Globalization Studies

The Faculty Initiated Concentration in Globalization Studies, one of the newest programs of study at the University at Albany, is an interdisciplinary major designed to help students function more effectively in the rapidly changing world of the 21st century. The program enables students to:

  • Gain a systematic awareness of the global forces and processes that shape our lives
  • Explain why we need to engage new ways of acquiring and applying knowledge; and
  • Broaden the notion of diversity beyond the limits of a U.S. context to encompass wider hemispheric and global realities.

The Faculty Initiated Concentration in Globalization Studies major enables students to take a variety of courses focusing on the comprehensive and multidisciplinary analysis of globalization processes. It prepares students to ‘think globally’ by providing them with an undergraduate education that responds effectively to today’s global interconnectedness and fosters a thorough knowledge and a critical understanding of the social, economic, cultural, political, and environmental forces that are reshaping the lives of peoples and nations around the world. At the same time, the major demonstrates that globalization is always implicated and embedded in the cultural and historical context of the ‘local’, which emphasizes the importance of a specific place, a community, or even an individual household.


The Faculty Initiated Concentration in Globalization Studies major emphasizes transnational and cross-national interconnections and interdependence, and requires students to gain knowledge of the United States in relation to other regions of the world. The goal is to ensure that majors in this field adopt a multi- and inter-disciplinary approach to their studies, while at the same time developing abilities grounded in concrete academic skills and experiences.

This combination will prepare students for a broad range of career paths in business, non-profits, government, education, the media, international organizations, international development agencies, and the U.S. foreign service. Intercultural skills and knowledge of global issues are crucial to success in many professions. Examples of applications include:  the promotion of international trade, investment and tourism; the management of social development programs for international migrants and refugees; research on the social and environmental impacts of major transnational investment projects; and, the design and management of programs to protect local economies, cultures and ecosystems from the negative impacts of globalization. The undergraduate major also provides a solid foundation for graduate study in a variety of disciplines, those that emphasize professional training (such as public policy, social welfare, criminal justice, business, education, law, health, and planning), as well as employment in a wide variety of public, non-profit/civil society, and private sector careers. Globalization Studies majors are encouraged, though not required, to Study Abroad as part of their undergraduate education at the University at Albany. Pertinent courses taken during study abroad will be evaluated to determine whether they are appropriate in level and content to be deemed equivalent to courses listed in the Globalization Studies curriculum.

Degree Requirements

For information about degree requirements for the Faculty Initiated Concentration in Globalization Studies major visit: