd semester in the program. Students should make progress toward their plan of study, reviewed each semester. All majors must meet with an IDS program adviser each semester.  Students who do not meet these benchmarks may be removed from their major.

 

General Education FOUNDATIONS

Please use this link to view a list of courses that meet each GEF requirement.

NOTE: Some major requirements will fulfill specific GEF requirements. Please see the curriculum requirements listed below for details on which GEFs you will need to select.

General Education Foundations
F1 - Composition & Rhetoric3-6
Introduction to Composition and Rhetoric
and Composition, Rhetoric, and Research
Accelerated Academic Writing
F2A/F2B - Science & Technology4-6
F3 - Math & Quantitative Skills3-4
F4 - Society & Connections3
F5 - Human Inquiry & the Past3
F6 - The Arts & Creativity3
F7 - Global Studies & Diversity3
F8 - Focus (may be satisfied by completion of a minor, double major, or dual degree)9
Total Hours31-37

Degree Requirements

Students in the Bachelor of Multidisciplinary Studies (B.D.M.S) must complete  the WVU General Education Foundations requirements, programmatic requirements, and electives to total a minimum of 120 hours. 

  • Capstone Requirement: The university requires the successful completion of a Capstone course. Students in the MDS program must complete MDS 489 with a grade of C- or better during their final year.
     
  • Writing and Communication Skills Requirement: Multidisciplinary Studies students fulfill the  requirement by completing ENGL 101 and ENGL 102 (or ENGL 103), and two additional SpeakWrite Certified CoursesTMMDS 199 and MDS 489.
     
  • Course Requirements:  Minor courses may not be used to satisfy the General Education Foundations requirements.  Each minor must consist of at least fifteen unique credits. Students must complete at least sixty credit hours of coursework at the 200 level or above.  At the latest, the required MDS orientation course, MDS 199, must be completed the semester before taking MDS 489.
     
  • Calculation of the GPA in the Major: Students must obtain a cumulative grade point average of at least 2.0, with grade of C- or better in all courses counted toward the major.
     
  • Benchmark Expectations: For details, go to the Multidisciplinary Studies admission tab.

Curriculum Requirements

UNIVERSITY REQUIREMENTS37
First Year Seminar
GEF (credit hour may vary based on selected options)
PROGRAM REQUIREMENTS2
Orientation to MDS
Minor One15
Minor Two15
Minor Three15
Capstone Experience3
Capstone
General Electives33
Number of electives may vary depending on options selected and AP credits
Total Hours120

Suggested Plan of Study

First Year
FallHoursSpringHours
WVUE 1911ENGL 101 (GEF 1)3
GEF 23GEF 23
GEF 33GEF 53
GEF 43GEF 63
General Elective3General Elective3
General Elective2 
 15 15
Second Year
FallHoursSpringHours
ENGL 102 (GEF 1)3GEF 8*3
ECAS International Requirement (GEF 7)3Minor II-13
MDS 1992Minor III-13
Minor I-13General Elective3
General Elective4General Elective3
 15 15
Third Year
FallHoursSpringHours
GEF 8*3GEF 8*3
Minor I-23Minor I-33
Minor II-23Minor II-33
Minor III-23Minor III-33
General Elective @ 200-level3General Elective @ 200-level3
 15 15
Fourth Year
FallHoursSpringHours
Minor I-43MDS 4893
Minor II-43Minor I-53
Minor III-43Minor II-53
General Elective @ 200-level3Minor III-53
General Elective @ 200-level3General Elective @ 200-level3
 15 15
Total credit hours: 120
*

 Students earning a fourth minor, a second major or a dual degree already fulfill F 8.

Major Learning Goals

multidisciplinary studies

1.    Knowledge

  • Broad-based knowledge of three discrete areas of study
  • Understanding of synergistic advantage of multidisciplinary curriculum

2.    Skills

  • Ability to think critically in each of three disciplines
  • Ability to partition and interpret information or events using the most appropriate discipline’s toolset
  • Ability to write a professional resume, conduct a job interview, and apply to graduate school.
  • Ability to research and write a research paper

3.    Attitudes

  • Positive attitude towards civic action, nonprofit organizations, and community engagement

4.    Integrative Learning

  • Ability to explain Multidisciplinary Studies and its advantages to others
  • Ability to apply academic knowledge to contemporary political, social, scientific, and humanitarian questions

Courses

MDS 101. Orientation to RBA. 1 Hour.

For students beginning the Regents Bachelor of Arts degree program. Orientation to curriculum, policies, benefits, and academic merits of the RBA to help students take advantage of its unique features.

MDS 199. Orientation to MDS. 1-2 Hours.

Orientation to degree programs and requirements, departmental resources, curriculum options, student responsibilities and opportunities.

MDS 289. Foundations of Interdisciplinary Studies. 3 Hours.

PR: MDS 199. Introduces students to interdisciplinary studies as an academic discipline with its own terminology, research methods, and set of assumptions applicable to addressing complex problems.

MDS 293A-Z. Special Topics. 1-6 Hours.

PR: Consent. Investigation of topics not covered in regularly scheduled courses.

MDS 389. Interdisciplinary Research Methods. 3 Hours.

PR: MDS 199. Instructs students to approach research from an interdisciplinary perspective. Students will develop skill in applying methodologies and principles from more than one academic discipline to frame perspectives and conduct research. The final research project will address a political, economic, social, scientific, or humanitarian issue with relevance to the student's post-graduate career or academic aspirations using interdisciplinary tools and analysis.

MDS 401. RBA Portfolio. 1 Hour.

PR: ENGL 101 or equivalent. To prepare RBA students who plan to petition for college equivalent credits through the portfolio option, including course selection, verifications and narratives.

MDS 489. Capstone. 3 Hours.

PR: MDS 199 with a minimum grade of C- and Senior Status. The MDS capstone instructs students on the methods and advantages of a multidisciplinary education. The capstone includes a community-service service learning project.

MDS 490. Teaching Practicum. 1-3 Hours.

PR: Consent. Teaching practice as a tutor or assistant.

MDS 491. Professional Field Experience. 1-18 Hours.

PR: Consent. (May be repeated up to a maximum of 18 hours.) Prearranged experiential learning program, to be planned, supervised, and evaluated for credit by faculty and field supervisors. Involves temporary placement with public or private enterprise for professional competence development.

MDS 492. Directed Study. 1-3 Hours.

Directed study, reading, and/or research.

MDS 493A-Z. Special Topics. 1-6 Hours.

PR: Consent. Investigation of topics not covered in regularly scheduled courses.

MDS 494. Seminar. 1-3 Hours.

PR: Consent. Presentation and discussion of topics of mutual concern to students and faculty.

MDS 495. Independent Study. 1-6 Hours.

Faculty supervised study of topics not available through regular course offerings.

MDS 496. Senior Thesis. 1-3 Hours.

PR: Consent.

MDS 497. Research. 1-6 Hours.

Independent research projects.

MDS 498. Honors. 1-3 Hours.

PR: Students in Honors Program and consent by the honors director. Independent reading, study or research.


Faculty

Coordinator

  • Evan Widders - Ph.D. (University of California)

Clinical associate professor

  • Evan Widders - Ph.D. (University of California)

Teaching Associate Professors

  • Carol Zwickel - Ph.D. (West Virginia University)
    MDS and Humanities

Teaching Assistant Professors

  • Cheyenne Luzynski - Ph.D. (Eastern Michigan)
    MDS and Leadership
  • Renee Nicholson - M.F.A (West Virginia University)

Instructors

  • Andrea Soccorsi - M.A. (West Virginia University)