Global Studies


Global Studies is an emerging interdisciplinary field, which offers a coherent and comprehensive approach to study contemporary globalization. As a field of inquiry, it aims to integrate the fragmentation of knowledge and skills through a conscious and broad integration, wherein the student is made aware of how and why every `theme’ in Global Studies encompasses more than one perspective, disciplinary area, historical time frame, and geographical area. This holistic approach is particularly relevant as we witness the challenges of rising inequality and climate crisis laid bare in the wake of emergent infectious diseases such as Covid19.

The Global Studies Minor at Athabasca University, therefore, adopts a transdisciplinary approach to enable students to examine core issues of Global Studies and the agents of change in our world. Treating the complex concept of 'globalization' as a description, a process, as well as an ideology, the GLST Minor is invaluable for both the beginning student as well as the professional who seek to comprehend the various contending views of the phenomena of globalization, which is critical to understand the fundamental aspects of our society and its development.

Bearing the above objectives in mind, the recently revised required course, GLST 205 – Building Blocks of Global Studies: Overview of Approaches, Concepts and Issues, provides a broad overview of this multilayered field from a variety of perspectives and an introduction to the tools for understanding the causes and consequences of globalization by using extremely readable texts and innovative assignments.

Additionally, to help develop a coherent and systematic study plan, GLST Minor students can choose a set of courses that have clear and specific relevance for a specific global theme. These courses are categorized into the following five focus areas within the GLST Minor at Athabasca University:

  • Global Economy and Development
  • Global Governance and Conflict
  • Global Cultures and Societies
  • Global Media and Communication
  • Global Literatures and Languages

The selection of courses in each focus area include introductory disciplinary courses, introductory language/literature courses, as well as interdisciplinary courses that aim to direct the students towards the broadening of their own perspective of the `global’ and their place in it. Due to its inclusive disciplinary approach, the GLST Minor is also an ideal complement to majors in the arts, humanities, social sciences, life sciences, and other disciplines.

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Updated September 17 2020 by Student & Academic Services