Clusters and Certificates
The Graduate School’s interdisciplinary clusters and certificates facilitate connections between doctoral students and faculty who share research interests yet may not be in the same department or program.
These initiatives enable participating graduate students to join a cohort of students not only in their degree program but also potentially in many other departments, labs, and research traditions who are working on a common set of problems. In this way, many TGS students experience “dual citizenship” in both a degree program and interdisciplinary area. Many draw upon these experiences when designing their research projects, preparing for qualifying exams, and selecting dissertation committees.
Differences between clusters and certificates
While both clusters and certificates provide opportunities for interdisciplinary research and an intellectual "home" outside your department, they differ in completion requirements:
- A cluster typically requires three courses for completion (in addition to cluster specific
requirements) and does not appear on your official transcript.
- A certificate typically requires five courses for completion (in addition to certificate specific requirements) and does appear on your official transcript.
Explore cluster and certificate offerings
- Clusters in the Humanities and Qualitative Social Sciences
- Clusters in the Sciences and Engineering
- Clusters in Life and Biomedical Sciences
Students and cluster directors are also encouraged to visit the cluster FAQ page for a list of frequently asked questions.