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International Studies

If you would like to travel or work with people from other countries, consider the area studies programs. People preparing for careers in international business, industry and non-profit organizations, government agencies (e.g., State or Defense Departments), journalism, community services, museums, the music industry, social work, or teaching will find area studies useful. These make ideal minors or second majors.

Area studies are interdisciplinary programs designed to promote understanding of history, culture, and contemporary social, political, and economic issues. You can choose to emphasize those aspects of a region or culture that most interest you—literature, art, history, religion, politics, or social issues. Area studies give you the opportunity of studying with experts across the campus.

Asian Studies offers a major and a minor that focus on South Asia, East Asia, and Southeast Asia. Students may pursue special interests in one area, while taking core courses that ensure breadth of knowledge.

Jewish Studies offers a minor in Modern Jewish and Israeli Studies and a major with innovative curriculum based in part on online courses linking a number of campuses in the CSU system together. Initially students take courses at CSU, Chico and at San Diego State via  interactive video and the Internet.

Latin American Studies offers a major and minor that emphasize Mexico and Central America. Students may participate in cultural immersion programs in Mexico as part of the minor or major, as well as their upper division general education theme.

African Studies offers a minor in the second largest and most diverse region of the world. Optional study abroad programs in Ghana and Zimbabwe provide students with the opportunity to get hands-on experience with African development.

The European Studies minor provides students majoring in a social science, humanities, or a professional degree program with an interdisciplinary perspective on European history, politics, economics, and culture.

Middle Eastern Studies focuses on a region that is the cradle of several of the world’s major religions—Islam, Christianity, and Judaism—and has played a pivotal role in human culture history. The region is important for understanding some contemporary global issues.

Study and Internship Abroad Opportunities

Study abroad exposes you to experiences and perspectives that you won’t get in the US and can strengthen your resume, especially as globalization makes foreign experience more attractive to employers.

Asian Studies offers a fall semester program in Beijing, which includes language study, course work, and field study in the history, culture, and contemporary issues of China. Latin American Studies offers cultural immersion and academic programs in Merida, Mexico. These programs are an optional part of upper division general education Theme I and the minor and major in Latin American Studies. The MA program offers overseas internship opportunities for those interested in teaching.

The CSU system has an International Program with a number of study abroad centers. CSU, Chico also belongs to the University Study Abroad Consortium, which offers programs around the world. For  information, see the Study Abroad adviser in the Office of International Programs or consult with the area study program coordinator.

Graduate Program

The M.A. in Teaching International Languages is a 36-unit interdisciplinary program that focuses on the study of language and cultures as an integral part of a world class education in a global society. Designed to develop knowledgeable, reflective, inquiry-oriented professionals, the program offers language studies patterns in teaching foreign languages and TESOL (Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages).

The Self-Instructional Language Program

SILP offers basic language instruction in the languages listed above. Students learn through text, cassette tapes, and weekly tutorials with a native speaker. Other languages can be offered on demand. Please inquire at the Office of International Programs.


The Department of Political Science offers the Bachelor of Arts in International Relations and the Minor in International Relations. For a description of the requirements for either the major or minor in International Relations, please refer to the Political Science section.