List of academic disciplines and sub-disciplines

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An academic discipline or field of study is a branch of knowledge that is taught and researched as part of higher education.

A scholar's discipline is commonly defined and recognized by the university faculties and learned societies to which he or she belongs and the academic journals in which he or she publishes research. However, there exist no formal criteria for the status of an academic discipline. Disciplines vary between well-established ones that exist in almost all universities and have well-defined rosters of journals and conferences and nascent ones supported by only a few universities and publications.

A discipline usually has several sub-disciplines or branches, but the distinguishing lines between these are often both arbitrary and ambiguous.[1] Overlap leading to a complex networks rather than a simple heirarchies. (e.g. medicine - not currently listed here - takes from selections of health science and life sciences)

Overview[edit]

The University of Paris in 1231 consisted of four faculties: Theology, Medicine, Canon Law and Arts.[2] Most academic disciplines have their roots in the mid-to-late-19th century secularization of universities, when the traditional curricula were supplemented with non-classical languages and literatures, social sciences such as political science, economics, sociology and public administration, and natural science and technology disciplines such as physics, chemistry, biology, and engineering.

In the early 20th century, new disciplines such as education and psychology were added. In the 1970s and 1980s, there was an explosion of new disciplines focusing on specific themes, such as media studies, women's studies, and black studies. Many disciplines designed as preparation for careers and professions, such as nursing, hospitality management, and corrections, also emerged in the universities. Finally, interdisciplinary scientific fields such as biochemistry and geophysics gained prominence as their contribution to knowledge became widely recognized.

There is no consensus on how some academic disciplines should be classified (e.g., whether anthropology and linguistics are social sciences disciplines or humanities disciplines). More generally, the proper criteria for organizing knowledge into disciplines are also open to debate.

An asterisk (*) denotes a field whose academic status has been debated among this article's editors.

Humanities[edit]

Human history[edit]

Linguistics[edit]

Literature[edit]

Performing arts[edit]

Philosophy[edit]

Religion[edit]

Visual arts[edit]

Social sciences[edit]

Anthropology[edit]

Archaeology[edit]

Area studies[edit]

Cultural and ethnic studies[edit]

Economics[edit]

Gender and sexuality studies[edit]

Geography[edit]

Political science[edit]

Psychology[edit]

Sociology[edit]

Natural sciences[edit]

Space sciences[edit]

Earth sciences[edit]

See also Branches of earth sciences

Biology[edit]

See also Biology (outline)
See also Branches of life sciences

Chemistry[edit]

See also Branches of chemistry

Physics[edit]

See also Branches of physics

Formal sciences[edit]

Logic[edit]

Mathematics[edit]

See also Branches of mathematics and AMS Mathematics Subject Classification

Statistics[edit]

Systems science[edit]

Professions and applied sciences[edit]

Agriculture[edit]

Architecture and design[edit]

Business[edit]

Computer sciences[edit]

See also ACM Computing Classification System

Divinity[edit]

Education[edit]

Engineering[edit]

See also Branches of engineering

Environmental studies and forestry[edit]

Family and consumer science[edit]

Healthcare science[edit]

Human physical performance and recreation*[edit]

Journalism, media studies and communication[edit]

Law[edit]

Library and museum studies[edit]

Military sciences[edit]

Public administration[edit]

Social work[edit]

Transportation[edit]

See also[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Andrew Abbott, Chaos of Disciplines University Of Chicago Press 2001 ISBN 0-226-00101-6
  2. ^ History of Education, Encyclopædia Britannica (1977, 15th edition), Macropaedia Volume 6, p. 337

References[edit]

External links[edit]