Global Engagement


In an increasingly complex and interconnected world, Brandeis students are encouraged to actively explore and analyze diversity and difference including the impact of social, political, cultural, environmental and linguistic structures in the U.S. and in the world. Through courses offered in the areas of diversity, equity and inclusion studies in the U.S. (DEIS-US); difference and justice in the world (DJW); and world languages and cultures (WLC), the global engagement requirement emphasizes the profound connections between local and global forms of understanding and social justice, encompassing global stewardship, world relationships, environmental justice and sustainability.

Extending our students’ ability to engage globally, World Languages and Cultures (WLC) sequence of courses will provide an "intermediate" proficiency (the equivalent level of a third semester of language instruction achieved through placement, exemption, or courses) in speaking, writing and reading and comprehension in a language other than English. This requirement will enhance an understanding of the challenges of cross-cultural communication, grant access to diverse bodies of knowledge through courses in languages other than English, and provide skills needed to communicate with friends, colleagues, and strangers in work, travel, and community settings.

Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Studies in the U.S. (DEIS-US) courses will prepare students to engage with dynamics, developments, divisions and inequalities within U.S. society, and to explore the historical and contemporary experiences, interests, and perspectives of groups and institutions that have shaped life in the United States.

In Difference and Justice in the World (DJW) courses, students will focus on the diversity of the human experience from global or transnational perspectives by engaging in the study of the histories, arts, cultures, politics, economies, environments and/or religions of peoples outside the U.S. 

Learning Goals

  1. Analyzing the historical and contemporary relationships between and within societies, institutions, regions, and peoples in English-speaking North America and in the world at large; (DEIS-US, DJW)
  2. Understanding dynamics of social difference, including power, privilege, prejudice, discrimination, inequality, injustice, identities and political and environmental changes; (DEIS-US, DJW, WLC)
  3. Understanding the histories, cultures, expressions and experiences of historically marginalized peoples in the United States and in the world; (DEIS-US, DJW)
  4. Exploring linguistic and cultural competence beyond one’s own culture (WLC)

How to Fulfill the Requirement

For students entering Brandeis beginning fall 2019, the global engagement requirement consists of successful completion of a 30-level (or higher) course in the world languages and cultures sequence or equivalent, one semester course from diversity, equity and inclusion studies in the United States, and one semester course from difference and justice in the world.