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Interdisciplinary Study at UW


Modern universities have become highly specialized in their approach to education. There are many historical, academic and professional reasons why this is so, and specialization does have many benefits for students and society. But modern universities still seek to offer students a way to achieve balance and perspective in their studies.

The University of Waterloo provides a challenging way to achieve such balance and perspective by means of its Interdisciplinary Programs. These innovative Programs enhance, complement and support the traditional disciplines while offering the benefits of an interdisciplinary approach to important issues.

The impact of technology on society is one such issue. Thus the Option in Society, Technology and Values (STV) brings together instructors and materials from several disciplines. Similarly Women's Studies makes use of many fields of study, from Anthropology and Economics to Health Studies and Sociology.

Latin American Studies, Peace and Conflict Studies, Legal Studies, Studies in Sexuality, Marriage and the Family - and the rest of the Programs - all follow a similar path, using the knowledge base, faculty members, problem-solving approaches and other resources from numerous disciplines.

Many combinations of Options, Minors, etc. with a student's major field of study are possible and actively encouraged by Program Directors. For example, a student in Honours French may choose a Canadian Studies Option.

By offering a range of Options, Minors and elective courses, UWUs Interdisciplinary Programs present an opportunity for students to extend their learning beyond their major field of study. Students in all faculties are invited to register, for example, in an Option or Minor, or to take occasional Interdisciplinary courses for personal interest.

What the Programs Offer

Generally, the Interdisciplinary Programs described in this section of the calendar offer a General or Honours Option which may be taken in conjunction with regular degree programs in any faculty of the University. Several Programs offer a Minor, a Diploma or a Certificate as well. Canadian Studies and Women's Studies also offer a three-year Major program. (See each entry for specific details.) Courses are usually categorized as "Core," "Approved" or "Required."

What the Programs Require

The Programs which have Options typically require six to ten Core, Approved or related courses, all maintained at a stipulated average. To proceed through the Option, students are generally required to:

For More Information

In addition to the description presented in this section, many Interdisciplinary Programs provide more details in their own brochure or other publication. For a copy of a Program brochure, or to arrange an interview, contact the respective Director.

Canadian Studies           W.R. Needham    St. Paul's College     885-1460
Environmental Economics    E. Carvalho     HH 217                 UW 3017
  (See "Arts - Economics" for program description)
International Studies      G. Hayes        HH 109                 UW 5138
Latin American Studies     M. Gutiérrez    ML 209                 UW 3658
Legal Studies              C. Brunk        Conrad Grebel College  885-0220
Liberal Science            H. Morrison     ESC 252G               UW 2063
  (See "Faculty of Science" for program description.)
Management Studies         S.W. Kardasz    HH 240                 UW 2584
Middle East Studies        L. Curchin      ML 238                 UW 6883
Peace and Conflict Studies R. Mathies      Conrad Grebel College  885-0220
Personnel Studies          S.W. Kardasz    HH 240                 UW 2584
Print Journalism           A. Ages         ML 335                 UW 2181
Russian and East European 
  Studies                  R. Karpiak      ML 222                 UW 3118
Society, Technology and    N. Ball         DC 2724                UW 4816
  Values                   K. Sharpe       DC 2722                UW 6215
Speech Communication       J. Tomasson 
                              Goodwin      ML 122                 UW 5056
  (See "Arts - Drama and Speech Communication" for program description.)
Studies in the French 
  Language                 C. Abbott       St. Jerome's College   884-8110
Studies in Personality 
  and Religion             J. Gollnick     St. Paul's College     885-1460
Studies in Sexuality, 
  Marriage and the Family  J.K. Rempel     St. Jerome's College   884-8110
Women's Studies            H. Lyons        PAS 3010               UW 2880

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