Department of European Studies
Why study languages?
"When I applied for a job with an American multinational company, the fact that I knew a second language immediately put me in the top tier of candidates. My study abroad experience stood out in my final interview, and I was given a job invitation on the spot."
The Department of European Studies at San Diego State University is one of the few integrated, interdisciplinary European Studies departments in the United States. It takes a comprehensive and transnational approach to the study Western Europe, Central and Eastern Europe, Russia, the Mediterranean, and Europe’s diasporic and postcolonial communities around the world.
The department offers a number of distinct degree programs, which in addition to the European Studies major include specialized B.A. degrees in French, German, German Studies, Russian, and Russian and Central European Studies. The department also offers minors in European Studies, French, German, Italian, Russian, and the Master’s degree in French.
Each program combines intensive language training with the study of Europe’s diverse societies and cultures. Students typically graduate with a strong command of one or more foreign languages and a solid understanding of the complexities of contemporary Europe—essential skills both for successful careers with an international focus and for advanced degree programs in a broad variety of fields, including, for example, international business, law, international relations, journalism, and cultural studies.
Student-Centered Learning and Mentoring
Classes in the European Studies Department are small by the standards of a large research university, creating a tight-knit community of students and faculty. This creates effective student-centered learning environments that encourage active participation, collaboration, and critical thinking. Students have access to mentoring from an experienced faculty who are committed to helping them thrive and achieve their goals toward a desired career or advanced graduate training.
European Studies is an interdisciplinary field, and the department therefore collaborates with many programs and centers across campus, including Africana Studies, History, the Honors Program, International Business, International Security and Conflict Resolution (ISCOR), International Comparative Studies, Jewish Studies, the Master of Arts in Liberal Arts and Sciences (MALAS), and Women’s Studies. The department also serves a substantial student population beyond its own majors and minors, enhancing the interdisciplinary character of its classes.
In language instruction we partner SDSU’s Language Acquisition Resource Center (LARC), a state of the art facility that is part of a select group of 15 national centers funded by the U.S. Department of Education and one of five national Language Training Centers funded by the Department of Defense.
The department and the Center for European Studies, which is housed in the department, host a variety of Europe-related events throughout the year, including scholarly lectures, musical and theatrical performances, and film series, both on and off campus.