International Development (IDEV), as a field of study, is relatively new. It emerged from critiques of post-World War II programs designed to alleviate poverty and promote economic, democratic and social development in second and third world countries after independence. It is a social science that embraces the theory and practice of improving the quality of life of people in the developing world. IDEV studies promote a cross-disciplinary understanding of economics, sociology, law, political science, anthropology and language, among others. Students of IDEV graduate with a sophisticated understanding of contemporary global issues, especially as they pertain to the developing world.
The School of Liberal Arts offers an undergraduate coordinate major and a minor in International Development (ID) which is paired with a separate major in a traditional discipline. The primary major determines whether a student earns a B.A. or a B.S. degree. Courses are taken in various departments throughout the University. Students first declare the major or minor with the Senior Program Manager, Sheila Favalora. Faculty then meet with students at least once a semester to discuss their progress.
The coordinate major provides students with an education firmly rooted in the liberal arts tradition, while complementing their studies by providing them with an interdisciplinary and international framework for analysis of current global events. Building on this foundation, the program's emphasis on sustainability challenges students to consider development issues through the lens of sustainable or environmentally friendly positive social change.