The Interdisciplinary Arts Program at Shippensburg University is the only one of its kind among the fourteen universities in the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education. An ideal major for undergraduates who wish to acquire a comprehensive understanding of the arts and their interrelationships, the B.A. degree program in interdisciplinary arts offers course work in both arts performance and criticism across a broad range of media including computer design, sculpture, dance, music, theater, film, photography, and creative writing.
Interdisciplinary Arts Features
Majors in Interdisciplinary Arts begin their studies by enrolling in a core of foundation courses that provide them with a general understanding of the arts, and they continue by enrolling in elective courses that offer in-depth study and practice in the arts, as well as other electives that suit their career goals, such as courses in education, business, and the social sciences. As a result, IA majors gain both a comprehensive knowledge of the arts and the critical and communicative skills necessary to succeed in their chosen professions.
The rapid growth in multimedia technology has created a large market for people with a comprehensive foundation in the arts, as well as an ability to appreciate, interpret, and work with relationships among the arts. By combining courses in art history and practice with courses featuring hands-on learning and marketable business skills, IA graduates enter the job market with a broad-based perspective and a unique combination of professional assets. Majors are provided with a foundation for careers not only in the performing arts, but also in professions such as arts education, journalistic criticism, media production services, museum programming and exhibition, arts management and fundraising, and government and community arts administration.
The culmination of the Interdisciplinary Arts major is a Senior Capstone experience (6 credit hours). In the first semester of senior year, the IA major participates in a seminar (IAP 449 Interdisciplinary Arts Senior Thesis ) designed to guide and encourage an individual research project resulting in a thesis paper with an interdisciplinary approach to the arts-a critical study of the influence of painting and music in a work of literature, for example, or an original screenplay, or an illustrated essay on the interaction of the arts in a certain film, opera, dance performance, or work of musical theater. The IAP senior thesis is an exciting opportunity for students to engage in research and creative thinking and to share their ideas with other IA majors.
The second semester of senior year offers Interdisciplinary Arts majors a choice. They may use the senior thesis as a foundation for designing a public performance (IAP 451 Interdisciplinary Arts Showcase ), or undertake an internship in an arts-related organization (IAP 452 Interdisciplinary Arts Internship ). The senior showcase can take many forms. It might be an illustrated lecture, an exhibition of work, a multimedia presentation, a reading of poetry or fiction accompanied by slides, a performance piece, or a short film, video, or work of computer animation. The internship can involve work in galleries or museums, with performance companies, on arts exhibitions, in the mass media, public relations, arts foundations, or other arts-related professions. Students opting for the senior showcase have the opportunity to display their work in a public forum, while those taking an internship can use the experience as a springboard for professional employment in the arts industry.
CoursesInterdisciplinary Arts Program