Middle East Studies Program of Study

To earn your Master of Arts in Middle East Studies you must successfully complete our 40 credit program which includes a 3 credit Cornerstone course, 9 credits of core courses, 12 credits in your chosen Professional Specialization field, 9 credits of electives, a 4 credit Capstone sequence and a 3 credit Skills course. 

 

Master of Arts in Middle East Studies Program of Study

 

IAFF 6361 Introductory Cornerstone Symposium

Students and faculty in the program will participate in an introductory symposium to be held during the first half of the first fall semester of study. The symposium will be required for all students, and will be graded on a pass/fail basis. It will focus on a general theme relevant to the modern Middle East. Program faculty will develop a short set of core readings and lead discussions on the theme from the vantage point of their own scholarly expertise and experience.

Students select three (3) of the following. One course in each of the following disciplines for a total of three courses: ANTH/GEOG, HIST, and PSC.

PSC 6377 Comparative Politics of the Middle East

PSC 6478 International Relations of the Middle East

HIST 6801 Special Topics: History of Modern Middle East/Middle East in the World

ANTH 6707 Issues in Middle East Anthropology (specific topics will vary)

GEOG 6262 Geographical Perspectives on the Middle East

Students take three elective courses related to the Middle East, selected in consultation with the program director. At least three (3) credits must have a language or humanities aspect. Students may apply up to three (3) credits of advanced, content-based langauge study (i.e. not basic language acquisition courses) toward this requirement. 

IAFF 6377 Middle East Studies Program Capstone Workshop

This 1-credit pre-capstone course must be taken in the fall of a student's final year. Both IAFF 6377 and 6379 must be taken consecutively in the same academic year. This course will prepare students for their Spring Capstone project that involves collaboration on a project of mutual interest and research related to the Middle East.

IAFF 6379 Middle East Studies Capstone

In this full-year, three (3) credit capstone course, students complete a focused research paper that is the culmination of the Middle East Studies curriculum. Students complete this project in the final spring semester of their program. 

Students will take three (3) one-credit professional skills courses that focus on practical skills to help students succeed as practitioners in their careers. The courses are designed to supplement the substantive and theoretical aspects of our academic curriculum and teach skills applicable to the professional world.

For a list of courses generally offered and more information on the Middle East Studies Program, please visit the IMES Website.


Professional Specialization Field

Students select a professional specialization field designed to develop competence in a field with applications related to the modern Middle East.

Students may design their own professional specialization field in consultation with, and approval from, the program director. The courses should form a coherent introduction to a professional field. Students may select from the following fields designed to develop professional competence in a field with applications related to the modern Middle East: Conflict and Conflict Resolution, Global Health, International Affairs and Development, International Business, International Economic Affairs, International Law and Organizations, International Security Studies, Management, Technology Policy and International Affairs, and U.S. Foreign Policy.

Required Course:

IAFF 6171 Introduction to Conflict Resolution 

Supporting Courses (choose three):

HIST 6801:

  • Readings in Israel Palestine 
  • War and Memory in the Middle East 

IAFF 6118Special Topics in International Affairs:

  • Special Topics in International Affairs: Reinventing the United Nations 
  • International Law and the Use of Force
  • Managing the World's Water

IAFF 6173 Security and Development

IAFF 6186* Special Topics in Security Policy Studies:

  • Responses to Terrorism
  • Stabilization and Peacebuilding
  • Conflict Early Warning and Prevention
  • International Peacekeeping
  • International Organized Crime
  • Insrugency and Counterinsurgency
  • Political Violence and Terrorism
  • Countering Violent Extremism

IAFF 6378* Special Topics in MIddle East Studies

  • Religion and Politics in Post-Revolution Iran
  • Militaries and Politics in the Middle East
  • Lebanon and Syria
  • Refugees and Displaced Peoples in the Middle East

MGT 6215 Conflict Management and Negotiations

PSC 6349 International Security Politics

PSC 6388 Select Topics in Comparative Politics

  • Political Violence 
  • Theories of Political Development
  • Nationalism and Nation Building

PSC 6476 The Arab-Israeli Conflict

PSC 8388 Special Topics in Comparative Politics: Authoritarianism and Democratization


*Other Special Topics courses (IAFF 6118, 6138, 6158, 6186, 6198, 6318, 6338, 6358, 6378), may, with permission of the program director, be used to fulfill the required number of credits. 

** Students may, with permission of their advisor, include courses in the GW Law School in their major field. Enrolling in a law school course also requires the permission of the Law School dean of students. Students should consult the Elliott School Academic Advising & Student Services office before enrolling in Law School courses.

Law School — Relevant courses in the GW Law School (maximum two courses; requires permission from the Law School dean of students).

Oxford — Courses in GW's Oxford Program on Human Rights (maximum two courses).

Students may design their own professional specialization field in consultation with, and approval from, the program director. The courses should form a coherent introduction to a professional field. Students may select from the following fields designed to develop professional competence in a field with applications related to the modern Middle East: Conflict and Conflict Resolution, Global Health, International Affairs and Development, International Business, International Economic Affairs, International Law and Organizations, International Security Studies, Management, Technology Policy and International Affairs, and U.S. Foreign Policy.

Required courses: (6 credits)

PUBH 6442 Comparative Global Health Systems

Supporting courses: (6 credits)

ANTH 6506 Topics in Medical Anthropology

  • The Social Life of Food
  • Food, Culture and Globalization

ANTH 6505 Medical Anthropology

GEOG 6223 Population and Health

PUBH 6572 Marketing Research for Public Health

PUBH 6501 Program Evaluation

PUBH 6436 Global Health Program Management

PUBH 6435 Global Health Program Development and Evaluation

Other Special Topics courses (IAFF 6118, 6138, 6158, 6186, 6198, 6318, 6338, 6358, 6378), may, with permission of the program director, be used to fulfill the required number of credits.

Students may design their own professional specialization field in consultation with, and approval from, the program director. The courses should form a coherent introduction to a professional field. Students may select from the following fields designed to develop professional competence in a field with applications related to the modern Middle East: Conflict and Conflict Resolution, Global Health, International Affairs and Development, International Business, International Economic Affairs, International Law and Organizations, International Security Studies, Management, Technology Policy and International Affairs, and U.S. Foreign Policy.

Choose one course from the following:

ANTH 6331 Research Methods in Development

SOC 6230 Sociological Research Methods

SOC 6232 Qualitative Methods: Doing Field Research

PPPA 6006 Policy Analysis 

Choose three courses from the following:

Cultural Anthropology

ANTH 6301 Anthropology of Development

ANTH 6302 Issues in Development (Topics vary)

ANTH 6391 Anthropology and Contemporary Problems (related topics)

ANTH 6505 Medical Anthropology

ANTH 6591 Topics in Sociocultural Anthropology

Environment

GEOG 6293 Water Resources and Management

GEOG 6223 Population and Health

PPPA 6066 Environmental Policy

PHIL 6281 Environmental Philosophy and Policy

Humanitarian Assistance

EMSE 6305 Crisis and Emergency Management

EMSE 6320 International Disaster Management 

GEOG 6232 Migration and Development 

International Development Management

PPPA 6057 International Development Administration

PPPA 6058 International Development NGO Management

PPPA 6059 International Development Management Processes and Tools

IBUS 6402 Managing in Developing Countries

International Education

EDUC 6100 Experimental Courses

  • International Education
  • International Student Advising
  • Business Development: International Exchange

EDUC 6601 International and Comparative Education

EDUC 6602 Regional Studies in International Education

EDUC 6620 Strategies and Analysis in International Education

EDUC 6640 Topics in International Education

  • Scholars and Practitioners in International Higher Education
  • UNESCO: 21st Century Agenda Topics
  • Evaluation in International Education
  • Education in Islamic Asia
  • Comparative Perspectives on Language and International Education
  • Gender in International Education and Development

EDUC 6650 Education and National Development

International Health

ANTH 6505 Medical Anthropology

PUBH 6400 Global Health Frameworks

PUBH 6436 Global Health Program Management

PUBH 6435 Global Health Development and Evaluation

PUBH 6014 Practicum (Internship) in Global Health

Political Economy

ECON 6250 Survey of Economic Development

ECON 8351 Development Economics I

ECON 8352 Development Economics II

ECON 6269 Economy of the People's Republic of China

ECON 6285 Economic Development of Latin America

IBUS 6400 Oil: Industry, Economy, Society

PSC 6336 Political Economy of Developing Areas 

PSC 6439 International Political Economy

Women and Development

ANTH 6501 Gender and Sexuality

WSTU 6230 Global Feminisms

WSTU 6270 Seminar: Selected Topics

  • Global Islamic Feminisms

GEOG 6233 Population and Health

LAW 6570** International Human Rights of Women

SOC 6273 The Sex Industry

Students are encouraged to discuss these choices with their major field faculty advisor.

 

*Other Special Topics courses (IAFF 6118, 6138, 6158, 6186, 6198, 6318, 6338, 6358, 6378), may, with permission of the program director, be used to fulfill the required number of credits.

** Students may, with permission of their advisor, include courses in the GW Law School in their major field. Enrolling in a law school course also requires permission of the Law School dean of students. Students should consult the Elliott School Academic Advising & Student Services office before enrolling in Law School courses.

Students may design their own professional specialization field in consultation with, and approval from, the program director. The courses should form a coherent introduction to a professional field. Students may select from the following fields designed to develop professional competence in a field with applications related to the modern Middle East: Conflict and Conflict Resolution, Global Health, International Affairs and Development, International Business, International Economic Affairs, International Law and Organizations, International Security Studies, Management, Technology Policy and International Affairs, and U.S. Foreign Policy.

Choose at least four:

IBUS 6400 Oil: Industry, Economy, Society

IBUS 6301 International Business Finance

IBUS 6401 International Business Strategy (Special Topics Course)

IBUS 6402 Managing in Developing Countries

MGT 6293 New Venture Initiation 

MGT 6279 International Management Experience 

Students may design their own professional specialization field in consultation with, and approval from, the program director. The courses should form a coherent introduction to a professional field. Students may select from the following fields designed to develop professional competence in a field with applications related to the modern Middle East: Conflict and Conflict Resolution, Global Health, International Affairs and Development, International Business, International Economic Affairs, International Law and Organizations, International Security Studies, Management, Technology Policy and International Affairs, and U.S. Foreign Policy.

Note: Students selecting this field must take ECON 6283 and ECON 6284 to satisfy the core requirement for economics. Students selecting this field must also demonstrate proficiency in introductory statistics. This requirement can be met by having taken an undergraduate course, a course at USDA, or STAT 1051, STAT 1053 or STAT 1111 at GW.

Two of the four major field courses must be taken from the Economics courses listed below (i.e. 6 of the 12 required credits in the professional specialization field). The remaining two courses can be from other departments shown below.

ECON 6250 Survey of Economic Development

ECON 6255 Economics of Technological Change

ECON 6269 Economy of the People's Republic of China

ECON 6271 Economy of Japan

ECON 6285 Economic Development of Latin America

ECON 6293 Topics in International Finance

ECON 6295 Special Topics – The following courses may be taken for this field without prior approval:

  • Economic Analysis of International Trade Law
  • Economics of Middle East and North Africa

Other ECON 6295 courses with international content may be applied towards the field with the approval of the program director.

IAFF 6318* Special Topics in Asian Studies

  • Chinese Business Law

IAFF 6358* Special Topics in Latin American & Hemispheric Studies (with approval from program director)

  • Political Economy of Latin America
  • Social and Economic Development of Latin America

IBUS 6301 International Business Finance

IBUS 6302 Seminar: International Banking

PSC 6439 International Political Economy

* Other Special Topics courses (IAFF 6118, 6138, 6158, 6186, 6198, 6318, 6338, 6358, 6378), may, with permission of the program director, be used to fulfill the required number of credits.

Students may design their own professional specialization field in consultation with, and approval from, the program director. The courses should form a coherent introduction to a professional field. Students may select from the following fields designed to develop professional competence in a field with applications related to the modern Middle East: Conflict and Conflict Resolution, Global Health, International Affairs and Development, International Business, International Economic Affairs, International Law and Organizations, International Security Studies, Management, Technology Policy and International Affairs, and U.S. Foreign Policy.

IAFF 6118 Special Topics in International Affairs

  • International Law and the Use of Force 
  • Reinventing the United Nations
  • Issues in Contemporary Diplomacy and National Security
  • International Law

LAW 6836**  National Security Law

LAW 6520** International Law

LAW 6534** Law of the European Union

PSC 6439 International Political Economy

IAFF 6138 Special Topics in International Development

  • Human Trafficking 
  • Care of Children in Complex Emergencies 
  • Global Food Security 
  • M&E for Foreign Assistance Programs 

IAFF 6158 Special Topics in International Science and Technology Policy

  • Space Law 
  • Geospatial Law and Policy

* Other Special Topics courses (IAFF 6118, 6138, 6158, 6186, 6198, 6318, 6338, 6358, 6378), may, with permission of the program director, be used to fulfill the required number of credits.

** Students may, with permission of their advisor, include courses in the GW Law School in their major field. Enrolling in a law school course also requires permission of the Law School dean of students. Students should consult the Elliott School Academic Advising & Student Services office before enrolling in Law School courses.

Students may design their own professional specialization field in consultation with, and approval from, the program director. The courses should form a coherent introduction to a professional field. Students may select from the following fields designed to develop professional competence in a field with applications related to the modern Middle East: Conflict and Conflict Resolution, Global Health, International Affairs and Development, International Business, International Economic Affairs, International Law and Organizations, International Security Studies, Management, Technology Policy and International Affairs, and U.S. Foreign Policy.

Required course:

PSC 6349 International Security Politics

Supporting courses: (choose three)

GEOG 6224 Political Geography

HIST 6001 International History of the Cold War

HIST 6051 Re-thinking the Cold War 

HIST 6801 Readings in Israel Palestinian Conflict 

IAFF 6141 International Science & Technology Policy Cornerstone

IAFF 6145  U.S. Space Policy

IAFF 6153 Science, Technology and National Security

IAFF 6160 Defense Policy and Program Analysis

IAFF 6163 Transnational Security

IAFF 6165 Fundamentals of Intelligence

IAFF 6169 Homeland Security

IAFF 6171 Intro to Conflict Resolution

IAFF 6186 Special Topics in Security Policy Studies:

  • International Organized Crime
  • Responses to Terrorism
  • Strategic Planning for the 21st Century
  • International Peacekeeping
  • Environmental Security
  • Stabilization and Peacebuilding
  • Cyber Threats, Policy & Strategy
  • Methods for Defense Analysis
  • Insurgency and Counterinsurgency
  • Political Risk Analysis
  • Conflict Early Warning and Prevention
  • U.S. Grand Strategy
  • Illicit Finance and Security
  • The Chinese Military
  • Nuclear Strategy

IAFF 6338 Special Topics in European and Eurasian Studies:

  • Security in Russia and Eurasia
  • Transatlantic Relations in the 21st Century
  • Ukraine & Georgia between Russia & the West
  • Nationalism in Russia and Eurasia

LAW 6836**  National Security Law

LAW 6552** Law of War

MGT 6215 Conflict Management and Negotiation

PSC 6346 U.S. Foreign Policy

PSC 6348 Politics of U.S. National Security Policy

PSC 6476 The Arab-Israeli Conflict
 

* Other Special Topics courses (IAFF 6118, 6138, 6158, 6186, 6198, 6318, 6338, 6358, 6378), may, with permission of the program director, be used to fulfill the required number of credits.

** Students may, with permission of their advisor, include courses in the GW Law School in their major field. Enrolling in a law school course also requires permission of the Law School dean of students. Students should consult the Elliott School Academic Advising & Student Services office before enrolling in Law School courses.

Students may design their own professional specialization field in consultation with, and approval from, the program director. The courses should form a coherent introduction to a professional field. Students may select from the following fields designed to develop professional competence in a field with applications related to the modern Middle East: Conflict and Conflict Resolution, Global Health, International Affairs and Development, International Business, International Economic Affairs, International Law and Organizations, International Security Studies, Management, Technology Policy and International Affairs, and U.S. Foreign Policy.

Select at least four:

EDUC 6381 Program Evaluation: Theory and Practice

EMSE 6220 Environmental Management

EMSE 6305 Crisis and Emergency Management

IBUS 6402 Managing in Developing countries

MGT 6215 Conflict Management: Theory, Concepts, and Methods

PPPA 6058 International Development NGO Management*

PPPA 6059 International Development Management Processes and Tools*

PPPA 6032 Managing Fund Raising and Philanthropy

PUBH 6436 Global Health Program Management

PUBH 6435 Global Health Program Development and Evaluation

SMPP 6210 Strategic Environmental Management

*This course is limited to IDS students and PAD/PPOL students during early registration, and open to all others on the basis of availability after early registration.

Students may design their own professional specialization field in consultation with, and approval from, the program director. The courses should form a coherent introduction to a professional field. Students may select from the following fields designed to develop professional competence in a field with applications related to the modern Middle East: Conflict and Conflict Resolution, Global Health, International Affairs and Development, International Business, International Economic Affairs, International Law and Organizations, International Security Studies, Management, Technology Policy and International Affairs, and U.S. Foreign Policy.

Required course:

IAFF 6141 Science, Technology and Public Policy Cornerstone

Supporting courses: (choose three)

ECON 6255 Economics of Technological Change (prerequisite ECON 6217)

IAFF 6142 Technology Creation and Diffusion

IAFF 6145 U. S. Space Policy

IAFF 6153  Science, Technology and National Security

IAFF 6158Special Topics in International Science and Technology Policy:

  • Science, Technology and Policy Analysis
  • Cybersecurity
  • Renewable Energy in a Decarbonizing World
  • Issues in Space Policy
  • Energy Policy

For additional supplementary coursework (not applicable to the major field requirement), students are advised to consider:

IAFF 6186Special Topics in Security Policy Studies: 

  • Military Technology Assessment
  • Strategic Planning for the 21st Century
  • Cyber Threats, Policy and Strategy
  • Nuclear Strategy

IAFF 6501 Applied Quantitative Analysis

Suggested 1-credit courses:

IAFF 6502-6503 Professional Skills Course

  • Mobile Phones for International Development
  • Tech for International Crisis Response


*Other Special Topics courses (IAFF 6118, 6138, 6158, 6186, 6198, 6318, 6338, 6358, 6378), may, with permission of the program director, be used to fulfill the required number of credits.

Students may design their own professional specialization field in consultation with, and approval from, the program director. The courses should form a coherent introduction to a professional field. Students may select from the following fields designed to develop professional competence in a field with applications related to the modern Middle East: Conflict and Conflict Resolution, Global Health, International Affairs and Development, International Business, International Economic Affairs, International Law and Organizations, International Security Studies, Management, Technology Policy and International Affairs, and U.S. Foreign Policy.

Choose at least one of the following courses:

HIST 6330 Modern U.S. Foreign Policy

PSC 6346 U.S. Foreign Policy Making

PSC 6348 U.S. National Security Policy-Making

Supporting courses: (choose three)

ECON 6295 Economics of U.S Trade Policy

HIST 6032 Readings Seminar: Strategy and Policy

HIST 6310 Readings Seminar - U.S. 19th Century History

HIST 6320/6321 Readings Seminar - Recent U.S. History

IAFF 6118* Special Topics in International Affairs

  • Reinventing the United Nations
  • Issues in Contemporary Diplomacy and National Security
  • Leadership in International Affairs
  • Afghanistan, Iraq and ISIS: Does Intervention Work?

IAFF 6153 Science, Technology and National Security

IAFF 6163 Transnational Security Issues

IAFF 6165 Fundamentals of Intelligence

IAFF 6186* Special Topics in Security Policy:

  • Environmental Security 
  • Methods of Defense Analysis 
  • Responses to Terrorism
  • Stabilization and Peacebuilding 
  • Political Risk Analysis
  • Energy Security
  • International Peacekeeping
  • Illicit Finance and Security
  • Countering Violent Extremism
  • Terrorism Today (ONLINE)
  • Military Power and Effectiveness
  • Nuclear Security

IAFF 6302 Taiwan: International Development and Foreign Affairs

IAFF 6308 International Relations of South Asia

IAFF 6338* Special Topics in European & Eurasian Studies:

  • Transatlantic Relations in the 21st Century 
  • Security in Russia and Eurasia
  • Ukraine & Georgia between Russia & the West
  • EU Foreign Relations

IAFF 6378* Special Topics in Middle East Studies:

  • U.S Foreign Policy in the Middle East
  • U.S Foreign Policy in the Persian Gulf
  • U.S Security Policy in the Middle East 

IAFF 6358 Special Topics in Latin American & Hemispheric Studies 

  • OAS and Democracy in the Americas
  • History and Praxis of US-Mexico Relations
  • Security in the Americas 
  • Brazil in the Global Arena
  • Argentina in the Global Arena
  • Immigration and Weak States: The Case of Central America

IAFF 6145 U.S. Space Policy

LAW 6870**  National Security Law

PSC 6349 International Security Politics

PSC 6439 International Political Economy

PSC 6372 Foreign Policy of the People's Republic of China

PSC 6478 International Relations of the Middle East

PSC 8489 Selected Topics in International Politics: Military Effectiveness
 

*Other Special Topics courses (IAFF 6138, 6158, 6186, 6198, 6318, 6338, 6358, 6378), may, with permission of the program director, be used to fulfill the required number of credits.

** Students may, with permission of their advisor, include courses in the GW Law School in their major field. Enrolling in a law school course also requires permission of the Law School dean of students. Students should consult the Elliott School Academic Advising & Student Services office before enrolling in Law School courses.