Through advanced coursework and immersion in a foreign language and corresponding region of their choice, Global Studies majors develop the ability to:
- address the impacts of global processes on a specific geographic location and cultural group;
- communicate effectively in academic, professional, and social contexts abroad; and
- explore, articulate, and debate diverse local perspectives on global issues.
Majors must choose a language, world region, and study abroad program that correspond with one another. Check out the map below to see some common combinations that our majors pursue.
*Note that in some cases, students can study abroad in English in programs that fit with their region and thematic area
Advanced Language Coursework (6 credits): Global Studies majors must complete 6 credit hours of advanced coursework in a language that corresponds with their regional focus and study abroad location, and that is not the student’s primary language. This requirement enables students to work in non-English speaking contexts and to gain familiarity with new ways of thinking, perceiving, and relating to other people.
Global Studies majors must select from the courses listed below to fulfill this requirement. All advanced language courses require four semesters of previous study at UIUC or the equivalent as determined by a placement exam. Students continuing a language that they began studying elsewhere should contact the corresponding language department to schedule a placement exam. The advanced language requirement for Global Studies majors cannot be waived through a proficiency exam. Global Studies majors may pursue languages that are not on this list by making arrangements with language instructors and consulting with a Global Studies advisor.
Click here to view Advanced Language Courses for Global Studies Majors.
Regional Area Studies (9 credits): Global Studies majors take courses on a regional area that corresponds with their language and study abroad location in order to develop expertise on the historical, political, and cultural context of one world region. Students select one of the following: Africa, East and South Asia, Latin America, Middle East, Russia and Eastern Europe, Western Europe.
Most Global Studies majors begin their area studies coursework before traveling and complete it while studying abroad. Area studies courses must be from at least two different departments and must be at the 200-level or above. Students can choose any courses that fit this description, with approval from a Global Studies advisor. For suggested area studies courses on campus, see our current recommended course list and browse the websites of UIUC's Area Studies Centers.
Study Abroad (1 full semester): Global Studies majors are required to study abroad for at least one full fall or spring semester in order to gain substantial international experience. See our Global Studies Study Abroad page for more information.