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Center for Interdisciplinary Studies

Are you a student interested in creating your own path? Are you a faculty member considering a new direction in your research or teaching? 

The Center for Interdisciplinary Studies (CIS) is a catalyst for innovation and experimentation for both students and faculty across disciplines. A wide range of academic programming inside and outside of the classroom nurtures and cultivates research, writing, and dialogue. CIS promotes both interdisciplinary and multidisciplinary* learning and teaching at the College — approaches that are an integral part of a liberal arts education.
(* Interdisciplinary generally refers to the integration of methods and knowledge from two or more disciplines. Multidisciplinary approaches draw upon several disciplines to address a question or set of issues.) 
CIS academic and cocurricular programs provide opportunities for students and faculty to address the following themes:
  • The intersection of race, class, gender — locally and globally
  • Past and present implications of science and technology in societies
  • Questions of globalization in relation in society, politics, and culture
  • Dialogue across the arts, humanities, and STEM (science, technology and mathematics) 
  • Intellectual engagement with the ideals of service and social justice

Program Highlights

CIS programming fall into the following categories:
  • Concentrations
  • the student-designed majors and minors program
  • an “incubator” for new interdisciplinary and multidisciplinary minors and majors. Majors such as International studies and the new minor in neuroscience are examples of such processes. CIS invites faculty to propose and pursue similar initiatives that explore the shared interests of faculty and students.
  • CIS also brings innovative courses that are not offered by other departments into the College curriculum in support of its programs.
(Please note that off-campus educational opportunities including the Academic Internship Program, the Washington Semester Program, the New York Semester Program and student-designed semester-away programs are now housed in the Center for Liberal Arts in the World.)