May 26, 2024  
2021-2022 Catalog 
2021-2022 Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

College of Humanities and Social Sciences


Dr. Paqui Paredes Méndez, Dean

The College of Humanities and Social Sciences, Western’s largest academic unit, is composed of two divisions: the humanities (communication studies, English, global humanities and religions, history, journalism, modern and classical languages, philosophy) and the social and behavioral sciences (anthropology, communication sciences and disorders, health and human development, linguistics, political science, psychology, sociology). These 14 departments offer more than 40 bachelor’s degrees and 10 master’s degrees, along with four interdisciplinary programs in East Asian studies; multidisciplinary studies; women, gender, and sexuality studies; and student/faculty designed majors.

The college houses several research and service centers, including the Center for Cross-cultural Research, the Center for Performance Excellence, and two community-based professional training centers: the Speech-Language Hearing Clinic and the Counseling Training Clinic. In addition, the college has five nationally accredited professional programs: school counselor, mental health counseling, speech-language pathology, public health and recreation.

Mission Statement

The College serves the University by engaging students in distinctive, diverse programs in social and behavioral sciences and the humanities. Emerging from a vibrant liberal arts core, our collaborative learning environment inspires individual, social, cultural, creative and scientific exploration. Students devise and apply innovative solutions, embrace divergent worldviews, consider the ethical implications of their actions and communicate effectively in their professional, public and personal lives. Together, students, faculty and staff generate knowledge, pursue research, and foster life-long learning to contribute to the well-being of communities from local to global.

Objectives of College:

The College of Humanities and Social Sciences partners with the College of Science and Engineering to provide students with a three-component liberal education: first, a program of education-in-breadth through the General University Requirements (GURs) intended to prepare students for postgraduate life as educated persons and citizens; second, a program of education-in-depth in a disciplinary or interdisciplinary major designed to prepare students for careers or graduate study; and third, a choice of elective courses which can help satisfy the student’s curiosity about any of the multitude of subjects that the University curriculum embraces. With each of these components, the college intends to produce graduates who are capable of informed and critical thinking; who have learned to tolerate ambiguity; who can appreciate cultural differences; who have developed moral and aesthetic sensibilities; who have mastered the basic tools of literacy and technology and who have acquired levels of information about the natural and social worlds, past and present, sufficient for responsible citizenship and the enjoyment of a civilized society. The college places strong emphasis on student-faculty collaboration in developing these skills through active learning, including laboratory experiences, community-based faculty-directed service learning, and student involvement in faculty research programs.

Academic Programs Leading to Undergraduate and Graduate Degrees

Anthropology BA, BAE, MA
Anthropology/Archaeology Concentration BA
Anthropology/Biocultural Concentration BA
Anthropology/Biology BA
Anthropology/Social Studies BA
Archives and Records Management MA
Behavioral Neuroscience BS
Biology/Anthropology BS
Clinical Mental Health Counseling MS
Communication Sciences & Disorders BA, MA, AuD
Communication Studies BA, BAE
Double Language Major (French, German, Spanish) BA
East Asian Studies BA
Economics/Political Science BA
English/Creative Writing MFA
English/Creative Writing Emphasis BA
English/English Studies MA
English/Literature Emphasis BA
Environmental Studies/Journalism BA
Experimental Psychology MS
History BA, BAE, MA
History/Social Studies BA
Humanities/History of Culture BA
Humanities/Religion & Culture BA
Journalism BA
Kinesiology BS, MS
Latin American Studies BA
Linguistics BA
Modern and Classical Languages (Chinese, French, German, Japanese, Spanish) BA, BAE
Multidisciplinary Studies BA
Philosophy BA
Physical Education and Health ~ P-12 BAE
Political Science BA
Political Science/Economics BA
Political Science/Social Studies BA
Politics/Philosophy/Economics BA
Psychology BAE, BS
Public Health BS
Recreation BA
School Counselor M/Ed
Sociology BA, BAE, BS
Sociology/Social Studies BA
Student/Faculty Designed Major BA, BS
Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies BA

Majors and Minors

In addition to the GURs and other common degree requirements of the University, the candidate for a Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science degree must complete a major area emphasis, which is usually accompanied by supporting courses. A minor is optional. A few concentrations are offered which encompass both a major and a minor. Students will confer with appropriate departmental advisors to plan study programs. Transfer students are expected to complete at least a portion of their work in the major and minor fields in this institution.

Student/Faculty Designed, BA or BS (College of Humanities and Social Sciences)

Students desiring concentrated study in areas not listed as majors by departments of the College of Humanities and Social Sciences may design a major in conference with faculty members. Procedures for the Student/Faculty Designed majors (BA or BS) are available from the Department of Global Humanities and Religions or at

College Admission and Advisement

Academic Advisement

As students complete the freshman year, which consists largely of courses that meet the GURs, they are referred to the academic departments for continued personalized advisement in planning and selecting courses of study. Faculty within each department share responsibility for counseling students electing concentrations in their area. In some cases, faculty from several departments may cooperate with students in constructing their own interdisciplinary major; in others, faculty members may recommend to the department chair the waiving of certain course prerequisites (when it has been demonstrated that the student already has these competencies). Students who are undecided about a major may seek advisement through the Academic Advising Center in Old Main.

Department Chairs

Dr. Todd Koetje Anthropology
Dr. Ee Lin Lee Communication Studies
Dr. Kimberly A. Peters Communication Sciences and Disorders
Dr. Kathryn Vulic English
Dr. Kimberly Lynn Global Humanities and Religions
Dr. Keith C. Russell Health and Human Development
Dr. Susan E. Costanzo History
Dr. Jennifer Keller Journalism
Dr. Kristin Denham Linguistics
Dr. Shannon Dubenion-Smith Modern & Classical Languages
Dr. Ryan Wasserman Philosophy
Dr. Amir Abedi Political Science
Dr. James Graham Psychology
Dr. Kristin Anderson Sociology

Other College Information

Departments, Courses and Programs

Courses listed in this catalog constitute a record of the total academic program of the University. For an exact scheduling of courses at Western, students should consult the annual online Timetable of Classes, and Outreach and Continuing Education  bulletins.


Go to information for Anthropology.


Communication Sciences and Disorders

Go to information for Communication Sciences and Disorders.


Communication Studies

Go to information for Communication Studies.


East Asian Studies

Go to information for East Asian Studies.



Go to information for English.


Global Humanities and Religions

Go to information for Global Humanities and Religions.


Health and Human Development

Go to information for Health and Human Development.



Go to information for History.



Go to information for Journalism.



Go to information for Linguistics.


Modern and Classical Languages

Go to information for Modern and Classical Languages.


Multidisciplinary Studies

Go to information for Multidisciplinary Studies.



Go to information for Philosophy.


Political Science

Go to information for Political Science.



Go to information for Psychology.



Go to information for Sociology.


Student/Faculty Designed Majors

Go to information for Student/Faculty Designed Majors.


Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies

Go to information for Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies.