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Ethnic Studies

Our Mission

The Ethnic Studies Program at Santa Clara University was established in 1969 by a multi-racial group of committed students, faculty, staff, and community activists for social justice pertaining to racial and ethnic communities in the U.S.  It is one of the oldest programs of its kind in the nation with leading teaching scholars in their respective areas of expertise.  The program’s focus is aligned with the Jesuit Education by focusing on educating the whole person through a rigorous and disciplined examination of the history and culture of historically underrepresented racial/ethnic groups in the context of U.S. development.  In addition, the program seeks to provide opportunities to all students for gaining an understanding of racial/ethnic minority cultures and their contributions to U.S. society.   In doing so, the program through its curriculum and co-curricular events seeks to develop a university-wide cross-cultural understanding of these underrepresented communities, to pursue social justice across a wide range of socio-economic issues, and to engage in constructive ways to address fundamental problems of contemporary society.  To achieve our mission, all majors must enroll in a Capstone during their senior year that is either a community placement/internship or a directed research/readings project.

Student Learning Goals & Outcomes

Learning Goal 1: Critical Thinking about Race and Ethnicity

  • Learning Outcome 1a: Student can explain how racial and ethnic hierarchies are constructed and how these hierarchies distribute political, social, and economic privileges.
  • Learning Outcome 1b: Student can analyze creative expression and cultural production in relation to social, historical, and political formations of racial and ethnic communities.

Learning Goal 2: Knowledge of Historical and Contemporary Formations of Race and Ethnicity

  • Learning Outcome 2a: Student can describe historical formations of race and ethnicity in the United States.
  • Learning Outcome 2b: Student can describe contemporary formations of race and ethnicity in the United States.
  • Learning Outcome 2c: Student can explain the historical and contemporary impact of laws and public policies on racial and ethnic communities.
  • Learning Outcome 2d: Can describe various types of cultural production by members of racial and ethnic communities.

Learning Goal 3: Multidisciplinary and Interdisciplinary Ethnic Studies Methods

  • Learning Outcome 3a: Student can integrate different disciplinary approaches to material related to ethnic studies.
  • Learning Outcome 3b: Student can apply research skills to issues that shape and influence racial and ethnic communities.

Learning Goal 4: Comprehension of Ethics and Social Justice

  • Learning Outcome 4a: Student can explain the ethical dimensions of racial and ethnic issues.
  • Learning Outcome 4b: Student can articulate how racial and ethnic inequalities are related to issues of social justice.

Learning Goal 5: Leadership in Promoting Social Justice

  • Learning Outcome 5a: Student can identify concepts, definitions, and strategies that prepare themselves and others to live and work effectively in a multiracial society.
  • Learning Outcome 5b: Student can articulate a vision of social change and social justice that addresses racial and ethnic issues.