MAY 14

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Department Mission

The mission of the Department of History, Political Science, and Global Studies is to prepare students to live effectively in a world of complexity and difference and to enjoy an intellectually rich life and satisfying career. We do so by challenging students to be critical thinkers, effective communicators, and proficient researchers. Students receive training in the concepts, theories, trends and professional activity central to their major field. Our programs in history, political science, global studies, and law examine society and government as shaped by both traditions and bold transformations, with special attention to distinctive American relationships with diverse communities around the globe. We encourage students to carefully consider values and to use those to inform their knowledge of themselves and others. Our goal is to graduate students who are ready to situate themselves in the world, transforming it while performing within it.

  1. Students will demonstrate basic competence in their discipline.
    • Students will demonstrate knowledge of key terms, classifications, principles, theories, methods, and trends central to their major field.

    • Students will demonstrate an understanding of professional and intellectual activity central to their major field.

  2. Students will demonstrate proficient research skills.
    • Students will show that they can locate, distinguish, and use high quality, credible source material appropriate to their major field.

    • Students will show that they can identify the thesis, main points, and evidence in the scholarly literature of their major field.

  3. Students will demonstrate effective communication skills.
    • Students will demonstrate in their written work the conventions particular to their discipline in organization, content, presentation, formatting, and stylistic choices.

    • Students will be able to communicate their ideas effectively in class discussions and to do a formal research presentation with a compelling and polished delivery.

    • Students will be able to write a research paper in clear and fluent language, either independently or collaboratively, that includes a thesis, literature review, empirical data, and analysis.

  4. Students will demonstrate critical thinking skills.
    • Students will be able to analyze and critically evaluate ideas, arguments, and points of view.

    • Students will be able to apply course materials to improve thinking, problem-solving and decisions.

    • Students will be able to go beyond perspectives presented in class to formulate original, well-defended arguments that show familiarity with various perspectives on events or processes.

  5. Students will develop the knowledge, skills, and attributes to live effectively in a world of complexity and difference.
    • Students will be able to distinguish among and analyze diverse economic, social and cultural activities.

    • Students will be able to evaluate the impact of values, traditions, and communities on themselves and others.