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  • American Studies

The American Studies major at Roger Williams University is an interdisciplinary major constructed from courses offered by American Studies specialists and courses on aspects of American culture offered by the faculties of a variety of other departments, including English, Political Science, Music and Historic Preservation. Students will focus on the regional and sub-cultural diversity of the United States, while at the same time exploring the shared history and values of the nation.

As an American Studies major, you will formulate your own flexible program of study in consultation with an American Studies advisor. Among the American Studies courses are offerings in areas such as regional studies (New England, Urban America, Southwestern Cultures), intellectual studies (Education in American Culture, Varieties of Religious Experience, American Mind) studies of specific groups within the American population (Experiences of Race, Culture and Gender; Class and Culture; Ethnic Cultures) and studies in popular culture (movies, television).

Student Learning Outcomes

  1. To teach students to locate, analyze, and interpret a variety of resources with logic, clarity, and efficiency.
  2. To teach students to recognize and respect the legitimacy of a variety of academic disciplines.
  3. To offer students practice in selecting interpretive tools and strategies most appropriate to the tasks which they define for themselves.
  4. To help students develop a sophisticated appreciation of the complexities and ambiguities in the culture, and to resist the temptation to settle for simplistic and pat solutions to complex problems.
  5. To connect students to the American tradition of global and transnational heritage, and to recognize and appreciate diversity in all categories of identity.
  6. To encourage students to develop their rhetorical skills: to write and speak confidently and persuasively.