Allegheny students graduating with a degree in International Studies (or a double major that involves International Studies) are expected to demonstrate the following competencies and skills:
- Global Awareness Skills: The Partnership for 21st Century Skills defines global awareness as “the ability to understand global issues; learn from and work with people from diverse cultures; and understand the cultures of other nations, including the use of non-English languages.” By taking courses in various disciplines (especially in History, Political Science, Modern Languages and Economics), students are expected to demonstrate awareness of global issues.
- Research Capabilities: Ability to undertake original, independent, and interdisciplinary research on an international topic. Students are expected to complete and defend a well-researched senior project by the end of their course work.
- Regional Competency: While being knowledgeable in global issues, students are also expected to demonstrate knowledge of a specific region. Upon graduation, an International Studies student will become a “specialist” in one of the following regions: Latin America, East Asia, Middle East and North Africa, and Europe. Competency could also be gained in other regions through a self-designed curriculum approved by the International Studies Steering Committee.
- Cultural Competency: Students are expected to demonstrate knowledge of the culture of a foreign country through a semester-long study abroad program approved by the college. Cultural immersion would enable students to understand cultural aspects such as culinary habits, indigenous religions, political culture, family structures, values and ethics.
- Foreign Language Competency: Students are expected to be proficient in one of the following languages: Arabic, Chinese, French, German and Spanish. Language competency will be demonstrated partly by the ability to undertake a senior project in a foreign language.
- Interpersonal Skills in a Global Context: We expect International Studies students to be global citizens by developing the skills for interacting with people from different cultural, ethnic, socio-economic, and religious background.