Format for Social Science Theme Proposals
A theme is cluster of courses that constitutes the focus for your interdisciplinary curriculum. After you have developed a theme idea, you are required to write a Theme Proposal that explains that focus. Writing this proposal can be a very useful exercise. People will probably ask in the future, "So what was this Social Science major all about?" The proposal is a good opportunity to work out your answer... to crystallize for yourself and others what interdisciplinary benefits you hope to derive from your curriculum. It may help you better define the kinds of connections you are most interested in. You may also want to think of it as good practice for cover letters and interviews since you will probably begin looking for internships and jobs in the near future.
- Introductory paragraph (introduce your theme). Restate the title and elaborate on what that title encompasses.
- List the classes in block form. For example...
SOCIO 432: Community Organization and Leadership
SOCIO 832: Community Change
GEOG 720: Geography of Land Use
POLSC 620: State and Local Government
Then explain how these classes fit together. Explain how they fit with your thematic interests.
- List any classes that might complement/supplement your theme. For example...
PLAN 315: Introduction to Planning
ECON 555: Urban and Regional Economics
Explain how these classes help you broaden your knowledge and/or provide context for your theme.
- End with a paragraph discussing how the knowledge from this theme will benefit you. How might this curriculum serve your career goals, plans for further education, development of transferable skills, life interests, understanding of society, et cetera?
* Keep in mind that this is just one model for how to write a theme proposal; it is not the only way to articulate your theme. You can use your own style, but these points should probably be included in your creation.