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Borromeo Institute
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Honors Program
Interdisciplinary Minors &
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Arts and Sciences, Fine Arts & FYS
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Entrepreneurship Minor
International Cultures
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Political Science
Religious Studies
Sociology and Criminology


Interdisciplinary Minors and Concentrations

In addition to the required major and optional minor programs, the University also offers a number of interdisciplinary minors and concentrations as options to supplement and strengthen specific degree majors.   These programs consist of approximately 18 to 39 semester hours of course work in which the student has attained at least a 2.0 (C) average.  To qualify, students must complete all the requirements of the related major as specified in this Bulletin. A completed minor or concentration is noted on the transcript.  For further details concerning minors and concentrations, and recommended courses, students are advised to contact the coordinator/director or the chair of a department participating in the minor or concentration.

Interdisciplinary Minors
        The following interdisciplinary minors are available:

East Asian Studies—Students in any major may pursue this minor in order to deepen their understanding of this important region of the world.  The program consists of 24 credit hours.  Courses taken for Core and major can simultaneously be counted toward the minor. Study abroad in an East Asian country is encouraged but not required.  The minor consists of courses from at least three disciplines, including at least one year of an East Asian language.

Students may choose from two tracks, one of which emphasizes language while the other provides a broader interdisciplinary approach in the humanities and social sciences.  The language track requires three years of study of an East Asian language as available at John Carroll or other universities, plus two additional courses focused on East Asia from two other departments:  AH 211, 313, 314, 399; EN 288; HS 180, 279, 280, 283, 381, 382, 452, 453, 456; IC 220; PO 102*, 242, 243; RL 251, 351, 353, 354; SC 151, 250, 253, 390; or special-topics courses in East Asian studies. The second track requires one year of an East Asian language as available at John Carroll or other universities, an introductory course in East Asian Studies (AH 211; HS 180, 279, 280; RL 252; or SC 151), and five additional courses from at least three departments:  AH 211, 313, 314, 399; EN 288; HS 180, 279, 280, 283, 381, 382, 452, 453, 456; PO 102*, 242, 243; RL 251, 351, 352, 353, 354; SC 151, 250, 253, 390; or special-topics courses in East Asian studies.  Additional courses in East Asian languages may also be applied.  One course containing a significant East Asian component may be substituted for one of the five elective courses at the discretion of the East Asian Studies coordinator:  EC 342, 343, 352, 353; EN 285; FN 439; MK 361; MN 361; SC 152.  (*PO 102 may be applied when the section focuses on East Asia.)  Coordinator:  Dr. Pamela A. Mason, Department of Political Science.

Entrepreneurship—Entrepreneurs create new ventures in both the for-profit and not-for-profit (social) arenas.  Examples of entrepreneurial enterprises are Habitat for Humanity, Kaboom, Google, E-Bay, Zappos, and Twitter.  Future entrepreneurs pursue majors in either the arts, humanities, social sciences, sciences, or business.  A national study found that 75% of entrepreneurs focused their college studies in fields outside of business.

The Entrepreneurship minor is open to all students regardless of major.  Required coursework depends on whether a student selects a major in the College of Arts and Sciences or the Boler School of Business.  Faculty from both the College of Arts and Sciences and the Boler School of Business teach the courses in the minor, which is administered by an interdisciplinary faculty committee under the supervision of the John J. Kahl Sr. Chair in Entrepreneurship.

The Arts & Sciences track:  ER 101, 102, 203, 204, 305*, 306*, and 480, plus one approved ethics course (21 hours).

The Business track:  ER 101, 102, 203, (or MN 364), ER 204, FN 312, MK 301, and ER 480 (or MN 480), plus PL 311 (21 hours.)  Coordinator:  Dr. John C. Soper, Department of Economics.

For course descriptions see pages 216-217.
*Open only to majors in the College of Arts & Sciences

Modern European Studies—This minor allows students to pursue concentrated thematic or regional study of Europe from the Enlightenment to the present in the fields of history, politics, literature, culture, and economics.  Students participating in the minor are strongly encouraged to study abroad.

The program consists of 24 credit hours, including six hours of language beyond the six required for the University Core, to be taken in the modern European language satisfied for the Core (12 hours total in the same language).  Students who complete 301/302 in fulfillment of their Core language requirement are not required to take additional courses to fulfill the MES proficiency requirement.  Languages applied toward the minor should be those taught at John Carroll.  Other requirements include a “depth” and a “breadth” requirement.  The depth requirement should include at least three elective courses from a list of approved courses (available from the coordinators), usually taken in the student’s major area; one of these courses should be a seminar, an upper-level course, or a senior thesis on a topic related to Modern European Studies.  The breadth requirement should include at least three courses from the Modern European Studies approved list in three departments outside the student’s major.  Up to two courses at the 100- or 200-level from the list of approved courses may be applied to the depth or breadth requirement.  Given the importance of foundational course work for a richer appreciation of modern European developments, students may apply one course in Medieval or Early Modern European fields toward fulfilling the MES minor.  Upon completion of these requirements, students will receive a certificate in Modern European Studies.  Coordinator:  Dr. John McBratney, Department of English.

The following interdisciplinary concentrations are available:

Africana Studies—This concentration is designed to provide students with a focused, systematic, and interdisciplinary plan to study multifaceted issues central to the African Diaspora.  The concentration offers two tracks—African Diaspora Cultural Studies and African-American Cultural Studies.  Each track is 22 hours and shares a common core of courses.  The following courses are required for all students:  BL 115/115L, either PS 342 or SC 255, and either AR 499A (Senior Seminar:  Program Evaluation and Policy Studies in Black America) or AR 499B (Senior Seminar:  Program Evaluation and Policy Studies in the African Diaspora).  Students must meet with the concentration coordinator at least one semester prior to enrolling in either AR 499A or AR 499B. 
African-American Cultural Studies students are additionally required to take one course each from four of the groups labeled A through F, for a total of 12 hours:  Group A—HS 131, 341, 343, 495; Group B—PL 398 (with coordinator approval); Group C—RL 229 (with approval), 327, 399 (with approval); Group D—PO 310, 312, 315, 316; Group E—EN 278, EN 299 (with approval), EN 379; Group F—CO 321, 324, 344. 
African Diaspora Cultural Studies students are additionally required to take one course each from four of the groups labeled A through D, for a total of 12 hours:  Group A—PL 285, 398 (with approval); Group B—RL 299 (with approval), 328; Group C—PO 310, EN 286 (with approval), EN 480, IC 110, IC 210, SP 429; Group D—HS 131.  Coordinators:  Dr. Sheri Young, Department of Psychology; Dr. Tamba Nlandu, Department of Philosophy.

Aging Studies—This concentration provides an in-depth understanding of the aging process.  Usually the recommended major is sociology, psychology, or religious studies, but all other majors are possible.  The concentration consists of 22 hours, including 16 hours of required courses in sociology, psychology, and religious studies, with a required four-hour internship.  The remaining six hours consist of approved electives.  Most of the hours may be easily subsumed under Core and major requirements.  The following are required:  PS 265; RL 260; SC 285, 475, 490.  The two electives, each from a different department, must be chosen from the following: PL 302; PS 280, 457, 462; RL 363; SC 295, 493.  Coordinator:  Dr. Phyllis Braudy Harris, Department of Sociology and Criminology.

Biochemistry/Molecular Biology—This concentration is for students majoring in biology or life sciences chemistry who seek rigorous training in the molecular basis of biological processes.  The concentration may be of interest to a) students planning for graduate work in fields such as biochemistry, molecular biology, biophysics, structural biology, and molecular genetics; b) students considering careers in biotechnology; and c) premedical students interested in the molecular basis of medicine.  Admission to the concentration is limited because of space limitations in BL/CH 470, so students must apply to the coordinators for admission to the concentration by the end of sophomore year.  Students must have completed the following courses before the start of junior year:  for Biology majors, BL 155-158, 213; CH 141-144 (or 151H, 153), 221-224; MT 135, 228; for Chemistry majors,      BL 155-158, 213; CH 141-144 ( or 151H, 153), 221-224, 261, 263; MT 135-136 ( MT 135, 228), PH 125, 125L, 126, and 126L may be taken as a sophomore (preferably) or junior.  During the junior and senior years, students will take the following courses:  for Biology majors, BL 465, 470; CH 361 (or 365, 366), 435-437, 439; for Chemistry majors, BL 465 and one BL elective chosen from a list provided by the coordinators; CH 361 (or 365-366), 367, 435-437, 439, 470.  All of the courses listed here may be used to satisfy major requirements.  Students will have to take additional courses to satisfy all requirements of their major.  Coordinators:  Dr. David Mascotti (Chemistry); Dr. James Lissemore (Biology).

Catholic Studies—Under the auspices of the Institute of Catholic Studies, this concentration aims at promoting serious reflection on the richness and vitality of the Catholic intellectual tradition through the ages.  This concentration is interdisciplinary in nature, highlighting within the history of ideas the contribution of Catholic intellectuals and scholars across various disciplines. The Catholic Studies concentration enables students to assess human intellectual activity and experience in the light of the Catholic faith, and to examine the Roman Catholic Church’s dynamic interaction with and interpenetration of cultures, traditions, and intellectual life.  The concentration consists of 18 credit hours from approved Catholic Studies courses distributed among the following disciplines:  one course in religious studies, one course in philosophy, one course in the humanities, and two electives from approved Catholic Studies courses.  The final course in the concentration is a required seminar, “The Classics of the Catholic Intellectual Tradition,” an interdisciplinary course in which students read the works of significant Catholic intellectuals from across the ages as a way of integrating the perspectives studied in their other courses within the concentration.  In fulfilling these requirements, a student must take a minimum of three courses at the 300-400 level.  Courses offered as part of the Catholic Studies concentration may satisfy Core Curriculum requirements or major/minor requirements within a specific discipline.  Students in the concentration are encouraged to study abroad in programs that offer their own courses in Catholic thought and experience, including the John Carroll program in Rome.  Scholarships and summer internships are also available.  Coordinator:  Dr. Paul V. Murphy, Department of History, and Director, Institute of Catholic Studies.

Economics/Mathematics—Students must major in economics or mathematics.  Both majors must take EC 201-202, 301, 302; MT 135-136, and 233.  Economics majors must complete MT 420 and two mathematics electives numbered above 300.  Mathematics majors must complete EC 410 and one other upper-division economics elective.  Coordinators:  Dr. Douglas Norris, Department of Mathematics and Computer Science; Dr. Thomas J. Zlatoper, Department of Economics and Finance.

Environmental Studies—The Environmental Studies concentration is designed to acquaint students with the knowledge necessary to understand and solve environmental problems:  the operations of the physical, biological, and chemical systems of our planet; the impact of people on these systems; the cultural underpinnings of our current patterns of interaction with nature; and the substantive nature and institutional process of political and social change that impinge on our environment.  Students pursue the concentration in Environmental Studies along with a major.  Students must complete the 21 credit hours selected from the following course offerings:  AR 199; BL 109, 111, 115, 155, 156, 159, 215, 222, 331; CH 103, 105, 299, 455; EC 315; HS 271; PH 101, 102; PL 314, 375, 385; PO 312, 361, 363, 464; RL 260, 363, 368; SC 290, 360, 380, 390.  Students must take at least two courses in the natural sciences and two courses in the social sciences and/or humanities.  Independent studies and internship opportunities may be arranged with the director of the concentration.  Director:  Dr. Wendy Wiedenhoft, Department of Sociology.

International Business—Students wishing to focus their studies in international business select a major offered by the Boler School of Business:  accountancy, economics (B.S.), finance, business information systems, business logistics, marketing, or management.  Selecting one of these majors presumes that the student must meet all requirements for admission to the Boler School and complete all courses required in the Business core.  Additionally, the student must meet all course and other requirements of their selected major.  The student must complete three courses from the following list (no two courses may be from the same area, and none of the courses listed may be used to simultaneously satisfy the major in the Boler School and the concentration):  EC 342, 343, 352; FN 439; LG 361; MK 361; MN 361; and demonstrate foreign-language proficiency determined by John Carroll courses numbered 301-302 or through consultation with the coordinator of student services in the Department of Classical and Modern Languages and Cultures.  Coordinator:  Dr. Lawrence Cima, Department of Economics and Finance.

International Economics and Modern Languages—Students must major in economics or modern languages.  The following courses are required:  PO 103; EC 201, 202; two courses from EC 342, 343, 352; FN 439; and two more upper-division economics courses.  EC 301 is required for economics majors and recommended for language majors.  Economics majors are required to take four courses in one language at the 300 level or above.  Language proficiency should be determined as early as possible.  Both majors must take two other courses in the area of international studies.  These two courses are to be chosen in consultation with the major advisor.  Coordinator:  Dr. Simran Kahai, Department of Economics and Finance.

International Studies—The International Studies concentration is administered through the Center for Global Education and is open to all majors.  The concentration encourages students to develop an awareness of international diversity and global interdependence through the comparative study of cultures and analysis of international issues.  Students in the International Studies concentration work with the director of the Center for Global Education to create a coherent course of study on a particular topic, issue, or world region.  A minimum of 27 credit hours are required to complete the concentration, including:

  • The two international courses required by the University Core.
  • Demonstrated proficiency in a foreign language through the intermediate level.  This can be met by taking the intermediate-level courses or by placing out of them.
  • Other specified course work in three different departments, including the student’s major department.

Students are strongly encouraged to apply credits earned through study abroad to the concentration.
For more detailed information on the International Studies concentration, including particular course requirements, students should consult their advisors and the director of the Center for Global Education as early as possible.  Coordinator:  Dr. Andreas Sobisch, Department of Political Science, and Director, Center for Global Education.

Italian Studies—Developed by the Bishop Anthony M. Pilla Program in Italian-American Studies, this interdisciplinary concentration (art history, philosophy, history, and Italian) seeks to foster an appreciation of Italian and Italian American history and culture. Students are exposed to the major intellectual, artistic, and cultural contributions that Italians and Italian-Americans have made throughout history as they complete 21 credit hours of approved course work.  Six of these credit hours must be in Italian language (2 IT courses at the 200 level or above), while 6 hours complete the Italian-American culture requirement. Additional courses that satisfy these requirements are designated each semester by the Italian Studies Committee. Coordinator:  Dr. Santa Casciani, Department of Classical and Modern Languages and Cultures, and Director, Bishop Pilla Program in Italian American Studies.

Latin American and Latino Studies—Bringing together the courses pertinent to the study of Latin American culture, social structure, religion, politics, literature, and history, this concentration seeks to enhance a student’s liberal arts education through the attainment of a basic level of expertise in Latin American and Latino studies.  Depending on the particular major, Latin American and Latino Studies prepares students for advanced studies or for a career in business, journalism, government, or non-governmental organizations related to this crucial region of the world.

The concentration is administered by the Latin American and Latino Studies Concentration Committee (LALSCC).  The LALSCC is composed of faculty from several departments in the College of Arts and Sciences.
While requirements are flexible to accommodate students with different interests and majors, the concentration allows for and encourages a focus in a particular area of Latin American or Latino studies.


  • Core of the concentration:  except for SP 301, each course must be from the list of approved courses.
    • SP 301 (along with satisfaction of its prerequisites).
    • At least three courses from history and political science, with at least one course from both of those disciplines.
    • At least one course must be HS 274, PO 254, or SP 314.
  • Electives of the concentration.

Nine hours of other courses from the list of approved courses (available at the LALSCC website) or accepted by the LALSCC through petition.  For a list of courses that may be used to satisfy the requirements for completion of the concentration, please see either of the LALSCC coordinators or visit the concentration’s website at www.jcu.edu/latamCoordinators:  Dr. Robert J. Kolesar, Department of History and Honors Program, and Dr. Maria Marsilli, Department of History.

Neuroscience—This concentration is coordinated by the Department of Psychology, and is intended for biology, chemistry, and psychology majors who desire an interdisciplinary approach to the study of physiology, biochemistry, and behavior of higher organisms.

Required courses for biology majors:  BL 155, 156, 157, 158, 360, 360L; CH 141, 142, 143, 144, 221, 222, 223, 224; BL 475 and CH 431 (or CH 435, and 436); PS 326, 426, 497N (or an additional BL, CH, or PS course outside of the major approved by neuroscience coordinator).  A GPA of 3.0 is required for enrollment in PS 497N.

Required courses for chemistry majors:  BL 155, 156, 157, 158, 360, 360L; CH 141, 142, 143, 144, 221, 222, 223, 224, 435, 436, 437; PS 326, 426, 497N (or an additional BL, CH, or PS course outside of the major approved by neuroscience coordinator).  A GPA of 3.0 is required for enrollment in PS 497N.

Required courses for psychology majors:  BL 155, 156, 157, 158, 360, 360L; CH 141, 142, 143, 144, 221, 222, 223, 224; PS 101, 326, 386, 426, 497N (or an additional BL, CH, or PS course outside of the major approved by neuroscience coordinator).  A GPA of 3.0 is required for enrollment in PS 497N.  Coordinator:  Dr. Helen Murphy, Department of Psychology.

Perspectives on Sex and Gender—This concentration, open to all majors, explores in depth the question of sex and gender in contemporary society.  The indicated sequence of courses will enable students to examine the philosophical and religious premises of sex roles; their historical, psychological, and social origins; and their political manifestations.  In addition to prerequisites (see individual departments for details),  these courses are included:  CO 322; EN 284; HS 150, 371, 372; PL 290 or 330; PO 305; PS 140; RL 325, 364, 437; SC 315, 320, 385.  These are described in the course offerings of the various departments and count toward the concentration.  Students may petition the coordinator for approval of additional courses.  The concentration consists of 18 credits, no more than six of which may be taken in any one department.  Coordinator:  Dr. Brenda A. Wirkus, Department of Philosophy.

Political Communication—This concentration is open to students majoring in political science or communication.  Students combine courses in journalism, electronic media, and rhetoric with classes in American and international politics in order to develop the critical and analytical knowledge by which to make sense of political communication.  Political Communication prepares students for the study of or careers in policy analysis and issues in research, politics, and/or political journalism.  Students must take three courses from each of the Group A courses in EACH department and one course from each of the GROUP B categories.
Group A courses:  CO 346, 449, 465, 467; PO 101, 102, 103, 104.

Group B courses:  Print Media—CO 325, 380; Electronic Media—CO 438; Communication & Politics—CO 341, 386, 447; American Politics—PO 207, 213, 301, 302, 310, 311, 312, 314, 316, 317, 318, 319, 410, 417; Comparative/International Politics—PO 242, 243, 254, 320, 321, 330, 331, 332, 333, 334, 335, 336, 355, 356; Public Policy—PO 305, 309, 315, 361;  Coordinators:  Dr. Douglas Bruce, The Tim Russert Department of Communication and Theatre Arts; Dr. Larry Schwab, Department of Political Science.

Public Administration and Policy Studies—The program is open to political science and economics majors.  It has three objectives:  1) to provide a preprofessional education in social sciences within a liberal arts curriculum; 2) to offer theoretical and analytical preparation for advanced training in public management, policy analysis, and applied social science; and 3) to equip students with knowledge and skills to serve in a variety of positions at the local, state, and federal levels of public service.

The concentration consists of 36 credits.  Political Studies—required:  PO 101, 204, 302, elective (one course):  PO 213 or 312.  Analytical Studies—Political Science majors:  EC 201, 202, 312; PO 300; MT 122.  Economics majors:  EC 201, 202, 312; MT 122 or 167.  Substantive Focus Studies (two courses):  PO 305, 309, 361; EC 331.  Internship:  PO 390 (3 credit hours, an internship in government).  Coordinator:  Dr. Larry Schwab, Department of Political Science.


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