Asian and Middle Eastern Studies (AMES)
Asian and Middle Eastern Studies (AMES) is a multidisciplinary program that aims to enrich the understanding of a broadly conceived “Asia” in relation to other parts of the world. The AMES curriculum includes the study of history, politics, religion, literature, fine and media arts, performance, expressive and ritual culture, and the major languages of the region. Its curriculum consists of course offerings encompassing a diverse range of topics that involve East Asia, South Asia, Southeast Asia, the Middle East, and the Asia-Pacific. Students select a track in either East Asian Studies or Middle Eastern Studies. The AMES curriculum includes four minor programs of study including minors in East Asian Studies, Middle Eastern Studies, South Asian Studies and Comparative and Diaspora Studies of Asia and the Middle East. AMES concentrators and AMES minors are encouraged to combine their academic study with service learning, study away, or study abroad.
AMES concentrators are required to complete 38 credit hours, including AMES 250 (core course) and AMES 493 (capstone course). AMES students are encouraged to look into allied programs such as Global Studies for complementary courses and intellectual exchange. Students are encouraged to pursue advanced research through AMES 495 -AMES 496 (Senior Honors). Please consult with a faculty member in AMES if you are interested in the program.
The Global Studies Programs
Students who major in Global Studies (GBST) design an interdisciplinary sequence of courses together with an advisor in one of the following area concentrations: Asian and Middle Eastern Studies, European Studies, Latin American Studies, and Russian and Post-Soviet Studies. Through coursework in the culture, history, languages, literature, politics, and religions of major world regions, students explore the specificity of a given region, the ways in which global forces are realized in and through local contexts, and the interconnections between global regions. Majors often combine their program of study with service learning, internships, or study abroad. Familiarity with a specific region provides a foundation for grappling with the emerging possibilities and the ethical responsibilities of living in an interconnected world.
In general, a major in Global Studies includes courses from at least three departments. Detailed descriptions of the degree programs are provided below. Additional information about courses and requirements is available from area concentration faculty advisors.
Language Requirement. Degrees in Global Studies include a modern foreign language component which exceeds the College’s proficiency requirement. Students meet the requirement by completing a specific level of language instruction as detailed in their concentration.
Major Writing Requirement (MWR). The major writing requirement may be satisfied in Global Studies by (1) completing the appropriate senior seminar of the individual program, or (2) fulfilling the major writing requirement for a department contributing courses to your selected concentration or (3) completing a writing project designed to meet the MWR with special permission from a faculty member. Students should consult with their area concentration advisor on how best to fulfill this requirement.
Major Computer Proficiency Requirement (CPR). Global Studies majors may satisfy the computing proficiency requirement by (1) fulfilling the computing requirement for a department that offers a course in the student’s major (2) completing a course that counts for the CPR for a student’s area concentration or (3) completing CSCI 131 or higher. Concentrators in AMES fulfill the CPR by completing AMES 493 with a grade of C- or better.
Study Abroad. Students are strongly encouraged to seek overseas opportunities and pursue summer and semester-long programs of study, scholarship, and service in all areas of Global Studies, or at approved institutions in the United States. Contact the Global Education Office at the Reves Center for International Studies for information on William & Mary study abroad programs and on programs offered by other institutions. With prior approval, courses taken abroad may be applied to the major or used for other requirements. Funding for independent research projects may be available from the Charles Center for Interdisciplinary Study; students should also investigate scholarship opportunities available through the Reves Center’s Global Education Office for language study.
Major Declaration. Prospective majors in Global Studies should discuss their plans for study with an affiliated faculty in an area concentration by the end of the sophomore year. Declaration forms and instructions for majors and minors are available at the Global Studies website and at the Registrar’s Office.
Minors. In Global Studies students may complete a minor in Comparative and Diaspora Studies of Asia and the Middle East, East Asian Studies, European Studies, Latin American Studies, Middle Eastern Studies, Russian and Post-Soviet Studies, or South Asian Studies.
Senior Honors Students who wish to conduct an honors project must apply for admission to the Departmental Honors program, which is administered by the Charles Center. As part of the application, students must get the approval of an honors project by a faculty member of their area concentration. Application, which includes a faculty signature and a prospectus, should be made to the Charles Center by the end of classes in the academic semester before the project is to begin. A prospectus includes: (1) a clear statement of the problem to be researched; (2) a brief, critical review of scholarly literature on the research topic; (3) a description of the methodology to be employed; (4) and an approximate schedule of work. Eligible applicants must carry a 3.2 grade point average in Global Studies and must also meet the College eligibility standard of 3.0 overall or in their junior year. For further information and an application, contact the Charles Center.
Students admitted into the Honors program in Global Studies will enroll in the honors courses (495-496) appropriate to their concentration during both semesters of their senior year. Honors candidates are responsible for (1) formulating and completing a program of study in consultation with a faculty advisor; (2) preparation and presentation, by two weeks before the last day of classes in the spring semester, of an honors essay; and (3) satisfactory performance in a comprehensive oral examination which focuses on the subject matter of the honors essay. For College provisions governing admission to the Senior Honors program, see the discussion of major honors elsewhere in this catalog and the Charles Center web site.
Programs and Course Descriptions
- Asian and Middle Eastern Studies, Global Studies, BA
- Comparative and Diaspora Studies of Asia and the Middle East Minor
- East Asian Studies Track, Asian & Middle Eastern Studies, Global Studies, BA
- East Asian Studies, Minor
- Middle Eastern Studies Track, Asian & Middle Eastern Studies, Global Studies, BA
- Middle Eastern Studies, Minor
- South Asian Studies, Minor
CoursesAsian and Middle Eastern Studies