International & Global Studies

Sewanee: The University of the South



The Program Committee

Our Program Committee is an interdisciplinary group charged with decision-making and teaching required courses for the major. We deal with the curriculum, hiring, student advising, study abroad, and comprehensive exams. For more information on the program, please contact the Program Committee: Donna F. Murdock (Chair), Yasmeen Mohiuddin, Don Rung, Ruth Sánchez-Imizcoz, Scott Wilson, Reinhard Zachau, Roger Levine, Betsy Sandlin, Mila Dragojevic, Nicholas Roberts, and Rohan Kalyan. You may find more information about each of these faculty members on our faculty page.

Faculty Teaching Required Courses for the Major

Professor Scott Wilson (Department of Politics) teaches INGS 200, Assistant Professor Mila Dragojevic (Department of Politics) teaches INGS 400, Associate Professor Murdock (IGS Chair, Anthropology and Women's Studies) teaches INGS 400.

Declaring the Major

Students interested in pursuing the International and Global Studies major should speak with a professor who teaches for the program or who is a member of the program committee. The IGS chair is also a good source for information if you have questions about the major. Students typically decide in the spring semester of the sophomore year. Once the decision has been made, students will need to choose an advisor appropriate to their planned course of study, fill out the Major Declaration Form, and get both the new advisor and the IGS Chair to sign it before turning it into the Registrar's office.

Planned Course of Study: Students determine in consultation with their advisor and the chair their planned course of study in the major. This should include discussion not only of planned areas of focus, but also the abroad experiences, language training, and possible minor course of study that make the most sense for that student. Keeping the coherence of the educational experience in mind is especially important in IGS as both the senior thesis (written in INGS 400), and the comprehensive exams, depend upon it. Once the course of study has been decided, the student should fill out a Planned Course of Study form, sign it, and give a copy to both their advisor and the IGS Chair. The planned program of study may be subject to change as the student progresses through the major, and should be reviewed with the advisor and chair should this occur

The Abroad Experience

An abroad experience is required by the IGS major because we believe that students who travel to work and/or study abroad are better prepared to live in a globalizing world. Studies have shown that students who have had a successful abroad experience tend to be more confident in new and unfamiliar settings, and also are better able to communicate and work with others who are different from themselves. Whether traveling to study, for an internship, or to do research, the benefits of immersion in a distinct cultural setting are broad-ranging. Students who have traveled know that independence, willingness to experience new surroundings and try unfamiliar things, as well as acknowledgement of and respect for diverse perspectives and opinions, are all central to the successful abroad experience. We believe these are also key contributors to the successful navigation of our world in the future.

There are many study abroad programs available to Sewanee students. There are a few Sewanee-run semester and summer programs that are especially suited for the IGS major. For a full listing, please visit the Study Abroad Office. The ideal abroad experience for an IGS major is one that combines language learning with cultural immersion while relating to course work taken while at Sewanee. Many IGS majors have multiple abroad experiences during their time here—most often combining a semester study abroad with a summer internship or research program. Students are encouraged to think deeply about the study abroad experiences they choose as an abroad experience will provide the basis for the senior thesis written in INGS 400, and for Honors in IGS should the student be eligible. All abroad experiences must be approved by the student's advisor and the chair.

Exceptions to the requirement for experience abroad under conditions of hardship may be granted through the mechanism of a written petition to opt out, considered by the chair in consultation with the program committee and the student's advisor.

Students seeking portability of financial aid for their abroad experience must follow the procedures outlined by the Financial Aid Office.

Language Learning

Language-learning skills facilitate students' participation in a globalized world, and for this reason, all IGS majors must take one foreign language course in addition to the usual 300-level course required for General Education in the college. This course may be at the 300 or 400 level in the same foreign language, or may be at any level in another language. If a second foreign language is proposed, the student must gain approval of the advisor and the chair. Whether students do their additional language study at Sewanee, or pursue language study abroad depends on the availability of pertinent language study here, and a student's own interests.

In some cases, students will take one of their eight distributed electives in a foreign language here at Sewanee. This is especially likely for those students focusing on Latin America and the Caribbean, Russia and Eurasia, and Europe as our German, French, Spanish and Russian departments all teach for the IGS program. However, some students may elect to simply start a second language while at Sewanee, and any course taken in a language different from that used to fulfill the Gen Ed will meet this requirement.

Other students will choose to undertake language learning while abroad, and this is the ideal situation as it allows the opportunity to immerse oneself both linguistically and culturally in a different setting. Combined language learning and content-based courses are very common among study abroad programs including those offered through Sewanee as well as through other programs.

There are also summer language learning programs offered through Sewanee, and at other schools. These may or may not involve cultural immersion, but in most cases do involve very intensive language learning. Summer intensive programs offered through Concordia Language Villages, Middlebury, Monterey Institute of International Studies, and the University of Texas at Austin are all good places to start.

Senior Thesis

All IGS majors write a senior thesis in their INGS 400 Senior Seminar taken in the fall semester of their senior year.  This paper is based primarily on library research although it is possible to use data gathered during an abroad experience as appropriate.  Paper topics will be related to your coursework in the major.  Your paper should deal with some aspect of the thematic and geographic sub-categories from which you have taken classes.  All papers should be grounded conceptually but should also demonstrate understanding of the importance of particular contexts in historic, political-economic, and socio-cultural terms.


In October of their senior year, students may apply for honors if they have a 3.5 grade point average in the major.  To apply, students submit a project proposal to the department chair for a 35-page paper to be written in consultation with and evaluated for Honors by two members of the IGS faculty.  If the proposal is approved, students will register for a full course (INGS 405:  Honors Thesis) taken in the second semester of the senior year.  Honors theses must be completed and presented in a public forum in April of the senior year.

Comprehensive Exams

Each student completes a comprehensive examination in the first semester of their senior year.  The comprehensive is broadly integrative, consisting of two parts.  The first part is a seminar paper written in INGS 400 that integrates materials from the eight elective courses taken in the student's chosen thematic and geographic sub-categories of focus.  The second part is an essay answering a question about themes and concepts in globalization learned in INGS 200 and 400.

Professional Training


Many IGS majors use at least one of their summers to complete an internship. A number of majors report that the summer internship was invaluable in terms of deciding about future career paths, gaining experience and making valuable connections that ultimately led to employment.

Professional Organizations

There are a number of professional organizations which deal with globalization; below you will find a sampling of some of the most prominent. You can find information about grants, conferences, and recent publications on these sites:

Scholarly Journals

Many scholarly journals today cover the topic of globalization. Below you will find a sampling of journals that deal in their entirety with this issue.

  • Globalizations
  • Global Networks
  • Journal of Global Ethics
  • Journal of Global History
  • Journal of World Systems Research
  • New Global Studies
  • The Global Studies Journal
  • Encounters: an International Journal for the Study of Culture and Society
Sewanee: The University of the South