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Program: Minor in American Indian Studies

Program Description

The American Indian Studies (AIS) minor provides access to the unique cultures and the historical and contemporary experiences of sovereign Indian nations. Topics that will be examined in the interdisciplinary minor include American Indian law and policy, internal colonization, contemporary social issues, metaphysics, art, music and literature.

The program is designed to enhance the understanding and respect of American Indian cultures and the unique sovereign status of First Nations. Many of the courses will satisfy requirements in several majors. AIS 101 Introduction to American Indian StudiesAIS 304 American Indian Law and Policy and AIS 333 American Indian Philosophy will meet the General Education, Comparative Cultural Studies requirement. AIS 222 Gender, Sexuality, and American Indian Communities will meet the General Education, Social Sciences Requirement, and AIS 301 American Indians and Popular Culture meets the General Education, Lifelong Learning requirement. In addition, AIS 401 Contemporary American Indian Social Issues is a community-partnership course. The program provides background for undergraduate or advanced study in anthropology, art, business, communication, criminology, education, English, geography, health sciences, history, language and linguistic studies, political science, pre-law, philosophy, psychology, religious studies, sociology, women’s studies and comparative study in other ethnic study programs.


American Indian Studies Program
Director: Brian Burkhart
Jerome Richfield (JR) 219
(818) 677-2736

Student Learning Outcomes

Students will:

  1. Demonstrate critical thinking, written, creative and oral communication skills.
  2. Develop a critical and reflective perspective on Western interpretations of the experiences of First Nation Peoples; in particular, an understanding of internal colonialism.
  3. Demonstrate an appreciation of the commonalities and the differences of indigenous cultures and nations.
  4. Demonstrate a commitment through effective community service to work cooperatively with indigenous peoples.
  5. Demonstrate an enhanced ability to respect indigenous communities.