Undergraduate Catalog

Interdisciplinary Minors and Courses

Interdisciplinary Minors

Western Illinois University offers a variety of minor programs using an interdisciplinary approach. These programs include individual courses, taught by instructors from one or more departments, that embrace the subject matter and class methods of several disciplines. All interdisciplinary minors include courses from at least two departments (not including the student’s major). To enroll in an interdisciplinary minor, students should consult their major academic advisor and the
minor advisor listed below.

Interdisciplinary Minor in Aging Studies: 18 s.h.

Program Location: Macomb
Academic Advisor: Dr. Robert C. Intrieri, Department of Psychology

  1. Core Courses: 12 s.h.
    AGE/ANTH/PSY/RPTA/SOC 202—The Aging Person in the Social Context (3)
    AGE 487—Practicum in Aging Studies (2)
    AGE 490—Seminar in Aging Studies (1)
    PSY 423—Psychology of Adulthood and Aging (3)
    SOC 405—Sociology of Aging in Rural and Urban America (3)
  2. Electives: 6 s.h.
    Select 6 s.h. from the following courses*:
    AGE 460—Individual Research in Aging Studies (1–3)
    AGE 463—Individual Readings in Aging Studies (1–3)
    HS 410—Human Diseases (3)
    HS 412—Public Health Administration (3)
    HSM 314—Health Care Management (3)
    HSM 315—Long Term Care Management (3)
    KIN 300—Fitness for Older Adults and Special Populations (3)
    RPTA 251—Foundations of Therapeutic Recreation (3)
    RPTA 452—Leisure Services for Older Adults (3)
    SW 332—Social Work with Aging Persons (3)
    ZOOL 420—Biology of Aging (3)

* Check the course prerequisites to determine eligibility to take the course.

Interdisciplinary Minor in Cannabis and Culture: 18 s.h.

Program Locations: Macomb, Online
Academic Advisor: Dr. Sarah Haynes, Department of Race, Religion, Gender, and Multidisciplinary Studies

  1. Core Courses: 9 s.h.
    ANTH 180—Cannabis Cultures: The Anthropological Study of Cannabis (3)
    LAS 420—Senior Seminar in Cannabis and Culture (3)
    REL 180—Religion and Drugs (3)
  2. Directed Electives: 9 s.h.
    Select 9 s.h. from the following courses with at least 3 s.h. at the 300- or 400-level. No more than two courses from one department:
    ANTH 210—Medical Anthropology (3)
    ANTH 333—Drugs and Cultures: From Magic Mushrooms to Big Pharma (3)
    ANTH/BOT 463—Ethnobotany (4)
    ANTH/REL 324—Religion, Magic, and Shamanism (3)
    ENG 363—Cannabis in Popular Culture (3)
    HIST 385—History of Drugs (3)
    PHIL 120—Contemporary Moral Problems (3)
    POLS 302—Introduction to Public Policy (3)
    POLS 400—Comparative Public Policy (3)

Note : A maximum of 3 s.h. of LAS 420 may count for this minor.

Interdisciplinary Minor in Environmental Studies: 18–22 s.h.

Program Location: Macomb
Academic Advisor: Ms. Jennifer Sandrik-Rubio, College of Arts and Sciences

  1. Core Requirements: 6 s.h.
    ENVR 201—Introduction to Environmental Studies (3)
    ENVR 401—Colloquium on Environmental Studies (3)
  2. Must take at least one course from each Foundation Area and a fourth course from any Foundation Area: 12–16 s.h.
    1. Foundation Area 1: Environmental and Earth Sciences
      AGRN 278—Fundamentals of Soil Science (4)
      BIOL 350—General Ecology (4)
      BOT 210—Local Flora (3)
      CHEM 342—Fundamentals of Environmental Chemistry (4)
      EOS 310—Environmental Sciences (3)
      EOS 311—Environmental and Occupational Health Problems (3)
      GEOL 113—Energy and Earth Resources (3)
      GEOL 310—Geologic Field Methods (2)
      GEOL 375—Environmental Geology (3)
      GEOL 380—Hydrogeology (4)
      GEOL 420—Geomorphology (3)
      METR 327—Environmental Climatology (3)
      PHYS 124—General Physics (5)
    2. Foundation Area 2: Human Dimensions and Environmental Interactions
      ANTH 410—Anthrozoology (3)
      ANTH/BOT 463—Ethnobotany (4)
      ANTH/WS 395—Gender, Race, and the Environment (3)
      ENG 340—American Nature Writing (3)
      ENG 481—Topics in Writing Studies (3)
      HIST 316—American Environmental History (3)
      HIST 420—Capstone Seminar: Illinois History (3)
      PHIL 333—Environmental Ethics (3)
      RPTA 376—Perspectives in Outdoor Recreation (3)
      RPTA 448—Interpretation of Cultural and Environmental Resources (3)
    3. Foundation Area 3: Environmental Management and Decision-Making
      CONS 405—Soil and Water Conservation (4)
      ECON/AGEC 430—Environmental Economics (3)
      GEOG/BIOL 426—Conservation and Management of Natural Resources (3)
      INAG 310—International Agriculture in Developing Countries (3)
      MGT 481—Management and Society: Ethics and Social Responsibility (3)
      POLS 393—Environmental Politics (3)
Interdisciplinary Minor in Horticulture: 18 s.h.

Program Location: Macomb
Academic Advisor: Ms. Ember Keithley; School of Agriculture

  1. Required Courses: 8 s.h.
    BOT 329—Plant Structure and Function (3)
    HORT 180—Principles of Horticultural Science (4)
    HORT 493—Practicum in Horticultural Science (1–3)
  2. Choice of one of the following courses: 3 or 4 s.h.
    FOR 308—Woody Plant Identification and Dendrology (4)
    HORT 381—Herbaceous Landscape Plants (3)
  3. Electives to be selected from any of the following four emphases: 7 or 8 s.h.
    1. Production
      AGRN 373—Integrated Pest Management (4)
      FOR 406—Tree Care Science—Arboriculture (4)
      HORT 384—Sustainable Landscape Construction and Management (3)
      HORT 393—Greenhouse Management (3)
      HORT 480—Plant Propagation (3)
      HORT 485—Turf Management (3)
    2. Design and Construction
      RPTA 487—Site Planning in Recreation and Parks (3)
    3. Plant Science
      AGRN 278—Fundamentals of Soil Science (4)
      HORT 389—Home Horticulture (3)
    4. Operations
      FOR 407—Urban Forest Management (3)
Interdisciplinary Minor in International Studies: 18 s.h.

Program Location: Macomb
Academic Advisor: Dr. Gregory Baldi, Department of Political Science

  1. Core Requirements: 6 s.h.
    1. Required of all minors:
      POLS 228—Fundamentals of International Relations (3)
    2. Choose one of the following four courses:
      The chosen course must not be in the student’s major department.
      ANTH 110—Introduction to Cultural Anthropology (3)
      GEOG 110—World Regional Geography (3)
      HIST 116—World History since 1500 (3)
      POLS 267—Introduction to Comparative Government and Politics (3)
  2. Language Component: 0–6 s.h.
    Some, but not all, of the areas of study require a foreign language. Language study is encouraged but not required for the others. This requirement can be satisfied in whole or part by proficiency credit. The areas which involve language requirements are:
    Latin America (6 hours Spanish)
    Eastern Europe (6 hours German)
    Western Europe (6 hours French or 6 hours German or 6 hours Spanish)
  3. Area Studies: 6–12 s.h.
    This requirement is for 6 or 12 s.h., depending on whether a language is required for the student’s area of study (see 2 above). If a language is required in 2, only 6 s.h. are required here. If no language is required in 2, 12 s.h. are required. Note that courses in a non-required but appropriate language (e.g., Japanese for a student in Asian Studies) can satisfy part of this requirement. Courses must be in a minimum of two departments. The elective courses from which the student must elect 6 or 12 s.h., as appropriate, are listed below by area.
    1. African Studies
      AAS/POLS 327—African Politics (3)
      AAS/GEOG 466—World Regions—Africa (3)
      AAS/HIST 349—Africa since 1800 (3)
      AAS 381—Modern African Literature (3)
      ANTH 201—World Culture Regions—Africa (3)
      ECON 420—Economic Development (3)
      ECON 470—International Trade (3)
      INAG 310—International Agriculture in Developing Countries (3)
    2. Asian Studies
      ANTH 201—World Culture Regions—Asia (3)
      ECON 420—Economic Development (3)
      ECON 470—International Trade (3)
      GEOG 466—World Regions—Monsoon Asia (3)
      HIST 345—China (3)
      HIST 346—Japan (3)
      INAG 310—International Agriculture in Developing Countries (3)
      REL 350—Hinduism (3)
      REL 355—Buddhism (3)
    3. Latin American Studies
      ANTH 201—World Culture Regions—Latin America (3)
      ECON 420—Economic Development (3)
      ECON 470—International Trade (3)
      GEOG 466—World Regions—Latin America (3)
      HIST 241—History of Latin America (3)
      INAG 310—International Agriculture in Developing Countries (3)
      POLS 329—Latin American Politics (3)
      SPAN 456—Masterpieces of Spanish American Literature (3)
      SPAN 457—Contemporary Spanish American Prose (3)
    4. Middle Eastern Studies
      ANTH 201—World Culture Regions—Middle East (3)
      ECON 420—Economic Development (3)
      ECON 470—International Trade (3)
      INAG 310—International Agriculture in Developing Countries (3)
      REL 365—Islam (3)
    5. Russian and East European Studies
      ARTH 489—Early Christian, Byzantine, or Medieval Art (3)
      ECON 470—International Trade (3)
      GEOG 466—World Regions—Russia (3)
    6. Western European Studies
      ARTH 283—History of World Art: 1400–1900 (3)
      ENG 328—Survey of British Literature (3)
      FR 404—French Civilization and Culture I (3)
      GER 406—German Civilization and Culture (3)
      HIST 328—Europe, 1914–1968 (3)
      HIST 427—French Revolution and Napoleon (3)
      HIST 438—Hitler’s Germany, 1919 to 1949 (3)
      MKTG 317—International Business (3)
      PHIL 300—History of Ancient Philosophy (3)
      PHIL 310—History of Modern Philosophy (3)
      POLS 322—European Politics (3)
      SPAN 408—Spanish Civilization and Culture (3)
      THEA 390—World Theatre History I (3)
      THEA 391—World Theatre History II (3)
Interdisciplinary Minor in Law and Society: 18 s.h.

Program Location: Macomb
Academic Advisor: Dr. Keith Boeckelman, Department of Political Science

  1. Required Courses: 3 s.h.
    POLS 226—Introduction to Law and Society (3) or
    PHIL 205—Philosophy, Law and Society (3)
  2. Electives: 15 s.h.
    Courses must be selected from the following list. They must be drawn from three different departments, not including the student’s major. Student may count PHIL 205 as a Directed Elective only if the student has taken POLS 226.
    AAS 270—Blacks and the Law (3)
    BC&J 400—Mass Communication Law and Ethics (3)
    HIST 303—American Legal History (3)
    LEJA 212—Criminal Law (3)
    LEJA 312—Criminal Procedure (3)
    LEJA 441—Seminar on Current Issues in the Court System (3)
    PHIL 205—Philosophy, Law and Society (3)
    PHIL 330—Moral Philosophy (3)
    PHIL 420—Philosophy of Law (3)
    POLS 319—The Judiciary (3)
    POLS 382—Modern Political Theory (3)
    POLS 410—Constitutional Law: Government Organization and Powers (3)
    POLS 411—Constitutional Law: Civil Liberties and Civil Rights (3)
    POLS 447—Administrative Law and Politics (3)
    POLS 448—The Supreme Court (3)
    PSY 453—Psychology and Law (3)
    SOC 355—Criminology (3)
    SOC 463—Sociology of Law (3)
Interdisciplinary Minor in Queer Studies: 16 s.h.

Program Location: Macomb
Academic Advisor: Dr. Merrill Cole, Department of English

  1. Required Courses: 7 s.h.
    QS 100—Introduction to Queer Studies (3)
    QS 400—Capstone in Queer Studies (4)
  2. Three of the following: 9 s.h.
    ENG 359—LGBT Topics in Literature (3)
    F L/WS 480—Sexuality in German and Austrian Culture (3)
    PSY 355—Psychology of Sexual Orientation (3)
    SOC 427—Sociology of Sexual Orientation (3)
    WS 280—Lesbianism and Gender Identity (3)
    WS 455—Feminist Theory & Practice (3)

Interdisciplinary Courses

The College of Arts and Sciences offers Interdisciplinary Courses, which involve the consideration of significant concepts and topics that cross the lines of a single department. Several of these courses, such as those dealing with themes in law and society, are primarily designed to serve the needs of students enrolled in interdisciplinary minors. Although not specifically designed for this purpose, Interdisciplinary Courses can be useful for career preparation in some areas.

Course Descriptions


201 Introduction to Environmental Studies. (3) Dimensions and scope of environmental studies, includes relationship of humans to nature, ecosystems, earth resources, population, environmental economics, politics, health, and biodiversity.

401 Colloquium on Environmental Studies. (3) The capstone course in the Environmental Studies minor. Variable topics on such issues as population growth, terrestrial resources, environmental ethics, global warming, politics and economics of environment, environmental regulations, agriculture—world food resources will be examined. Students will complete a research project. Prerequisites: ENVR 201 or permission of instructor.