Curriculum in Global Studies

FedEx Global Education Center, Room 2202, CB# 3263; (919) 962-5442


Jonathan Weiler, Senior Lecturer/Director of Undergraduate Studies

Michal Osterweil, Lecturer/Internship Coordinator

Erica Johnson, Lecturer/Director of Graduate Studies


Globalization of the economy, cross-cultural relations, international media, ecological crises, and political transformations are all making international studies more important today. The Curriculum in Global Studies offers an interdisciplinary program of study focusing on these and many other issues. It draws on courses throughout the social sciences, humanities, and professional schools and offers students the chance to concentrate on an area of the world and a theme of global significance.

Students prepare for careers in business, diplomacy, international aid, economic development, and other forms of public service. The global studies major is also excellent preparation for graduate school in one of the social sciences, in professions such as law, business, and journalism, or in international affairs and area studies. About 450 juniors and seniors major in global studies.

Global Studies Major, B.A.

Core Requirements

Additional Information

Of the seven courses in the thematic and world area concentrations, five must be numbered 200 and above.

The curriculum urges that, in addition to fulfilling requirements, students continue the study of a foreign language to a level as close as possible to fluency. All majors should also make every effort to include a study abroad program in their undergraduate education, preferably in their sophomore or junior year.

Students must complete all General Education requirements. No courses fulfilling major requirements may be taken Pass/D+/D/Fail.


All majors and minors have a primary academic advisor in Steele Building. Students are strongly encouraged to meet regularly with their advisor and review their Tar Heel Tracker each semester. The department's director of undergraduate studies works with current and prospective majors by appointment (see "Contact Information" below) to discuss major requirements, how study abroad credits transfer into the major, and other issues of relevance to global studies. Further information on courses, the honors program, internships, and more are available on the department's Web site.

Special Opportunities in Global Studies

Honors in Global Studies

Honors study involves the completion of a substantial piece of original research and the formal presentation of the results in an honors thesis and oral defense. Those who successfully complete the program are awarded their B.A. degree with either honors or highest honors in global studies. Students who wish to submit a thesis for honors in global studies must have at least a 3.3 cumulative grade point average and, under normal circumstances, a 3.5 grade point average in the major and must enroll in GLBL 691H and 692H. GLBL 692H may count toward the major as a theme or area studies course with departmental approval. GLBL 691H will count as elective credit only. Each prospective honors student must submit a two- to three-page prospectus outlining his/her project in the fall of the junior year. Students accepted into the global studies honors program will enroll in GLBL 691H in the spring of the junior year and GLBL 692H in the fall of the senior year.

Study Abroad (recommended, but optional)

Global studies majors are strongly urged to gain experiential knowledge of the countries and thematic concerns they are studying through participation in an approved study abroad program appropriate to their areas of concentration. Every effort will be made by the curriculum to integrate study abroad courses into the major. Students must receive course approval from the director of undergraduate studies prior to departure for a program abroad. No credit will be given unless programs are preapproved.

Undergraduate Awards

All majors in the Curriculum in Global Studies who study abroad are considered for two study abroad awards that are presented each year. These funds may be used to defray any expenses associated
with studying abroad.

The Michael L. and Matthew L. Boyatt Award Fund provides several meritorious awards each year of no more than $2,500 each. They are designated for majors who want to participate in a study abroad program pertinent to their area of concentration within global studies.

The Laura Hudson Richards Fund provides one award of $2,500 each year to a major in the Curriculum in Global Studies who demonstrates both academic excellence and financial need.

In addition, each spring the curriculum awards the Douglas Eyre Prize to the student writing the best honors thesis. The curriculum also selects an annual recipient of the Anne Scaff Award for service to the curriculum and for internationalizing the College. Students chosen to receive the Eyre Prize and Scaff Award are recognized at the curriculum's spring commencement ceremony.

Graduate School and Career Opportunities

Global studies majors are prepared for careers in business, diplomacy, international aid and economic development, and other forms of public service. The major is also excellent preparation for graduate school in one of the social sciences; in professions such as law, business, or journalism; or in international affairs and area studies. Career resources are available on the curriculum's Web site,


Joint Faculty

Chad Bryant, Renee Alexander Craft, Mark Driscoll, Banu Gökariksel, Liesbet Hooghe, Nina Martin, Townsend Middleton, Michael Morgan, Christopher Nelson, Elizabeth Olson, John Pickles, Andrew Reynolds, Graeme Robertson, Eunice Sahle, Iqbal Sevea, Mark Sorensen, Michael Tsin.

Adjunct Faculty and Lecturers

Hannah Gill, Georges Nzongola-Ntalaja, Niklaus Steiner.

Contact Information

Jonathan Weiler, Director of Undergraduate Studies,

Nancy Gray Schoonmaker, Department Manager,, (919) 962-5442.


GLBL–Global Studies

GLBL 89 First-Year Seminar: Special Topics (3). Special topics course. Content will vary each semester.

GLBL 181 Teaching Great Decisions (1). Permission of the department. This course gives credit to the Great Decisions coordinating committee for organizing the eight lectures in
GLBL 381.

GLBL 193 Global Studies Internship (1). Internship in a sponsoring organization whose work or mission is meaningfully connected to a global studies topic.

GLBL 196 Independent Study (1–12). Permission of the instructor. Reading and research on special topics in global studies.

GLBL 210 Global Issues in the 20th Century (ANTH 210, GEOG 210, HIST 210, POLI 210) (3). Survey of international social, political, and cultural patterns in selected societies of Africa, Asia, America, and Europe, stressing comparative analysis of 20th-century conflicts and change in different historical contexts. LAC recitation sections offered in French, German, and Spanish.

GLBL 281 Phillips Ambassadors Program (3). This academic course is mandatory for Phillips Ambassadors.

GLBL 290 Current Topics in Global Studies (0.5–21). An interdisciplinary approach to the study of the background, current status, and future prospects for one of a series of global issues such as the nuclear age, the environment, technological transition.

GLBL 381 Great Decisions (1). Eight evening guest lectures, with a discussion session after each, on eight issues in current foreign policy. May be repeated for credit.

GLBL 382 Latin American Migrant Perspectives: Ethnography and Action (3). This class combines fieldwork, oral history, and service learning in a course that examines concepts of globalization, migration, and transnationalism, and their intersections with anthropological theory and practice.

GLBL 383 Global Whiteness (3). This course will look at race as a theory and practice as it has been constructed in academic disciplines, popular culture, and social struggle.

GLBL 390 Current Topics in Global Studies (3). Topics vary from semester to semester.

GLBL 394 Great Decisions and International Relations (2). Pre- or corequisite, GLBL 381. This course links the Great Decisions lecture series with readings and analyses of international relations. Its purpose is to provide the students on the Great Decisions coordinating committee with a practical and intellectual engagement with United States foreign policy and global issues.

GLBL 405 Comparative Political Economics of Development (3). Political, economic dynamics of selected countries in Asia, Latin America, Caribbean, and Africa.

GLBL 406 Transitions to Democracy (3). Transitions to liberal democratic political structures in Latin America, Asia, Africa, and the former Soviet bloc.

GLBL 450 Social Changes in Times of Crisis: Knowledge, Action, and Ontology (3). Examines dominant, alternative, and emergent narratives of change and the future from around the world. Takes as a premise that we live in a period of multidimensional crises characterized by uncertainty and conflict about how to pursue sustainable economic, ecological, political, social, and cultural projects.

GLBL 470 Globalization and Childhood (3). Surveys major issues in the interdisciplinary study of globalization and the lives of children. Course themes include children's rights, migration, child labor, exploitation, transnational adoption, inequality, the growth of consumerism and consumption, and children in crisis and conflict situations.

GLBL 481 NGO Politics (3). This course will investigate how nongovernmental organizations emerge, how they structure their organizations, how they function, and how they influence public policy.

GLBL 482 Soviet and Post-Soviet Politics and Institutions (3). This course is an introduction to the history and contemporary politics of the post-Soviet region and explores topics of religious, ethnic, and identity politics; international influences; and civil society and social movements.

GLBL 483 Comparative Health Systems (3). This course provides students with an understanding of the origins and comparative performance of a range of international healthcare systems.

GLBL 484 History and Politics of Central Asia (3). This course is an introduction of the history, politics, and societies of Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan. The class explores the foundations and conditions of change in the modern history of these societies and investigates how these issues influence contemporary politics.

GLBL 485 Comparative Development (3). This course is an APPLES service-learning course whose goal is to integrate real-world experience working with development-oriented organizations, theoretical discussions about the origins and evolution of development thinking, and exposure to the challenges facing practitioners of development, in some of its many substantive and geographical contexts.

GLBL 486 Sports and Globalization (3). This course explores some of the relationships between sports and globalization and will delve into sports as an important social and cultural practice within larger social, cultural, and political forces shaping studies of globalization.

GLBL 487 Social Movements: Rethinking Globalization (3). This course explores the history, objectives, and manifestations of global social movements.

GLBL 488 International Migration and Citizenship (3). This class explores the moral, economic, political, and cultural dimensions of movements across international borders.

GLBL 490 Current Topics (3). Current topics in global studies. Topics vary by semester.

GLBL 560 Human Rights, Ethics, and Global Issues (3). This seminar examines the political, economic, and intellectual developments that led to the emergence of human rights as a global phenomenon historically and in the current phase of globalization. Also engages with debates concerning the role of human rights as an ethical philosophy in thinking through current issues.

GLBL 691H Honors in Global Studies (3). Permission of the instructor. Preparation for writing the honors thesis.

GLBL 692H Honors in Global Studies (3). Permission of the instructor. Completion of the honors thesis and an oral examination of the thesis.