Academics

American Studies

Learn more about the American studies degree program at Rollins College.
Flexibility to Thrive

Flexibility to Thrive

“The major’s interdisciplinary approach helped me build a well-rounded perspective and develop the research, critical thinking, and communication skills I need to thrive in law school.” 
— Kalli Joslin ’19, JD Candidate, Georgetown University Law Center

Why Study American Studies at Rollins

Race, politics, capitalism, globalization, popular culture. American studies places you at the heart of the 21st century’s most compelling narratives—and at Rollins, you’re given the flexibility to maximize that relevance.

With a focus on four core departments and many ways to tailor your learning plan, you’ll develop a holistic, wide-ranging way of thinking and expression that is increasingly valued by graduate schools and employers alike.

You’ll engage in hands-on learning under the watchful eye of expert faculty, building critical-thinking, creative problem-solving, and effective communication skills that will prepare you for a range of graduate programs and for a career in everything from business and law to health care and publishing.

Connect with Campus Leaders As an American studies major at Rollins, you’ll be uniquely positioned to network with multiple department leaders and seize professional opportunities across campus.

Develop a Comprehensive Perspective Your coursework focuses on four core departments—English, history, political science, and sociology—allowing you to investigate American culture and society from multiple angles.

Discover Your Passions With a long list of electives and a requirement for coursework outside the core departments, the American Studies program is designed to let you explore many diff erent academic disciplines.

Popular Courses

Rollins’ American studies courses focus on five key themes: the drivers of change; notions of equality; major divisions; core and conflicting principles in American society; and American exceptionalism and global perspectives.

  • AMST 200 Introduction to American Studies In this class, you’ll focus on a specific theme, such as American crime, then study that theme from all angles, using historical texts, novels, television shows, podcasts, and more.

  • MUS 165 History of Rock and Roll Explore the sociological, cultural, political, and musical impact of rock and roll, sampling diverse styles of “pop” music along the way.

  • SOC 331 The Civil Rights Movement Investigate the African-American freedom struggle from the era of slavery to the present, with a special emphasis on the civil rights movement of the 1950s and 1960s.

  • ENG 307 Immigrants in American Film and Literature Explore the American immigrant experience through literature and film, using material as diverse as the autobiography of Olaudah Equiano, the critically acclaimed film The Godfather, and the musical Hamilton.

  • HIS 311 History of American Sexuality Examine societal attitudes toward premarital and teen sex, gendered sexual pleasure, prostitution, abortion, contraception, eugenics, pregnancy, and other sexual issues.

  • POL 343 The American Presidency Trace the development of the presidency, then study the relationship between the president and Congress, bureaucracy, and interest groups.

Beyond the Classroom

Study Abroad Because this major crosses several core disciplines, there are a diverse range of opportunities to study around the world for credit toward the major. As an American Studies student, you’ll be encouraged to take advantage of these study abroad programs in the Caribbean, Europe, Asia, and more.

One-on-One Collaboration As a senior in the American Studies major, you’ll spend your final semester working one-on-one with a professor to complete an interdisciplinary capstone project.

Faculty-Led Field Studies Field study experiences connect with work you’ll do in the classroom. So as you learn about American environmental history, you can also visit state and national parks. Or, as you study the literature of Flannery O’Connor and William Faulkner, you can visit their homes and tour the lands that inspired their work on a Southern lit road trip.

Major and Minor Requirements

Visit the Rollins catalogue to access the program requirements

Contact Info

American Studies Program
Carnegie Hall – Room 101
1000 Holt Ave. – 2666
Winter Park, FL 32789
T. 407.691.1273
Visit American studies program website
Contact American studies program faculty