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CCOG for INTL 201 Winter 2024

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Course Number:
INTL 201
Course Title:
Introduction to International Studies
Credit Hours:
Lecture Hours:
Lecture/Lab Hours:
Lab Hours:

Course Description

Introduces a multidisciplinary approach to global affairs. Analyzes topics, such as identity, nationalism, power relationships, and environmental social justice issues. Provides perspectives of marginalized groups, nation-states, regions and global forces in solving historic and contemporary economic, political, sociological and cultural problems. Prerequisites: WR 115, RD 115 and MTH 20 or equivalent placement test scores. Audit available.

Intended Outcomes for the course

Upon completion of the course students should be able to:

  1. Explain how geography, history, culture and political economy shape contemporary environmental and social issues.
  2. Analyze patterns of increasing global interconnectedness, power structures, and inequality through multidisciplinary inquiry. 
  3. Apply theory to global phenomena, using relevant primary source materials.
  4. Evaluate one’s own assumptions, judgments, and/or bias about one’s own role in contemporary inequalities and connection to other places and peoples in the world.

Social Inquiry and Analysis

Students completing an associate degree at Portland Community College will be able to apply methods of inquiry and analysis to examine social contexts and the diversity of human thought and experience.

General education philosophy statement

In the Introduction to International Studies, students prepare for meeting the challenges of a rapidly changing world. International studies is interdisciplinary by nature so students examine the challenges of a complex global reality from different perspectives that include sociology, literature, geography, economic, business, health care, political science, religion, history, and anthropology. Students enrolled in this class examine the changing nature of the international system and the importance of looking at it through these multiple lenses. Students examine how countries around the world interact with one another but also how ordinary people are connected to or are impacted by the world around them and how they, in turn, affect it.

Aspirational Goals

Course will help develop leadership skills for students to become active and responsible global citizens.

Course Activities and Design

In addition to a wide variety of readings from many different disciplines, the course will include lectures from faculty in different disciplines, films and videos, role plays, and final student projects with a focus on an issue or geographic region of each student's choosing.

Outcome Assessment Strategies

Student mastery of skills, content and outcomes may be assessed by any combination of the following:

1.    written or oral examinations

2.    participation in class discussion, exercises, small group activities or role plays

3.    essays, research, journal assignments or interviews

4.    performances or plays

5.    oral or visual presentations

6.    participation in organizing community or professional events

7.    service learning activities

Course Content (Themes, Concepts, Issues and Skills)

Course Content: Themes, Concepts, Issues

1.    Introduce the concept and discipline of International Studies: theoretical framework and approach

2.    Focus on a combination of themes from the following list:

o    Culture, Values, & Human Behavior (religion, philosophy, art, food, language)

o    Global Economic Systems (basic economic systems, international trade and business, development, health, migration patterns)

o    Political Systems & World Politics (basic political systems, regimes, war & conflict, group identity and politics, colonialism)

o    Global History (colonialism, migration issues and patterns, evolution of political systems)

o    Geography (world geography, physical geography, environmental issues, migration patterns, borders and boundaries, language issues)

o    Sustainability and the Environment (resource issues, food/water security, health, climate change, energy security and energy policy)

o    Human Rights & Equality (health, migration patterns, language issues, minority rights, women’s rights, economic inequality)

3.    Utilize case studies from a variety of the following regions to explore the above themes:

o    Africa

o    Asia and Oceania

o    North America

o    Central/South America

o    Europe

o    The Middle East


·         Identify countries, geographic features, populations, natural resources on a map

·         Demonstrate awareness of fundamentals of Intercultural communication knowledge and sensitivity to how language reflects and shapes social construction of culture.

·         Assess one’s own cultural biases & identify ethnocentric attitudes

·         Analyze problems, situations, events, cultural phenomena from multiple perspectives

·         Identify various artistic and religious traditions as reflections of cultural specificity

·         Identify the variety of stakeholders whose interests impact understanding of and offer solutions to problems.

·         Compare media systems and their role in shaping preconceived views of the world.

·         Utilize diverse, sophisticated and nuanced sources to attain information about the world.

·         Discuss political, economic, ideological discourses and one’s position within it.

·         Articulate how various schools of thought interact with each other/ability to contextualize theories

·         Read and assess college-level books, articles, chapters, etc.

·         Identify historical precursors of current events.

·         Articulate issues of diversity and inequality