School of
Graduate Studies

At UMKC we understand that each person’s academic, professional and career goals are unique. Our Interdisciplinary Ph.D. program enables students to work across multiple disciplines and develop an academic focus that is just as individual as they are.

From the moment you enroll in the Interdisciplinary Ph.D. program, you begin to write your own personal story of the future.

The world of the future will require scholars with a global approach to problem solving. It will no longer be enough to know one area, one discipline, or one field of study. Inquiry and discovery are crossing disciplines. With this in mind, the mission of the Interdisciplinary Ph.D. Program is to span traditional boundaries among disciplines while helping students develop knowledge and skills for independent research on the fundamental questions of the present and the future. Students must be admitted to at least two disciplines (Primary and Co-Discipline) by the end of their first semester.

Participating Disciplines
Discipline  Coordinator

Biomedical and Health Informatics

Dr. An-Ling Cheng

Cell Biology and Biophysics Dr. Jeffrey Price
Chemistry Dr. David VanHorn
Computer Networking and Communication Systems Dr. Baek-Young Choi
Computer Science Dr. Yugyung Lee
Curriculum and Instruction Dr. Candace Schlein
Economics Dr. Scott Fullwiler
Educational Leadership, Policy and Foundations Dr. Eric Camburn
Electrical and Computer Engineering Dr. Ahmed Hassan
Engineering Dr. Ceki Halmen
English Dr. John Barton
Geosciences Dr. Fengpeng Sun


  • Faculty sponsor required - please contact the Coordinator.
Dr. Matthew Osborn
Mathematics Dr. Liana Sega
Molecular Biology and Biochemistry Dr. Jeffrey Price

Music Education

  • Available as a primary discipline only, with a co-discipline of Curriculum and Instruction.
Dr. Joseph Parisi
Oral and Craniofacial Sciences Dr. Mary Walker
Pharmaceutical Sciences Dr. Kun Cheng
Pharmacology Dr. Hari Bhat
Physics Drs. Paul Rulis

Social Science Consortium

  • Available as a co-discipline only.
Dr. Marc Garcelon

View the Coordinator Policy