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  Global Center Home Page    Academic Programs    Ph.D. Minor in Global Studies

Ph.D. Minor in Global Studies

Ph.D. Minor in Global Studies Overview

The Global Studies Program encourages interdisciplinary study and critical analysis of transnational issues and problems in a rapidly changing international system. Conventional definitions of world regions and nations as discrete and bounded systems are becoming increasingly blurred as profound contemporary global trends converge. The globalization of economic, political, and social forces, the global impact on new information technologies and diaspora, and the limits of global environmental sustainability require the interdisciplinary study and empirical analysis of how these processes develop and interrelate within micro and macro contexts. This Ph.D. minor program embraces an interdisciplinary approach to global research by encouraging students to take course work in the social sciences, natural sciences, the humanities, and the professional schools to understand better emerging world trends. We encourage interdisciplinary conversations and approaches that empirically explore global and local interconnections. Our ultimate goal is to help graduate students find an interdisciplinary framework and analytical approach that will allow them to effectively and empirically study global phenomena in such a way that it complements and furthers their own disciplinary and professional academic programs. We encourage an approach to Global Studies that is as pertinent as it is scholarly, and that incorporates considerations of content and structure, change and continuity, the individual and the universal, and the local and global.

Ph.D. Minor Requirements

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Requirements for the Global Studies Ph.D. minor encourage graduate students to develop a program of academic study that complements their doctoral program and takes advantage of the wide range of international resources at Indiana University. Each program is developed in consultation between the student and the Global Studies Director. Students must complete one core course, Multidisciplinary Seminar on Issues and Approaches in Global Studies, and supporting graduate elective courses for a minimum total of 15 credit hours. Students can also enroll in a readings course (Independent Study in Global Studies) if they want to further explore a particular global issue, cross-regional topic, theoretical perspective, or comparative method.

Elective Courses

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In addition to Multidisciplinary Seminar on Issues and Approaches in Global Studies, students must take four courses, for a minimum of twelve credits, of graduate course work outside of the student's major field. The group of electives must be selected from at least two different disciplines, and must reflect a coherent, purposive, and thematic approach to the study of Global Studies. Graduate students will work with the Global Studies Director to design a course of study which reflects a theme or sub-field of Global Studies. Examples include, but are not limited to, Social Activism and Global Change, Global Resources and the Environment, Global Communications and Information, Gender and International Development, Transnational Minority Rights, World Peace and Security, or some other thematic study. All students are required to complete a "capstone project" which often involves enrolling in Independent Study in Global Studies for 1 to 4 credits. The exact parameters of this capstone requirement are determined by the Global Studies Director in consultation with the student and their doctoral program advisor, though the project must synthesize the student's course of study and demonstrate their understanding of their research in a global context. Examples of "capstone projects" include a one-credit research paper taken under the direction of the Global Studies Director through Independent Study in Global Studies, an international internship, service-learning program, or field work that results in a substantive project, or a question on the student's qualifying examination.

Course Listing (Sample)

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Students must consult with the Global Studies Minor director before registering in order to ascertain whether the courses are suitable for their minor program. Additional courses will be considered with permission from the director. See Ph.D. Minor Sample Course Listing.

Program of Study

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In collaboration with the Director of Global Studies and the student's major program advisor, students are required to submit a Program of Study to the Global Studies Advisory Committee for final approval. The Program of Study will provide the rationale for the student's proposed curriculum and will list the courses, with alternate selections in the event such courses are not offered on a timely basis, that will serve as the student's minor program. This rationale should explain how the Global Studies Ph.D. minor will complement the student's doctoral program and how it will meet future academic and career objectives. The Program of Study will also serve as a pedagogical tool in helping candidates frame a sound academic program, a skill they will need as future academics. With the Global Studies Advisory Committee's approval of the Program of Study, the student will become officially enrolled in the Global Studies Program.


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While not required, internships are strongly encouraged in the Global Studies Minor. Students can earn academic credit by registering for GRAD I850: Internship in Global Studies. Interns must design a plan of study which incorporates an analysis of an international issue which complements their internship experience. This course must be pre-approved by the Global Studies Director.

Foreign Language Competency

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Minors are expected to demonstrate foreign language competency at a level determined as suitable by and for the student's approved Program of Study. When necessary, testing will be administered by the appropriate foreign language department or area studies program. The Global Studies Ph.D. minor firmly believes that foreign language skills are vital to preparing students to be effective and responsive actors, researchers, and instructors in the increasingly interdependent world.


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Although a 3.7 or higher GPA in Global Studies courses would normally exempt the student from having to take a written comprehensive examination, the final decision regarding a qualifying examination rests with the student’s doctoral field advisor and the Global Studies director. Students who opt for the qualifying examination to satisfy their capstone project are required to take a written comprehensive examination regardless of their GPA.

Contact Information

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For more information about the Ph.D. Minor in Global Studies, contact:

Hilary Kahn, Ph.D.
Director, Ph.D. Global Studies Minor
(812) 855-5545
Fax: (812) 855-6271


Indiana University is an equal opportunity/affirmative action institution. If you have a disability and need assistance, special arrangements can be made to accommodate most needs. Center for the Study of Global Change
355 N. Jordan Ave., Bloomington, IN 47405-1105
Phone: (812) 856-5523    Fax: (812) 855-6660    E-mail: global@iu.edu
This page was last modified on: 02/5/13
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