Bachelor of Arts in American Studies

Summary of Degree Requirements

University Requirements:

  • MATH 0701 (4 s.h.) and/or ENG 0701 (4 s.h.), if required by placement testing.
  • All Temple students must take a minimum of two writing-intensive courses as part of the major. The specific courses required for this major are: AMST 2098, and AMST 4097 (or AMST 4098 with permission).
  • Students must complete requirements of the General Education (GenEd) Program. See the General Education section of the Undergraduate Bulletin for more details.

College of Liberal Arts Requirements:

  • Completion of a minimum of 123 credits, including:
    • 90 credits in CLA/CST courses;
    • 45 credits of which must be at the upper level (numbered 2000-4999).
      • For Social Science majors, 6 upper level credits (numbered 2000-4999) must be taken in Humanities Subject Areas: Arabic, Chinese, English, French, German, Greek (Ancient), Greek and Roman Classics, Hebrew, Hindi, Italian, Japanese, Latin, Philosophy, Religion, Russian, and Spanish in the College of Liberal Arts, Art History in the Tyler School of Art and Architecture, or any department in the College of Science and Technology.
    • A minimum GPA of 2.0, cumulatively, in CLA/CST coursework, and in the major.
    • Only courses in which a student receives a grade of at least C- can satisfy GenEd, major, minor, or CLA Foreign Language and Global Studies requirements.
    • Professional Development Requirement
      • All students in the College of Liberal Arts are required to take a 1 credit seminar in professional development. CLA 1002 Professional Development for Liberal Arts Majors is the appropriate course option for this major. Other courses that fulfill this requirement may be found on the CLA College Requirements page. Only one course in this category may count towards graduation.
    • Foreign Language/Global Studies Requirements:
      • All students must complete or test out of the first and second levels of a foreign language - these courses are numbered 1001 and 1002;
      • All students must complete at least one course from the GenEd Global/World Society category; and
      • All Bachelor of Arts students must complete one of the following options:
        • Third semester of a foreign language;
        • Demonstrated proficiency beyond the third semester in a foreign language (placement exam or certification from the language department);
        • Take one Global Studies course from the list on the CLA College Requirements page;
        • Study Abroad at an approved program; or
        • Take a second General Education Global/World Society course.
      • Notes on Foreign Language Study
        • The third level of language is numbered 1003 in French, German, Spanish, and Portuguese and numbered 2001 in all other foreign language subjects.
        • Students are strongly encouraged to take the third level of a foreign language as it is the minimum required for election to the prestigious honor society Phi Beta Kappa. (Taking the course does not guarantee admission but not taking it guarantees exclusion.)
        • See the College of Liberal Arts Policies section of this Bulletin for more information on the Foreign Language Placement, Regression in Coursework, and guidelines for students' other experiences with language.

General Electives are typically one-third of a student's program of study and can be focused on a second major, a minor, or towards some other personal enrichment or professional goals. See an academic advisor for assistance in developing an academic plan for these courses.

Major Requirements (39 credits):

Core Courses
Must complete five courses, one from each group below:
American Biography and Work3
Work in America
American Culture3
The Arts in America
American Things: Introduction to Material Culture
Museums and American Culture
Topics in American Culture 1
Photography in America
Film and American Society
Place in American Life3
Tourism in America
Philadelphia Neighborhoods
American Places: Home, City, Region
Topics in American Culture 1
Architecture, Urban Design, and American Culture
American Frontiers
Media and American Popular Culture
Diversity in America3
Select one course in consultation with your advisor.
Change in America3
Radicalism in the United States
Technology and American Culture
Global America
Topics in American Culture 1
Political Protest and Culture in the '60s
Literature and Political Change
Courtroom in American Society
Contemporary Trends in the American Workplace
Literature of American Slavery
Additional Courses
Select three American Studies 2000-4999 Electives 29
Three American-Focused Electives from Related Disciplines, numbered 1000+. 39
Writing Intensive Courses
AMST 2098Reading Culture3
AMST 4097Senior Seminar in American Studies 43
or AMST 4098 Senior Independent Study
Total Credit Hours39

Distinction in Major

American Studies majors may graduate with distinction in the major if they have a GPA of at least 3.5 in the major and a cumulative GPA of at least 3.0.

Suggested Academic Plan

Bachelor of Arts in American Studies

Requirements for New Students starting in the 2022-2023 Academic Year

Year 1
FallCredit Hours
ENG 0802, 0812, or 0902Analytical Reading and Writing [GW]4
GenEd Quantitative Literacy Course [GQ]4
Foreign Language 1001 - first level4
GenEd Breadth Course3
 Term Credit Hours15
IH 0851 or 0951Intellectual Heritage I: The Good Life [GY]3
Foreign Language 1002 - second level4
GenEd Breadth Course3
GenEd Breadth Course3
AMST 1042Work in America3
 Term Credit Hours16
Year 2
IH 0852 or 0952Intellectual Heritage II: The Common Good [GZ]3
GenEd Breadth Course3
AMST 2098Reading Culture [WI]3
American Studies 2000+ American Culture Course from approved list3
Select one of the following:3
Foreign Language - third level
GenEd Global/World Society course
Internationally Focused Course from approved list
 Term Credit Hours15
GenEd Breadth Course3-4
GenEd Breadth Course3
GenEd Breadth Course3
American Studies 2000+ Diversity in America - Consult Advisor for options3
American Studies 2000+ Place in American Life Course from approved list3
CLA 1002Professional Development for Liberal Arts Majors1
 Term Credit Hours16
Year 3
CLA/CST 2000+ Humanities/CST Course3
American Studies 2000+ Change in America Course from approved list3
American Studies 2000-4999 American Studies Elective3
American-Focused Elective 1000+ from Related Discipline13
CLA/CST 0800-4999 Elective3
 Term Credit Hours15
CLA/CST 2000+ Humanities/CST Course3
American Studies 2000-4999 Elective3
American Studies 2000-4999 Elective3
CLA/CST 2000+ Course3
CLA/CST 0800-4999 Elective2
One 0800-4999 Elective in Any School or College2
 Term Credit Hours16
Year 4
American-Focused Elective 1000+ from Related Discipline13
AMST 4097 or 4098Senior Seminar in American Studies [WI]23
CLA/CST 2000+ Course3
CLA/CST 0800-4999 Elective3
CLA/CST 0800-4999 Elective3
 Term Credit Hours15
American-Focused Elective 1000+ from Related Discipline13
CLA/CST 2000+ Course3
CLA/CST 2000+ Course3
CLA/CST 0800-4999 Elective3
One 0800-4999 Elective in Any School or College3
 Term Credit Hours15
 Total Credit Hours: 123