International Studies Program

Why Major in International Studies?

International Studies is a field of study exploring all aspects of international phenomena from diverse perspectives and disciplines. The world is becoming more connected, interdependent, and globalized. In this changing world, it is vital for all students to have global perspectives and a deeper understanding of international issues. This is why majoring in International Studies is a valuable stepping stone to several career options. 

We offer an interdisciplinary, flexible curriculum. In choosing courses, you have the opportunity to take advantage of this interdisciplinary approach and develop your own interests. International Studies is also a great choice and ideally suited for students who are interested in a double major and want to pursue a career in the international arena.

Students with a degree in International Studies will:

  • Acquire broad knowledge from various academic fields including political science, economics, business, foreign languages, history, sociology, etc.
  • Develop specialization in one of the seven thematic/regional clusters (Asia, Africa/Middle East, Europe, Latin America, International Development, Human Rights, and Comparative Studies)
  • Develop a deeper understanding of other countries through diverse study abroad opportunities
  • Gain proficiency in at least one foreign language
  • Acquire analytical, research, and problem-solving skills
  • Attain data management and analysis skills
  • Develop their academic interest through various research opportunities including the Model United Nations program, etc.

The International Studies program at Murray State University also sponsors the Model United Nations activities, which helps students develop their interest in international organizations and diverse skill sets.

What Can You Do with an International Studies Degree?

The knowledge and skill sets that Murray State International Studies graduates gained are required for many successful careers and valued by diverse employers in various fields.

International studies graduates enter:

  • Careers in government and diplomacy
  • Business
  • International organizations
  • Nongovernmental organizations
  • Education,
  • Research. Graduates have also pursued graduate-level degrees in public administration, non-profit leadership and management, and human rights.

Program Requirements

Bachelor of Arts/Bachelor of Science Degree (CIP 45.0901)

University Studies Requirements — 42-43 hrs
(See Academic Degrees and Programs.)
University Studies selections must include:

  • Global Awareness, Cultural Diversity, and the World’s Artistic Traditions:
    • POL 252 Introduction to Comparative Politics
  • Scientific Inquiry, Methodologies, and Quantitative Skills:
    • STA 135 Introduction to Probability and Statistics
  • Social and Self-Awareness and Responsible Citizenship:
    • ECO 230 Principles of Macroeconomics
  • World’s Historical, Literary, and Philosophical Traditions:
    • CIV 201 World Civilizations I & CIV 202 World Civilizations II
  • University Studies Elective:
    • CSC 199 Introduction to Information Technology

Required Courses — 25 hrs

  • POL 100T Transitions
  • POL 250 Introduction to International Relations
  • ECO 310 Issues in Global Economy
  • POL 359 Writing and Inquiry in the Social Sciences
  • POL 360 Research Methods
  • POL 499 Senior Seminar in Political Science
  • One of the following:
    • HIS 305 The Irish Diaspora
    • HIS 309 Survey of World Religions
    • HIS 316 Women and Gender in World History
    • HIS 352 20th Century World
    • HIS 407 Modern Imperialism and Colonialism
    • HIS 415 Women in History
    • HIS 451 Slavery and Africa
    • HIS 459 Genocide in World History
    • HIS 476 The World Since 1945
    • HIS 478 Comparative Civilizations After 1500
  • One of the following:
    • POL 456 American Foreign Policy
    • POL 457 International Law and Organizations
  • One of the following:
    • BUS 396 International Business Seminar
    • BUS 515 Communicating in International Business Environment
    • MGT 350 Fundamentals of Management
    • MKT 360 Principles of Marketing
    • SOC 250 Global Sociology
    • SOC 455 Environmental Sociology
    • SOC 465 Globalization

Thematic Cluster Courses — 15 hrs
Choose one theme and courses with approval of advisor. Required courses in the major or minor cannot be applied to a thematic cluster.

  1. International Development
  2. Africa and Middle East
  3. Asia
  4. Europe
  5. Latin America
  6. Comparative Studies
  7. Human Rights

Required Minor — 21-24 hrs
Courses taken for the major will not count towards the minor.

Electives — 13-17 hrs
International education experience or equivalent is required. English counts as second language for international students whose native language is not English.

Total Curriculum Requirements — 120 hrs

International Studies Minor — 24 hrs

ECO 310 or 315 or 410; EES 110; POL 250, 252 and nine hours from one of the thematic clusters listed under the major. At least six hours of the cluster must be upper-level courses at Murray State University. Twelve hours of a foreign language and international education experience or equivalency is required

Peace Studies Minor — 21 hrs

POL 250, 465, 469 and an additional 12 hours from the following: HIS 106, 108, 333, 456, 459; NLS 305/SWK 505, PHI 315 or PHI 383, POL 449, 456, 457; SOC 432. 

Social and Behavioral Sciences Minor — 21 hrs

POL 140, PSY 180, SOC 133, and an additional 12 hours from ECO, LST, PHI 350 or PHI 382, POL, PSY, or SOC. Six hours must be upper-level courses. 

Take the next step

© Murray State University Department of Web ManagementWe are Racers.