Disability Studies

This is the first version of the 2024–25 General Catalog. Please check back regularly for changes. The final edition and the historical PDF will be published during the fall semester.

Undergraduate certificate: disability studies

Website: https://hhp.uiowa.edu/certificate-disability-studies

Disability studies examines disability as a social, cultural, historical, and political phenomenon rather than focusing on its clinical, medical, or therapeutic aspects. It is an interdisciplinary and multidisciplinary field that draws on scholarship from diverse disciplines, including anthropology, architecture, the arts, communication and media studies, cultural studies, economics, gender studies, geography, global studies, history, law, literature, medicine, nursing, philosophy, policy studies, political science, religious studies, social work, and sociology.

The certificate program helps students expand their knowledge and awareness of disability issues and prepare for careers in a variety of fields. Its multidisciplinary nature makes disability studies a good complement to a broad range of undergraduate majors.

Students who complete the certificate develop:

  • understanding of the history of disabilities in America;
  • awareness of how culture and society define disability;
  • the ability to interact with individuals from diverse backgrounds;
  • a personal philosophy of treating people fairly, equitably, and thoughtfully; and
  • greater understanding of and concern for public policy issues and active citizenship.

The certificate program in disability studies is administered by the Department of Health and Human Physiology.