American Studies B.A.

Bachelor of Arts in American Studies

Explore the history, literature, and culture of the United States and the larger Americas from an interdisciplinary perspective with a B.A. in American Studies. Our field connects with people, ideas, and methods from across the humanities and social sciences. While we focus on the Americas, our work is understood in a global context.

All American Studies classes emphasize analytical writing. Gain the ability to define issues, develop their implications, and propose interpretations in persuasive, expository prose.

Alumni spotlight: Ann Lewandowski

Ann graduated from Indiana University in May, 2020 with a B.A. in Journalism and American Studies. While at IU, Ann was active in many student organizations including: WIUX Pure Student Radio, the Indiana Daily Student, Reporters Without Borders at IU, TEDxIU, and even worked with her peers to create a new organization, Women in Media at IU, for the Media School.

Read more about Ann

Interview with AMST alum Ann Lewandowski

Interview with AMST alum Ann Lewandowski

Develop expertise & understanding

Our degree attracts students from a variety of backgrounds and perspectives who tend to be committed to social justice, critical citizenship, and diversity. American Studies students want to develop their critical thinking skills, satisfy their intellectual curiosity, and use innovative approaches to research. With this degree, you have a chance to examine subjects such as these:

  • The history and cultures of the Americas
  • The nation state as an intellectual framework
  • Critical citizenship locally, nationally, and globally
  • Globalization
  • Cultural objects and how they both reflect and shape values and relationships
  • Interdisciplinary methodologies
  • Equality and social justice
  • Relationships between dominant cultures and marginalized or countercultures
  • Historical and contemporary social movements
  • Individual, group, and national identities as well as the intersectionality of identity
  • Geo-political relationships

You can expect to gain the following skills in this major:

  • Learn to set the history, politics, and culture of the United States in a global and comparative context
  • Think logically and analytically, make detailed observations, and formulate interpretations of the literature, art, music, and mass culture of the United States, Canada, and the Americas
  • Become familiar with fundamental principles of American Studies as an interdisciplinary field
  • Collect, document, maintain, and manage evidence while doing your own research
  • Learn how to organize and compose interpretive and research essays and media presentations
  • Develop your oral and written communication skills