Interdisciplinary Studies requires the completion of an Area of Concentration, which unlike traditional majors, does not contain a list of required and elective courses. Rather, students work with an Interdisciplinary Studies mentor to build their individual program of studies. Each of the Areas of Concentration (American Studies, Comparative Cultures, Environmental Studies, Global Studies) provides a structural framework that defines the types and numbers of courses which may be chosen to develop the major. Appropriate courses may be chosen from departments throughout the university as well as from the Interdisciplinary Studies course offerings. Similarly, the minor also is designed for the individual student using Interdisciplinary Studies and other appropriate courses.
PACE is designed to assist students who must work full time while trying to complete their college educations. The program, which exists in various forms at several colleges and universities throughout the country, recognizes that increasing numbers of adults are returning to school for intellectual growth, personal development and enhanced career opportunities. PACE students at California State University, Dominguez Hills usually have completed most of their lower division requirements when they enter the program. They are highly motivated people with limited amounts of time to allocate to their educations and thus want to make the best use of that time.
PACE provides an accessible and intellectually rigorous academic major in Interdisciplinary Studies. Another element of PACE is a strong support base of academic advisors, counselors and administrators who understand the needs and concerns of working adult students and help them to complete their studies in an efficient and educationally rich manner. Courses are scheduled in sequences and at times and locations convenient to most working adults. Currently, classes are available on campus in the evenings and Sundays and on Saturdays in a weekend college format. Students are advised to pursue either a part-time or full-time course of study, depending on their individual needs. Faculty members are chosen who appreciate the special challenges presented to these students as they pursue their educations. PACE students are given assistance in integrating their courses of study with their work, family and social obligations. The course scheduling and advising are designed to allow PACE students to finish the junior and senior year requirements for the degree in five to six semesters rather than the four to five years that are typical for part-time students.