Peace Studies Program

Richard Ruppel, Ph.D., Director

Bachelor of Arts in Peace Studies

The dramatic changes in Eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union and the new spirit of cooperation between these countries and the United States have signaled the end of the Cold War. Despite these positive changes, conflict and social turmoil continue throughout the world. While ideological differences among nations persist, strife of a national, ethnic or religious nature (often fueled by economic injustice) has re–emerged as a fundamental challenge to world peace. The events of September 11, 2001 tragically demonstrated the changing nature of global conflicts. Responding to these challenges, the Peace Studies Program reaches beyond the confines of strategic studies and disarmament issues to probe the underlying causes of international conflict and domestic strife.

The autonomous Peace Studies Program offers a major and minor that encourage students to analyze the sources of social conflict and to explore the potential for the nonviolent resolution of such strife. The problem–centered, multicultural and interdisciplinary program is premised on the belief that the analysis of conflict demands a thorough synthesis of insights from various fields of knowledge. Students in the Model United Nations program annually attend the National Model United Nations Conference in New York City. Peace studies majors are strongly encouraged to consider overseas study as well as internship opportunities.

Peace studies majors may pursue careers in government service, the United Nations or other international organizations, labor management relations and religious or service organizations. Most careers will benefit from peacemaking skills.

Students pursuing a peace studies degree must receive at least a "C–" in all major core courses. Moreover, peace studies majors cannot take a pass/no pass in any of the core major courses.

Program Honors

The Peace Studies Program awards honors to graduating seniors who have demonstrated exceptional academic achievement. Requirements for consideration include a GPA of 3.700 or higher within the major and the completion of a substantial independent research project as part of a 400level seminar and an independent research project in conjunction with a faculty member. Exceptional and/or sustained community service may also be considered.

Bachelor of Arts in Peace Studies

core requirements (15 credits)

PCST 150

Introduction to Peace Studies

3

PCST 253/453

Mediation and Conflict Resolution

3

POSC 335

Political Economy

3

PCST 354

Nonviolent Social Change

3

PCST 450

Conflict Resolution: Advanced Theory and Practice

3

five of the following (15 credits) at least one course must be upper–division

POSC 120

Introduction to International Relations

3

REL 120

Global Ethics and Religion

3

POSC 130

Introduction to Comparative Politics

3

FSN 201

International Nutrition: The World Food Crisis

3

ANTH 230/330

Indigenous Rights: Peace and Justice in the Americas

3

PCST 251

Intercultural Conflict and Communication

3

PCST 257

Model United Nations I

3

SOC 281

Sociology of Sex and Gender

3

PHIL 304

Multicultural Ethics

3

POSC 317

Media and Politics

3

PHIL 318

Political and Legal Philosophy

3

PCST 320

International Law, International Organizations and World Order

3

POSC 323

Law and Politics of Mass Atrocity

3

PCST 325

Albert Schweitzer: His Life and Thought

3

SOC 325

Social Change

3

HIST 326

The African–American Historical Experience

3

POSC 326

Politics of the Contemporary Middle East

3

POSC 327

Latin American Politics

3

PCST 328

Human Rights Law

3

PCST 332

Democracy and Democratization

3

SOC 335

Society and the Environment

3

POSC 336

The Global and The Local

3

PCST 339

People with Disabilities in Politics and Society

3

PSY 341

Cross–Cultural Psychology

3

ENG 347

Topics in Literary and Cultural Studies

3

PCST 352

Race and Change in South Africa and the United States

3

PCST 353

Peace and Conflict in the Middle East

3

PCST 355

Vietnam: War, Peace and Legacy

3

PCST 356

The Psychology of International Conflict

3

PCST 357

Model United Nations II

3

PCST 358

Islam and the West

3

PCST 366

Conflict and Social Change in Latin America

3

PCST 425

Global Education

3

POSC 439

Disability and the Law

3

ECON 441

Economic Development

3

PCST 490

Independent Internship

3

PCST 499

Individual Study

3

area of study

12

Four courses, three of which must be upper–division, selected to provide the specific expertise that will enhance the major. Subject to prior approval by the director of the Peace Studies Program.

total credits

 

42

Program Learning Outcomes and Educational Effectiveness Evaluation Plans for B.A. in Peace Studies.

Minor in the Peace Studies Program

Minor in Peace Studies

A Minor in Peace Studies requires a total of 21 credits chosen from the peace studies major distributed as outlined below. 12 credits must be upper–division. Students who wish to design a minor in a particular area of study should speak with the director of the Peace Studies Program.

core requirements (9 credits)

PCST 150

Introduction to Peace Studies

3

PCST 253/453

Mediation and Conflict Resolution

3

PCST 354

Nonviolent Social Change

3

four other upperdivision peace studies electives

12

total credits

 

21

Course Descriptions – Peace Studies

PCST 120 Introduction to International Relations

(Same as POSC 120.)

PCST 150 Introduction to Peace Studies

An introduction to the applied meanings of peace, justice, and peacemaking particularly at the societal and global levels. Topics explored include the roots of national and international conflict, the dangers of nuclear holocaust, and various attempts to prevent war and achieve disarmament. (Offered every year.) 3 credits.

PCST 229 Experimental Course

(Offered as needed.) 3 credits.

PCST 251 Intercultural Conflict and Communication

(Same as POSC 251.) The us/them dichotomy is waged in the language of culture. When we realize our cultural differences are we doomed to clash? This course explores what we can learn from the study of communication that would help us understand intercultural conflicts and act as agents of resolution and promotion of intercultural cooperation. (Offered every year.) 3 credits.

PCST 253 Mediation and Conflict Resolution

(Same as PCST 453.) The theory and practice of mediation through role–playing of effective techniques in dealing with a wide variety of interpersonal, workplace, group, and international conflicts and negotiations. (Offered every year.) 3 credits.

PCST 257 Model United Nations I

(Same as POSC 257.) Prerequisites, sophomore standing, consent of instructor. This course involves preparation for, and participation in, Model United Nations Activities. It also serves as an introductory course on the United Nations itself. Students will master UN procedures of debate and deliberation as well as complete detailed research on one country's policy at the UN. (Offered fall semester.) 3 credits.

PCST 290 Independent Internship

(Offered as needed.) 1–3 credits.

PCST 319 Israel/Palestine: 3000 Years

(Same as HIST 319, POSC 319.)

PCST 320 International Law, International Organizations, and World Order

(Same as POSC 320.)

PCST 325 Albert Schweitzer: His Life and Thought

(Same as PHIL 325, REL 325.)

PCST 328 Human Rights Law

(Same as POSC 328.)

PCST 329 Experimental Course

(Offered as needed.) 3 credits.

PCST 332 Democracy and Democratization

(Same as POSC 332.)

PCST 339 People With Disabilities in Politics and Society

(Same as POSC 339.) This course explores people with disabilities (PWDs)' participation in politics and society. We consider differences 1) over time; 2) between countries and cultures; and, 3) between conventional and unconventional strategies for political, social, and economic participation. We examine similarities to and differences from representations of other historically disadvantaged groups and social movements including the women's movement, gay and lesbian rights movements, and ethnic movements. The role and implications of charity will also be explored. A final theme is relationships between disability issues and issues of war and peace. (Offered every year.) 3 credits.

PCST 352 Race and Change in South Africa and the United States

(Same as POSC 352.) Apartheid has ended in South Africa, yet ethnic violence and economic challenges cloud the future of South Africa. Despite the civil rights movement, racial injustice persists in America. What insights can South Africa provide for the United States? (Offered alternate years.) 3 credits.

PCST 353 Peace and Conflict in the Middle East

(Same as POSC 353.) Beginning with a historical examination of the region focusing on the key social forces and the sources of conflict, students explore the Israeli-Palestinian conflict in depth and conduct a peace conference in an attempt to develop a plausible resolution. (Offered alternate years.) 3 credits.

PCST 354 Nonviolent Social Change

(Same as POSC 354.) In a world consumed by religious, ethnic, and social strife, we need to search for nonviolent means of solving human problems. Students examine the theory and practice of nonviolent social change and explore the ideas of Henry David Thoreau, Mohandas K. Gandhi, and Martin Luther King, Jr. as well as successful cases on nonviolent social change such as South Africa, Poland, Argentina, Denmark, and India. (Offered every year.) 3 credits.

PCST 355 Vietnam: War, Peace, and Legacy

(Same as POSC 355.) The U.S. war in Vietnam had an enormous impact upon both countries. Debates still rage about who won the war and why. Students will study the war, the peace movement, and the legacy of the conflict. (Offered every year.) 3 credits.

PCST 356 The Psychology of International Conflict

(Same as POSC 356.) This course will cover key theories of conflict at that micro and macro level, including the role of the leader and small and large groups as generators, transmitters, and recipients of conflict dynamics. As the understanding of international conflict requires a multi-level approach, this course cuts across the field of politics, sociology, psychology, and history. (Offered every year.) 3 credits.

PCST 357 Model United Nations II

(Same as POSC 357.) Prerequisites, PCST 257, or POSC 257, and consent of instructor. This course involves preparation for, and participation in, Model United Nations Activities. It also serves as an introductory course on the United Nations itself. Students will master UN procedures of debate and deliberation as well as complete detailed research on one country's policy at the UN. May be repeated for credit. Fee: $350. (Offered spring semester.) 3 credits.

PCST 358 Islam and the West

(Same as POSC 358, REL 358.) This course begins with an introduction to Islam, its historical interaction with the Christian world, and then focuses on the contemporary relations between the Muslim world and the Judeo-Christian influenced west. It explores whether current conflicts derive from religious differences, historical conflicts of interest, or from contemporary political and cultural incompatibilities. It also stresses the heterogeneity in the Islamic community, which is often overlooked by the west. (Offered spring semester.) 3 credits.

PCST 366 Conflict and Social Change in Latin America

(Same as ANTH 361.)

PCST 399 Individual Study

(Offered as needed.) 1–6 credits.

PCST 425 Global Education

(Same as EDUC 625.) For teachers, future teachers, and students of international/peace studies who are considering teaching as a career. Students examine developments in the global economy, the global environment, cultural and political systems, and technology. Students also explore ways in which these themes and topics can be incorporated into the K12 curriculum through the design of appropriate learning activities. (Offered as needed.) 3 credits.

PCST 429 Experimental Course

(Offered as needed.) 3 credits.

PCST 439 Disability and the Law

(Same as POSC 439.)

PCST 450 Conflict Resolution: Advanced Theory and Practice

This course analyzes theories of international and intergroup conflict, and discusses how root causes of deadly conflict influence the processes to settle, resolve, or transform conflict. The course examines different aspects of peacemaking, including official and unofficial processes, the role of third parties in conflict prevention and resolution, and the sustainability of peace agreements. Through class discussions, simulations, and case studies, the students will examine how theories presented in the readings and those discussed in class apply to actual conflict situations. (Offered spring semester.) 3 credits.

PCST 453 Mediation and Conflict Resolution

(Same as PCST 253.)

PCST 490 Independent Internship

P/NP. (Offered every semester.) 1–3 credits.

PCST 499 Individual Study

(Offered every semester.) 1–3 credits.