Twin Cities campus
Twin Cities Campus

Multidisciplinary Studies B.S.

CCAPS Individualized Degrees
College of Continuing and Professional Studies
  • Program Type: Baccalaureate
  • Requirements for this program are current for Fall 2019
  • Required credits to graduate with this degree: 120
  • Required credits within the major: 50
  • Degree: Bachelor of Science
Founded in 2006 in response to the growing demand for high quality pathways to degree completion, multidisciplinary studies (MdS) embodies the University of Minnesota's commitment to individualized undergraduate education by providing returning adult learners with access to cross-college, individualized degree options. Drawing upon the curricular offerings of most of the University's colleges and departments, students design a bachelor of arts (BA) or bachelor of science (BS) degree incorporating coursework from three of five multidisciplinary areas. Multidisciplinary studies degree areas include applied, technical, and professional; arts and humanities; communications; history and social science; and science and health science. MdS students begin their journey to degree completion in a credit-based degree planning seminar in which they discern a degree plan which reflects their professional and personal goals. MdS is intended to serve returning adult learners with a minimum of a two-year gap in their pursuit of higher education and who value the challenge and rewards of individualized education. Interested students are encouraged to attend an information session held multiple times per month. Academic advisors provide a detailed introduction to the program and help students begin the planning process. A growing number of courses are available online and students may have the option of completing the MdS degree completely online. For further information on Multidisciplinary Studies, visit
Program Delivery
This program is available:
  • via classroom (the majority of instruction is face-to-face)
Admission Requirements
Students must complete 50 credits before admission to the program.
Transfer students are usually admitted to pre-major status before admission to this major.
A GPA above 2.0 is preferred for the following:
  • 2.50 already admitted to the degree-granting college
  • 2.50 transferring from another University of Minnesota college
  • 2.50 transferring from outside the University
Students with 30-49 transferable credits, a GPA of 2.5, and strong interest in the major may be admitted to premajor status. Admission is based on GPA, grade trends, performance in relevant coursework, and demonstrated ability to meet expectations of individualized undergraduate education. Students must have attended an information session and an advising appointment. Preferred program match factors include * A 2-year break in pursuit of a degree (need not be continuous) * A heavy, though not necessarily exclusive, reliance on evening and online/distance learning (ODL) course work At a timely point after admission, students must enroll in MDS 3001W: Intro to Multidisciplinary Studies, a 3-credit course, to develop a written proposal with a rationale for the degree plan. When the instructor has determined that the proposal is complete, it is submitted to a review committee for approval. At that point, the student achieves major status.
For information about University of Minnesota admission requirements, visit the Office of Admissions website.
General Requirements
All students in baccalaureate degree programs are required to complete general University and college requirements including writing and liberal education courses. For more information about University-wide requirements, see the liberal education requirements. Required courses for the major, minor or certificate in which a student receives a D grade (with or without plus or minus) do not count toward the major, minor or certificate (including transfer courses).
Program Requirements
In applicable departmental areas, successful completion of the following courses will count toward the 50 credits: CHEM 2302, CSCI 2021, DHA 2463, FW 2001, PSY 2801. All major courses must be completed with a letter grade of C- or better.
Multidisciplinary Studies Oral Communication Requirement
ABUS 4023W - Communicating for Results [WI] (3.0 cr)
or COMM 1101 - Introduction to Public Speaking [CIV] (3.0 cr)
or COMM 1313W - Analysis of Argument [WI] (3.0 cr)
or COMM 3411 - Introduction to Small Group Communication (3.0 cr)
or COMM 3605W - Persuasive Speaking and Speech Writing [WI] (3.0 cr)
or MGMT 3033W - Business Communication [WI] (3.0 cr)
or WRIT 3257 - Technical and Professional Presentations (3.0 cr)
or Equivalent
Multidisciplinary Studies Quantitative or Critical Thinking Requirement
EPSY 3264 - Basic and Applied Statistics [MATH] (3.0 cr)
or EPSY 5261 - Introductory Statistical Methods (3.0 cr)
or NURS 3710 - Statistics for Clinical Practice and Research [MATH] (3.0 cr)
or POL 3085 - Quantitative Analysis in Political Science [MATH] (4.0 cr)
or PSY 3801 - Introduction to Psychological Measurement and Data Analysis [MATH] (4.0 cr)
or SOC 3811 - Social Statistics [MATH] (4.0 cr)
or STAT 3011 - Introduction to Statistical Analysis [MATH] (4.0 cr)
Upper Division Writing Intensive Requirement
Students are required to take one upper division writing intensive course within the major. Typically students use MdS 3001W to satisfy this requirement.
Multidisciplinary Studies Requirements
Note: Students must complete a minimum of 50 upper-division credits for this degree program. Courses taken for above requirements may sometimes count toward this 50-credit minimum.
MDS 3001W - Introduction to Multidisciplinary Studies [WI] (3.0 cr)
Must have min of 50 upper div cr for major & include min of 15 upper div cr in each area. Students choose coursework from one of the following areas: applied, tech & Prof; or science & health sci; and may choose coursework from remaining areas: arts & humanities; communication; or hist & soc sci.
More program views..
View college catalog(s):
· College of Continuing and Professional Studies

View future requirement(s):
· Fall 2020

View sample plan(s):
· Multidisciplinary Studies - Consult with MdS advisor to develop program

View checkpoint chart:
· Multidisciplinary Studies B.S.
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ABUS 4023W - Communicating for Results (WI)
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Fall, Spring & Summer
Aspects of communication essential for being persuasive/influential. Organizing/presenting ideas effectively, strategies for audience analysis, choosing communication methods, making appropriate use of informal influence methods, handling dissent. Processes for intercultural communication. prereq: 45 cr completed
COMM 1101 - Introduction to Public Speaking (CIV)
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Course Equivalencies: 00670
Typically offered: Every Fall, Spring & Summer
Public communication processes, elements, and ethics. Criticism of and response to public discourse. Practice in individual speaking designed to encourage civic participation.
COMM 1313W - Analysis of Argument (WI)
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Typically offered: Every Fall & Spring
Strategies for analyzing, evaluating, generating arguments. Problems in listening/responding to argument.
COMM 3411 - Introduction to Small Group Communication
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Typically offered: Every Fall, Spring & Summer
Cooperative thinking in task-oriented groups. Planning, preparing for, and participating in small groups in private and public contexts.
COMM 3605W - Persuasive Speaking and Speech Writing (WI)
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Typically offered: Every Fall, Spring & Summer
Performance/composition with critical inquiry into rhetoric theories. Writing, thinking, and speaking skills. prereq: 1101, soph
MGMT 3033W - Business Communication (WI)
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Course Equivalencies: 01482
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Fall, Spring & Summer
Written/oral communication skills for effective participation in contempory organizations. From basic principles to communication strategy. Communication technology. Cases, simulations of "real-world" situations. Student small groups meet with instructor three times for presentation coaching/feedback. Recitation times are arranged with instructor at start of semester. prereq: Fr composition, CSOM upper-div, at least 60 cr
WRIT 3257 - Technical and Professional Presentations
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: OPT No Aud
Typically offered: Every Fall & Spring
Oral presentation skills for technical or professional topics. Visual communication, audience analysis, organizing presentation, presenting complex research material. Emphasizes use of digital technologies. Recommend that students take Comm 1101 or equivalent first
EPSY 3264 - Basic and Applied Statistics (MATH)
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Course Equivalencies: 02317
Typically offered: Every Fall, Spring & Summer
Introductory statistics. Emphasizes understanding/applying statistical concepts/procedures. Visual/quantitative methods for presenting/analyzing data, common descriptive indices for univariate/bivariate data. Inferential techniques.
EPSY 5261 - Introductory Statistical Methods
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Course Equivalencies: EPsy 3264/5231/5261/5263
Typically offered: Every Fall, Spring & Summer
Application of statistical concepts/procedures. Graphs, numerical summaries. Normal distribution, correlation/regression analyses, probability, statistical inferences for one or two samples. Hypothesis tests, Chi-square tests. Conceptual understanding/application of statistics.
NURS 3710 - Statistics for Clinical Practice and Research (MATH)
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Typically offered: Every Fall
Numerical reasoning, measurement principles. Vital statistics, rates, data description. Probability. Hypothesis testing/confidence intervals for tests on means. Proportions, correlations, linear regression. prereq: [High school algebra or instr consent], students enrolled in School of Nursing must take A/F option
POL 3085 - Quantitative Analysis in Political Science (MATH)
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Fall & Spring
POL 3085 teaches students how to study politics scientifically and introduces them to how to use quantitative analysis to answer political questions. The first part of the class covers how to formulate a theory (a possible answer to a question), specify testable hypotheses (what you would see if the theory is correct or incorrect), and set up a research design to test those hypotheses. In the second part of the class, we cover quantitative data analysis, beginning from preliminary statistical analysis to multivariate linear regression. There is no mathematical or statistical background required for this course. By the end of the class, students should be able to ask and answer political questions using quantitative data and fluently evaluate statistical analyses of political phenomena in the media and many academic articles.
PSY 3801 - Introduction to Psychological Measurement and Data Analysis (MATH)
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Course Equivalencies: 01316 - Psy 3801/Psy 3801H
Typically offered: Every Fall, Spring & Summer
Descriptive/basic inferential statistics used in psychology. Measures of central tendency, variability, t tests, one-way ANOVA, correlation, regression, confidence intervals, effect sizes. Psychological measurement. Graphical data presentation. Statistical software. prereq: High school algebra, [PSY 1001 or equiv]; intended for students who plan to major in psychology
SOC 3811 - Social Statistics (MATH)
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Course Equivalencies: 02148 - Soc 3811/Soc 5811
Typically offered: Every Fall & Summer
This course will introduce majors and non-majors to basic statistical measures and procedures that are used to describe and analyze quantitative data in sociological research. The topics include (1) frequency and percentage distributions, (2) central tendency and dispersion, (3) probability theory and statistical inference, (4) models of bivariate analysis, and (5) basics of multivariate analysis. Lectures on these topics will be given in class, and lab exercises are designed to help students learn statistical skills and software needed to analyze quantitative data provided in the class. prereq: Credit will not be granted if credit has been received for Soc 5811 (Soc 5811 offered Fall terms only). Undergraduates with strong math background are encouraged to register for 5811 in lieu of 3811. Soc Majors/Minors must register A-F.
STAT 3011 - Introduction to Statistical Analysis (MATH)
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Course Equivalencies: (Select a set)
Typically offered: Every Fall, Spring & Summer
Standard statistical reasoning. Simple statistical methods. Social/physical sciences. Mathematical reasoning behind facts in daily news. Basic computing environment.
MDS 3001W - Introduction to Multidisciplinary Studies (WI)
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: A-F only
Typically offered: Every Fall, Spring & Summer
University study at a major research institution, its history/theory and expectations/outcomes. Students design their degree and select areas/courses. Institutional/student perspectives. prereq: Admitted to multidisciplinary studies