International Studies

Students majoring in International Studies build the knowledge and skills needed to communicate and work effectively in a global society. In addition to examining theories and practices of international relations and affairs, students engage in multi-disciplinary study in order to appreciate the politics, history, economy, language, and culture of a particular region of the world. All students study abroad for at least one semester and also study at least one foreign language.

Why choose a major or minor in International Studies?

The International Studies major at many universities in the U.S. often focuses on the study of political science and economics. At Pacific University, you can approach International Studies in that traditional way, or you can adapt it as a way to internationalize any degree. International Studies at Pacific emphasizes intercultural communication and a broad interdisciplinary scope which can complement any other major. Do you want to study theater in Japan? Math education in Hungary? Exercise science in England? Public heath in Switzerland? The International Studies major at Pacific will give you the immersive intercultural benefits of second-language study and study abroad and the foundations of a truly interdisciplinary education.


The International Studies Major consists of three parts: a set of core courses, an international experience, and a second multi-disciplinary set of courses to support the student’s chosen international experience. For a list of courses see Advising Handbook. International Studies majors are required to study outside of the United States and enroll in a 4-credit Global Skills program to maximize their international experience.  Courses taken while studying abroad may be accepted as elective courses in the major with approval of the International Studies Chair.

Preparation and Application

International studies students at Pacific University develop the knowledge and skills necessary for rewarding and successful careers in such fields as law, diplomacy, education, health professions, NGOs and social justice organizations, international research,anthropology, and the globalized marketplace of business and economics--just to name a few of the vast applications of the degree.


Please contact Dr. Michael Miller, International Studies Advisor, or Prof. Jann Purdy, PhD, Chair of International Studies, .