Major or minor in American Studies

American Studies provides training in interdisciplinary thinking, analytical writing, and comparative cultural studies. We stress the diversity of United States cultures. This comparative approach to a variety of populations, histories, and traditions within the nation complements our emphasis on the international dimensions of American life.

In our classes, you are encouraged to understand local and national phenomena as embedded in larger social and economic systems. In this way, you explore how American cultural forms and practices have been and continue to be shaped by the movement of people, ideas, commodities, and resources across national borders.

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.

As a student with this major, you can expect to:

  • 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

View the Major Guide

Undergraduate Minor in American Studies

Our undergraduate minor pairs well with many other subject areas. It equips you to:

  • better evaluate the methods and approaches of any particular discipline
  • bring an understanding of the Americas to your primary field
  • make connections between different objects of study
  • open up new areas of inquiry or innovative perspectives on familiar topics
  • answer questions related to your areas of study, while generating even better questions to open up rich possibilities for creative activity

Undergraduate Minor in the American Experience

The minor in the American Experience provides domestic and international undergraduate students with a rigorous introduction to research on the richness, diversity and specificity of the society and the cultures of the United States.

You can expect to develop the ability to discuss and analyze the experience of diverse communities leading to the formation of current American society. Examine its specific institutions, social practices, socio-cultural tensions, cultural sensibilities, world views, public discourses and forms of artistic expression.

Undergraduate Minor in Native American and Indigenous Studies

Native American and Indigenous Studies (NAIS) is a vibrant field that incorporates perspectives from american studies, anthropology, folklore, history, literature, law, political science, the visual and expressive arts, and other areas of study.

In pursuing this undergraduate minor, you can expect to:

  • learn a broad range of basic historical facts about the Native American and Indigenous peoples of the Americas
  • think logically and analytically while making critical observations
  • formulate interdisciplinary interpretations of the history, literature, art, music, law, politics, and culture of Native American and Indigenous peoples
  • formulate a conception of indigeneity (both globally and comparatively) while understanding the persistence of localism in indigenous culture
  • gain new perspectives on globalization, sustainability, and cultural and environmental preservation

View the requirements in the student portal