Nov 29, 2022  
Undergraduate Catalog 2009-10 
Undergraduate Catalog 2009-10 [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

American Studies Major (36 hours)

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Admission to the American Studies Program is suspended pending review of the curriculum, effective Fall 2005

Joint-appointed Faculty:
Michael Millar, Spanish and American Studies
Carolyn Podruchny, History and American Studies

Associate Faculty:
James Biles, Geography
Linda Borish, History
Jose Brandao, History
Paula Brush, Sociology
Sharon Carlson, Director of the Regional History Archive
Michael Chiarappa, History and Environmental Studies
Kevin Corder, Political Science
Dourglas Davidson, Sociology
Nora Faires, History
Sarah Hill, Anthropology
Catherine Julien, History
Ashlyn Kuersten, Political Science
Irma Lopez, Spanish
Vincent Lyon-Callo, Anthropology
Mustafa Mirzeler, Comparative Religion
Michael Nassaney, Anthropology
Gwen Raaberg, Women’s Studies
John Saillant, English
Peter Schmitt, History
Kristin Szylvian, History
Gwen Tarbox, English
Daneen Wardrop, English
Ben Wilson, Africana Studies
Brian Wilson, Comparative Religion
Nicolas Witchi, English

The Program in American Studies provides students with a critical understanding of American identities through teaching and mentoring as well as providing opportunities for internships, undergraduate research, and study abroad. The course of study offers students an interdisciplinary framework that examines the United States and its neighboring countries from regional, national, and global perspectives. 

The program in American Studies offers a major and a minor designed to be interdisciplinary. The program brings together WMU faculty from Africana Studies, Anthropology, Comparative Religion, English, Geography, History, Political Science, Spanish, Sociology, and Women’s Studies who are scholars and teachers specializing in aspects of the United States and its neighboring countries. Students are required to take courses within the American Studies Program, including an introductory course, two courses in special topics, and a capstone seminar. They are also required to take at least one course in non-U.S. American Studies, such as the geography of Mexico and the Caribbean or the history of Canada. Other courses are selected from offerings in participating departments, covering such topics as popular art and architecture, urban politics, gender and law, literatures and cultures, the Underground Railroad, modern social problems, Hispanic culture, philosophy and religions in America. 

The interdisciplinary approach of the Program in American Studies provides theoretical, methodological, and practical grounding for careers in journalism, politics, research, organizations, public relations, and information technology. It is also a useful major for students who plan to do graduate studies in law, the humanities, and the social sciences.    

American Studies Major (30 hours)

Students must select courses in at least three (3) departments participating in the program and must concentrate nine (9) hours of study in one department; at least sixteen (16) hours must be taken at the 400-level or above.

Required Courses (6 hours)

Capstone Seminar (3 hours)

For majors and minors in American Studies, this course satisfies the Baccalaureate Writing Requirement.

Required Course in Non-U.S. American Studies (3 hours)

Student may select from the following offerings:

Required Course in Participating Departments (12 hours)

Students will work with the director to create a course of study that will focus attention on regional, national, and global perspectives on American cultures.


Electives (3 hours)

Students may choose an additional course from the College of Arts and Sciences or from courses offered in the College of Fine Arts or the College of Business.

Optional American Studies Courses:

American Studies Abroad

The director will arrange for WMU students to study American culture at a university outside the United States. Consult the director for more information about this option.

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