Dec 03, 2023  
2023-2024 Graduate Catalog 
2023-2024 Graduate Catalog

Interdisciplinary Studies, M.A.L.S.

General Program Information

Jill LeRoy-Frazier, Ph.D., Graduate Coordinator
208 Yoakley Hall
Box 70659
(423) 439-4223

Faculty: Julie Fox-Horton; Jill LeRoy-Frazier.

The Interdisciplinary Studies, MALS degree is an interdisciplinary program that allows students to design an individualized program of study in the Arts, Humanities, Sciences, Social Sciences, and related fields. Interdisciplinary Studies students complete a common core and select graduate elective courses from disciplinary departments, then choose either a thesis or a culminating project to complete their programs of study. The Interdisciplinary Studies program emphasizes maximum flexibility; students may attend on-ground, online, or in either mode as needed.

Program Admission Requirements for Interdisciplinary Studies, MALS

A student applying to the Interdisciplinary Studies program needs the following:

  1. A baccalaureate degree in any field from a regionally accredited institution, or international equivalent.
  2. An undergraduate cumulative grade point average of 2.75 on a 4.0 scale (domestic applicants) or 3.0 on a 4.0 scale (international applicants) 
  3. Three letters of recommendation.
  4. A successful admissions interview.
  5. A writing sample of four to five pages in response to the prompt provided at (click on Interdisciplinary Studies - M.A.L.S, then scroll down to Additional Requirements).

Students may be admitted into the Interdisciplinary Studies degree program fall, spring, or summer.

Articulation Agreements

A student who completes the Certificate in Appalachian Studies and later wishes to pursue the Interdisciplinary Studies degree may apply up to 15 credits into the Interdisciplinary Studies program, with the approval of the Interdisciplinary Studies director. 

A student who completes the Certificate in Heritage Interpretation and Museum Studies and later wishes to pursue the Interdisciplinary Studies degree may apply up to 12 certificate credits into the master’s degree with the approval of the degree graduate coordinator and the School of Graduate Studies. All credit, however, must meet GPA requirements and must be within the six-year matriculation limits.

Interdisciplinary Studies, M.A.L.S. Degree Requirements: 31-37 credits

Core Requirements 13-16 credits
Advisor Approved Electives 18-21 credits
TOTAL 31-37 credits

Thesis: The thesis option requires 31-34 credits including 18 credits of advisor approved electives.

Non-Thesis: The project option requires 34-37 credits including 21 credits of advisor approved electives.

Interdisciplinary Studies Core Requirements: 13-16 credits

Advisor Approved Electives: 18-21 credits


Beyond the Interdisciplinary Studies core, the program of study will come from offerings of various departments at East Tennessee State University, with the following limitations:

  • Elective courses must come from at least two (2) different academic departments, and except in special circumstances,
  • No more than one (1) course may be taken from colleges other than Arts and Sciences and Education.
  • Only six (6) credits of coursework may be taken from any one (1) department in Arts and Sciences and Education without the approval of the M.A.L.S. director.

Please note that a student may not take all elective courses from the College of Education. Students must meet all prerequisites for all courses. Students who do not earn a grade of B in MALS 5400  may repeat the course once. If the student does not then earn a grade of B, the student will be dismissed from the program for failure to make academic progress.