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Regional Focus: Europe (ISEE)

Regional Focus: Europe (ISEE)

  Europe has long been a site of struggle over issues of self-identity, politics, ethnicity, class, gender, and religion, among others. The focus in European Studies proposes an in-depth study of European history, economics, politics, geography, theater, art and literature in order to convey the complexity of the European scene, past and present.


EU Symbol


This region of focus will take an interdisciplinary approach to investigate the meaning of Europe, examining the history of its development, and its contemporary relevance. Courses may analyze the historic impact of national, ethnic, religious, and class identities, or the various art forms (art, drama, and/or literature) produced by European cultures, emphasizing the arts as a forum for the portrayal of ethical issues within human experience. 

A variety of scholarly and literary sources are used to provide the student with a varied and balanced view of this complex region.

Courses will concentrate on teaching students to read closely history and the arts, and critically analyze both by investigating the different social, political, intellectual, and religious contexts, as well as the ideologies and symbolisms imbedded in the arts, history and culture or Europeans.



Regional Coordinator

Chip Long, Ph.D.

East Hall 337  (503) 725-3451

For a different regional coordinator, please visit the corresponding Regional Focus page. (See menu in the left margin above.)

Regional Focus

At least 20 upper-division credits (with a grade C or above) from adviser-approved, area-specific courses appropriate to the student's regional focus; selected from departments and programs in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, the School of Business Administration, the Graduate School of Education, the School of Fine and Performing Arts, and the College of Urban and Public Affairs.

For a list of recommended Europe-related courses, you can view all lists under FORMS/LISTS.

Foreign Language

A common misconception is that globalization has reduced the value of knowledge of languages other than English.

The International Studies major requires that students demonstrate third-year proficiency in one language appropriate to the regional focus.  For students taking courses at PSU, third-year proficiency is defined by successful completion of the terminal course in the third-year language sequence or completion of an upper division equivalent.  For students admitted to PSU in Fall 2007, or later, the terminal course for most languages is 303. 

Since this requirement is met by proficiency and not credit hours, you may have learned the foreign language outside of a classroom, for example, from relatives or by living abroad. If this is the case, please contact the World Languages and Literatures department for information on how to satisfy this requirement and demonstrating third-year proficiency.

Adviser-Approved European Languages:

  • French
  • German
  • Italian
  • Russian
  • Spanish

The following languages only offer classes at PSU through second year.  However, with adviser approval, the anguage requirement can be met by supplementing with one year of another adviser-approved European region language:

  • Norwegian
  • Greek (Modern)
  • Danish
  • Finnish
  • Swedish

Hellenic Studies

Through the generosity of a local business leader, E. John Rumpakis, we are pleased to have this new program as a resource for our community.  We’re excited about the courses and activities that Hellenic Studies has coming up and encourage you to visit their website and get involved with Hellenic studies today.

Education Abroad

There is not an education abroad requirement associated with the International Studies major; however, our students are encouraged to pursue international experience opportunities. Portland State University's Education Abroad Office offers study abroad opportunities in the following countries in Europe:

  • Austria
  • Belgium
  • Cyprus
  • Czech Republic
  • Denmark
  • England
  • France
  • Germany
  • Greece
  • Hungary
  • Ireland
  • Italy
  • Netherlands
  • Poland
  • Russia
  • Scotland
  • Spain
  • Sweden
  • Turkey

For more information on any of these programs please visit the Study Abroad office in East Hall 101.

Need a reason to study abroad??  . . . just read this article and it will inform you of many of the benefits of an intercultural academic experience!