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Major Requirements

Students majoring in International Studies must complete a total of ten courses, which include a core of four courses, an elective track of four courses, and a senior capstone experience of either two courses (398 and 399) OR 398 and an additional 300 level course.

Please note that some of the courses listed in the core have prerequisites, which may increase the total number of courses for the major in International Studies to eleven. Also note that no more than two courses in an International Studies major work plan can be used to satisfy another major, minor, or concentration requirement.

 Core Courses

The Core is a mix of 100-300 level courses in International fields. Students must choose one course from among four eligible courses in EACH of Politics, Economics, and Philosophy (at least one of which is at the 300 level). They must also choose one course from among ten in Culture and Interpretation, a requirement in the core that is unique to Bryn Mawr. The rationale for the two parts of the Core (Politics, Economics, and Philosophy and Culture and Interpretation) are given below along with corresponding lists of eligible courses under each.

The disciplines of Politics, Economics, and Philosophy have become central to International Studies programs since markets, conflicts, diplomacy and rules are nested in values and norms as much as in state territories and institutional framings. The program at Bryn Mawr is distinctive in having the requirement that students take an ethics course in which they study topics in areas such as global ethical issues, development ethics, global justice, and human rights.

The eligible courses for the Politics, Economics, and Philosophy component of the core are:

Political Science
Introduction to International Politics (POLS B250), or International Politics (POLS H151)
Politics of International Law and Institutions (POLS B241)
International Political Economy (POLS B391)
Topics in International Politics (POLS H350)

 

Economics
Economic Development (ECON B225), or Economic Development and Transformation: China vs. India (ECON H240)
The Economics of Globalization (ECON B236)
Democracy and Development (ECON B385), or Economics of Transition and Euro Adoption in Central and Eastern Europe (ECON H241)
NOTE: Introduction to Economics (ECON B105) is a prerequisite for all other Economics courses.
Philosophy
Global Ethical Issues (PHIL B225), or Human Rights and Global Politics (POLS H262)
Applied Ethics of Peace, Justice and Human Rights (PEAC H201)
Development Ethics (PHIL B344)
Global Justice (POLS H362)

 

If none of the eligible core courses from a particular discipline in the Politics, Economics, and Philosophy core are available in any given year, substitutions will be allowed with another allied course offered at Bryn Mawr, Haverford, Swarthmore or Penn, with the approval of an Advisor from the Center for International Studies.

Also in the core, and unique to Bryn Mawr, Culture and Interpretation teaches how language, aesthetics, beliefs, values, and customs can shape possibilities for cross-cultural understanding and dialogue in globalizing polities, economies and societies.

Courses satisfying this requirement cover a broad perspective that teaches students about differing cultures and what it means to interpret or make cross-cultural comparisons and engage in cross-cultural dialogue in the global context. The list of eligible courses is, therefore, drawn from courses taught by Advisors from a range of key disciplines in International Studies: Anthropology, Cities, Comparative Literature, History, Philosophy, Sociology, and Languages and Area Studies. The course is meant to be a broad analysis of culture and interpretation that does not focus on a country or region in isolation from this broad analysis. Each of the courses selected from the range of disciplines capture this breadth and depth. Students interested in studying a specific region of the world separate from its global implications can pursue this study in one of the tracks.

The eligible courses for the Culture and Interpretation component of the core are:
Introduction to Cultural Anthropology (ANTH B102)
Culture and Interpretation (COML/PHIL B202 or COML/PHIL B323)
The Play of Interpretation (COML/ENGL/GERM/PHIL B292)
Chinese Perspectives on the Individual and Society (at Haverford) (EAST H120)
La Mosaique France (FREN/CITY B251)
Cultural Profiles in Modern Exile (GERM/COML/ANTH B231)
Introduction to Latin American, Latino, and Iberian Peoples and Cultures (GNST B145)
The Atlantic World 1492-1800 (HIST/ANTH B200)
British Empire: Imagining Indias (HIST B258)
Society, Culture and the Individual (SOCL B102)

 

With the approval of an Advisor from the Center for International Studies, substitutions may be allowed in the case of the ten eligible courses for the Culture and Interpretation component of the core when none is available in any given year.

Electives

Elective Tracks allow students to focus on one theme or area in greater depth across four courses, one of which must be at the 300 level.

The electives continue to anchor the major in inter- and multidisciplinary work while also adding flexibility so that students may be creative and purposeful in structuring their own work. What makes International Studies at Bryn Mawr unique is that it draws upon its established faculty research, resources, and reputations in the individual tracks at the same time as it offers flexibility under clear advising for each of the individualized pathways of learning.

Students should choose the four electives from the approved lists under one of the tracks identified below.

Students should check the International Studies Web site or the Tri-College Course Guide for information about courses that are offered in the current year.

Students may choose one of the following tracks:

  

Gender
Bryn Mawr’s “proud history of global leadership for women” makes gender an obvious choice as one of the tracks enabling students to complete the Major in International Studies. To make good on Bryn Mawr’s mission to prepare “students to be purposefully engaged citizens of an increasingly complex and interconnected world”, the student in International Studies who selects the Gender track will study gender and its intersections with factors such as race, class, ethnicity, sexual orientation, age, religion, and disability in order to analyze gender with respect to the workings of the global economy and globalization more generally. Although not always the case, many organizations at the local, national, and global levels now understand gender to be a central factor in policies for alleviating poverty or promoting economic growth. The changes wrought by measures such as improving health care for women and children and increasing access to education, property, and work outside the home shows the importance of understanding gender and its intersections with other forms of discrimination in a globalized and interconnected world.

The FOUR elective courses are to be selected from (but are not limited to) the courses liisted below.  The listed courses are a starting point for collaboration between the student and the major advisor.

Anthropology of Reproduction (ANTH B312)
Gender in South Asia (ANTH B316)
Cultural Perspectives on Marriage and Family (ANTH B341)
Advanced Topics in Gender Studies:  African Childhoods (ANTH B350)
Histoire des Femmes en France (FREN B248)
Le printemps de la parole feminine:  femmes ecrivains des debuts (FREN/COML B302)
Women in Britain since 1750 (HIST B292)
The Italian Women's Movement (ITAL B235)
Feminist Theory (PHIL B252, POLS B252)
Feminism and Philosophy:  Feminist Ethics (PHIL/POLS B352)
The Exotic Other:  Gender and Sexuality in the Middle East (POLS B282)
Women in Society (SOCL B225)

  

Development
Development is most often understood in terms of processes of economic growth, industrialization, and modernization that result in a society’s achieving a high (per capita) gross domestic product. These descriptions of economic processes tend to embed assumptions about progress, transformation, and liberation as exemplified in concepts such as “underdeveloped” or “developing” countries. The student in International Studies who selects this track will study the concept of development in a broad sense by using a multidisciplinary approach that combines courses from disciplines such as Anthropology, Economics, Cities, History, Philosophy, Political Science, and Sociology to effectively understand development processes from multiple perspectives. One result is an exploration of development that broadens the study from describing economic deprivation in terms of levels of income, for example, to understanding the ways in which equality, justice, well-being, and human flourishing are affected by growth and modernization processes. The student selecting the Development track will become versed in the critical issues, problems, and achievements common not only to developing regions of the world but also to developed countries and the world as a whole.

The FOUR elective courses are to be selected from (but are not limited to) the courses liisted below.  The listed courses are a starting point for collaboration between the student and the major advisor.

Archaeology of Agricultural and Urban Revolutions (ARCH/CITY B104)
The Form of the City:  Urban Form from Antiquity to Present (CITY/HART B190)
Globalization and the City (CITY/EAST B218)
Technology and Politics (POLS B321)
International Trade (ECON B348)
Themes in Modern African History  Topics:  Urbanization in Africa (HIST/CITY B237)
Impact of Empire:  Britain 1858-1960 (HIST B263)
Themes in British Empire (HIST/CITY/POLS B286)
Topics in African History  Topics:  Social and Cultural History of Medicine (HIST B336)
Politics of Global Commodities (POLS B264)
The Political Economy of the Middle East and North Africa (POLS/HIST B288)
Comparative Economic Sociology:  Societies of the North and South (SOCL/C"ITY B330)
 
 Global Social Justice
 Efforts to realize social justice are increasingly necessary in global systems as much as they had always been in national and local ones. The Global Social Justice track will allow students to make connections at all these levels. They will be able to draw on the long tradition of focus on Social Justice at Bryn Mawr and Haverford and on collaboration with the Graduate School of Social Work and Social Research and its thrust on Social Welfare. Bryn Mawr’s mission statement identifies the characteristics of a Bryn Mawr education as “critical thinking, interdisciplinary perspective, engagement in a diverse community, and purposeful vision of social justice”. The Global Social Justice track allows students to explore issues of social and political change in the context of economic and political transition in the globalized world. Students gain insight into how global issues affect relationships among people and cultures within and across national boundaries and how global issues are in turn affected by these relationships. They will study the ways in which dramatic economic disparities wrought by globalization and the global economy affect social welfare and thwart efforts to achieve social justice locally, nationally, and globally.
The FOUR elective courses are to be selected from (but are not limited to) the courses liisted below.  The listed courses are a starting point for collaboration between the student and the major advisor.
Medical Anthropology (ANTH B210 / CITY B209)
Environmental Health (ANTH B237)
Urban Culture and Society (CITY/ANTH B185)
Comparative urbanism  Topics:  Divided Cities:  Race, Class, Gender & Other Debate
                        (CITY/ANTH/EAST B229)
Human Rights in China (EAST B264 / HIST B260)
Introduction to African Civilizations (HIST B102)
Atlantic Cultures  Topics:  Maroon Societies (HIST B243)
Comparative Politics (POLS B131)
African and Caribbean Perspectives in World Politics (POLS B243)
Comparative Social Movements:  Power, Protest and Mobilization (POLS/SOCL B354)
Immigrant Experiences:   Introduction to International Migration (SOCL B246 / ANTH B258)
The New African Diaspora:  African and Carribbean Immigrants in the United States
                        (SOCL/CITY B338)

Perspectives on Social Welfare:  Local and Global (SOWK B323)

 Independent Design
Students who are so inclined may develop an independent design in consultation with an Advisor from the Center for International Studies. An Independent Design could include area studies that draw on Bryn Mawr’s strengths in the study of languages and cultures and on our programs in Africana Studies, East Asian Studies and Latin American, Latino and Iberian Peoples and Cultures.

 

Senior Capstone Experience
The capstone experience consists of two 300 level courses, 398 and 399 OR 398 and an additional 300 level course in International Studies.
 

The 398 seminar will have students do research, presentations, and final essays that delve deeper into topics from relevant courses in previously taken tracks and may incorporate experiences in Praxis courses, Summer internships, or Study Abroad. Should a student select to take 399 instead of an additional 300 level course, the 398 seminar could also be the basis for students to identify and begin preliminary work on research projects for 399 – including the exploration of theoretical perspectives and research methods that will provide a framework for their research and the matching of students with faculty serving as individual supervisors.

While most individualized supervision for those taking 399 will be of students writing a senior thesis, designated advisors in International Studies will work with those students who select to produce an extended document using platforms such as DVD documentary, a website, or a PowerPoint talk with pictures and video clips instead of writing a senior thesis.

 

Minor Requirements

The Minor in International Studies has been in place since 2005. Students who have declared a Minor and have not yet graduated should consult with one of the Co-Directors of the Center for International Studies to determine whether to continue under the old requirements for the Minor, switch to doing a Major in International Studies, or make slight adjustments to the requirements for the Minor in light of revisions that now have the core requirements for the Minor in line with those for the Major.

The Minor has always attracted and will continue to attract students who major in a language, arts, an area study, Political Science, or Economics. It will be possible, however, for select students to pursue one of the tracks in the major under consultation with an Advisor from International Studies.

Students minoring in International Studies must complete a total of seven courses, which include a required core of four courses and an elective track of three courses. Please note that some of the courses listed in the core have prerequisites, which may increase the total number of courses for the minor in International Studies to eight.

Core Courses

The Core is a mix of 100-300 level courses in International fields. Students must choose one course from among four eligible courses in EACH of Politics, Economics, and Philosophy (at least one of which is at the 300 level). They must also choose one course from among ten in Culture and Interpretation, a requirement in the core that is unique to Bryn Mawr. The rationale for the two parts of the core (Politics, Economics, and Philosophy and Culture and Interpretation) are given below along with corresponding lists of eligible courses under each.

The disciplines of Politics, Economics, and Philosophy have become central to International Studies programs since markets, conflicts, diplomacy and rules are nested in values and norms as much as in state territories and institutional framings. The program at Bryn Mawr is distinctive in having the requirement that students take an ethics course in which they study topics in global ethical issues, development ethics, global justice, or human rights.

The eligible courses for the Politics, Economics, and Philosophy component of the core are:

Political Science
Introduction to International Politics (POLS B250), or International Politics (at Haverford) (POLS H151)
Politics of International Law and Institutions (POLS B241)
International Political Economy (POLS B391)
Topics in International Politics (at Haverford) (POLS H350)

 

Economics
Economic Development (ECON B225), or Economic Development and Transformation: China vs. India (at Haverford) (ECON H240)
The Economics of Globalization (ECON B236)
Democracy and Development (ECON B385), or Economics of Transition and Euro Adoption in Central and Eastern Europe (at Haverford) (ECON H241)

NOTE: Introduction to Economics (ECON B105) is a prerequisite for all other Economics courses.

Philosophy
Global Ethical Issues (PHIL B225), or Human Rights and Global Politics (POLS H262)
Applied Ethics of Peace, Justice and Human Rights (PEAC H201)
Development Ethics (PHIL B344)
Global Justice (POLS H362)
 

If none of the eligible core courses from a particular discipline in the Politics, Economics, and Philosophy core is available in any given year, substitutions will be allowed with another allied course offered at Bryn Mawr, Haverford, Swarthmore or Penn, with the approval of an Advisor from the Center for International Studies.

Also in the core, and unique to Bryn Mawr, Culture and Interpretation teaches how language, aesthetics, beliefs, values, and customs can shape possibilities for cross-cultural understanding and dialogue in globalizing polities, economies and societies.

Courses satisfying this requirement cover a broad perspective that teaches students about differing cultures and what it means to interpret or make cross-cultural comparisons and engage in cross-cultural dialogue in the global context. The list of eligible courses is, therefore, drawn from courses taught by Advisors from a range of key disciplines in International Studies: Anthropology, Cities, Comparative Literature, History, Philosophy, Sociology, and Languages and Area Studies. The course is meant to be a broad analysis of culture and interpretation that does not focus on a country or region in isolation from this broad analysis. Each of the courses selected from the range of disciplines captures this breadth and depth. Students interested in studying a specific region of the world separate from its global implications can pursue this study in one of the tracks.

The eligible courses for the Culture and Interpretation component of the core are:
Introduction to Cultural Anthropology (ANTH B102)
Culture and Interpretation (COML/PHIL B202 or COML/PHIL B323)
The Play of Interpretation (COML/ENGL/GERM/PHIL B292)
Chinese Perspectives on the Individual and Society (at Haverford) (EAST H120)
La Mosaique France (FREN/CITY B251)
Cultural Profiles in Modern Exile (GERM/COML/ANTH B231)
Introduction to Latin American, Latino, and Iberian Peoples and Cultures (GNST B145)
The Atlantic World 1492-1800 (HIST/ANTH B200)
British Empire: Imagining Indias (HIST B258)
Society, Culture and the Individual (SOCL B102)
 

With the approval of an Advisor from the Center for International Studies, substitutions may be allowed in the case of the ten eligible courses for the Culture and Interpretation component of the core when none is available in any given year.

Electives

In addition to the four core courses listed, three electives are required. Each of the four tracks identifies a major topic or theme in International Studies that builds on or develops the core. The tracks under the minor will allow students who major in a discipline such as Political Science or Economics or in one of the Languages or Area Studies to have a minor that focuses their disciplinary work on International Studies.

Students should choose the three electives from the approved lists under one of the tracks identified below. Electives should demonstrate coherence and be approved by an advisor.

Students should check the Tri-College Course Guide for information about courses that are offered in the current year.

 International Politics

This track allows students to focus on the dynamics and structures of intergovernmental and transnational relationships from the perspective of the discipline of Political Science. Through engagement with the most salient theoretical and policy debates, students may focus upon such themes as globalization and resistance to it, development and sustainability, nationalism and sovereignty, human rights, conflict and peace, public international law and institutions, and non-governmental or civil society organizations and movements at regional, trans-regional and global levels.

The three elective courses are to be selected in consultation with an Advisor from the Center for International Studies.

 International Economics

This track allows students to focus on various theoretical, empirical, and policy issues in international economics. Each of the courses in the track – trade, open-economy macroeconomics, development, and environmental economics – focuses on different economic aspects of the international or global economy. International trade looks at the major theories offered to explain trade and examines the effects of trade barriers and trade liberalization on welfare. International macroeconomics and international finance examines policy-making in open economies, exchange rate systems, exchange rate behavior, and financial integration and financial crises. Development economics is concerned, among other things, with understanding how developing countries can structure their participation in the global economy so as to benefit their development. Environmental economics uses economic analysis to examine the behavioral causes of local, regional, and global environmental and natural resource problems and to evaluate policy responses to them

The three elective courses are to be selected in consultation with an Advisor from the Center for International Studies.

 

 Area Studies

This track allows students to situate and apply the economic, political, and social theory provided in the core to the study of a particular geopolitical area. It provides students with a global frame of reference from which to examine issues such as history, migration, colonization, modernization, social change, and development through an area study.

A coherent set of courses can be achieved by selecting the three electives from one of the following area studies: Africana, European, East Asian, and Latin American, Latino and Iberian Peoples and Cultures. The three elective courses are to be selected in consultation with an Advisor from the Center for International Studies.

 Language and Arts

This track allows students to explore human interaction at the global level through language, literature, music, and the arts. Students in this track focus their studies on the forms of language and the arts that are generated through global processes and in turn affect the generation and exchange of ideas in and between different societies and cultures.

A coherent set of courses can be achieved by selecting the three electives from one of the following: English, French, German, Italian, Russian, Spanish, and Dance and Music. The three elective courses are to be selected in consultation with an Advisor from the Center for International Studies.