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International/Global Studies

Technology and the forces of cultural and economic integration appear to reduce the distances between societies; at the same time, ethnic, religious and economic conflicts erupt within and between societies, often in violent form. The proximity of diverse societies as well as the remaining divisions within and between them demand a better understanding of their cultures and institutions. The International Studies major provides an interdisciplinary perspective on global issues, politics, societies, history and cultures, preparing students for careers in fields such as international public policy, business and finance; international organizations and affairs; academic research and teaching; non-profit work; and education.

Global Studies uses a similar multidisciplinary base in the humanities and sciences to understand the processes of globalization and its consequences. The major provides a well-rounded liberal arts degree that prepares students for a variety of careers in the international arena as well as graduate study in international affairs, international business, peace and world order studies, area studies and the emerging global society. Students are empowered to shape their world as the next generation of global leaders in business, education, government, and the non-profit sector. Global Studies programs seek to develop more accurate ways of studying and understanding how our world is changing and how we can face the challenges of the future.

The lower division requirements for students transferring in International Studies or Global Studies can vary considerably, depending on the transfer institution. Students should work closely with their counselor, the Transfer Center or the Foreign Language Department Chair in order to research universities, programs and transfer requirements. In addition, general education requirements at CSU’s and UC’s and other universities are not all the same. Not all universities offer this major. Some offer a related major, such as Global Cultures (UCI) or Geography with a Global Studies concentration (CSUSB). Students can find information about which majors are offered at CSUs and UCs, the requirements for the major and which AVC courses are accepted for a particular major at The Transfer Center has information on many other colleges and universities.

Foreign Language Requirements

Most programs in international/global studies require in-depth knowledge of a foreign language and culture. Students should complete at least four semesters of foreign language study at AVC. Students who come to AVC with knowledge of a foreign language as a heritage learner or from previous study are encouraged to consult the Foreign Language Department Chair regarding placement in the language sequence (See Placement). Students proficient in languages not offered at AVC or who would like to acquire proficiency in a language not offered at AVC should also consult with the Foreign Language Department Chair. Students may be able to meet the foreign language requirement at their transfer institution through a proficiency exam rather than coursework.

Study Abroad

Most programs either require or strongly encourage study abroad, usually at the upper division level through the home university. However, acceptance to many programs is very competitive and higher levels of language proficiency and travel or study abroad before transfer will make students more prepared and more competitive when seeking to transfer.


Students should choose electives with an international/global focus when possible (i.e., World Music rather than Music Appreciation). Courses with an international/global/diversity aspect or component will better prepare students for upper division work in the major.

Suggested electives:
Pols 103:  Comparative Government
Soc 101:  Introduction to Sociology
Comm Studies 217:  Gender and Communication
Pols 120:  International Organizations
Hist 119:  History of Latin American and the Caribbean
Psych 215:  Psychology of Prejudice
Dance 113:  World Dance
Music 105:  World Music
Art 103:  History of Non-Western Art
Bio 104:  Environmental Biology
Geog 102:  Weather and Climate

60 unit transfer requirement

Students who begin at higher levels of foreign language will be able to fulfill the general education and transfer requirements with fewer units and must take additional courses to meet the 60 unit minimum for transfer. Students who plan to meet the foreign language requirement in a language not offered at AVC through proficiency examination at the transfer institution may also need to take additional courses to satisfy the 60 unit transfer requirement. Students can generally transfer a maximum of 70 units.

Recommended Plan of Study

The recommended Plan of Study listed below provides a solid foundation for transfer as an international or global studies major and meets the general education requirements for both CSU (Gen-Ed) and UC (I-GET-C).

Many of the recommended courses fulfill a general education requirement as well as a requirement of the major; hence, changing the course may require a student to take additional courses.

An asterisk * indicates that this course is required for transfer to UCLA’s Global Studies Program. These courses, as well as some electives, could be substituted if the student is transferring to a different institution or with a different major (Global Cultures rather than Global Studies, for example). Students should work closely with their counselor and the appropriate department at their transfer institution.

Semester One UC  IGETC CSU Gen Ed
English 101    Freshman Composition 3 Area 1a A-2
Elective [Comm Arts 103 for CSU transfer] 3   A-1 and E
Physical Science (Geology 101) 3 Area 5a B-1
Science lab (Geology 101L) 1 Area 5c B-3
*Foreign Language 101 5   C-2
Total for Semester One 15  
Semester Two    
Critical Thinking (Eng 102 or 103 or Phil 201) 3 Area 1b A-3
*Anth 102: Intro to Cultural Anthropology 3   D-1
*Eng 231: Masterpieces of World Literature 3    
*Econ 101: Macroeconomics 3   D-2
*Foreign Language 102 5 LOTE C1 or C2
Total for Semester Two 17  
Semester Three    
*Math 115: Statistics 4 Area 2 B-4
Elective [Pols 101 for CSU transfer] 3   Am Inst
Choice [see below] 3 Area 3 Art C-1
*Foreign Language 201 3-5 Area 3 Hum  
Total Units for Semester Three 13-15  
Semester Four    
*Pols 201: Contemporary Internatl Relations       3    
Elective [History 107, 108, 109 or 110 for CSU] 3   Am Inst
Biological Sci (Anth 101, Bio 101 or Bio 103) 3 Area 5b B-2
*Hist 105: World Civilizations 1500-present 3   D-6
*Foreign Language 202 3-5    
Total for Semester Four 15-17  


Choice—many courses meet both the CSU and UC requirement for a course in art. Those with a diversity or international focus, such as Art 103, Mus 105 or FTV 203 are highly recommended.

UCLA Global Studies requires 5 courses from among the following 3 areas. One course must be from each area with no more than 2 from one area; substitutions can be made within these parameters.

  1. Anth 102, Geog 105, Eng 231
  2. Hist 105, Pols 201, Pols 103, Soc 101
  3. Econ 101, Econ 102