American Studies (BA)


College of Arts & Sciences/History, Politics and International Relations Department

Learning Outcomes

Upon completion of the program, students should:

  • Be familiar with American culture and institutions in the past and present.
  • Be able to demonstrate knowledge of different disciplinary approaches to the study of American culture.

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Special Requirements

Courses completed with a grade of D+ or below do not count toward fulfilling the specific course requirements of the major. A total of 6 credit hours of internship may be used to satisfy American studies degree requirements, with a maximum of 3 credit hours counting as upper-level coursework.

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Degree Requirements

A minimum of 128 credit hours hours consisting of the following:

  • 42 required credit hours
  • 3 international language credit hours
  • Applicable university global citizenship or general education program
  • Electives

International Language Requirement: A minimum of 3 credit hours in a non-native language is required in addition to the requirements for the major. Courses used towards the International Language requirement may also be used to fulfill general education requirements or a major/minor in a foreign language. and may be waived for students whose native language is not English and who are studying in English. Their mastery of English as a second language fulfills the requirement.

Students are required to complete 42 credit hours ; 30 credit hours must be within the department, and 12 must be selected from designated courses outside the department. The 30 credit hours within the department must include INTL 1500, POLT 1060, HIST 1320 (HIST 1300 or HIST 1310 may be substituted), a course in methods, a research requirement (fulfilled by taking the seminar, senior thesis, or a designated upper-level course in history or political science), senior overview, and 6 credit hours from Group A and 6 credit hours from Group B listed below. The 12 credit hours from outside the department must be selected from Group C below.

In addition to methods and the senior overview, at least 12 credit hours within the major must be upper-level coursework (3000 or above). If the student's coursework from Groups A, B, and C is not upper level, additional coursework must be completed so that the student has at least 6 credit hours of upper-level coursework from either Groups A or B and 6 credit hours of upper-level coursework from any of the Groups, A, B, or C. This should result in a total of 12 credit hours of upper-level coursework. At least 18 of the 42 credit hours must be taken at Webster University. There is a minimum distribution of coursework as well as the above requirements:

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Required Courses

  • INTL 1500 The World System since 1500 (3 hours)
  • POLT 1060 Introduction to American Politics (3 hours)
  • HIST 1320 Twentieth-Century United States (3 hours)
    or HIST 1300 Colonial and Revolutionary America (3 hours)
  • HIST 1310 Nineteenth-Century America (3 hours)
  • HIST 2600 The Craft of History (3 hours)
    or POLT 2600 Research Methods and Approaches in Political Science (3 hours)
  • Senior Overview (0 hours)

Group A: Students must select at least 6 credit hours hours from the following:

  • HIST 1010 Topics in History (with American subtitle) (3 hours)
  • HIST 1150 History of Popular Culture (with American subtitle) (3 hours)
  • HIST 1300 Colonial and Revolutionary America (3 hours)
  • HIST 1310 Nineteenth-Century America (3 hours)
  • HIST 1320 Twentieth-Century United States (3 hours)
  • HIST 1500 American Studies (3 hours)
  • HIST 2000 Social History (with American subtitle) (3 hours)
  • HIST 2060 Topics in the History of Gender and the Family (with American subtitle) (3 hours)
  • HIST 2090 Encounters with History (with American subtitle) (3 hours)
  • HIST 2320 African-American History (3 hours)
  • HIST 2340 History of American Business and Management (3 hours)
  • HIST 2330 History of the Consumer Society (3 hours)
  • HIST 3000 Ideas in History (with American subtitle) (3 hours)
  • HIST 3050 Economic History (with American subtitle) (3 hours)
  • HIST 3060 History Roundtable (with American subtitle) (3 hours)
  • HIST 3100 Diplomatic History: U.S. (3 hours)
  • HIST 4300 Advanced Studies in U.S. History (3 hours)
  • HIST 4600 History Seminar (with American subtitle) (3 hours)
  • HIST 4700 Senior Thesis (4 hours)

Group B: Students must select at least 6 credit hours hours from the following:

  • POLT 2400 or LEGL 2400 Introduction to Law (3 hours)
  • POLT 1000 Topics in Politics (with American Subtitle) (3 hours)
  • POLT 1060 Introduction to American Politics (3 hours)
  • POLT 1750 State and Local Government (3 hours)
  • POLT 2050 Contemporary American Politics (3 hours)
  • POLT 2060 Politics and Gender (3 hours)
  • POLT 2070 Politics of Race and Ethnicity (3 hours)
  • POLT 2500 Interdisciplinary Approach to Politics (with American Subtitle) (3 hours)
  • POLT 3010 American Constitutional Law (3 hours)
  • POLT 3020 Civil Liberties and the Law (3 hours)
  • POLT 3310 Conduct of Foreign Policy (with U.S. focus) (3 hours)
  • POLT 3320 American National Institutions (3 hours)
  • POLT 4600 Political Science Seminar (3 hours)
  • POLT 4700 Senior Thesis (4 hours)

Group C: Students must select at least 12 credit hours from the following:

  • SOCI 2375 Social Problems (3 hours)
  • ANTH 2000 Issues in Contemporary Anthropology (with American Subtitle) (1-4 hours)
  • ANTH 2300 Culture and Communication (with American Subtitle) (3 hours)
  • ANTH 2500 Peoples and Cultures (3 hours)
  • SOCI 2175 Social Movements (3 hours)
  • PSYC 3600 Social Psychology (3 hours)
  • ANTH 3130 Race and Ethnicity (3 hours)
  • SOCI 4475 Class, Status and Power (3 hours)
  • ARHS 3270 Contemporary Art (3 hours)
  • ARHS 4600 Topics in Art History¬† Relevant topics: Abstract Expressionism or American Art (3 hours)
  • BIOL 1310 Issues in Biology
    (with American Rivers subtitle only) (1-3 hours)
  • ENGL 2040 Major U.S. Writers (3 hours)
  • ENGL 2110 Perspectives (with American subtitle) (3 hours)
  • ENGL 2210 Literature into Film (3 hours)
  • ENGL 3450 Reading and Writing Autobiography (3 hours)
  • ENGL 3500 Contexts (with American subtitle) (3 hours)
  • FILM 1800 Film Appreciation (3 hours)
  • FILM 3150 Topics (with American subtitle) (3 hours)
  • FLST 3160 Topics in Film Studies (with American subtitle) (3 hours)
  • GNST 1300/1308 Technology, Science, and Society (with American subtitle) (2-4 hours)
  • GNST 1400 Civilization and the Arts (with American subtitle) (2-4 hours)
  • GNST 2000/2004/2005/20006 Topics in the Liberal Arts (with American subtitle) (1-3 hours)
  • GNST 2500 Honors Seminar (with American subtitle) (3 hours)
  • GNST 3500 Liberal Arts Seminar (with American subtitle) (3 hours)
  • JOUR 2360 History and Principles of American Journalism (3 hours)
  • JOUR 2380 Free Expression and the First Amendment (3 hours)
  • LEGL 2080 Topics in Law (with American subtitle) (3 hours)
  • MEDC 1010 Introduction to Mass Communications (3 hours)
  • MEDC 2800 Cultural Diversity in the Media (3 hours)
  • MEDC 3800 Studies in Cultural Diversity (with American subtitle) (3 hours)
  • MEDC 4100 The Law and the Media (3 hours)
  • MULC 1100 Introduction to Multicultural Studies (3 hours)
  • MULC 4650 Seminar in Multicultural Studies (3 hours)
  • MUSC 1070 Topics in Music (with American subtitle) (3 hours)
  • MUSC 3170 Jazz History I (3 hours)
  • MUSC 3180 Jazz History II (3 hours)
  • MUTH 1030 History of American Musical Theatre (3 hours)
  • PHIL 2080 Topics (with American subtitle) (3 hours)
  • PHIL 2320 Contemporary Moral Problems (3 hours)
  • PHIL 2540 American Philosophy (3 hours)
  • PHIL 3370 Feminist Philosophy (3 hours)
  • PSYC 2000 Issues in Contemporary Psychology (with American subtitle) (1-4 hours)
  • PSYC 2700 Psychology and Women (3 hours)
  • RELG 2030 Contemporary Topics (with American subtitle) (3 hours)
  • RELG 2100 Religion and Literature (with American subtitle) (3 hours)
  • RELG 2420 Religion and Culture (with American subtitle) (3 hours)
  • RELG 3070 Psychology of Religion (with American subtitle) (3 hours)
  • RELG 3180 Judaism (with American subtitle) (3 hours)
  • RELG 3190 Christianity (with American subtitle) (3 hours)
  • RELG 3200 Islam (with American subtitle) (3 hours)
  • RELG 4040 Belief Systems (with American subtitle) (3 hours)
  • SCIN 1520 Environment (intended for non-majors) (3 hours)
  • SCIN 1521 Environment: Lab (1 hour)
  • SOCI 3175 Social Psychology (3 hours)
  • SOCI 2000 Issues in Contemporary Sociology (with American subtitle) (3 hours)

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