Academic Catalogs

American Studies, Associate of Arts Degree

Area of Emphasis


This interdisciplinary major is designed to provide students with an integrated understanding of American society, history, and culture. Students may select designated courses within the humanities, social sciences, and fine arts disciplines. More than 300 colleges and universities in the United States offer American Studies programs. They approach American culture from many directions but have in common the desire to view America as a whole rather than from the perspective of a single discipline. Students who have graduated from four-year universities with American Studies degrees have gone on to work as lawyers, librarians, business leaders, writers, archivists, researchers, teachers, and politicians.

Program Level Student Learning Outcomes

Upon completion of this program, students will be able to:

  1. Apply perspectives from a variety of disciplines to develop an understanding of American culture, past and present, and its impact upon both the peoples of the United States and those outside its borders.
  2. Critically evaluate historical sources, literature, art, film, music, or other types of cultural expressions in terms of their relevance to the American experience.

Associate Degree Requirements

Unit Requirement

Complete at least 60 units of acceptable college work with a minimum of 12 units completed in residence at Coastline. Earn an overall grade point average of 2.0 or higher from all colleges attended and a 2.0 or higher grade point average at Coastline.

*Students must be in good academic standing (not on probation and/or disqualification) during the semester graduation is petitioned.

Program of Study

Complete the required courses in one of the programs as detailed In the Academic/Career/Certificate Programs section of this catalog. All coursework must be completed with a grade of C or higher.

General Education

Complete one of the three General Education options below (visit the General Education page for details):

Option 1 — Coastline General Education: designed for students pursuing an Associate degree and who may or may not be planning to transfer to a four-year university. The degree is transferable to many colleges and universities.

Option 2—CSU GE Breadth: designed for students who are planning to transfer to a university in the CSU system. It may also be appropriate for transfer to some independent colleges and universities.

Option 3—IGETC: designed for students who are planning to transfer to a university in the CSU or UC system. It also may be appropriate for transfer to some independent colleges and universities.

Global and Multicultural Studies Requirement

Complete at least 2.5 units from any Global and Multicultural Studies courses. See what courses fulfill the Global and Multicultural Studies Requirement.

Course Title Units
Requirements for the Degree
Select a minimum of 18 units from at least five different disciplines:18
Contemporary Art History
Interpersonal Communication
Fundamentals of Human Communication
Public Speaking
American Literature: The Short Story
American Literature through the Civil War
American Literature 1865 to Present
Aging in a Multicultural Society
History of American Women
Chicano History
History of California
The American West
United States History to 1876
United States History since 1876
History and Appreciation of the Cinema
Introduction to Mass Communications
History of Rock Music
History of Jazz
Survey of Current Issues
American Government
Child Growth and Development
Psychology of Aging
Introduction to Marriage and Family
Introduction to Gerontology
Subtotal for Area of Emphasis18
Requirement Units
Total Units for Major Preparation 18
Degree Option 1, 2, or 3 Varies
Electives to satisfy unit requirement Varies
Total Degree Units 60