American Studies

major-american studies

American Studies is an interdisciplinary major that focuses on the principles of the American regime, the history of the American republic and the unique culture that emerges from American foundational principles. Courses are primarily drawn from the disciplines of politics and history, while also including courses in literature as well as other subjects when focused on American themes. Students who complete the major will demonstrate knowledge of the extent, aim, end, and structure of America’s constitutional republic, the philosophic principles upon which it was founded, and the extra-political, cultural institutions that are part of its foundation. Upon graduation, students will possess knowledge of the normative principles and purposes of American politics, as well as of the factual operations of its systems of governance.

Explore the American Studies Program

In addition to the core curriculum, American history majors take the following courses

  • LITR 411 American Literature or any other Literature course dealing with American literature
  • POLT 203 American Civilization (Core Curriculum Requirement)
  • POLT 301 American Government
  • POLT 304 Constitutional Law
  • POLT 415 American Political Thought
  • POLT 490 Senior Seminar
  • Any 2 American history courses (in addition to POLT 203 American Civilization)


2 Electives in American Studies which may include:

  • HIST 415 American Legal History
  • POLT 305 Public Policy
  • POLT 307 The United States Presidency
  • POLT 314 U.S. Foreign Policy

*With program director’s approval, elective courses can be taken in any department.

Course descriptions for American Studies may be found under their respective majors.

See the Academic Catalogue for course descriptions

John Colman, Ph.D.

Associate Professor of Politics
Education: B.A., Political Science, Carleton University; M.A., Political Science, Carleton University; Ph.D., Political Science, Boston College
Office: Canizaro Library 161B
Phone: (239) 280-1609