American Studies Program

James P. Jacobson, Coordinator

The American Studies Program offers an interdisciplinary approach to the study of the history, culture and society of the United States. It provides students with the opportunity to develop an integrated understanding of American society by transcending the boundaries of traditional disciplines. Students may major in American Studies or choose a Composite Major with an individualized area of concentration such as: The American City, The American Family, American Public Policy, Politics in America, Race and Ethnicity in America, Visual, Literary and/or Performance Cultures, Criminal Justice in America, American Government, Women in America and Minority Groups in America. Areas of concentration may be highly individualized, depending on the student’s intellectual focus, prior preparation and the availability of courses.

Requirements for American Studies Major

Degree of Bachelor of Arts

HS-231Main Currents in American History I3
HS-232Main Currents in American History II3
Select two of the following in American Literature:6
The American Novel Before 1900
American Literature to 1870
American Literature From 1870
The American Short Story
Modern American Poetry
The American Novel Since 1900
African-American Writers
Interdisciplinary Electives (one course from five of the following groups)15
AM-XXX Capstone Course3
Total Credits30

Interdisciplinary Electives

Select one course from five of the following groups.

Group 1
AR-214Art Advertising and Design3
AR-240Cultural Diversity in Art3
AR-250Live Performance Art3
AR-340The Visual Arts in America3
AR-420New York Theatre Live3
AR-425Women in Art3
AR-274American Stage and Broadway Musicals3
AR-293Today's Film Scene3
Group 2
CJ-165Introduction to Criminology3
CJ-170Introduction to Criminal Justice3
CJ-175Introduction to Law Enforcement3
CJ-199Fundamentals of Criminal Law3
CJ-210Multiculturalism in Justice3
CJ-222Family Law3
CJ-240Gangs and Organized Crime3
CJ-253Social Deviance3
CJ-258Criminal Justice Ethics (Values course)3
CJ-280Juvenile Delinquency3
CJ-306Cops, Crime and Cinema: Criminal Justice in Film3
CJ-390Criminal Law3
CJ-420Drugs, Society and Human Behavior3
CJ-485Child Protection Agencies and the Law3
Group 3
CU-213Advertising and the New Media3
CU-256The Horror Film3
CU-282Science Fiction Film3
CU-285Gender and Communication3
Group 4
EC-324Poverty and Inequality3
EC-351American Economic History3
Group 5
ED-160Education and Schooling in a Multicultural Society3
ED-390Innovative Projects in Education I3
Group 6
EL-347The American Novel Before 19003
EL-348American Literature to 18703
EL-351American Literature From 18703
EL-353The American Short Story3
EL-356Modern American Poetry3
EL-357The American Novel Since 19003
EL-359African-American Writers3
EL-421Fiction and Film3
EL-493Film Noir: Dark Side of American Film3
Group 7
HS-314The World Wars3
HS-450Colonial Experience to 17633
HS-452American Revolution and Federalist Era 1763-18003
HS-459The Era of the Civil War3
HS-464History of Amercan Immigration3
HS-468American Republic 1919-19453
Group 8
PL-285American Philosophy3
Group 9
PO-201American Government3
PO-207The Mass Media and American Politics3
PO-215United States Foreign Policy3
PO-303Early American Political Theory3
PO-304Recent American Political Theory3
PO-310Feminist Political Theory3
PO-311Peace and Justice Issues Within Political Theory3
PO-409Constitutional Law and Governmental Powers3
PO-417Constitutional Law and Civil Liberties3
Group 10
SO-208Sociology of Film3
SO-224Black Hair and Identity in America3
SO-230Experiencing Social Issues I3
SO-236Families in Urban Settings3
SO-256Sociology of Sports3
SO-345Sociology of Intimacy3
SO-370Urban Anthropology3
SO-385People and Culture of North America: Native Americans3
Group 11
TH-443Black Theology 13
TH-444Religious Story of the American People3
TH-496Theology and Urban Problems3
Group 12
UR-151The Contemporary City 23
UR-201Contemporary Social Ideas3
UR-202Urban Music: Jazz to Hip-Hop3
UR-308Analysis of Urban Social Class3
UR-309Women in the Changing Urban World3
UR-312Media and Urban Environment3

1               May count towards the Core Theology Requirement.

2               May count towards the Core Social Science Requirement.

Special Notes on Major Requirements


All American studies majors must enroll in the capstone course during their senior year.


For Elementary Education majors who have chosen American Studies as their second major, the capstone project is to develop a two week unit of study on an aspect of American studies that they will teach during their student teaching assignment.