The Curriculum

The GSIS program provides a rigorous introduction and foundation to the field of International Studies. All GSIS students will receive three hours of college credit and be enrolled in a special section of "Introduction to International Studies" (INTL 1101).

What is the field of international studies?

International Studies is a broad, interdisciplinary field of study encompassing the international community's social, political, economic, and cultural workings. Course content will cover culture, meaning and identity, social and political organization, inequality, and power within a changing global context. The course features several guest lecturers from various academic disciplines to expose students to historic and ongoing globalization processes from perspectives of culture, economics, environment, and politics.

Through the curriculum, GSIS students will:

  • Develop problem-solving skills related to global events
  • Develop an appreciation and understanding of other cultures
  • Develop critical thinking skills with an international perspective
  • Create and present an individual project on a topic of their choice

What else will students study?

In addition to the main lecture in the morning, GSIS students meet daily Monday through Friday in small International Perspectives groups, each of them having a specific theme of international/global importance. In addition, students will be divided into language/culture classes, with each group being introduced to a language that they will not have had the opportunity to study in high school. Students will also study the cultures, customs, and lifestyles of the countries where these languages are spoken, and curate a cultural dinner with ethnic food, traditional dances, foreign songs, and other culturally-appropriate activities. 

Is geography included in the curriculum? 

One of the class requirements is to be able to recognize and locate all of the countries of the world. Students will be given a map test in the third week of the program, asking them to identify a randomized list of sovereign nations.  To successfully pass the course, students must score at least 90% or greater. Chances to retake the exam will be allowed. Due to the program's intensive nature, students may wish to study well in advance as class time will not prepare for this exam.

Students can test themselves on their knowledge of countries of the world with a test on JetPunk.

For a list of other study resources, check out Parts Geek here

What will students do during the late afternoons, evenings, and weekends? 

Other co-curricular activities include a variety of guest speakers, group activities, and field trips to local sites. Students will also have free time to spend at the recreation center, nap, practice instruments, study, and enjoy the UofM campus!