Discover American Studies

Discover American Studies

The American Studies program offers the interdisciplinary study of American society and culture, coursework and hands-on experiences provide students with the knowledge and analytical skills to thrive in teaching and administrative roles in colleges, universities, and high schools; governmental and public policy agencies; museums, cultural organizations, and archives; and communications venues.

American Studies at Penn State Harrisburg

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Undergraduate Programs

The American Studies major at Penn State Harrisburg prepares students for a variety of professions and to participate in the world as critical thinkers, clear communicators, and global citizens. American Studies examines the country’s history in a way that emphasizes culture – literature, art & architecture, film, folklore, music, and media. While discovering America’s past, students learn to think critically – to analyze and evaluate information; to write and speak clearly and expressively; and to conduct research.

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Graduate Study

The graduate programs in American Studies offer an interdisciplinary approach to studying American society and culture. Through coursework and hands-on experiences, students gain valuable knowledge and analytical skills that prepare them for diverse roles in education, government, museums, cultural organizations, and communications.

American Studies student working in the archives

Our Program and our People

American Studies has a rich history that reaches back to the establishment of the Harrisburg campus. The program was established in the late 1960s with the goal of providing students with a comprehensive understanding of American culture, society, and history. Our M.A. program traces its beginning to 1972. Our doctoral program was founded in 2009 and is the only American studies doctorate offered in Pennsylvania.