BISP Special Focus: Current and Historical Politics

BISP Special Focus Program Overview

The BISP Special Focus in Current and Historical Politics is available for visiting students who are interested in current-day political and societal issues, examining political history, public policy, law, power and governance, criminal justice, conflicts and war, NGOs, social movements, human rights, globalization, immigration, international relations, journalism, media, among other areas of work that involve politics. The political focus may be on the U.S. and/or other regions in the world.

Politics affects every aspect of human life and society and this BISP Special Focus topic consists of multidisciplinary fields and courses focused on current and historical perspectives including history, sociology, and economics. Students can choose to focus their courses on a particular interest in politics, or study more broadly with a variety of political topics. 

Learning Goals

By pursuing this BISP Special Focus topic, you will gain:

  • UC Berkeley academic credit in a focused set of courses tailored to your interests in politics.
  • Faculty guidance on a culminating certificate project in which you will synthesize learnings and insight gained in your coursework and research at UC Berkeley.
  • Research and analytical skills through approaching political and historical issues from multiple perspectives.
  • Communication and presentation skills through your participation in the BISP Special Focus program and coursework.

Sample Courses

  • Politics and Culture in 20th-Century Germany: A Divided Nation. Politics and Culture 1945-1990
  • Origins of Western Civilization: Medieval Europe
  • Social History of the United States: Creating Modern American Society: From the End of the Civil War
  • Deaths and Afterlives of Columbus
  • Middle East: Post-Colonialism, Migration, and Diaspora
  • Comparative Perspectives on U.S. and European Societies: Culture

For a more comprehensive list of pre-approved courses for the BISP Special Focus in Current and Historical Politics see the longer list here.