Interdisciplinary Studies

Programs in Interdisciplinary Studies

  • The First-Year Experience Program at Missouri Southern State University has been established to assist first year students in the transition to university life and to introduce new students to the opportunities at MSSU. The FYE program oversees several components that help accomplish these goals such as the UE 100: The University Experience course, the Common Reading Program and the Leadership Training courses for peer mentors.
  • The Honors Program serves Missouri Southern State University by recruiting academically talented and motivated students and engaging them in enhanced educational opportunities and challenges designed to promote their development as scholars and citizens.
  • The Bachelor of Science in Justice Studies is a multi-disciplinary approach that prepares students for positions in the public and private sector. This degree will help prepare students for careers as court administrators, legal assistants, social workers, lobbyists, drug court administrators, state and federal law enforcement officials and many other law-related careers. In addition, this degree is ideal for students who wish to pursue a law degree or a graduate degree.

One of the goals this degree seeks to address is to develop the student’s critical thinking, reading and problem solving skills. This course of study should assist students in effectively presenting their ideas orally and in writing. This multi-disciplinary approach should enhance problem solving skills by exposing students to a wide array of justice-related courses in different disciplines.

Upon completion of this degree, students should have a comprehensive understanding of the legal system and how it interrelates with various disciplines. Students are encouraged to seek a minor in a foreign language, accounting, computer science, criminal justice, English with a writing emphasis, political science or social work.

  • The minor in Multimedia is designed to allow students to gain the skills necessary for careers in a variety of occupations such as business communication, advertising, graphics and the arts, network communication systems and business and media communication. Students will gain skills in software, multimedia design, programming, communication, marketing and strategy development.
  • Pre-Law - Law schools agree that a variety of majors prepare students for law school; there is no single preferred course of study for prelaw students. There are a variety of majors they advise students to pursue in order to prepare for law school. The U.S. Department of Labor recommends that students who wish to attend law school should become proficient in writing and speaking, reading, researching, analyzing and thinking critically. They recommend “Courses in English, foreign languages, public speaking, government, philosophy, history, economics, mathematics and computer science, among others.” Students may also find useful any courses that acquaint students with legal vocabulary and “hypothetical” exam questions, a staple of law school exams. Some of the MSSU majors that help prepare a student for law school include: Accounting, Criminal Justice, English, History, International Studies, Justice Studies, Mathematics, Political Science and Sociology. There is also a Legal Studies minor open to any student regardless of major. There are a variety of courses which would be helpful to any student desiring to enter law school no matter what major he or she chooses.

Missouri Southern also offers a variety of activities to prepare students for the law school experience. These activities include Law School Admissions Test (LSAT) training sessions, field trips to law schools and on-campus visits by law school recruiters to help students prepare for and select a law school.

The curriculum for prelaw students should be jointly planned by the student and one of the prelaw advisers below. The student may major in almost any discipline emphasizing development of the academic skills necessary to prepare the student for performing well on the LSAT and for the rigorous study required in law school. The major may be determined by the student’s general area of academic interest and by the type of law the student plans to practice, such as government service, private practice, corporate law, criminal prosecution or criminal defense.

  • Sustainability is the promotion of environmentally sustainable practices that maintain natural resources at least at their present level. The mission of the sustainability minor at Missouri Southern is to explore sustainability in greater detail as it is related to biological and Earth sciences, economics and public policy and to promote sustainable practices across campus.

You may be interested in: Justice Studies, Multimedia, Pre-Law, Sustainability

Criminal Justice Administration Department

Dr. Michael Hulderman
Interim Department Head, Criminal Justice Administration
3950 E. Newman Road
Joplin, Missouri 64801-1595
Phone: 417.625.9684
Fax: 417.625.9796

Communication Department

Dr. Kelly Larson
Department Head, Communication Department
Webster Hall - 3rd Floor
3950 E. Newman Rd.
Joplin MO 64801-1595
Phone: 417.625.9580

Biology and Environmental Health Department

Mike Kennedy
Sustainability Program Coordinator
Department of Biology and Environmental Health
Reynolds Hall 312
3950 E. Newman Rd.
Joplin MO 64801
Phone: 417.625.9857