American Studies Major

Department of History and American Studies

Affiliated Faculty

Krystyn R. Moon, Program Director

American Studies is an interdisciplinary major (Bachelor of Arts) that enables students to explore the complex interactions of peoples, cultures, social structures, and political institutions that have shaped the experiences of peoples living in the United States. In addition to four core courses, students demonstrate the ability to transcend disciplinary boundaries by completing five (5) thematically-assembled courses from affiliated disciplines approved by an American Studies advisor and the Program Director. Example concentrations include, although are not limited to, the following: gender and sexuality, race and ethnicity, cultural expression, human rights, politics and society, and space and place.

Requirements for the Major

Thirty-six (36) credits: to include AMST 201, AMST 202-210 (one course), AMST 302-310 (once course), and AMST 485; and 24 credits (eight courses) in related disciplines selected from a pre-approved list of American Studies electives as well as other courses with relevant content approved by the Program Director.  Five of the eight elective courses must be assembled thematically; that is, they must be organized around a unifying line of inquiry, which must be approved by an American Studies advisor and the Program Director. Internships are encouraged, but only 3 credits can count toward the major.

The major also has a number of requirements for the eight electives:  They are as follows: one must deal with the United States prior to 1900, and another must deal with race and/or gender. [The race/gender and pre-1900 requirements may be met by a single class.] Six of the eight electives must be at the 300-level or beyond. To ensure breadth, no more than three of the eight elective courses may be from one of the affiliated disciplines.

Major Electives for American Studies:

AMST 350, 491, 499; ANTH 211, 212, 341; ARTH 352, 354, 355; ECON 341, 351, 375; ENGL 328, 329, 330, 352, 353, 354, 355, 356, 357, 358, 371, 385, 386, 455, 457, 458; GEOG 221, 222, 331, 337; HISP 100, 105, 206, 207, 305, 320, 325; HIST 303, 304, 305, 307, 308, 310, 313, 314, 315, 318, 319, 320, 321, 322, 323, 325, 326, 327, 328, 329, 380, 390, 395, 396, 416, 417, 426, 440, 444; IDIS 203, 205; LING 302, 307; MUHL 156, 368; PSCI 201, 202, 311, 312, 313, 324, 334, 363, 370, 422, 450; RELG 250, 251, 277, 278, 304, 305; SOCG 304, 313, 315, 320, 331, 332, 341, 411, 421, 440, 442; WGST 101, 102.

American Studies Course Offerings

American Studies course offerings will be found under the 4 letter code of AMST in the course listings.

201- Introduction to American Studies (3)

Introduction to the method and theory of American Studies, its practice and a survey of key texts.

202 – Sophomore Special Topics Seminar (3)

Sophomore-level seminar that explores a topic chosen by the instructor.

203- American Protest (3)

This seminar explores how social movements have demanded access to political, cultural, and economic institutions in order to generate change and promote social justice.

204- American Foodways (3)

This seminar looks at the ways in which foodways relates American society and culture, and develops many of the skills that are central to interdisciplinarity.

303 – Junior Special Topics Seminar (3)

Junior-level seminar that explores a topic chosen by the instructor.

305 – American Gender and Sexuality (3)

This seminar explores the ways in which various disciplines explore the behaviors and attitudes tied to gender and sexuality in the Untied States.

350 – Topics in American Studies (3)

Exploration of specific topics in American Studies.

485 – Senior Thesis (3)

Prerequisite: Senior standing and permission of instructor. A significant research project pursued under the supervision of a faculty mentor.

491 – Independent Study (3)

Directed individual research on problems in American Studies, as approved by the Director. No more than three credits can count toward the major.

499 – Internship (variable credit)

Supervised off-campus experience, developed in consultation with the Director. Six credits may be taken but only three credits may count in major.