Interdisciplinary Programs

Interdisciplinary Degree Programs Queen's University arts and science

Interdisciplinary programs combine two or more academic disciplines leading to a degree plan. It is the creation of something new by crossing boundaries, and thinking across them. It is related to an interdisciplinary field, which is an organizational unit that crosses traditional boundaries between academic disciplines or schools of thought, as new needs and professions have emerged.

The School of Computing offers many broad, flexible plans of study, each providing you with a solid foundation in the science and principles of computing. Theory and application are balanced as you put your knowledge to work under the guidance of award-winning researchers.  Choose from a Computing-specialist Plan (Computer Science, Software Design), a multi-disciplinary Plan (Biomedical Computing, Cognitive Science, Computing and the Creative Arts, Computing and Mathematics), or design your own program by incorporating a Major or Minor Plan in Computing with another Plan in the Creative Arts, Humanities, Languages, Social Sciences, or Natural and Physical Sciences. Top it off with a 12-16 month professional internship.

The Dan School of Drama and Music, and the Isabel Bader Centre for the Performing Arts have two new exciting programs - a new Arts Management Graduate Diploma and a Master's in Arts Leadership. These programs are ideal for students and working professionals who have the passion and acumen for the arts  and see their careers not so much as on the stage but rather directing from behind the scenes - directing the business operations that is.

The undergraduate Black Studies Minor Program is housed and administered in the Department of Gender Studies. With an interdisciplinary reach that is open to departments, programs, and faculties across the university, the undergraduate program in Black Studies serves to educate the Queen’s community about the histories and contemporary struggles of African and Black diasporic communities.

Cultural Studies researchers investigate values, beliefs and belongings, cultural processes and cultural objects, economic and social relations, institutions and identities. Comprising 85 distinguished faculty from 21 disciplines to offer an innovative program at the MA and PhD levels that includes opportunities for cultural production and community-activist fieldwork, Cultural Studies at Queen's is committed to a diversity of students and faculty and to the global expertise that they bring to the cultural and academic fields.

The online or on-campus Certificate in Employment Relations is designed as an additional credential to support undergraduate students seeking jobs in labour relations and human resources management. The MIR and PMIR programs attract new graduates as well as career employees wishing to upgrade their credentials. 

The Earth's environment is under stress, and the search for solutions is anything but simple: It requires an interdisciplinary approach to problem-solving and education. Our program, both Environmental Science and Environmental Studies, emphasizes the diverse contributions of technology, the natural sciences, humanities, and social sciences to understanding and solving environmental problems. The School of Environmental Studies at Queen's University takes a new, innovative approach to environmental education. Our faculty draw on a wide variety of backgrounds ‐ biology, chemistry, geography, geological sciences, economics, history, and policy studies, to name but a few ‐ and so can offer a truly multidisciplinary perspective on the challenging environmental problems facing humanity today.

Without its visual media, the modern world would be unimaginable. In undergraduate Film Studies, we approach many varied types of visual medias as means for understanding and participating fully in that world. The concentration includes historical inquires into the forces that have shaped the cinema and media; critical analysis of films and television and video productions; theories that explore the principles and functions of film; and the methods of making film and video. In most Film Studies courses, a film or video is used like a textbook in any other course, or like a specimen in a biology lab.

The Gender Studies Department at Queen’s University teaches feminist, anti-racist, and queer theories and methods that centre activism for social change. Gender Studies is an innovative interdisciplinary field that investigates social life and creative works by examining gender, our key category of analysis, through its interdependence with race, nationality, class, sexuality, disability, religion, colonization, and globalization.

Global Development Studies offers students critical insights into development theory and practice. They explore contested meanings of ‘development’ and analyze the institutions that are integral to the apparatus of development at local and global levels. They provide students with the analytical perspectives needed to understand how inequality is produced and reproduced, how resources are distributed, and how hierarchical relationships are maintained and challenged over time. Our courses cover economic and political systems, cultural norms, physical environments, and status differences. The nature of interactions between and within the countries of the North and the South extend to issues such as poverty, cultural imperialism, human rights, social policy, and trade relations. Courses on Aboriginal communities in Canada further help students appreciate ‘development’ as a relationship rather than as a characteristic of particular places and people.

Our vibrant interdisciplinary degree programs in Kinesiology/ Physical and Health Education, as well as Arts programs in Health Studies, all emphasize prevention rather than treatment as the best route to health. From the structure of the cell to the structure of society, your studies will expose you to the complex factors which influence health and wellness. Your courses might explore social determinants of health, the biomechanics of movement, or approaches to health promotion. You might learn ways of measuring body composition, analyzing human motion or evaluating local public health initiatives. Whether you pursue the social or the physical sciences, you will definitely learn how to think and be challenged to expand your perspectives by faculty who are among the world's experts in their field.

The Department of Languages, Literatures and Cultures is a multidisciplinary unit that offers students the opportunity to learn languages, develop an understanding of literary and cultural traditions, and pursue studies in the field of Linguistics.  The Department offers language courses in Anishinaabemowin, Arabic, Chinese, German, Hebrew, Inuktitut, Italian, Japanese, Mohawk, Portuguese, and Spanish, and Degree Plans in German Studies; Indigenous Studies; Italian; Languages, Literatures and Cultures; Linguistics; Hispanic Studies; Spanish and Latin American Studies; and World Language Studies.

Why go into Religious Studies at Queen's? Because we care about how much religion is in the news. We think about the ways that misunderstandings of religion play a role in conflict around the world. We see evidence that creating better understanding of religious diversity contributes to a more cohesive and peaceful society. Gaining a critical understanding of religion helps interpret it as an essential dimension of human life.