Immerse yourself in global issues at home and abroad
Arcadia’s International Studies majors examine complex global issues such as the COVID-19 pandemic, environmental injustices, migration, and war. The program provides an interdisciplinary, immersive experience that integrates rigorous, academic learning in the classroom with applied experiences outside of it, both at home and abroad. Whether studying abroad at top universities overseas or engaging in applied, experiential learning with Glenside faculty, International Studies majors combine pragmatic approaches with critical thinking and situate global processes in local contexts. By thinking through innovative solutions to global challenges, students work alongside faculty towards creating a just world. By experiencing the interconnectedness of the world, our students are truly prepared for life in a rapidly changing global society.
What to Expect
A supportive, close-knit academic community who share your concerns about the world.
A flexible curriculum that helps you develop and follow your interests.
Interdisciplinary courses with core International Studies faculty on key global issues such as forced migration and climate change.
Coursework in anthropology, political science, history and other disciplines.
Travel abroad and immersive, domestic educational experiences related to global issues.
Learning a language.
Developing excellent research, writing and communications skills and executing an intensive, year-long research project on a topic of your choice.
The program offers two different accelerated options for high-achieving students:
Three-year accelerated program
Five-year accelerated (B.A./M.A.) program in conjunction with the International Peace and Conflict Resolution Program
Minors Related to International Studies:
Law and Public Policy (Pre-Law)
Due to the interdisciplinary nature of International Studies coursework, many International Studies Majors choose to pursue a double major. The most common double majors are:
Politics, Government and Law
International Studies graduates pursue careers in international development, emergency management, non-governmental and non-profit management, advocacy, English language teaching, international education, social enterprise, social work, counseling, journalism, law, religion, business, and government.
Many of our students have an interest in Peace Corps and Americorps.
This program also prepares students for top graduate and law schools.
International Studies 3 Year Degree Course Sequence
Please note that this course sequence is an example only. Each student’s program is individualized based on numerous factors including AP, IB or dual enrollment credits earned during high school. Accelerated degree students work closely with two academic advisors to produce a program of study that fits their needs and interests. More about the 3 Year degree.
The First Year
Fall Semester (16 credits)
EN 101 Though and Expression I
International Studies Gateway Course
Spring Semester (20 credits)
Four courses that fulfill either major or Arcadia Undergraduate Curriculum (AUC) requirements
Quantitative Reasoning, Natural and Physical World, Creative Expressions or Visual Literacy recommended
Service Learning Experience (ex: working with NGOs, watchdog, UN or governmental agencies)
The Second Year
Semester in Glenside (20 credits)
IS 201 International Studies Research and Writing
Three courses fulfilling either major or AUC requirements
1 University Seminar course, or International Relations
1-2 of the following if not completed in year 1: Cultural Legacies, Natural and Physical World, Visual Literacy, Creative Expressions
Semester Abroad (20 credits)
While abroad, students will take at least 2 courses for the International Studies major
The Third Year
Fall Semester (20 credits)
IS 490 Senior Thesis Seminar
Four courses in major, AUC, elective or Modern Language
Spring Semester (16 credits)
IS 491 Senior Thesis Seminar
Three courses in major, AUC, elective or Modern Language
International Studies Minor
The International Study minor provides an interdisciplinary opportunity to explore a variety of international issues. Interested students should meet with their major advisers and with the Director of International Studies. Participating students must declare their intent through the Registrar’s Office.
Study abroad is a required part of the International Studies major. All majors study abroad for one semester in a location related to their concentration, and many majors choose to study abroad more than once. Drawing upon the strength of Arcadia’s College of Global Studies, International Studies majors have the opportunity to study at universities around the world, including in Australia, Great Britain, Italy, South Africa, and Spain.