University of Maine at Farmington 2014-2015 Catalog
 
The University
Academic Organization, Faculty Listing
Academic Programs
Courses
Admission, Costs, Farmington in Four, Financial Aid
Academic Policies
Personnel
Notices
Search
 
Catalog Program Academic Policies
Interdisciplinary Studies - Culture, Meaning and Society
Print This Page

Degree Earned
Bachelor of Arts: Interdisciplinary Studies - Culture, Meaning and Society

Interdisciplinary Studies recognizes that academic disciplines do not exist in a vacuum, that to fully understand a subject one must move beyond the silos of the individual disciplines and integrate the knowledge, skills, and dispositions that are to be found in related, complementary academic subjects. Thus the student will study at least two different subjects in the Interdisciplinary program, looking for connections between them.

About the Concentration

The mission of UMF’s program in Culture, Meaning, and Society is to foster in students the kind of global and comprehensive knowledge that is necessary for living, as committed citizens, in our complex, interdependent, and increasingly trans-cultural world. The core of our program is anthropology, a discipline that examines the social, cultural, and biological diversity of humans across the globe and through time.

Foundational courses in anthropology are at the heart of our program, but so is our commitment to allowing students the freedom to personalize a significant part of their educational experience. Working in close consultation with their faculty advisors, students in our program develop a coherent, individualized course of study consistent with their educational and professional goals. A student passionate about human rights, development, and social change, for example, could devise a study plan that integrates a range of courses in anthropology, geography, economics, or political science. A student interested in social services could take courses in psychology and rehabilitation.  A student wishing to work in archaeology could include courses in geology and geographic information systems.  A student wanting to explore performance in global perspective and in everyday life could devise a plan that integrates anthropology, visual and performing arts, religion, and philosophy. The options are limitless as students can span not only the social sciences, but also the natural sciences, arts and humanities in crafting their Student-Originated Study Plan.

Our program in Culture, Meaning, and Society is meant to be a springboard for life after college.  We aim to promote active citizenship by providing opportunities for students to engage in fieldwork and research experiences locally, regionally and abroad, depending on student interest. The knowledge and experience gained through our program will prepare students for further academic study in anthropology or related disciplines and for pursuing careers in social services, public health, government/public policy, education, archaeology and cultural resource management, museum studies, social justice advocacy, urban planning, non-profit organizing, and community/international development, among many other possibilities.

Learning Goals:

Successful students will want to demonstrate their:

  • Solid knowledge base of the field of anthropology and how it interfaces with other disciplines;
  • Understanding of, and practical experience with, concepts and modes of inquiry essential to examining and explaining human behavior;
  • Knowledge of cultural practices (both those of one’s own and others’) and their respect for human diversity;
  • Ability to apply socio-cultural concepts and analyses across a range of contexts and to engage as active citizens locally, regionally, and globally;
  • Meaningful engagement with their educational experience by conceptualizing and carrying out a purposeful, coherent course of study consistent with their educational and professional goals;
  • Awareness of ethical concerns in socio-cultural research and engagement;
  • Capacity to develop and effectively express ideas and arguments across a spectrum of communicative styles and genres.

Assessment Criteria:

Student accomplishment in our program will be evaluated according to one’s ability to:

  • Integrate socio-cultural concepts and analyses into class discussions, exercises, and various assignments;
  • Identify, understand, and critique academic scholarship;
  • Design and implement an original research project that explores meanings that guide human behavior; and
  • Write and give oral presentations more clearly and effectively than when one entered the program.

 

PROGRAM REQUIREMENTS

Students are required to complete at least 48 credit hours for a major in Culture, Meaning, and Society. Students shall take 24 hours of required courses in anthropology and an additional 24 hours of elective courses as part of the Student-Originated Study Plan. We highly recommend that students become proficient in another language, particularly if they are going to pursue an advanced degree in anthropology.

 

Required Courses (24 credits)

Introduction to Cultural Anthropology
4
Human Origins and Cultural Development
4
Ethnography
4
Theoretical Foundations in Sociology and Anthropology     
4
Social Science Research Methods
4
Senior Seminar/Capstone in Anthropology 
4

 

Student-Originated Study Plan (24 credits)

Working in close consultation with their faculty advisors, students in our program develop a coherent, individualized course of study consistent with their educational and professional goals. It is unlikely that any two study plans will be the same, as potential interdisciplinary connections and convergences will be unique to each student. A minimum of 12 credit hours (at the 200-level or higher) from outside of anthropology must be incorporated into the Student-Originated Study Plan. Each Student-Originated Study Plan must be approved by the student’s academic advisor. 

Total Credit Hours for the Program: 48

Students must earn a C or higher in all required anthropology courses in order to successfully complete the Interdisciplinary Studies degree in Culture, Meaning, and Society. Students may take a maximum of eight credits in elective courses as pass/fail.

 

FOREIGN LANGUAGE REQUIREMENT

Two years in high school (or one year in college) of a language other than English.

GENERAL EDUCATION REQUIREMENTS

For specific information about general education requirements and expectations, see the General Education Requirements in the Academic Programs section of this catalog.

MINIMUM TOTAL CREDITS FOR THE DEGREE: 128

 

See other years' Catalogs