International and Area Studies

Scope and Objectives

The International Institute offers a variety of area studies majors and minors through the International and Area Studies Interdepartmental Program (IDP). The overarching goal of each of these programs is to address the need for students to have a broad understanding of the international nature of the world and guide them through a course of study that allows them to apply that knowledge to a particular region of interest. The majors are structured so that area-specific content proceeds in tandem with instruction in the humanities and social sciences disciplines that provide the tools for analyzing the cultures, social structures, polities, and histories of the regional areas.

Emphasizing the contemporary world since 1750, the majors establish a common conceptual and thematic basis for study of regional areas. Students take a common core course that illuminates the international character of the contemporary world and introduces a set of contemporary issues and challenges that cross borders and regions. Thematic and conceptual courses equip students with a variety of disciplinary tools they can use to study a particular area or region. Studies culminate in a capstone seminar.

The IDP also offers a series of area studies minors that allow students to focus their interest in a particular region of the world.