American Studies

http://www.montana.edu/amst/

The American Studies program is designed to meet the needs of students, including non-traditional majors and lifelong learners, who want to pursue a flexible, multi-disciplinary curriculum in American Studies. Students explore the experiences and values of the people of the United States as embodied in their history, literature, art, and other forms of cultural expression. All students are required to choose one of three program focus areas: American Arts, American History, or American Literature.

Students must complete a minimum of 45 credits in the program after declaring themselves to be American Studies majors. Up to 12 credits required in a minor or in a second degree program may be applied toward the American Studies degree requirements. Courses taken to complete requirements in the American Studies program may also be used to satisfy University Core requirements.

For details about the American Studies degree, contact the Program Administrator, Cassandra Balent, at 406-994-4396 or cassandra.balent@montana.edu, or check the American Studies website www.montana.edu/amst.

Foundation Courses

All students, regardless of program focus area, must complete the following courses:

AMST 101DIntro to American Studies3
LIT 110IHIntro to Lit3
NASX 105DIntro Native Amer Studies3
PSCI 210ISIntroduction to American Government3

Foreign Language Requirement and Study Abroad

Students are required to take the first two courses in a foreign language (8 credits) or to demonstrate equivalent competency. Additionally, to better understand how America is perceived in the world, students are encouraged (although not required) to spend at least one semester abroad at a Center for American Studies.

Capstone Experience

All students in the major take a common 4-credit capstone course in their final year (AMST 401 Seminar in American Studies). Students will work together in small groups to design solutions to contemporary issues in American society (e.g., immigration). Each small-group project will result in a scholarly product (typically a paper or presentation) that will serve as a measurable indication of the extent to which students have mastered the critical thinking, reading, writing, and oral communication skills that are the principal learning objectives of the program.

American Studies Courses (General and Focus Area Requirements)

With the exception of the foundation courses described above, all courses that apply to the American Studies requirements are listed below. This includes a general component, required of all focus areas, as well as the more specific requirements of the individual focus areas.

American Studies Courses - General Requirement

In consultation with their advisor, students will select 33 credits from the list of American Studies Courses (below). Courses used to satisfy this requirement cannot be used to satisfy other American Studies requirements, although they may count toward CORE 2.0. Students in the American Arts focus area may select no more than 12 credits from Art, Film and Photography, and Music. Students in the American History focus area may select no more than 12 credits from History. Students in the American Literature focus area may select no more than 12 credits from Literature. Regardless of their focus area, all students will complete the following:

  • One (1) LIT course
  • One (1) 300 or 400-level HSTAcourse
  • One (1) NASX course

American Studies Courses

ANTY 215ISHuman Prehistory3
ANTY 225ISCulture, Language, and Society3
ANTY 332Native North America3
ANTY 351Archaeology of North America3
ARTH 201IAArt of World Civilization II4
ARTH 43019th Century Art3
ARTH 44020th Century Art3
ECNS 101ISEconomic Way of Thinking3
ECNS 372Economic History of US3
GPHY 121DHuman Geography3
GPHY 325Cultural Geography3
GPHY 431Historical Geography3
FILM 106IA3
HSTA 311Early America3
HSTA 316American Civil War Era3
HSTA 318Gilded Age to 19403
HSTA 322Am History: WWII to Present3
HSTA 406McCarthy/Ike/Truman3
HSTA 407Gender in US & Canadian West3
HSTA 408Gender in America3
HSTA 412IHAmerican Thought and Culture3
HSTA 416Race and Class in America3
HSTA 450History of American Indians3
HSTA 460Montana and the West3
HSTA 464Trans-Mississippi West3
HSTA 468History of Yellowstone3
HSTA 470American Environmental History3
HSTA 482History of American Technology3
LIT 214DRegional Lit3
LIT 308Multicultural Lit3
LIT 310Early American Lit3
LIT 31119th Century American Lit3
LIT 37120th Century British/American Lit3
LIT 372Contemporary British and American Literature3
LIT 431RHStudies in Major Author/s3
MOR 301Museum Practices3
MUSI 130IAHistory of Jazz3
NASX 205DNative Americans Contemp Soc3
NASX 232DMT Indian Cult, Hist, Cur Issu3
NASX 239Native North American History through Art and Material Culture3
NASX 280ISNA Studies Rsrch Theors/Mthds3
NASX 304Native American Belief & Phil3
NASX 310Native Cultures of N America3
NASX 340Native American Literature3
NASX 360Native Americans and Cinema3
NASX 430American Indian Education3
NASX 476Amer Indian Policy and Law3
PHL 255DPhilosophy and Culture3
PHL 328Philosophy and Film3
PHL 354Philosophy of Race3
PHOT 113RAUnderstanding Photography3
PHOT 303Early History of Photography3
PHOT 304Recent History of Photography3
PSCI 214ISPrinciples of Political Science3
PSCI 306Legislative Process3
PSCI 346American Presidency3
PSCI 4413
PSCI 471American Constitutional Law3
RLST 220IHInterpretations of Amrcn Relig3
SOCI 101ISIntroduction to Sociology3
SOCI 320Sociology of Religion3
SOCI 325Social Stratification3
SOCI 326Sociology of Gender3
SOCI 333Sociology of Education3
SOCI 340Social Movements3
SOCI 345Sociology of Organizations3
SOCI 359Crime, Justice and Media3
SOCI 435Law and Society3
SOCI 436Law and Inequality3
SOCI 470Environmental Sociology3
WGSS 201IHIntro to Feminist Theories3
WGSS 301RHIntegrative Seminar in Women's Studies3

American Arts Focus Area (13 cr.)

This focus area explores the ways in which art, architecture, music, and film have shaped, and been influenced by, American values and behaviors. Students must complete the following:

AMST 202RA The Arts in America
MUSI 203IA American Popular Music
LIT 310 Early American Lit, or LIT 311 19th Century American Lit,
HSTA 101IH American History I, or HSTA 102IH American History II, or HSTA 160D Introduction to the Am West

Freshman YearCredits
FallSpring
WRIT 101W - College Writing I*3  
AMST 101D - Intro to American Studies3  
Modern Language4  
University Core and Electives5  
NASX 105D - Intro Native Amer Studies  3
Modern Language  4
University Core and Electives  8
Year Total: 15 15
Sophomore YearCredits
FallSpring
HSTA 101IH - American History I
or HSTA 102IH - American History II
or HSTA 160D - Introduction to the Am West
4  
MUSI 203IA - American Popular Music3  
American Studies general requirements3  
University Core and Electives5  
AMST 202RA - The Arts in America  3
LIT 110IH - Intro to Lit  3
American Studies general requirements  3
University Core and Electives  6
Year Total: 15 15
Junior YearCredits
FallSpring
LIT 310 - Early American Lit
or LIT 311 - 19th Century American Lit
3  
American Studies general requirements3  
Focus Area requirements3  
Electives6  
PSCI 210IS - Introduction to American Government  3
American Studies general requirements  3
Focus Area requirements  3
Electives  6
Year Total: 15 15
Senior YearCredits
FallSpring
American Studies general requirements6  
Focus Area requirements3  
Electives6  
AMST 401R - Seminar in American Studies  4
American Studies general requirements  6
Electives  5
Year Total: 15 15
Total Program Credits: 120

A minimum of 42 credits must be in courses numbered 300 and above. In addition to AMST 401R, at least 9 credits must be in courses numbered 400 and above.

*

Students have the option to take WRIT 101W in the spring semester and 3 additional university core electives in the fall semester.

American History Focus Area (18 cr.)

Students will acquire a broad understanding of the major events and processes of American history, and of the ways in which modern American society has been shaped by its historical development. Students must complete the following:
HSTA 101IH American History I
HSTA 102IH American History II
HSTA 160D Introduction to the Am West
AMST 202RA The Arts in America, or MUSI 203IA American Popular Music: Reflections of Politics & Society
LIT 310 Early American Lit, or LIT 311 19th Century American Lit

Freshman YearCredits
FallSpring
WRIT 101W - College Writing I*3  
AMST 101D - Intro to American Studies3  
Modern Language4  
University Core and Electives5  
NASX 105D - Intro Native Amer Studies  3
Modern Language  4
University Core and Electives  8
Year Total: 15 15
Sophomore YearCredits
FallSpring
LIT 110IH - Intro to Lit3  
HSTA 101IH - American History I4  
LIT 310 - Early American Lit
or LIT 311 - 19th Century American Lit
3  
University Core and Electives5  
AMST 202RA - The Arts in America
or MUSI 203IA - American Popular Music
  3
HSTA 102IH - American History II  4
American Studies general requirements  3
University Core and Electives  5
Year Total: 15 15
Junior YearCredits
FallSpring
HSTA 160D - Introduction to the Am West4  
American Studies general requirements6  
Focus Area requirements3  
Electives2  
PSCI 210IS - Introduction to American Government  3
American Studies general requirements  6
Focus Area requirements  3
Electives  3
Year Total: 15 15
Senior YearCredits
FallSpring
American Studies general requirements6  
Focus Area requirements3  
Electives6  
AMST 401R - Seminar in American Studies  4
American Studies general requirements  3
Focus Area requirements  3
Electives  5
Year Total: 15 15
Total Program Credits: 120

A minimum of 42 credits must be in courses numbered 300 and above. In addition to AMST 401R, at least 9 credits must be in courses numbered 400 and above.

*

Students have the option to take WRIT 101W in the spring semester and 3 additional university core electives in the fall semester.

American Literature Focus Area (13 cr.)

This focus area will examine critical approaches to studying the American literary tradition, and its relationship to the major social and cultural movements of American history. Students must complete the following:

AMST 202RA The Arts in America, or MUSI 203IA American Popular Music: Reflections of Politics & Society
LIT 310 Early American Lit,
LIT 311 19th Century American Lit,
HSTA 101IH American History I, or HSTA 102IH American History II, or HSTA 160D Introduction to the Am West

Freshman YearCredits
FallSpring
WRIT 101W - College Writing I*3  
AMST 101D - Intro to American Studies3  
Modern Language4  
University Core and Electives5  
LIT 110IH - Intro to Lit  3
NASX 105D - Intro Native Amer Studies  3
Modern Language  4
University Core and Electives  5
Year Total: 15 15
Sophomore YearCredits
FallSpring
LIT 310 - Early American Lit3  
American Studies general requirements3  
University Core and Electives9  
AMST 202RA - The Arts in America
or MUSI 203IA - American Popular Music
  3
American Studies general requirements  6
University Core and Electives  6
Year Total: 15 15
Junior YearCredits
FallSpring
HSTA 101IH - American History I
or HSTA 102IH - American History II
or HSTA 160D - Introduction to the Am West
4  
American Studies general requirements6  
Focus Area requirements3  
Electives2  
PSCI 210IS - Introduction to American Government  3
American Studies general requirements  6
Focus Area requirements  3
Electives  3
Year Total: 15 15
Senior YearCredits
FallSpring
American Studies general requirements3  
Focus Area requirements6  
Electives6  
AMST 401R - Seminar in American Studies  4
American Studies general requirements  3
Focus Area requirements  3
Electives  5
Year Total: 15 15
Total Program Credits: 120

A minimum of 42 credits must be in courses numbered 300 and above. In addition to AMST 401, at least 9 credits must be in courses numbered 400 and above.

*

Students have the option to take WRIT 101W in the spring semester and 3 additional university core electives in the fall semester.

 American Studies offers the degrees of Master of Arts and Doctor of Philosophy, with a special focus on the American West. Major fields include American Arts, American History, American Literature, American Pluralism, and Public History.