/ Interdisciplinary Studies


These courses help you connect your learning to a well-lived life.

IDS 295: The Second Seminar: Designing a Life That Matters

2 credits
Instructor: Ryan White

This course provides an opportunity to better understand oneself and also offers methods of helping students design a meaningful education and future. The course will examine the meaning of vocation and calling in the Christian tradition as well as help students discern their own sense of calling. Students will evaluate various views on key questions of life meaning and purpose from perspectives within the humanities and social sciences, and will also develop a clearer understanding of and commitment to their own skills, interests, strengths, and values. Students will leave the course with an academic plan for moving forward in their education and professional future.

IDS 296: Peace Studies

4 credits
Instructor: Tom Arendshorst

Peace Studies originates in the assumption that, just as war is too important to be left to the generals, peace is too important to be left only to those who have warm and fuzzy notions of doing good in this world. Introduction to Peace Studies develops understanding of the precursors and processes of violent conflict and peace, and provides a strong foundation on which students can build further learning related to peace. The discipline of peace studies has developed over the past half-century, and continues to develop, understandings and strategies that are proving much more effective than established theories in resolving and transforming conflict, and in moving societies toward more sustainable peace. This course, Introduction to Peace Studies, will engage questions and dilemmas: What is peace? What is "positive peace"? What are the forces and dynamics of conflict, especially violent conflict, at different levels of human interaction? What is "structural violence"? What are professed and actual causes and purposes of war? What is the relationship connecting justice and peace? How can people respond to conflict without violence? Why are diplomatic peace accords so problematic? What are core principles of negotiation, conflict transformation, and nonviolent social action? What makes nonviolent action powerful? What is "peacebuilding," and what principles guide its practice among people trapped in violent conflict? Finally, how can we, individually and together, live as agents of peace and justice?

IDS 329: Transitioning into the Health Professions

0–1 credits
Instructor: Marikay Dobbins

This course will help students explore the qualifications and expertise needed for a successful transition to their chosen health profession. Topics covered include values clarification, exploration of ethical issues in healthcare, financial considerations, and an in-depth exploration of the aspects of a successful application and interview for each health profession.

For descriptions of other IDS courses, see the pages for the Anchor Plan Arts and Humanities and Senior Seminar programs and the catalog.