FOR MORE INFORMATION
Contact the Undergraduate Advising Head, Paola Servino.
Want to investigate what you can do with an Independent Interdisciplinary Major in Italian Studies? Visit the Hiatt Career Center here!
Learn more about a new Study Abroad Opportunity.
Independent Interdisciplinary Major (IIM) in Italian Studies
Brandeis offers students the opportunity to focus on the cultural heritage of Italy from the inception of the Italian language to the present day. The study of Italy’s language and creative achievements enables a student to explore another culture in depth in preparation for study abroad and eventual graduate work or related opportunities in the workplace.
Italian studies provides an independent major (through an Independent Interdisciplinary Major or IIM) for those who wish to extend their study of Italian beyond language and culture to areas of Italian literature, history, film, art history, and music. The study of Italian within a variety of cultural contexts enables students to deepen their understanding of a national heritage beyond the boundaries of a single time frame, region, gender, genre, or academic discipline.
Students in the program work closely with an advisor to develop an individualized plan of study that balances the exploration of a broad range of topics and sectors with a focus on a single discipline or cultural period.
One or two advanced language and culture course(s): ITAL 105a and/or ITAL 106a.
Two upper level courses in Italian: ITAL 110a, 120b, 128a, or 134b.
4-5 electives listed below or other courses on Italian-related culture approved by the student’s Italian Studies advisor. Senior Experience: Students must complete either a one-semester independent study or senior essay course (IIM 97a, IIM 97b, IIM 98a or IIM 98b) or a two-semester senior research course (IIM 99d).
- An Italian Studies IIM student who wishes to do an internship in an Italian environment may enroll in ITAL 92a (Internship and Analysis) as one of their electives. Students arrange their own internships with prior permission of the Undergraduate Advising Head.
The total number of courses for the major must add up to 9 courses. If students choose the senior thesis option, students must take 2 semesters of 99d, for a total of 10 courses.
CLAS 120a Age of Caesar
CLAS 134b The Art and Archaeology of Ancient Rome
CLAS 136b Roman Technology, Medicine, and Art
CLAS 145b Topics in Greek and Roman Art and Archaeology
CLAS 150b Pompeii: Life in the Shadow of Vesuvius
CLAS 165a Roman Sex, Violence, and Decadence in Translation
COML 103b Madness and Folly in Renaissance Literature
FA 45b Art of the Early Renaissance in Italy
FA 46b High and Late Renaissance in Italy
FA 48a Baroque in Italy and Spain
FA 145a St. Peter's and the Vatican
FA 191b Studies in Renaissance and Baroque Art
FYS 48a JustBooks: Voicing the Outrage of Silence, Social Justice and the Mafia
HIST 123a The Renaissance
HIST 131a Hitler's Europe in Film
HIST 139b Fascism East and West
HIST 140a A History of Fashion in Europe
HIST 142a Crime, Deviance, and Confinement in Modern Europe
HIST 170a Italian Films, Italian Histories
Students seeking to pursue Italian Studies further may petition for an IIM and discuss various options with the Italian Studies faculty members.
The IIM Proposal in Italian Studies consists of 3 parts
- Cover Sheet, signed by the student and the Undergraduate Advising Head in Italian Studies
- Completed Proposed Curriculum for the Independent Interdisciplinary Major
- Written Proposal (2-3 pages)
The written proposal should address:
- A description of how the major contributes to your intellectual development.
- A discussion of the curriculum and how the courses contribute to your course of study.
- (Optional): A description of your post-Brandeis plans.
To be considered for departmental honors upon graduation, students must successfully complete two semesters of IIM 99d, and have a GPA of 3.5 or higher in all Italian Studies courses. Departmental honors are awarded based on cumulative excellence in all courses taken in the IIM, including the senior essay and thesis.
In addition to studying abroad, students are encouraged to take advantage of resources within the Boston Area Consortium (Boston College, Boston University, Tufts University and Wellesley College).
The Hiatt Career Center has a page devoted to Italian Studies, which has a host of information specific to Independent Interdisciplinary Majors in Italian Studies. For sample internships, alumni career paths, transferable skills, and links to professional websites, please visit the Hiatt Italian Studies Page.
The Hiatt Center has also compiled student destination data from Post-Grad surveys over the last five years. To discover career paths other students have pursued, please visit the First Destination Data Page.
More information can be found on the Internship & Job Opportunities section of the ROMS website.
For students interested in an off-the beaten-path Italian experience, a summer in Catania, Sicily, is an exciting possibility for you.
Open to all Brandeis students, this eight-week program provides the opportunity for Italian language immersion to students ranging from no Italian background through four semesters of language experience. An academic traveling seminar in addition to language practica and a history and culture course take learning outside the classroom walls and into the streets of one of Sicily's most charming cities.
Students who complete the program may receive numeric credit for three Brandeis courses as well as Italian elective credit.
Download the fact sheet (pdf) and learn more about this program and how it relates to Brandeis credit.
Ready to apply? Start the application process.