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International Studies

School of Sciences and Social Sciences

24 credits

The International Studies minor is an interdisciplinary program that combines core courses in political science (emphasizing global and comparative politics) with courses offered in other social science and humanities disciplines (anthropology, ecomics, geography, sociology, history, and holocaust and genocide studies). Its purpose is to develop a coherent understanding of power relationships in their spatial, social, and historical contexts throughout the world, and to encourage students to seek instruction in programs that complement their major courses of study. All students who minor in International Studies must complete courses in the three content areas enumerated below and demonstrate to the International Studies coordinator (in the Department of Political Science) that they have had a meaningful experience in a language other than English. The minor is most valuable when students select closely related courses from each content area, and when they undertake study abroad and/or an internship that applies the content of the minor.

Students should be aware that some of the courses listed below have prerequisites that must be met or waived by the instructor of record before they can be registered for the course.


International and Comparative Politics

These courses provide a broad conceptual exposure to international systems, international political economy, and governance in foreign countries.

8 credits

Select two of the following:

  • ISPOSC 220 Global Politics
  • POSC 322 Global Political Economy
  • POSC 323 Advanced Comparative Government

Socio-Cultural Studies

These courses will provide spatial and cultural awareness of area studies. It is the intent that academic advisors will strongly recommend that, wherever possible, students select socio-cultural courses and history courses that focus on the same regions.

8 credits

Select two of the following:

  • ISANTH 110 Cultural Anthropology
  • ANTH 315 Gender and Culture
  • ANTH 316 Cultures of Southeast Asia
  • IIECON 320 Gender & Economic Development in a Globalizing World
  • IIECON 380 Modern Middle East
  • ECON 460 Development Economics
  • ECON 470 International Trade and Finance
  • GEOG 303 The Politics of Place
  • GEOG 305 The Global Economy
  • GEOG 332 Global Water Resources
  • GEOG 340 Topics in Regional Geography
  • GEOG 371 Geography Field Studies [abroad]
  • SOC 320 Women, Gender, and Society
  • SOC 325 Ethnic Relations
  • SOC 326 Sociology of the Holocaust
  • SOC 327 Sociology of Genocide
  • SOC 350 Sociology of Globalization
  • IISOC 360 Nicaragua in Change
  • SOC 380 Environmental Sociology
  • SOC 427 Sociological Topics in Genocide
  • SOC 480 Political Sociology

Historical Studies

These courses provide important contextual background to the exercise of power in global relations during the current era, since they treat the late 19th and 20th century antecedents of our time.

8 credits

Select two of the following:

  • HIST 122 Modern East Asia
  • HIST 290 with appropriate regional foci (such as the Mideast or Africa)
  • HIST 322 The Chinese Revolution
  • HIST 324 Modern Japan
  • HIST 342 Europe 1918-1945
  • HIST 343 Europe Since 1945
  • IIHGS 255 Genocide
  • HGS 374 Comparative Genocide

Experience in a Language Other than English

Students must provide evidence to the International Studies program coordinator that they have successful experience living, or studying, or working in an environment that requires the use of a language other than English.  (The coordinator will verify in writing to the Registrar that this experience has been satisfied and documented.)  This requirement may be met in a variety of ways.  A student may:

  • offer evidence of proficiency in a language other than English (such as a language that was spoken at home), where satisfactory evidence includes a score of 50-or-better on the CLEP examination, or a score of 3 or better on an AP examination, or a comparable score on another assessment offered by a recognized academic organization;
  • successfully complete a two-course sequence of instruction in one language other than English (such as IHFR 101 and IHFR 102, or IHSP 101 and IHSP 102);
  • successfully complete two semesters of a college-approved internship, in which the internship requires the continuous use of a language other than English; or
  • successfully participate in a semester-long study away program in a host culture where either English is not the official language spoken (e.g., Poland, Chile, Japan, Italy, etc.) or other languages are spoken and instruction is offered (e.g., Ireland, South Africa, India, etc.) and either (a) successfully complete two academic courses in the language or (b) successfully complete one language course and one additional course or internship that demonstrates in-depth cross-cultural immersion that connects to the target language being studied.  (For example, a student could study in Italy and take one class in Italian and a credit-bearing internship where Italian language is used in interactions.)

Procedure for Course Substitutions

Other college-level courses (both here and abroad) may meet the objectives of this program.  Interested students are encouraged to apply to the International Studies program coordinator for course substitution approval. Three criteria govern substitution decisions: approved courses focus on (a) power relationships and human behavior during (b) a period that is relatively recent in world history in (c) a place that is not the United States.