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MIT Course Catalog 2013-2014

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Department of Humanities

The Department of Humanities consists of six autonomous sections and programs, each with its own headquarters: Anthropology, Comparative Media Studies/Writing, Foreign Languages and Literatures, History, Literature, Music and Theater Arts. There are also two programs affiliated with the Department: Science, Technology, and Society and Women’s and Gender Studies.

In addition to the degrees offered in the six sections, other undergraduate degree programs are available in Course 21, either in combination with a field in engineering or science (as 21E or 21S composite majors) or as full majors (as Course 21 major departures), described later in this section. Students interested in any of these degree programs should consult an advisor in the field, as well as the section or program office.

Major Departure

Bachelor of Science in Humanities/Course 21
[see degree chart]

The Bachelor of Science in Humanities degree provides an option for students who wish to pursue their humanistic studies extensively and at an advanced level. This degree is received by students completing a Course 21 major departure or by students majoring in German. The major departure is a major by special arrangement, requiring approval by the Dean of the School of Humanities, Arts, and Social Sciences, in one of the following fields:

American Studies
Ancient and Medieval Studies
Asian and Asian Diaspora Studies
Latin American and Latino Studies
Russian and Eurasian Studies
Theater Arts
Women's and Gender Studies

Humanities and Engineering/Science

Bachelor of Science in Humanities and Engineering/21E
Bachelor of Science in Humanities and Science/21S
[see degree chart]

These joint degree programs combine humanities with scientific/engineering studies. Groups of subjects from the humanistic and technical areas are conjoined to yield a basic command of each mode of inquiry. One part is a selection from the undergraduate degree curriculum of a science or engineering department approved by a faculty member in the field. The other part consists of subjects in a humanities field, chosen by the student in consultation with an advisor from the appropriate humanities faculty. In most cases, a senior thesis or sequence of advanced seminars is also required.

This arrangement yields a humanities program of considerable depth while allowing for continued serious commitment to a scientific or engineering interest. Available humanities fields include:

American Studies
Ancient and Medieval Studies
Anthropology
Comparative Media Studies
Asian and Asian Diaspora Studies
Foreign Languages and Literatures (in French, German, or Spanish)
History
Latin American and Latino Studies
Literature
Music
Russian and Eurasian Studies
Science, Technology, and Society
Theater Arts
Women's and Gender Studies
Writing (Creative, Digital Media, or Science Writing)

Faculty advisors in each discipline help students to arrange programs suited to both their interests and professional objectives. Any one of these fields may be joined with any science or engineering field to form a major. Some combinations naturally lend themselves not only to an understanding of each field but also to an integrative and comparative view of the relationship between the two.

Students may take Course 21E or Course 21S as part of the double major program outlined in the section on Undergraduate Education in Part 1. However, because 21E and 21S are composite degrees, a second major is not allowed in either field of a student's chosen program. For example, if a student pursues a 21S degree with the Science portion in Course 8, the student would not be permitted to apply for a second major in Course 8. Similarly, if the Humanities portion of the 21S degree were in Course 21L, the student could not apply for a second major in Course 21L.

 

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