Academic Program

The Department of Global Interdisciplinary Studies is tasked with the primary purpose of providing students with a set of skills that will foster critical and analytical thinking and the problem solving tools that will prepare them to assume their roles as responsible global citizens. Students who elect to major in this highly rigorous and relevant course of study do so under the guidance of a caring, dedicated, and nurturing faculty, highly skilled in their specific disciplines, who also collaborate with each other to help students integrate their coursework.

MAJOR: Global Interdisciplinary Studies (31-34 credits/11-12 courses and 1 semester of study abroad) 

Required Courses: GIS 2000: Introduction to Global Interdisciplinary Studies; 2 GIS team-taught 3-credit courses from GIS 4000 through GIS 6499, one of which counts as the Junior Research Seminar for the major; GIS 6500: Senior Capstone 1: Research; GIS 6600: Senior Capstone 2: Thesis; 1-credit GIS 5000: Special Topics; 1 semester of Study Abroad; and a specialization.

Seven Area Specializations: GIS offers seven specializations in interdisciplinary areas of study—Africana Studies, Arab and Islamic Studies, Asian Studies, Cultural Studies, Irish Studies, Latin American Studies, and Russian Area Studies.  The additional requirements of each specialization are listed below.  Students must indicate their specialization at the time of declaring the GIS major.

Individually Designed Specialization:   A student may opt out of the seven specializations and design a 15-credit specialization.  This specialization must be proposed at the declaration of the major, with a clear rationalization for all selected courses.  The proposal must be approved by a faculty mentor and the Department Chair and include at least three courses regularly offered at Villanova University.

   GIS: Africana Studies (GAFR) 

Required Courses:

  • GIS 2000: Introduction to Global Interdisciplinary Studies
  • 2 GIS team-taught 3-credit courses from GIS 4000 through GIS 6499 one of which counts as the Junior Research Seminar for the major
  • GIS 5000: Special Topics (1-credit)
  •  GIS 6500: Senior Capstone 1: Research
  •  GIS 6600: Senior Capstone 2: Thesis
  • 1 semester or summer session of Study Abroad

Six courses with the AFR attribute for a minimum of 18 credits, of which the following must be included: 

a. AFR 3000:  Constructs of Blackness;
b. one course in either Africana History or Literature (HIS 2292, 2293; ENG 2501, 2502, 3690, 2530)
c. students may also combine three 1-credit IGR courses to count as one of the undesignated Africana courses;
d. courses taken as part of a study abroad program may be counted;
e. A GIS Select course with AFR attribute may be counted among the six courses, as long as the two required GIS Select courses (GIS 4000-6499) for the GIS major have been fulfilled. 

GIS: Asian Studies (GASN)

Required Courses:

  • GIS 2000: Introduction to Global Interdisciplinary Studies
  • 2 GIS team-taught 3-credit courses from GIS 4000 through GIS 6499 one of which counts as the Junior Research Seminar for the major
  • GIS 5000: Special Topics (1-credit)
  •  GIS 6500: Senior Capstone 1: Research
  •  GIS 6600: Senior Capstone 2: Thesis
  • 1 semester or summer session of Study Abroad

Five courses with the ASN attribute for a minimum of 15 credits, of which the following must be included: 

a.  two courses of either Chinese or Japanese at the intermediate level or above;
b.  three non-language courses with the ASN attribute;
c.  courses taken as part of a study abroad program may be counted;
d.  one internship course may be counted. 

GIS: Arab and Islamic Studies (GAIS)

Required Courses:

  • GIS 2000: Introduction to Global Interdisciplinary Studies
  • 2 GIS team-taught 3-credit courses from GIS 4000 through GIS 6499 one of which counts as the Junior Research Seminar for the major
  • GIS 5000: Special Topics (1-credit)
  •  GIS 6500: Senior Capstone 1: Research
  •  GIS 6600: Senior Capstone 2: Thesis
  • 1 semester or summer session of Study Abroad

Five courses with the AIS attribute for a minimum of 15 credits, of which the following must be included: 

a.  two courses of Arabic at the intermediate level;
b.  one Political Science course with an AIS attribute;
c.  one History course with an AIS attribute;
d.  one Theology course with an AIS attribute;
e.  courses taken as part of a study abroad program may be counted. 

GIS: Cultural Studies (GCST)

Required Courses:

  • GIS 2000: Introduction to Global Interdisciplinary Studies
  • 2 GIS team-taught 3-credit courses from GIS 4000 through GIS 6499 one of which counts as the Junior Research Seminar for the major
  • GIS 5000: Special Topics (1-credit)
  •  GIS 6500: Senior Capstone 1: Research
  •  GIS 6600: Senior Capstone 2: Thesis
  • 1 semester or summer session of Study Abroad

Six courses with the CST attribute for a minimum of 18 credit, of which the following must be included: 

a.  CST 2100: Introduction to Cultural Studies;
b.  courses taken as part of a study abroad program may be counted; one internship course may be counted 

Three Core Courses, one from each of the following three categories:

Representation 

· CST 4100: US and Global Pop Culture
· PHI 2750: Philosophy of Art
· PHI 2170-001 Mass Media Ethics
· PHI 2760: Philosophy of Literature
· PHI 4140: Philosophy of Contemporary Music
· PHI 4150: Philosophy and Film  

Gender 

·  PHI 2410: Philosophy of Sex and Love
·  PHI 2420: Philosophy of Women 
·  PHI 2430: Eco-Feminism
·  PHI 4900: Feminist Theories

Race 

·  PJ/PHI: Gender, Race and Class
·  PHI 3160: History of Islamic Philosophy
·  PHI 2140: Philosophy of Criminal Justice
·  ENG 4646: Race & Ethnicity: American Novel

Required Courses:

  • GIS 2000: Introduction to Global Interdisciplinary Studies
  • 2 GIS team-taught 3-credit courses from GIS 4000 through GIS 6499 one of which counts as the Junior Research Seminar for the major
  • GIS 5000: Special Topics (1-credit)
  •  GIS 6500: Senior Capstone 1: Research
  •  GIS 6600: Senior Capstone 2: Thesis
  • 1 semester or summer session of Study Abroad

Five courses with the IS attribute for a minimum of 15 credits, of which the following must be included: 

a.  one course of Irish language at the intermediate level or above (IS 1121 or IS 2222); 
b.  one literature survey (ENG 2450 or ENG 2500);
c.  one history survey (HIS 3216 or HIS 2286);
d.  two electives with IS attribute
e.  courses taken as part of a study abroad program may be counted;
f.   one internship course may be counted. 

GIS: Latin American Studies (GLAS)

Required Courses:

  • GIS 2000: Introduction to Global Interdisciplinary Studies
  • 2 GIS team-taught 3-credit courses from GIS 4000 through GIS 6499 one of which counts as the Junior Research Seminar for the major
  • GIS 5000: Special Topics (1-credit)
  •  GIS 6500: Senior Capstone 1: Research
  •  GIS 6600: Senior Capstone 2: Thesis
  • 1 semester or summer session of Study Abroad

Six courses for a minimum of 18 credits, of which the following must be included: 

a.  four courses with the LAS attribute (12 credits minimum)
b.  two advanced Spanish courses above 1122 (6 credits)
c.  courses taken as part of a study abroad program may be counted
d.  one internship course may be counted. 

GIS: Russian Area Studies (GRAS)

Required Courses:

  • GIS 2000: Introduction to Global Interdisciplinary Studies
  • 2 GIS team-taught 3-credit courses from GIS 4000 through GIS 6499 one of which counts as the Junior Research Seminar for the major
  • GIS 5000: Special Topics (1-credit)
  •  GIS 6500: Senior Capstone 1: Research
  •  GIS 6600: Senior Capstone 2: Thesis
  • 1 semester or summer session of Study Abroad

Six courses for a minimum of 18 credits, of which the following must be included: 

a.  two Russian language courses at the intermediate level;
b.  four courses with the RAS attribute for a minimum of 12 credits;
c.  up to two courses taken as part of a study abroad program may be counted.  

Required Courses:

  • GIS 2000: Introduction to Global Interdisciplinary Studies
  • 2 GIS team-taught 3-credit courses from GIS 4000 through GIS 6499 one of which counts as the Junior Research Seminar for the major
  • GIS 5000: Special Topics (1-credit)
  •  GIS 6500: Senior Capstone 1: Research
  •  GIS 6600: Senior Capstone 2: Thesis
  • 1 semester or summer session of Study Abroad

Individually Designed Specialization:   A student may opt out of the seven specializations and design a 15-credit specialization.  This specialization must be proposed at the declaration of the major, with a clear rationalization for all selected courses.  The proposal must be approved by a faculty mentor and the Department Chair and include at least three courses regularly offered at Villanova University.

MAJOR: Gender and Women's Studies (GWS) (30 credits/10 courses)  

Required Courses: GIS 2000: Introduction to Global Interdisciplinary Studies; GWS 2050: Gender and the World; GWS 3000: Research Seminar in Feminist Theory and Methodology; GWS 5000: Capstone Seminar; six electives with the GWS attribute, one of which should be a GIS-GWS team-taught Select Course and may include GIS 6500 GIS Capstone 1 (at the discretion of the Director). Possible courses include: COM 3341, 3406; ENG 2300; HIS 2296, 3360; NUR 4800; PHI 4900; PJ 2800; PSC 2700; PSY 3000; SOC 2300, 3500; THL 5850; or other course with GWS attribute.

Gender and Women’s Studies is an interdisciplinary field that continues to transform scholarship and fundamental assumptions in all areas of the humanities, social and natural sciences, and the professions. Because gender and sexuality are fundamental to the ways men and women understand themselves, a major in GWS can enhance practically any other field of study. 

Please click on the GWS Website for more information.

MAJOR: Peace and Justice Studies Major (PJ) (30 credits/10 courses)

Required Courses: GIS 2000: Introduction to Global Interdisciplinary Studies; PJ 2800: Race, Class, and Gender; PJ 2993: Internship; GIS 6500: Capstone 1: Research; GIS 6600: Capstone 2: Thesis; five electives with PJ attribute.  

The major in Peace and Justice Studies is offered in collaboration with the Department of Global Interdisciplinary Studies.  To complete the major, students take five required courses (PJ 2800: Race, Class, and Gender; GIS 2000: Intro to Global Interdisciplinary Studies; PJ 2993: Internship; GIS 6500: Senior Capstone 1: Research; GIS 6600: Senior Capstone 2: Thesis) and five elective courses in Peace and Justice, courses with a Peace and Justice attribute, or courses otherwise earning Peace and Justice credit.  Electives should be determined in consultation with the program director and tailored to the student’s field(s) of interest.

Please click on the Peace and Justice Website for more information.