Featured Departments

Departments in the arts and humanities are home to internationally known experts who collaborate with a broad array of units on campus, in the community and across the globe, forging dynamic partnerships in creative endeavors, scholarly activities and state-of-the-art research. 

African American and African Studies

The Department of African American and African Studies was established as an academic division in October 1969 as Black Studies, and today enjoys the reputation of being one of the strongest African American and African Studies programs in the nation. The primary mission of the department is to stimulate teaching and research about the Black experience in the U.S., Africa and throughout the African Diaspora.


The Department of Art is a nationally ranked program that nurtures creative expression and teaches undergraduate and graduate students to develop as autonomous artists through traditional and new media.

Arts Administration, Education and Policy

The Department of Arts Administration, Education and Policy undergraduate and graduate programs prepare future educators, researchers, and leaders in the areas of art education and arts policy and administration. 


The Department of Classics is devoted to the study of the languages, literature and cultures of Greece and Rome, focusing on Antiquity but including all periods from the Bronze Age to Modern Greece.


The School of Communication has achieved national and international distinction in research, teaching, and service by designing innovative programs in specific areas of expertise. Strong research and teaching programs focus on present and future directions in the field.

Comparative Studies

The Department of Comparative Studies examines the variety of ways people have developed to understand and describe the world, their place within it, and their relationship to others, and strives to encourage understanding of cultural similarities and differences.


As one of the premiere dance programs in U.S., the Department of Dance is at the forefront of contemporary modern dance through choreographic and performance exploration, creative use of technologies and reimagining the documentation of dance traditions.


The Department of Design is dedicated to purposeful, systematic and creative activity. Designers give form to products, spaces and messages. 

East Asian Languages and Literatures

The Department of East Asian Languages and Literatures is one of the largest programs of its kind in the United States, offering undergraduate degrees in Chinese, Japanese, and Korean language and literatures.


The Department of English prepare students to think critically about texts; to construct sound arguments based on evidence; to write elegantly and persuasively; and to understand the historical and cultural contexts in which texts are produced, disseminated and received.

Film Studies

The Film Studies Program concentrates on cinema as an international social practice and shapes its study as a humanistic discipline mirroring the inherently interdisciplinary nature of film.

French and Italian

In the Department of French and Italian, students explore and gain expertise in French, Francophone and Italian cultures, societies, literatures and languages via a comprehensive course of study that covers all periods of literary, cultural and intellectual history.

Germanic Languages and Literatures

The Department of Germanic Languages and Literatures is home to one of the oldest and largest German and Germanic Studies programs in the country. Its 16 faculty members offer a comprehensive course of study that covers literary and cultural studies, intellectual history and German for the professions.


Studying in the Department of History creates comprehension of complexity and diversity. This is an essential skill for negotiating today’s multicultural, globalized world.

History of Art

The Department of History of Art offers undergraduate and graduate training in the history and criticism of the visual arts, including film and architecture; students and faculty work in a wide array of historical and geographical areas of specialization, from medieval China to contemporary America.


The Department of Linguistics is a vibrant and creative intellectual community that has consistently placed near the top in national and international rankings of linguistics programs, in terms of both faculty productivity and graduate training.


The School of Music is a place where dedicated people make exceptional music, stimulate artistic growth, explore educational methodology and conduct groundbreaking research, and offers a broad selection of 38 degree programs.

Near Eastern Languages and Cultures

The Department of Near Eastern Languages and Cultures offers majors in Arabic, Hebrew and Islamic Studies, and minor in Arabic, Hebrew, Persian, South Asia Studies and Turkish.


The Department of Philosophy trains students in analytical reasoning and teaches them how to solve problems and communicate logically and convincingly, both in speech and in writing. By studying classic texts and contemporary problems, students learn how to construct powerful arguments and to write persuasively, while thinking about some of the deepest questions in human life.

Slavic and East European Languages and Literatures

The Department of Slavic and East European Languages and Literatures researches and teaches the languages, literatures and cultures of Central, Eastern and Southeastern Europe, guiding students in their pursuit to understand the rich cultures and languages of the region. 

Spanish and Portuguese

The Department of Spanish and Portuguese's  program encompasses Spanish, Portuguese and Quechua elementary and intermediate language courses, providing instruction to more than 8,000 students each year. It helps students develop skills in communication across ethnic, cultural, ideological and national boundaries.


The Department of Theatre is a vibrant, active community committed to teaching and training the artist-scholars of the future. The creation of new work is the life blood of the theatre and it is important to provide opportunities for students to create new performance work while maintaining connections to our history through productions of classic, modern and contemporary texts.

Women’s, Gender and Sexuality Studies

The Department of Women’s, Gender and Sexuality Studies advances the field through interdisciplinary research and innovative pedagogies, inspiring a new generation of gender and sexuality scholars and feminist leaders committed to social justice.