Dec 11, 2019  
2013-2014 General Catalog (Summer, Fall 2013) 
2013-2014 General Catalog (Summer, Fall 2013) [ARCHIVED CATALOG Please see current catalog]

American Studies - BA

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College of Humanities and Social Sciences

Department of English


Students must complete the General Education requirements  

Students must also complete the University Studies requirements 

  •   or   (required Capstone Course), plus another course having CI designation, will fulfill the Communications Intensive requirement
  • For most students, a course taken for the major will fulfill the Quantitative Intensive requirement
  • Complete at least 2 credits in approved 3000-level or above courses from each of the following two categories: Life and Physical Sciences (DSC) and Social Sciences (DSS)


Bachelor of Arts Degree Language Requirement

Bachelor of Arts Degree

A Bachelor of Arts (BA) degree signifies proficiency in one or more foreign languages. Specifically, the BA requirement may be completed in one of the following ways:

  1. Demonstration of proficiency in one foreign language by successful completion of one course at the 2020-level or higher (or its equivalent).
  2. Demonstration of proficiency in American Sign Language by successful completion of COMD 4920  and COMD 4780 , and by passing an exit interview.
  3. Demonstration of proficiency in two foreign languages by successful completion of the 1020 course level in one language and the 2010 course level in the second language (or its equivalent).
  4. Completion of an upper-division (3000-level or higher) foreign language grammar or literature course requiring the 2020 course level (or its equivalent) as a prerequisite. Conversation courses cannot be considered for satisfying this requirement.

For nonnative English-speaking students only, the following options are available:

  1. Successful completion of the Intensive English Language Institute (IELI) program for international students.
  2. TOEFL, Michigan, or IELI placement scores high enough to meet the University admission criteria.

American Studies Major and Minor

Many key issues tied to the roots, development, and expression of American culture transcend the boundaries of traditional subject areas and are best explored from a variety of perspectives or disciplines. The American Studies major and minor provide students with the opportunity to integrate studies in various fields into a broader understanding of American culture and its antecedents. Although housed in the Department of English, the American Studies Program permits students to choose relevant courses for their cognate areas from a variety of participating departments throughout the University.

For admission and graduation, students must have and maintain a minimum grade point average of 2.75. All courses used to fulfill either the major or minor requirements must be taken on an A-B-C-D-F basis, and major or minor courses passed with less than a C grade must be repeated. However, up to 3 credits of internship credit, which is recorded as P/F, may be used to partially fulfill the major requirements. Transfer students are required to take at least 15 credits of major subject courses and 10 credits of minor subject courses in residence at USU.

American Studies BS/BA

Minimum GPA for Admission: 2.50, major; 2.50, USU; 2.50, Career
Minimum GPA for Graduation: 2.50, major courses; 2.0, USU; 2.0, Career
Minimum Grade Accepted: C in major courses

To obtain a degree in American Studies, students must complete a total of 39 credits for major and 18 credits in a requried minor. These include 9 credits of English department Core/Explore courses, 12 credits of core requirements that introduce foundations of American literature, region, and culture; 12 credits chosen from the 3000 or 4000 level that expose students to the diversity of American culture; and 6 credits of upper-division work (3000 or 4000 level) that allow students to approach American literature, history, and culture through various genres, historical periods and regions.

The American Studies final course, a senior capstone, encourages graduating students to reflect on their overall coursework, synthesizing the perspectives they have gained about American culture in an extended research project reflecting their interdisciplinary academic experience.

In addition to completing the required English and history classes, students must complete a required minor or equivalent (minimum of 18 hours).

Students cannot use the same class to meet more than one requirement in American Studies major.

Credits in Residence

Students must complete 21 credits of major-applicable coursework at Utah State University.

Course Requirements

A. Required Exploratory Core Courses (9 credits)

B. American Studies Degree Emphasis

1. Foundations Requirements (12 credits)

Choose four courses from the following (student choices must cover all three disciplines, i.e., Literature, History, and Folklore):

2. Midlevel Requirements (12 credits)

Choose four additional courses in English and History Departments. Choices must include both History and English or Folklore. 


1 Topics must be American

3. Upper Level Requirements (6 credits)


Courses cannot be double-counted. For instance, a student may use ENGL 3700  or HIST 3700  to fulfill only one of the following requirements: the culture component of the exploratory core courses, the American Studies foundational folklore requirement, the American Studies Midlevel requirement, the American Studies Regional Course requirement, or a folklore minor.

4. Required Minor or Equivalent (minimum of 18 credit hours above major requirements):

Students will choose a minor in fields already offering  minors, such as Folklore, Sociology, Anthropology, Political Science, Environmental Studies, Geography, Ethnic Studies, Asian Studies, British and Commonwealth Studies, Latin American Studies, or Women and Gender Studies.

Or, by petition, a student may focus in one of the fields that do not offer minors, such as Creative Writing, Philosophy, Technical and Professional Writing (suggested course of study available), Fine Arts (Music History and/or Art History). In this case, however, students will do the work of a minor but a minor will not be listed on their diplomas.

Minimum University Requirements

Total Credits


Grade Point Average (most majors require higher GPA)

2.00 GPA

Credits of C- or better


Credits of upper-division courses (#3000 or above)


USU Credits (30 USU credits, 20 of which must be upper-division courses, 10 of which must be courses required for student's major)

30 USU credits

Completion of approved major program of study

See college advisor

Credits in minor (if required)


Credits in American Institutions (ECN 1500 ;HIST 1700 , HIST 2700  or HIST 2710 ; HONR 1300 POLS 1100 ; or USU 1300 )


General Education Requirements  and University Studies Depth Requirements 




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