International Studies

major

The International Studies interdisciplinary program provides knowledge of major international or global issues including regional and global political economies; comparative cultural and political systems; ethnicity, identity and belief systems; peace, conflict and wars; gender, culture and politics; and environment, health, and science issues.

Students acquire proficiency in a modern foreign language, and knowledge of at least one major region of the world and significant global issues; are encouraged to experience living and studying abroad or working with an international organization focused on international issues; and conduct research on a global issue in conjunction with a senior research seminar, study abroad experience, or relevant internship or service learning opportunity.

The major provides cross-cultural and interdisciplinary training that prepares students for graduate study or international careers as specialists in international relations, international development, communications and media, education, business, global health, sustainability, public affairs, government foreign service, export sales, and international research.

Coursework for the Major

Students are required to designate a region of the world on which to focus. This region then determines the courses appropriate for the major's primary requirements (Category A) as well as the major's foreign language requirement.

The major requires 36 credits of coursework in addition to the language requirement. All courses must be completed with minimum grades of C. A minimum of 15 credits of Category A and/or B courses must be completed at UF.

Required Coursework

  • INS 3004
  • INS 4930
    With prior approval, students may substitute:  
    • Study abroad with a research project; internship or work experience abroad with a research project; international studies research poster with presentation; international studies-related service learning with a research project; or independent study course with a research project. Students pursuing any of these alternatives must still register for 3 credits of coursework to replace INS 4930. All research papers will be graded by a common grading rubric. S/U grades are acceptable for these alternatives to INS 4930 with prior approval and successful completion of the research project
  • Category A: 15 credits of international studies-approved courses in social science, humanities or professional courses that focus on the region of the world selected by the student: Africa, Asia, Europe, Latin America and the Caribbean, or the Middle East. 
    • Twelve credits of Category A coursework must be at the 3000/4000 level.
  • Category B: 15 credits of international studies-approved courses in social science, humanities, or professional courses that focus on regions of the world other than the student’s regional focus and/or focus on global issues.
    • Nine credits of Category B coursework must be at the 3000/4000 level. (These 9 credits of 3000/4000-level Category B courses will be accepted toward the CLAS 3000-level elective requirement. INT majors still will need to take 9 additional credits of 3000-level electives from courses NOT approved for any INT category.)
  • Four semesters minimum (0-20 credits) of a single modern foreign language or demonstrated proficiency equivalent to completion of the intermediate level. The language for which proficiency is demonstrated must be logically linked to the selected primary region of focus (Category A).

Region Focus

The links below determine the region courses appropriate for Category A and Category B requirements as well as the region's foreign language requirement.

Critical Tracking records each student’s progress in courses that are required for entry to each major. Please note the critical-tracking requirements below on a per-semester basis.

For degree requirements outside of the major, refer to CLAS Degree Requirements: Structure of a CLAS Degree.

Equivalent critical-tracking courses as determined by the State of Florida Common Course Prerequisites may be used for transfer students.

Semester 1

  • Complete 1 international studies course from Category A or Category B at the 2000-level or higher with a 2.0 critical-tracking GPA
  • 2.0 UF GPA required

Semester 2

  • Complete 1 international studies course from Category A or Category B at the 2000-level or higher with a 2.5 critical-tracking GPA
  • 2.0 UF GPA required
  • Students must have at least one Category A and one Category B class completed by the end of Semester 2

Semester 3

  • Complete 1 foreign language course from the selected region and 1 additional international studies course from Category B at the 2000-level or higher with a 2.75 critical-tracking GPA
  • 2.0 UF GPA required 
  • Students should take INS 3004 as soon as they have completed three Category courses. For many students, this will be either semester 3 or 4

Semester 4

  • Complete 1 additional foreign language course from the selected region with a 3.0 critical-tracking GPA
  • 2.0 UF GPA required

Semester 5

  • Complete INS 3004 International Studies Perspectives and one additional international studies course from Category A at the 3000-level or higher with a 3.0 critical-tracking GPA
  • 2.0 UF GPA required
  • By the end of Semester 5, students must complete two Category A classes, two Category B classes, one year of a relevant foreign language, and INS 3004.

Semester 6

  • Take 2 major classes at the 3000-level or above (may be any mixture of Category A and/or Category B)
  • Students should have completed at least 21 credits of the 36 total (excluding language) required for the major

Semester 7

  • Complete 2 major classes at the 3000-level or above (may be any mixture of Category A, Category B, and/or INS 4930 or pre-approved alternative)
  • Complete Foreign Language Intermediate 1
  • Students should have completed at least 27 credits of the 36 total (excluding language) required for the major

Semester 8

  • Complete 3 major courses at the 3000-level or above (may be any mixture of Category A, Category B, and/or INS 4930 or pre-approved alternative)
  • Complete Foreign Language Intermediate 2
  • By the end of semester 8, students must complete a minimum of 15 credits of Category A coursework, 15 credits of Category B coursework, INS 3004, INS 4930 or pre-approved alternative, and the intermediate level or equivalent of a foreign language relevant to the primary region of study.

Students are expected to complete the writing requirement while in the process of taking the courses below. Students are also expected to complete the general education international (GE-N) and diversity (GE-D) requirements concurrently with another general education requirement (typically, GE-C, H, or S).

Nine credits of 3000 level or above Category B courses count towards the 3000 level or above electives outside of the major.

Depending upon the international studies courses chosen, students may meet some of their GE-H, GE-S and GE-N requirements through courses for the major. In that case, the student can substitute general elective credit.

To remain on track, students must complete the appropriate critical-tracking courses, which appear in bold. These courses must be completed by the terms as listed above in the Critical Tracking criteria.

This semester plan represents an example progression through the major. Actual courses and course order may be different depending on the student's academic record and scheduling availability of courses. Prerequisites still apply.

Plan of Study Grid
Semester OneCredits
Beginning foreign language course (Critical Tracking) 3-5
International studies course (Critical Tracking; Category A, 2000 level or above); recommended: 3
State Core Gen Ed Biological or Physical Sciences 3
State Core Gen Ed Composition; Writing Requirement 3
Africa
The African Experience: An Introduction to African Studies (Gen Ed Social and Behavioral Sciences and International)
African Cultures and Literatures (Gen Ed Humanities and International)
Asia:
Introduction to Islam (Gen Ed Humanities and International)
Europe
European Experience: a Humanities Perspective (Gen Ed Humanities and International)
European Experience: a Social Science Perspective (Gen Ed Social and Behavioral Sciences and International)
Latin America and the Caribbean:
Introduction to Latin American Studies (Gen Ed Humanities and International or Social and Behavioral Sciences and International)
Middle East
Introduction to Islam (Gen Ed Humanities and International)
Science laboratory (Gen Ed Physical or Biological Sciences) 1
 Credits13-15
Semester Two
Quest 1 (Gen Ed Humanities) 3
Beginning foreign language course (Critical Tracking) 3-5
International studies course (Critical Tracking; Category B, 2000 level or higher) 3
Gen Ed Biological or Physical Sciences (area not taken in semester one) 3
Gen Ed Composition; Writing Requirement 3
 Credits15-17
Semester Three
Intermediate foreign language course 3-5
International studies course (Critical Tracking; Category B, 2000 level or higher) 3
State Core Gen Ed Humanities 3
State Core Gen Ed Mathematics 3
Gen Ed Biological or Physical Sciences (area not taken in semester two) 1 3
 Credits15-17
Semester Four
INS 3004 International Studies Perspectives (Critical Tracking) 3
Intermediate foreign language course 3-5
State Core Gen Ed Social and Behavioral Sciences 3
Gen Ed Biological or Physical Sciences (area not taken in semester three) 1 3
Select one: 3
Gen Ed Humanities (if needed)
Elective
 Credits15-17
Semester Five
International studies course (Critical Tracking; Category A, 3000 level or above) 3
International studies course (Critical Tracking; Category B, 3000 level or above) 3
Select one: 3
Gen Ed Social and Behavioral Sciences (if needed)
Elective
Gen Ed Mathematics 3
Elective 3
 Credits15
Semester Six
International studies course (Critical Tracking; Category A, 3000 level or above) 3
International studies course (Critical Tracking; Category B, 3000 level or above) 3
Elective (3000 level or above, not in major, if needed) 2 3
Select one: 6
Study abroad
Internship
Electives
 Credits15
Semester Seven
International studies course (Critical Tracking; Category A, 3000 level or above) 3
International studies course (Critical Tracking; Category B, 3000 level or above) 3
Electives (3000 level or above, not in major, if needed) 2 6
Elective 3
 Credits15
Semester Eight
INS 4930 Senior Research Seminar in International Studies (Critical Tracking; Capstone Experience) 3
Select one: 3
International studies course (Critical Tracking; Category A, 3000 level or higher) 3
Gen Ed Social and Behavioral Sciences (if needed)
Elective
Electives 8
 Credits17
 Total Credits120
1

One of these General Education courses must be a Quest 2 course.

2

Majors are encouraged to use some of their electives to pursue a minor, combination degree, dual degree, or double major. 


The international studies major provides knowledge of major international issues. Students will be able to identify and conduct internationally relevant research. They will evaluate the significance, quality and veracity of information gathered in the literature and to apply it effectively. Students will also be able articulate the results of research clearly and effectively.

Before Graduating Students Must

  • Complete requirements for the baccalaureate degree, as determined by faculty.

Students in the Major Will Learn to

Student Learning Outcomes (SLOs)

Content

  1. Describe, explain and apply basic knowledge of the modern history, culture, politics, geography, economy or sociology of one major region of the world (Africa, Asia, Europe, Latin America or the Middle East).

Critical Thinking

  1. Use analytical intellectual tools to examine global issues.

Communication

  1. Interpret and effectively communicate about global issues.

Curriculum Map

I = Introduced; R = Reinforced; A = Assessed

Courses SLO 1 SLO 2 SLO 3
Category A Courses1 R R R
Category B Courses2 R R R
Foreign Language3 I, R I, R I, R
INS 3004 I I I
INS 4930 R, A R, A R, A
1

Category A: Students focus on a region of the world, taking 15 credits of approved courses in social science, humanities or professional courses that deal with the region chosen. 

2

Category B: Students take 15 credits of approved courses that deal with regions of the world other than the region chosen in Category A. 

3

Foreign Language: Students take a minimum of four semesters of a single modern foreign language linked to their focus region, or demonstrate intermediate level-proficiency. 

Assessment Types

  • Direct assessment of research paper