Minor in Disability and Human Development, University of Illinois at Chicago

Taking an interdisciplinary approach, the minor in disability and human development examines various aspects of society— healthcare, culture, politics, economics, history, legislation, education and social attitudes—that uniquely impact the experience and development of people living with disabilities.

In the coursework, disability is explored and understood through a social model that is based on history and culture. Under this formulation, disability is not inherent in the disabled person, but a result of socio-cultural dynamics that occur in interactions between society, the environment (buildings as well as attitudes) and people with disabilities. Therefore, Disability Studies’ subject matter is not simply human differences, but the meaning we in society have made of those differences historically by constructing disability as inferior and a “lack” based on particular cultural norms.

Part of this transformative approach to studying disability involves the education of academicians, researchers, policy experts, and clinicians who will join with disabled people as active challengers of oppressive institutions and environments. Students from any discipline can engage in disability studies. Because the program has faculty, researchers, and students with backgrounds in health, education, assistive technology, the social sciences, and the humanities, the Minor in Disability and Human Development offers a unique opportunity to study the full complexity of disability in a rich interdisciplinary manner.

Learn more about our program and what a Minor in Disability and Human Development can offer:


For video interviews with specific instructors about their classes, please visit our Coursework page.

For more information:

Maitha Abogado, Academic Coordinator
DHD Office of Student Affairs
Phone: (312) 996-1508
Email: maitha@uic.edu