Interdisciplinary Graduate Groups

The purpose of interdisciplinary graduate groups (IDGGs) is to seed and support the development of research, educational, and training activities that expand and enhance interdisciplinary graduate and professional education at the University of Minnesota. IDGGs are also intended to facilitate collaboration among faculty, students and staff with similar interdisciplinary interests that transcend those of established departments and academic programs.

Members of interdisciplinary graduate groups share the particular group’s intellectual focus, as reflected in grants, fellowships, publications, conference participation, and/or teaching, among other scholarly, creative and professional activities. University of Minnesota faculty, students, postdoctoral researchers and other professional staff—as well as experts in emerging fields who are located outside the UofM—may hold membership in an IDGG.

Need to Make a Change in Your Group's Membership?

To make a change in membership, see the form and instructions for submitting new or updated interdisciplinary graduate group membership lists

Promoting Group Events

The Graduate School encourages IDGGs to submit their events and activities for consideration for publication in Synthesist, the Graduate School's e-newsletter, which is circulated every other Tuesday to current graduate and professional students, faculty and staff with graduate education responsibilities, and anyone interested in issues related to graduate education at the University of Minnesota. To submit your events and activities in Synthesist, and for the current publication schedule, please visit the Synthesist website. To submit information about your upcoming events and activities on your IDGG webpage, please submit information using this form. The Graduate School will include IDGG events in its online calendar and will publish an IDGG-specific events calendar on this IDGG homepage as well as on each of the IDGG's web pages. We may also occasionally feature an event on the Graduate School's homepage.

Call for Proposals

The Graduate School issues periodic calls for proposals to create IDGGs and fund their activities. These calls will be announced on this website. Interdisciplinary graduate groups are also encouraged to seek funding through the Minnesota Futures Grant Program, administered by the Office of the Vice President for Research.

Please direct questions about interdisciplinary graduate groups to Vicki Field, Director, Office of Interdisciplinary Initiatives (field001@umn.edu or 612-625-6532).

Current Interdisciplinary Graduate Groups

Adolescent Health

About this group

The Healthy Youth Development Prevention Research Center and the Center for Adolescent Nursing are among the premier sites in the country for adolescent health research and training. By joining forces with collaborative partners from state and local organizations and community agencies, Adolescent Health aims to be the premier trainers of adolescent health in the state. With the addition of the Office of Public Engagement and graduate students, this graduate group seeks to bring best practices in adolescent health to a broad audience of both academic and community practitioners.

AEGIS

About this group

The Anthropological, Environmental, and Geological Interdisciplinary Sciences group (AEGIS) brings together researchers from a wide variety of disciplines who share the goal of applying cutting-edge scientific techniques to the study of the human past, including archaeology, biological anthropology, and paleoenvironmental studies.

Aging Studies

About this group

The Aging Studies Interdisciplinary Graduate Group (ASIGG) promotes the development of critical engagement with a variety of social, policy, health and other complex problems related to aging. 

Asian American/Diaspora Studies

About this group

The interdisciplinary graduate group in Asian American/Diaspora Studies offers students a focused study of the history, politics, and culture of Americans of Asian and Pacific Islander descent.

Auditory Perception and Neuroscience

About this group

This group provides an opportunity to facilitate collaborations and the sharing of knowledge among hearing researchers at the University of Minnesota and the greater research community. The group’s interests focus on the understanding of the perceptual mechanisms underlying normal and impaired auditory systems. Current study methods involve the use of animal and human subjects to obtain physiological measures (evoked auditory surface potentials, neural imaging, and neurophysiology) and behavioral measures of simple and complex sounds, including speech and music. 

Biologically Motivated

About this group

“Biologically Motivated” seeks to pose new questions and solve problems by looking to the diverse ways that organisms adapt and survive. This interdisciplinary graduate group brings together students from the College of Biological Sciences with students from the School of Architecture in the College of Design and the Department of Art within the College of Liberal Arts.

Boreas Leadership Program

About this group

The Boreas Leadership Program trains and develops the next generation of world changers to catalyze social and environmental solutions.

Child Health and Wellbeing

About this group

The Child Health and Well Being interdisciplinary graduate group intends to harness the increased interest in research, training, and practice in children’s health and well being that exists at the University of Minnesota Duluth (UMD)

Clinical Movement Science

About this group

The Center for Clinical Movement Science is an interdisciplinary group of University of Minnesota faculty who leverage their collective expertise to solve problems affecting human movement and behavior.

Critical Race Ethnic Studies

About this group

The University of Minnesota is recognized nationally as an important locus for African American and African, American Indian, Chicano, and Asian American Studies. This group draws on the expertise and interests of those departments, but also brings in scholars from across the disciplines similarly interested in the interdisciplinary and critical study of US Race and Ethnic studies with an awareness of the global context in which power operates.

Design

About this group

The members of this group are interested in the theories and practice of design that can inform and affect the ways we understand and structure our material world.

Disability Studies

About this group

The U of M’s Interdisciplinary Graduate Group in Disability Studies (IGGDS) is a collaborative academic effort supporting individual and collaborative research and artistic creativity, working to develop a graduate-level minor in Applied Disability Studies on the Twin Cities campus.

Early Modern Atlantic Workshop

About this group

Our group aims to cultivate a multidisciplinary community of scholars from a variety of institutions to discuss the contours, possibilities, and limitations of the early modern Atlantic as a field of study.

FEASt

About this group

The purpose of FEASt is to provide a platform for graduate students in the natural sciences to develop the interdisciplinary literacy needed to critically navigate broader social, economic and political concerns of the food and agricultural sciences.

Food Studies

About this group

Food studies is an emerging field of enormous importance, both intellectually, but also politically and in the current moment. Its practitioners work in private and public sectors and must often analyze data and administer programs that include social as well as scientific knowledge. Yet graduate students and faculty who work in this area emerge from discipline specific training that does not equip them for the holistic world in which they will work. This graduate group tries to rectify that problem by creating a space of shared inquiry and training that orients researchers toward literatures, knowledge, and methodologies they would not otherwise encounter.

Hearing Loss In Children

About this group

The main focus of the Hearing Loss in Children: Diagnosis, Etiology and Outcomes group is in advancing research and care related to hearing loss in children.

Heritage Studies and Public History

About this group

Heritage Studies and Public History (HSPH) Interdisciplinary Graduate Group seeks to bring together faculty and graduate students across multiple colleges and disciplines seeking interdisciplinary approaches to heritage interpretation and education at the University.

Holocaust, Genocide and Mass Violence Studies

About this group

The Holocaust, Genocide and Mass Violence Studies Interdisciplinary Graduate Group provides a common intellectual space to bring together the disparate but closely related scholarly, legal, policy, and activist work being done by individual faculty and graduate students across the university’s multiple schools, centers, and departments.

Inquiry on Sustainable Operations

About this group

We aim to study the means by which organizations can achieve sustainability (in the broad sense: ecological, economic, social) by studying the characteristics of and the means by which organizational operations can be made sustainable.

Interdisciplinary Life Sciences Consortium

About this group

The mission of the interdisciplinary life science consortium (ILSC) is to foster a culture of interdisciplinary research in life sciences and to act as a catalyst for promoting interaction, exchanging of ideas and collaboration among life science researchers in Swenson College of Science and Engineering, College of Pharmacy, and School of Medicine in the University of Minnesota Duluth.

Interdisciplinary Studies in Virus Research

About this group

The members of this interdisciplinary graduate group are interested in viruses and 1) Their roles in disease of microbes, plants, invertebrates, and vertebrates, 2) As models for understanding biological processes, and 3) As tools for use in therapy and nanotechnology.

Interdisciplinary Studies of Innovative Community-Based Approaches to Research Dissemination (CARD)

About this group

The intellectual focus of this group is to explore, implement, and continuously improve methods for making useful, research-based information about children’s development available to parents and others in high-poverty neighborhoods, and to do this in ways that affect both the knowledge of community members and the research of graduate students and advisors.

Language and Cognition

About this group

Our group provides a structure for bringing together, and facilitating collaboration among, students and faculty with a common interest in addressing theoretical and practical questions that arise at the interface between language and other cognitive systems, and whose answers require a deeper understanding of the neurocognitive basis of linguistic communication.

Language, Culture and Society

About this group

The focus of the Interdisciplinary Graduate Group in Language, Culture and Society is on the analysis of the ways that language is used in cultural and social settings. All study of language consists of the study of language biology, language structure, and language use. The third of these is the principal concern of this group.

Mediterranean Studies Research Collaborative

About this group

The Mediterranean Studies Research Collaborative at the University of Minnesota has animated interdisciplinary investigation into the Mediterranean world past and present with the specific themes of identity and exchange. Identity is a much-contested analytic category. Despite the imprecision and ambiguity inherent in the construct, it allows for examination of hybridities and cultural translations that enrich our understanding of interactions and exchanges among peoples of the Mediterranean. As a group we have wide-ranging interdisciplinary and broad chronological interests in this world and have had considerable success with lectures series and conferences/workshops to date.

Microbial Biofilms

About this group

Microbial biofilms are tremendously complex, and their ubiquity in nature and medicine has stimulated the interest of researchers from incredibly diverse areas. The focus of this graduate group is to promote interactions between students from very different fields across the university who are interested in microbial biofilms.

Minnesota Scientists in Aging Research

About this group

The Minnesota Scientists in Aging Research is a group of scientists and students (undergraduate and graduate) at the University of Minnesota and other institutions in the State of Minnesota that investigate multiple aspects of aging. We conduct a broad range of aging research, from basic science to clinical and epidemiologic studies. We welcome scientists to join our community.

Mixed Methods

About this group

The mission of the Mixed Methods Interdisciplinary Graduate Group (MMIGG) is to serve as a resource and community for University of Minnesota faculty, students, and staff who are interested in integrating qualitative and quantitative sources of information in their scholarly work.

Moving Image Studies

About this group

Moving Image Studies is itself intrinsically interdisciplinary, and our community provides an institutional framework for the community of scholars at the University who wish to put their own work within a broader dialogue about the nature of contemporary media societies and their historical antecedents. The Graduate Group helps to build such a community, providing an ongoing forum for study, viewing, and discussion.

MRI Users' Group (MUG)

About this group

MUG is broadly interested in the neuroscience of cognition, behavior and disease, and specifically interested in applications of MRI for studying human brain function.

Music and Sound Studies

About this group

The Music and Sound Studies Interdisciplinary Graduate Group aims to provide a space for the study of fields that fall outside of traditional music studies (that is, historical musicology, music theory, ethnomusicology, and music education), particularly those of interest to graduate students investigating acoustic phenomena at the University of Minnesota.

Networks in Biology and Bioengineering

About this group

The Networks in Biology and Bioengineering Interdisciplinary Graduate Group (“Networks Working Group” for short) will bring together researchers interested in the behavior of complex, interacting systems across biology and bioengineering. The mission of group is to create an intellectual environment in which faculty and students studying all varieties of networks—e.g., neural, fiber, genetic, metabolic, and vascular networks—that arise in biological systems can interact synergistically and can advance their research individually and collectively. 

Reconfiguring Rhetorical Studies

About this group

The original purpose of the collaborative was to foster collaboration between Communication and Writing Studies at the University of Minnesota-Duluth campus as well as other colleges.

Rehabilitation Research Graduate Group

About this group

Mission: Cultivation of premiere scientists and future academicians to lead the transformation of the science and practice of rehabilitation. The Interdisciplinary Rehabilitation Research Graduate Group includes faculty, graduate students, and clinical, translational, and basic scientists at the University of Minnesota and other institutions in Minnesota interested in advancing the discovery, dissemination, and clinical translation of scientific findings in Rehabilitation. We conduct a broad range of rehabilitation research, from basic science to clinical studies.

Sexuality Studies

About this group

This interdisciplinary group of faculty and graduate students brings together their collective experiences, epistemologies, cultures and diverse perspectives from across the disciplines and colleges in an effort to better understand the social, historical, psychological, literary, legal, and political contexts in which human sexualities have been and are currently being expressed and theorized. 

UMycoNet

About this group

The University of Minnesota Mycology Network (UMycoNet) graduate group goals are to 1) better integrate the strengths of the UMN fungal research community, 2) to promote interdisciplinary graduate and faculty research and provide students with exposure to the broad spectrum of approaches used to study fungi, and 3) to serve as an incubator for industrial partnerships and training grant opportunities related to fungal biology in areas ranging from agriculture to medicine.