Minor in Intercultural Studies

The intercultural studies minor is an excellent choice for students interested in diversity, multicultural and ethnic studies who want to develop intercultural awareness and skills.

You’ll learn about the structures of cultures, explore your own culture and discover a range of cultures different from your own.

For a minor in intercultural studies, you will choose an area of study in consultation with the department chair. Students are expected to develop an understanding of one cultural group or to explore a thematic interest in depth.

Objectives of the Minor

Students earning a minor in intercultural studies should be:

  • Develop cultural group knowledge and understanding
  • Use intercultural models to analyze similarities and differences between cultures (ethnic, racial, gender, social class and other minority and national identities) and their interactions
  • Develop an ability to analyze power, social hierarchy and social inequality effects in interactions involving individuals, groups, organizations and nations
  • Develop a problem-solving focus as it relates to the ability to effectively communicate with and relate to others from various cultural or national backgrounds

Requirements for the Minor

The minor requires five credits.

Intercultural Courses

To develop an understanding of cultural and thematic issues as guided by program objectives, students take two half-course credit intercultural studies courses, as follows:

  • ICS 270 Introduction to Intercultural Studies (.50 credit)
  • ICS 271 Intermediate Intercultural Studies (.50 credit)

Core Conceptual Courses

To develop a conceptual base for intercultural understanding, students must take two or three courses from among the following:

  • BUS 350 Cultural Diversity in Organizations
  • COM 315 Intercultural Communication
  • ENG 230 Readings in Race, Class and Gender
  • ICS 275 Introduction to International Studies
  • ICS 375 Critical Issues in Women’s Studies
  • ICS 385 LGBTQ Identity: Individual and Communal Journeys
  • PSY 325/425 Psychology and Culture
  • SOC 212 Cultural Anthropology
  • SOC 304 Majority-Minority Relations

Students must earn a C or better in the required courses and core conceptual courses to count toward an ICS minor.

Areas of Study

Working with the department chair, students select one or two elective courses from the various areas of study to complete their specific coursework. These include:

  • Regular and adapted Elmhurst University courses
  • Special January Term courses
  • Portfolio documentation of workshops, training sessions, lectures, retreats, etc., undertaken with an intercultural studies program focus
  • Independent study, research or field experience
  • Study abroad, internship, off-campus study or service learning

At least half the ICS coursework must be taken at Elmhurst University. Some areas of study, especially international, may require additional foreign language competency. A maximum of two courses may count also toward other majors or minors.

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