College of Arts & Sciences


2020-2021 UNDERGRADUATE STUDIES CATALOG

Effective 1 June 2020 through 31 May 2021

Please see the Temporary Adjustments to Policy on Grading for Undergraduate Courses for Spring 2020

Please see the Undergraduate Catalog Archives for PDF versions of past catalogs.


This page was modified on 19 June 2020.
Please see the Undergraduate Catalog Addendum to view changes that were made.

Anton Wallner, dean

College of Arts & Sciences website (external to catalog)


Mission Statement

Webster University's College of Arts & Sciences fosters free and rigorous intellectual inquiry among students and faculty in an atmosphere that respects differences in background, belief and aspiration. We promote the values that ground an open, critically reflective, culturally diverse and democratic society, and we prepare students to be active contributors to such a society.

As part of an international university, we encourage students to expand their horizons by learning the languages and worldviews of other cultures. We inspire students to seek the common ground upon which humans create sustainable relationships with each other and with their wider environment.

Owing to the general and fundamental nature of our various disciplines, we are committed to providing academic and intellectual support to the entire university.

We include several professional programs, which are guided by contemporary practices, appropriate accreditation standards and the best recent scholarly activity.


Degree Distinctions

International Distinction

The student must have a significant, practical, international field experience in a country other than his or her native country. This experience may be an internship, community service, volunteer work with a nongovernmental organization or other organization, paid employment in the second country, or other field experience that is proposed and approved

The approval process involves submission of the proposed plan, identifying what the student will accomplish, and who will be involved, i.e. supervisor of the actual field experience, contact person at the University, etc. The student will work with his or her advisor and the Director of the Center for International Education in developing the plan for the international field experience. Prior to the field experience, the student must receive approval of the plan from the department in which the student expects to receive her or his undergraduate degree.

Approval must also be given by the Academic Director (or appointee) of the country in which the field experience will take place. Approval forms will be available electronically. During the field experience, a journal will be kept and will be handed in at the end of the experience along with a written synopsis of the field experience. The department will determine if the experience was acceptable or unacceptable.

Students should register for ISTL 2500 for 3-5 credit hours. Grade will be pass or fail. A minimum of 10 hours and a maximum of 20 hours per week will be spent doing the field experience.

Study Abroad Distinction

Students must have completed at least one term of study (eight weeks) as a full-time student at a Webster University international campus or a Webster University affiliated campus abroad. This campus must be a campus other than the student's home campus.


Biological Sciences Department

Mary Preuss, chair

Majors and Degrees

Minors

Pre-Professional Programs

Department Mission

The Department of Biological Sciences provides a rigorous and applied learning experience that integrates the fundamental sciences of biology, chemistry and physics. We serve a highly diverse student population coming from a range of ethnic and educational backgrounds. As a department, we focus on a personalized approach to education, tailoring each experience to meet the academic and career goals of the individual student. By maintaining small class sizes and emphasizing group activities, our students interact directly with the faculty and with each other on a regular basis.

The degrees offered in the biological sciences are designed to prepare students for rewarding careers as scientists, educators, professionals, and global citizens. The department currently offers four baccalaureate programs (a BA in biology and a BS in biological sciences, each with associated emphases, a BS in chemistry and a BS in exercise science) and four minor programs (biology, chemistry, exercise science and general science). We also offer individual courses satisfying the requirements for general education and special interest courses in environmental studies, education and health science.

Given the importance of independent research and experimentation in science, the department faculty are committed to providing hands-on research opportunities to all majors in the biological sciences. Our curriculum includes extensive laboratory experience, ensuring that each student will develop proficiency in a wide range of lab techniques, as well as in the analysis, interpretation and presentation of scientific data.

Special Requirements

Science courses taken more than 10 years ago may not count as the prerequisite for certain advanced courses.

Transfer students must complete a minimum of 18 credit hours at Webster University within the Biological Sciences Department. This must include Research Methods (BIOL 4400 or CHEM 4400) and Senior Thesis (BIOL 4420, BIOL 4430 or CHEM 4430) for the appropriate majors. Transfer courses taken prior to enrollment at Webster University may be used to substitute for required courses if accepted by the chair.

No more than 6 credit hours of independent study courses may count toward the required biology hours. Coursework completed with a grade of “D” may not be counted toward the fulfillment of departmental requirements.


English Department

Murray Farish, chair

Majors and Degrees

Minors

Department Mission

The curriculum of the English Department is designed to demonstrate the interaction of literature with every area of human values and human concern. The central works of English and American literature are emphasized, but they are joined by other great literatures studied in translation. In upper-division courses, instead of treating together works widely varied in style, content and theme because they were written in the same century, the department has cut across historical lines to place side by side works dealing with the same subjects or themes, or works that belong to the same genre.

All courses listed in the catalog are offered on a regular basis, though some upper-division courses are taught only in two-year rotation.

A special program in the School of Education for seniors who plan to teach permits them to work as apprentices at local high schools, devoting their energy to teaching, with minimal demands made on them at the University.

Special Study Opportunities

Internships: Creative writing majors can perform writing internships with businesses, nonprofit organizations and government agencies. These internships can earn course credit if taken as part of ENGL 4620 Practicum.

Departmental Honors in Creative Writing: With the English Department's approval, a creative writing major may earn recognition as an outstanding student in the department by completing additional requirements, as follows:

  • Complete at least 45 credit hours in residence at Webster University.
  • Maintain a GPA of 3.5 in English coursework completed at Webster University
  • Complete at least six credit hours of a foreign language with a grade of B or higher in each semester, or test out of that requirement.
  • Further explore cultures other than British or U.S. in one of four ways: complete at least three additional credit hours of foreign language with a grade of C or higher; complete an approved course in literature in transition; complete an approved course in world literature; or participate in study abroad.
  • Complete three hours of the following: an additional ENGL 4400 in a second genre; an additional Topics course (if content differs); an additional literature course at the 3000-4000 level.
  • Complete at least one credit hour of ENGL 4620 Practicum, prior to the student's final semester.
  • Through consultation with an English Department advisor and successful completion of the Petition to Write the Honors Thesis, secure the approval of the department to proceed with the Honors Thesis. This step should be completed by the Monday before the mid-semester break prior to the student's graduation semester.
  • Complete ENGL 4900 Thesis Workshop. Guidelines for writing the thesis can be found on the department's website. Students who successfully complete ENGL 4900 will earn one credit hour, for a total of 41 credit hours.
  • Receive Honors on the thesis by writing a thesis that meets departmental standards for exceptional work. A student who received Honors on the thesis will be enrolled in the 0-credit ENGL 4910 Honors Thesis course before the end of the semester in which the thesis is completed.

Global Languages, Cultures and Societies Department

Silvia Navia, chair

Majors and Degrees

Minors

Certificates

Department Mission

The Department of Global Languages, Cultures and Societies at Webster University brings together inter-disciplinary faculty expertise spanning anthropology, sociology, literature, language and global studies to help students live and thrive in an increasingly interconnected global environment. Students in the department develop the skills to understand and critically engage with the consequences of complex flows of people, goods, ideas, conflicts and social problems across borders. Students hone critical thinking, language fluency, inter-cultural competence and holistic knowledge of important global social problems to prepare them for careers in business, economic development, non-profit sector, government and international organizations, and culture industries.

Departmental Academic Advising

Students majoring in one of the programs administered by the Global Languages, Cultures and Societies department are encouraged to seek the direction of a Global Languages, Cultures and Societies faculty advisor as early in their studies as possible. A departmental faculty advisor will help assess and plan the student's program of study, focusing on the student's specific academic and career goals. The diversity of activities for which students are preparing themselves urges this approach: some students are seeking careers in teaching, social service, museums, historical societies, nonprofit organizational settings, or corporations, while others are preparing for admission to graduate and professional training programs.

Special Study Opportunities

Language Offerings: Chinese (Mandarin), English as a Second Language, French, German, Japanese and Spanish. When there is sufficient interest, other languages are also offered, such as American Sign Language, Italian, Latin and Russian.

Teaching Assistants: The department employs teaching assistants from Argentina, France, Germany or Austria, and Japan who incorporate contemporary culture from their countries into their courses and organize extracurricular cultural events like language tables.

Study Abroad/Exchange Programs: There is an exchange of students as assistant instructors between Webster University and the Universidad Nacional de Cuyo in Mendoza, Argentina, and between Webster and the French Ministry of Education. Advanced students of Spanish and French have the opportunity to apply for these teaching assistantships. Webster University offers an exchange program with Kansai University in Japan. The department also provides study abroad programs in France, Belgium, Argentina, Mexico, Spain, Austria and Germany. The minors in Africana Studies and in Anthropology: Archeology Focus offer the unique opportunity to study abroad at the Ghana and Athens campus respectively where students may experience firsthand many of the social-cultural and political-economic issues introduced in the classroom.

Research Experience: Numerous opportunities for collaborative research with faculty on ongoing projects.

Scholarships: Scholarships are available to help students participate in these international experiences. Contact the department faculty and the Office of Study Abroad to learn more about scholarship opportunities.

Language Recognition Credit

Language Recognition Credit is designed for students who already have proficiency in a second language. Students who enroll in their first 3-credit language course (other than 1070/1080 and 1090) at Webster, and complete the course with a grade of "B" or better (not "B-"), will be awarded recognition credit. Up to 12 recognition credit hours can be earned. Students must apply for Recognition Credit and pay a $10 processing fee. RC are Webster credits and are applicable to requirements for a minor, certificate, or a major in a foreign language. Please contact the department for more information.

English as a Second Language (St. Louis only)

The English as a Second Language (ESL) program at Webster University in St. Louis combines instruction in English with coursework in other academic disciplines. Courses offered in the ESL program are labeled ESLG in this catalog and in University course listings. With the help of an academic advisor, students enroll in appropriate ESLG courses along with an additional undergraduate course offered in cooperation with the St. Louis ESL program. This combination of ESL coursework with study in another discipline is designed to increase the students' academic skills proficiency while providing them with practical experience in using and understanding spoken and written academic English.

Based on test scores submitted during the admission process and through diagnostic testing, students in St. Louis may take two or three terms of ESLG courses. Undergraduate students can use ESLG classes as elective credits, and a record of their achievement in all ESLG courses is posted on their official University transcripts. See the ESLG course listings in the Course Description section. Students may also be referred to the ESL program for advising, testing or possible ESL placement by faculty or staff.

Special Requirements

Courses completed with a grade lower than "C" do not count toward fulfilling the specific course requirements of the major. Courses at the 3000-level may only be taken as pass/fail with permission of the chair of the department.


History, Politics, International Relations and Religious Studies Department

Warren Rosenblum, chair (Summer and Fall)
Allan MacNeill, chair (Spring)

Majors and Degrees

Minors

Certificates

Pre-Professional Program

Department Mission

The Department of History, Politics, International Relations and Religious Studies educates students for the insight, perspectives and skills necessary for global citizenship. Study in the department equips student with the knowledge to understand, analyze and interact with a complex world. Bridging the humanities and social sciences, the department offers complementary areas of specialization in the majors of history, political science, international relations and the individualized major in religious studies. The faculty value diversity, inclusion, individualized attention and personal growth. Study in the department develops the critical thinking, writing, speaking and analytical skills necessary for the changing career possibilities in our fast-paced world.

Special Study Opportunities

Internships: Students intern with a variety of companies, non-profit organizations and government institutions both in the United States and overseas. Local internship placements have included the Missouri History Museum, the St. Louis Science Center, KETC-TV, Legal Services of Missouri, the American Civil Liberties Union, Monsanto/Bayer, Anheuser-Busch, the Missouri State Legislature and various Congressional offices. Farther afield, students have held internships with United States Congressional Committees in Washington, the International Atomic Energy Agency in Vienna, the International Red Cross and the World Health Organization in Geneva, and the International Criminal Police Organization (INTERPOL) in Lyon, France, among other organizations. Through a special arrangement with the French Embassy in the U.S. and the Centre Francophone at Webster, we are also able to offer students the opportunity to intern with French government institutions in the Innovation Policy Internship Program.

Study Abroad: The Department of History, Politics, International Relations and Religious Studies encourages all students to pursue the opportunities available at Webster campuses in Europe, Asia and Africa. There are rich offerings in history, political science and international relations at our programs in Vienna, Austria; Accra, Ghana; Athens, Greece; Leiden, The Netherlands; Geneva, Switzerland; and Cha-am, Thailand. Students can also take courses in religious studies at many of the Webster campuses and at our partner institutions in Japan and China.


Institute for Human Rights and Humanitarian Studies

Lindsey Kingston, director

Majors and Degrees

Minors

Certificates

Institute Mission

The Institute for Human Rights and Humanitarian Studies is the interdisciplinary academic home for the international human rights program and combines curricular and co-curricular programming to support human rights education.

Fellows

  • Pinar Alakoc, History, Politics, International Relations and Religious Studies
  • Bill Barrett, Electronic and Photographic Media
  • Elsa Fan, Global Languages, Cultures and Societies
  • Oresté Foppiani, International Relations (Geneva)
  • Dana Hill, International Human Rights
  • Michael Hulsizer, Psychology
  • Danielle MacCartney, Law, Crime and Social Justice
  • Andrea Miller, Global Languages, Cultures and Societies
  • Paul Moriarty, Philosophy
  • Chris Parr, History, Politics, International Relations and Religious Studies
  • Kate Parsons, Philosophy
  • Kelly-Kate Pease, History, Politics, International Relations and Religious Studies
  • Robin Ramcharan, International Relations (Thailand)
  • Warren Rosenblum, History, Politics, International Relations and Religious Studies
  • Sheetal Shah, Behavior/Social Science (Leiden)
  • Deborah Stiles, Educational Psychology
  • Dongling Zhang, Global Languages, Cultures and Societies 

Law, Crime and Social Justice Department

Robin Jefferson Higgins, chair

Majors and Degrees

Minors

Certificates

Pre-Professional Program

Department Mission

The Law, Crime and Social Justice Department is a multidisciplinary and interdisciplinary department committed to developing intellectual skills of critical thinking and analysis. Through a student-centered approach, faculty inspire students to engage with local, national and international communities to create a more just world. Courses in the department examine the structures of law, crime and society and investigate how assumptions about race, sex/gender, class and sexuality both reproduce and resist hierarchies of power. The department focus is on preparing students for further study in law, crime and justice, while cultivating real world practical skills that can be applied in a wide array of growing careers in law, crime and social justice.

Special Study Opportunities

Internships: Students have the opportunity to participate in an internship course which allows students to connect classroom learning with practical experience.

Study Abroad: Students may participate in a summer hybrid study abroad program dedicated to the study of law in Leiden, the Netherlands, the most prominent hub of international law in the world. During this study abroad program, students visit such locations as the International Court of Justice in the Peace Palace, the International Criminal Court, the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons and other law-related governmental agencies, e.g. Eurojust, the judicial arm of the U.N. agencies.

Departmental Academic Advising

Early in a departmental advisee's residence, a departmental faculty advisor is assigned to help assess and plan the student's program of study, focusing on the student's specific academic and career goals.


Nursing Department

Janice Palmer, chair 

Majors and Degrees

Department Mission

The bachelor of science in nursing (BSN) program is designed for registered nurses who wish to advance their knowledge in nursing, the sciences and the liberal arts. The program helps the registered nurse develop analytic and communication skills for professional excellence.

The BSN curriculum focuses on holistic health promotion for the individual student, the profession, the individual client, the family, groups and the community. There is a strong emphasis on the nurse's personal development, the needs and future of the profession, and the broad, accountable nursing role that is needed and expected by today's health care consumer. The program prepares the registered nurse for generalist nursing practice. The faculty strives to create a dynamic, interactive learning environment. A variety of faculty members, student experiences and learning environments are used to meet program and individual student goals.

The BSN program is accredited by the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing, 3343 Peachtree Road NE, Suite 850, Atlanta, GA 30326.

Special Study Opportunities

Instructional Formats: Part-time evening study is available at select St. Louis cohort partner locations. Courses are also offered online in eight-week sessions. Since all RN to BSN students are transfer students, students have individualized plans based on the number and types of transfer credits. Student can complete the core program requirements in two and one-half years on a part-time basis but often have additional credit hour requirements for degree completion.

Special Requirements

To progress through the program, nursing courses (NURS) must be completed with a grade of “C” or higher. In addition, in courses with a clinical/practice experience component, students must receive a grade of “Satisfactory” in the clinical/practice experience portion of the course in order to pass the course. Unsatisfactory completion of the clinical/practice experience component of the course results in automatic failure of the course. Students may repeat a specific nursing course only one time and no more than two nursing courses may be repeated during the program.

Special Admission Requirements

Students are expected to demonstrate a minimum GPA of 2.5 on prior college coursework for admission to the BSN program. The student must also hold current, unencumbered licensure as a registered nurse or, for new graduates, have a scheduled NCLEX exam within three months of beginning the program.


Philosophy Department

Bruce Umbaugh, chair

Majors and Degrees

  • Philosophy (BA)
    Emphasis areas:
    • Art and Creativity
    • Ethics and Social Justice
    • Individualized Emphasis

Minors

Certificates

Department Mission

The Philosophy Department cultivates habits of thinking critically and communicating effectively about significant matters to help people live more meaningful, creative and productive lives.


Psychology Department

Michael Hulsizer, chair 

Majors and Degrees

Minors

Certificates

Pre-Professional Programs

Department Mission

The Department of Psychology provides students with a solid foundation in the major theoretical perspectives of psychology and its scientific approach. By studying psychology at Webster, students attain a broad understanding of and appreciation for the complexity and diversity of human behavior within a global context. 

The bachelor degrees in psychology prepare students for a wide range of professional career opportunities. To that end, there are four different psychology majors to assist students in meeting their career ambitions: psychological science (BS), psychology (BA), psychology (BA) with an emphasis in mental health, and psychology (BS). These majors and designed to prepare students for a variety of career options and graduate opportunities. Students also attain the necessary prerequisites for graduate education in psychology or for professional training in related fields such as counseling, education, social work, criminal justice, law, medicine, business or management. In addition, students who successfully complete the psychology program will have critical thinking, research and data analysis skills to navigate the wealth of information present in our society. 

Through the psychology curriculum, students learn about both the scientific and applied areas of psychology from a range of perspectives including biological, clinical/counseling, cognitive/learning, lifespan developmental and social/cultural. Students take the Careers in Psychology class soon after entering Webster and have the opportunity to explore professional opportunities through specialized courses highlighting applied subfields (e.g. Introduction to Clinical Psychology, Social Work, or Counseling). 

The degree opportunities in the Psychology Department were designed according to the most recent research on the scholarship of teaching and learning within the field of psychology. Curriculum is constantly updated to meet the best practices advocated by the American Psychological Association.

Special Study Opportunities

Study Abroad: The psychology program at Webster is unique. What distinguishes it from other programs across the country is the importance placed on examining psychology from a global perspective and the emphasis placed on infusing international human rights throughout the curriculum. To that end, psychology is one of the few programs with a full complement of courses available at all of Webster’s sites in Europe and Thailand. Students are strongly encouraged to take advantage of these opportunities. 

Individualized Learning/Research Opportunities: Students can also further tailor their learning through individualized coursework, international experiences, and collaborative research with faculty members. As a capstone experience, students have the opportunity to either conduct their own research projects in the Senior Thesis course or further prepare for post-graduate opportunities in the Senior Overview course.

Instructional Formats: Webster provides students with a wide variety of methods for pursuing their goals. In addition to traditional coursework, the curriculum includes independent study, practica, research and supervised reading courses. Students will leave Webster having learned material in a fashion that reflects the diversity of opportunities in the real world.

Departmental Academic Advising

Early in a departmental advisee's residence, a departmental faculty advisor is assigned to help assess and plan the student's program of study, focusing on the student's specific academic and career goals. A student's individual academic plan is flexible and may change as he or she fine-tunes his or her goals and interests. 

This page was modified on 19 June 2020.
Please see the Undergraduate Catalog Addendum to view changes that were made.