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What is Global Studies?

Global studies encompasses the insights and knowledge base of area studies: the interdisciplinary study of world regions and their intersecting cultures, languages, history, politics, and societies.

Global studies advances this concept further by applying multi-disciplinary knowledge, from human biology and earth sciences to music and engineering, to better understand the character of world regions, their respective developmental trajectories, and the way those trajectories fit within the larger context of globalization.

How does the Global Studies Minor differ from other international-related minor programs at Stanford?

International Relations (IR) offers an interdisciplinary undergraduate minor focusing on the changing political, economic, and cultural relations within the international system of the modern era. The program explores how global, regional, and domestic factors influence relations between actors on the world stage. Students are equipped with both the foundational skills and specific knowledge necessary to analyze the choices and challenges that arise in this arena. Areas of specialization include:

  • Africa
  • Comparative International Governance
  • East and South Asia
  • Economic Development/World Economy
  • Europe (East and West) & Russia
  • International History and Culture
  • International Security
  • Latin American and Iberian Studies
  • Middle East and Central Asia
  • Social Development and Human Well-Being

The Departments of Comparative Literature, French and Italian, German Studies, Iberian and Latin American Cultures, Slavic Languages and Literatures, and the Language Center, are housed in the Division of Literatures, Cultures, and Languages (DLCL). DLCL students master modern languages and use them to do research in culture, literature, history, politics, and philosophy. Through courses in poetry, prose, drama, and film at Stanford and at the Bing Overseas Studies Program, DLCL undergraduates learn to think both critically and globally about how people use language to make sense of the world, to claim an identity and a place in history, to entertain, and to persuade.

The Department of East Asian Languages and Cultures at Stanford is dedicated to the study of the languages, literatures, linguistics and cultures of East Asia. The department prepares students for B.A., M.A. and Ph.D. degrees in Chinese and Japanese, and has a thriving program in Korean language. The undergraduate minors in East Asian Languages and Cultures has been designed to give students majoring in other departments an opportunity to gain a substantial introduction to Chinese (Mandarin) or Japanese language, as well as an introduction to the culture and civilization of East Asia.