Directed Interdisciplinary Studies

Students may formally apply for admission to the DIS program no earlier than the second semester of their freshman year through the first semester of their junior year, and will be admitted on the strength of their written application, academic record, letters of recommendation and personal interview. Applications will be reviewed by the DIS Oversight Board, which will be comprised of representatives of all the academic colleges at Montana State University. 

Applicants for admission to the DIS degree options must provide appropriately detailed answers to the questions listed below. Particular attention should be given to the DIS Project Proposal, and to the DIS Course Plan. If necessary, applicants may attach separate sheets providing documentation which might be useful to the DIS Oversight Board’s deliberations.

Applicants must also include an academic transcript with grades earned (3.5 minimum GPA) and two letters of reference attesting to the motivation of the applicant and their ability to work independently.

All applicants will be invited to discuss their proposals with the DIS Oversight Board during a formal interview, and applicants may resubmit amended proposals if they wish.

  1. What are your reasons for wishing to undertake the Directed Interdisciplinary Studies Degree program? Comment briefly on your undergraduate education thus far, and give a brief account of why the DIS degree is particularly appropriate to your intellectual/academic goals.
  2. Describe your anticipated and/or career goals after graduation from Montana State University.
  3. Describe your anticipated DIS Project. It is understood that in consultation with your Faculty Advisory Committee (FAC), you may amend this initial proposal prior to the beginning of your final year of study as a DIS major.
  4. Provide details of your anticipated DIS Course Plan.

A minimum of 120 semester credit hours will be required for graduation. No B.A. or B.S. DIS Degree will be awarded with less than 92 semester credit hours of DIS course work, (30 per academic discipline) nor less than 62 semester credit hours of DIS course work at the Upper Division level. At least 15 credits must be at the 400 level. Students must complete HONR 201 and HONR 202 (Texts and Critics: Knowledge and Imagination) or HONR 301 (Text and Critics for transfer students or students who enter the program late in their academic careers). Of particular use to the students in this curriculum will be existing Honors contracts including HONR 292 or HONR 492 Independent Study; HONR 450 Honors Tutorial; HONR 490R Honors Thesis and HONR 494 Honors Seminars.

The DIS Project must represent no fewer than 8 semester credit hours. Upon successful completion of their thesis defense, students will be required to present their Project in a public forum.

Students will not be eligible for the award of a DIS Degree unless they have also satisfied the Montana State University Core Curriculum requirements.

For more detailed information regarding the DIS, please visit