"Interdisciplinary Studies" -- It Shouldn't Be a Joke, But Is

George Leef

In today’s Pope Center piece, Troy Camplin discusses that strange campus phenomenon known as “Interdisciplinary Studies.” He argues that this could and indeed should be a serious field of study, pointing to a book making a strong case for it. Unfortunately, colleges and universities don’t take it seriously, allowing it to serve as a weak “create your own major” playground for students who aren’t making it in fields where some semblance of academic standards still holds sway. He mentions a student who was pre-med, but couldn’t handle the work, became a biology major but couldn’t handle that either, and was finally advised to become an interdisciplinary studies major. The student was told that medical school was still a good possibility for her. Talk about stringing a student along! How could anyone teach a demanding interdisciplinary studies course if the majority of students taking it are the flotsam and jetsam of majors that still give students bad grades when warranted? Camplin asks.

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