In addition to programs offered by the undergraduate colleges at ACU, the university offers programs that require courses from more than one college. These programs offer students an opportunity for significant enhancement to their education.
An individually designed composite interdisciplinary degree is a special opportunity for the student whose career goals are not met by a departmental major.
Health Professions Cooperative Degree
Diana Flanagan, Advisor for Biology Track
ACU Box 27868
Abilene, Texas 79699-7868
Halbert-Walling Research Center, Room 103
Autumn Sutherlin, Advisor for Biochemistry Track
ACU Box 28132
Abilene, Texas 79699-7868
Halbert-Walling Research Center, Room 302
The Department of Biology and the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry offer the BS degree in cooperation with some professional schools. In this program a bachelor’s degree is awarded to certain qualified students who have satisfactorily completed three years of prescribed work at ACU plus one year at a recognized professional school. Students in the cooperative degree program are advised by the advisors for health professions as well as a departmental advisor in either the Department of Biology or the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry. Two tracks are available for students pursuing this program: biology and biochemistry.
Composite Interdisciplinary Major
Jessica Smith, Assistant Provost for Curriculum and Assessment
ACU Box 29103
Abilene, Texas 79699-9103
Hardin Administration Building, Room 200
A composite interdisciplinary Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science may be designed to meet the student’s needs.
A Master of Liberal Arts in interdisciplinary studies is also available.
An individualized composite interdisciplinary major may be approved for a student whose life and career goals will be served by such a major. The student must work with the appropriate academic advisor(s) to design the degree plan, which will include the University Requirements.
The “Composite Interdisciplinary Major” (CIND) is a special academic program that is designed to allow a student to integrate studies from multiple disciplines in the baccalaureate curriculum. This major builds upon a core of classes from different majors and combines them to create a degree plan satisfying some or all of the learning outcomes for multiple disciplines. Students may choose either the BA or BS degree for the CIND major. The student transcript after being awarded a degree includes the CIND major, as well as listed concentrations for each of the disciplines that composed the major.
Students must meet the following criteria before being admitted to a composite interdisciplinary program:
- Students must have fewer than 66 earned hours to declare a CIND major and should have a minimum GPA of 2.5.
- Students must submit a written statement explaining the value of the combined fields to their interest and career goals. The statement should address why the composite degree is a better fit for the student than any existing degree. Students should have a clear rationale for pursuing the degree. With rare exception, practical considerations, such as reducing time required to graduate, are not valid justifications for pursuing a CIND degree.
- Department chairs from each area of study represented within the CIND degree plan must approve the course selection from that discipline, including finalizing required courses from that major that must be included in the degree plan. The Provost’s Office must approve the degree plan as a whole.
- The Registrar’s Office must ensure that the plan meets the general graduation requirements for the University, and that areas selected for the CIND major are areas in which the university is approved to grant degrees (including minors), based on the catalog.
- A student must satisfy all requirements listed in the ACT/SAT Placement Information section of this catalog.
The composite interdisciplinary major will include the University Requirements appropriate to the BA or BS major.
The composite interdisciplinary major will include all graduation requirements for the appropriate degree (BA or BS) as well as any special graduation requirements necessary to fulfill the student’s goals. The degree plan, which will exceed the minimums for a major (see General Requirements for the Baccalaureate Degree) in the chosen BA or BS degree, can combine significant elements from two or more majors. Combined areas such as social sciences, humanities, behavioral sciences, fine arts or natural sciences may be used as one academic area. Minimum GPA requirements, both within major and cumulative, will be determined by the departments and programs involved. The major may include a minor, supplement and support areas. Generally, the degree will not exceed 128 hours; however, an interdisciplinary degree may exceed 128 hours with the student’s understanding that the hours are necessary to satisfy the departmental elements that the student wishes to include in the major.
Electives may be used to build the interdisciplinary degree if necessary.
Applying for a CIND Degree Plan
Students who wish to inquire about a CIND major should begin with their academic advisor.
Liberal Studies Major
Jon Camp, Associate Dean
College of Arts and Sciences
ACU Box 29210
Abilene, Texas 79699-9210
Sherrod Building, Room 127
The faculty of the university serve as the faculty for the liberal studies major.
Mission of the Program
The liberal studies major allows students to combine degree programs from different disciplines into one major. It may attract students who have varied interests or career goals that draw on diverse fields.
The liberal arts tradition exposes students to a broad spectrum of disciplines. Students whose interests range or who have career goals that would be well served with academic background in multiple areas may find the liberal studies major a good fit. Students educated in the liberal arts tradition are known for their ability to adapt to changing demands at work and to connect information and insights from different fields.
The liberal studies major uses existing degree plans to give students the option to select three fields of study that are right for them. The faculty of many departments have designated minors intended to introduce students to their discipline or provide a concentration in some aspect of it. The university offers more than 40 minors, and all include at least 18 credit hours and a minimum of 6 advanced hours.
Liberal studies majors select three existing minors to provide the three fields that form their major field of study. Students majoring in liberal studies are not the students of any one department but are students of the College of Arts and Sciences.
Students must meet with the liberal studies academic advisor to declare the major and select their fields of study.
Guidelines for Selecting Fields of Study
- All fields must be selected from the minors offered by the university. The minors together count as the major field of study and will not be recorded as minors on students’ transcripts.
- At least two of the minors selected must be located in the College of Arts and Sciences; one minor may be located in another college.
- The intent is for three disciples to be represented, so a course may not count toward more than one field in the degree plan. Students may not select more than one minor in the same discipline.
- Students must meet the university requirements to complete 33 upper-division hours and take both a writing-intensive course and a capstone course. The writing-intensive and capstone course requirements may be completed in separate fields.
Interdisciplinary Minor in Philosophy
Frederick Aquino, Advisor
ACU Box 29406
Abilene, Texas 79699-9406
Onstead-Packer Biblical Studies Building, Room 315
Philosophy examines questions in every aspect of human life, and its methods apply to problems in every discipline. The study of philosophy allows one to develop the capacity to see the world from the perspective of other individuals and cultures; it enhances one’s ability to perceive the relationships among various academic disciplines; it deepens one’s sense of the meaning and variety of human experience; and it teaches critical techniques that are invaluable in all aspects of life.
A true liberal arts education must include a study and analysis of the ideas of the great thinkers of the world. Our world views and ideas are formed in the context of history, and we as citizens of the world and Christians have the responsibility to be aware of where our thoughts come from and what previous ideas influenced our own. There are many philosophies in the world today, and we cannot adequately respond to them or criticize them without some knowledge of their philosophical genesis.
The philosophy minor at ACU is designed to prepare a student who wishes to pursue graduate study in philosophy, to supply knowledge for a philosophical basis for the other disciplines, or simply to satisfy the curious mind.
Interdisciplinary Minor in Aging Studies
Suzanne Macaluso, Director
Pruett Gerontology Center
ACU Box 27793
Abilene, Texas 79699-7793
Sherrod Building, Room 133
A Minor in Aging Studies is a value added complement to many undergraduate majors. The growing number of older adults in the nation and the world is creating opportunities for most majors to focus on leading and serving an aging population.
The minor may be obtained through the Pruett Gerontology Center and the College of Arts and Sciences as a specialization in conjunction with any other degree.
Job potential in the rapidly expanding field of aging studies includes social work, family services, health care, retirement home industry, a broad area of non-profit organizations, communities of faith, public agencies, research opportunities, and a host of other positions in the network of professionals serving the older adult.
The undergraduate student, in consultation with the advisor, will design a program of study that will meet the individual student’s need in the area of gerontology.
Suzanne Macaluso, Director
Pruett Gerontology Center
ACU Box 27793
Abilene, Texas 79699-7793
Cherrod Building, Room 133
Denise Barnett, Assistant Professor of Communication Sciences and Disorders
Suzanne Macaluso, Associate Professor of Communication and Sociology
Heidi Morris, Adjunct Instructor of Family Studies
Tom Winter, Professor of Social Work
The interdisciplinary Graduate Certificate in the Study of Aging is offered through the Pruett Gerontology Center within the College of Arts and Sciences. The certificate is an 18-hour non-thesis program. A certificate in gerontology is also available on the undergraduate level.
Course work in this interdisciplinary program is carefully integrated in an effort to add richness, depth, and balance to a student’s background. The certificate may be earned independently or as a specialization to another graduate degree program. It is a nationally recognized credential in the field of gerontology education.
Since 1986, the Pruett Gerontology Center has worked to develop a curriculum in the study of aging to respond to church and community service needs of individuals and organizations. The center sponsors numerous workshops and conferences that address needs and issues in aging being faced by churches, families, and communities.
The admission requirements for the Graduate Certificate in the Study of Aging are as follows:
- A completed application for admission with a nonrefundable application fee;
- An official transcript(s) in English (or translated to English) of all previous colleges attended. The transcript must indicate an earned bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited college or university or equivalent;
- A cumulative undergraduate GPA of at least 3.0 on a 4.0 scale;
- A personal interview with the Director of the Pruett Gerontology Center.
ProgramsBachelor of ArtsBachelor of ScienceMinorCertificate