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Degree Programs in Cultural Studies

The field of cultural studies encompasses sociology, anthropology, gender studies, history, literary criticism and feminism to provide students with a multidisciplinary approach for studying culture and society around the world. Cultural studies degree programs are available at many liberal arts colleges and universities around the country, and give students a chance to explore careers in the fields of history, politics, sociology and even religion.

Students gain a thorough understanding of how certain cultural events throughout history have shaped humanity, and also learn how to conduct research from a historical and cultural perspective. The majority of graduates pursue a career in the field of arts administration, ministry, non-profit management and education.

About Cultural Studies

Cultural studies programs cover a broad range of topics and encourage inquiry and research in areas such as neomarxism, semiotics, social movements throughout history, ethnography and the impact of the media. Many programs answer critical questions about the changing relations among different cultures after World War I and World War II, the programs and institutions formed throughout the '70s and '80s, and the effects of various social movements such as feminism and Marxism in the Western world.

Some colleges and universities offer bachelor's degree programs in the field, while others offer advanced degrees and certificate programs for students who have a background in humanities, sociology and anthropology. Many colleges and universities offer a cultural studies degree program as a branch of a liberal arts and humanities program, while others offer it under a social science or history program.

Completing a Cultural Education Program

Bachelor of arts degrees in cultural studies give students a chance to interpret events and artifacts that have made an impact in Western and Eastern civilizations, learn about representations of gender from a philosophical or media context, and analyze how different works of art and socially accepted values have developed and sustained themselves throughout history. A cultural education program draws from a variety of academic disciplines including literary theory, economics, anthropology and political science.

Students may explore areas such as:

  • Politics
  • Ethnicity
  • Gender
  • Technology
  • Media
  • Historical Identity
  • Feminism
  • Social Movements
  • Pop Culture
  • Film

Students typically take part in readings of historical texts, review works of modern authors and artists, watch movie screenings and participate in dialogue and debates on different social issues. Students enrolled in an advanced degree may be required to work directly with faculty members or leaders within a community on special projects or assignments.

Individuals who choose to complete a cultural study program online may be required to participate in discussion groups, attend webinars and lectures online, complete quizzes and tests online, and work on in-depth research projects that require interacting and communicating with other students and leaders across the country.

Types of Courses in Cultural Studies

Bachelors degree and master's degree programs cover a wide range of courses and students typically need to have completed general courses in the field of humanities, social sciences, sociology and modern history. Types of courses include:

  • Language, Identity and Power
  • Media Studies
  • Critique of Humanism
  • Cinema and Spectatorship
  • Philosophy and Rhetoric
  • Communication and Poststructural Theory
  • Mapping the 18th Century
  • Representations of the Holocaust
  • National Identity and Collective Movements
  • Ethnomusicology
  • Historiography of Imperialism
  • Gender Studies of Modern Europe
  • Theories of Gender & Sexuality

Career Options with a Cultural Study Degree

Students that complete a cultural study degree program develop practical experience and in-depth knowledge bout the history of the world, different cultures and the impact of certain sociological events throughout history. They obtain critical thinking skills, debate skills and analytical skills that can be applied to a number of industries. Some of the career options to consider include:

  • Foreign advisor
  • Human relations professional
  • Cultural studies professor
  • Humanities teacher
  • Historian
  • Anthropologist
  • Sociologist
  • Criminologist
  • Community outreach manager
  • Remedial education teacher
  • Social worker
  • Minister

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