Why study European studies?

European Studies, through interdisciplinary study, broadens, deepens, and strengthens a student’s knowledge and understanding of the enduring importance of our transatlantic partners, the Europeans.

Undergraduate Admission

Admission to KU

All students applying for admission must send high school and college transcripts to the Office of Admissions. Unless they are college transfer students with at least 24 hours of credit, prospective students must send ACT or SAT scores to the Office of Admissions. Prospective first-year students should be aware that KU has qualified admission requirements that all new first-year students must meet to be admitted. Consult the Office of Admissions for application deadlines and specific admission requirements.

Visit the Office of International Student and Scholar Services for information about international admissions.

Students considering transferring to KU may see how their college-level course work will transfer on the Office of Admissions website.

Admission to the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences

Admission to the College is a different process from admission to a major field. Some CLAS departments have admission requirements. See individual department/program sections for departmental admission requirements.

First- and Second-Year Preparation

To complete the requirements for the degree in 4 years, prospective co-majors are encouraged to complete all general education and language requirements no later than fall semester of the junior year. Students should begin study of a western European language other than English or Russian as early as possible. For more information, contact the European Studies undergraduate advisor, Laura Leonard, 785-864-3500, laleonar@ku.edu.

During their first and second years, students are strongly encouraged to enroll in HIST 115 French Revolution to the Present: Europe 1789-Present (3) plus 1 additional course from the list below:

ECON 104Introductory Economics4
ECON 144Principles of Macroeconomics3
GEOG 100World Regional Geography3
GEOG 102People, Place, and Society3
POLS 150Introduction to Comparative Politics3
or POLS 151 Introduction to Comparative Politics Honors
POLS 170Introduction to International Politics3
or POLS 171 Introduction to International Politics Honors
HA 100Introduction to Western Art History3
PHIL 180Introduction to Social and Political Philosophy3

Note: Enrollment in the above courses counts toward College principal course distribution requirements in the humanities and social sciences.

Note: European Studies co-majors are strongly encouraged to study abroad and should discuss this opportunity with the undergraduate advisor early in their undergraduate career.

Admission to the Co-Major

Admission Requirements

  1. Second-semester sophomore or junior standing.
  2. Declared major in a department or admission to a professional school.

Requirements for the Co-Major

European Studies Prerequisites or Co-requisites (18)
Students selecting this co-major must complete the following:
French Revolution to the Present: Europe 1789–Present. Satisfied by:
HIST 115French Revolution to the Present: Europe 1789-Present3
Interdisciplinary Perspective. Satisfied by one course from the following:
Introductory Economics
Principles of Macroeconomics
World Regional Geography
People, Place, and Society
Introduction to Comparative Politics
Introduction to Comparative Politics Honors
Introduction to International Politics
Introduction to International Politics Honors
Introduction to Western Art History
Introduction to Social and Political Philosophy
Students selecting this co-major must complete the following:
Second Language Skills (3 hours). Students must complete one semester beyond the College general education second language requirement (completion of a fourth-semester course) in a modern western European language (Danish, Dutch, French, German, Hungarian, Italian, Portuguese, Polish, Spanish, Swedish). 3
Seminar in European Studies. Satisfied by one of the following:3
Seminar in European Studies
Europe Today
Upper-Division General European Studies Required Electives. Satisfied by three approved courses (9 hours), two of which must be from different departments. The following list is not exhaustive; visit the European Studies website or speak with the undergraduate advisor each semester for a complete list of approved general European Studies courses:9
History of Architecture III: Modern
History of Urban Design
Economic History of Europe
Economic Issues of the European Union
Current Economic Issues of East Europe
European Culture and Society 1945 to Present
History of War and Peace
Europe Today
Studies in Exile Literature
Culture and Politics of the Cold War in Western Europe
Research in European Collections
Politics and Economics of Cultural Production in Western Europe
Introduction to the Study of Southern European Societies
Topics in European Studies: _____ (when covering 2 or more countries)
The European Union
European Art 1789-1848: Gender and Revolution
European Art, 1900-1945
Art Since 1945
The Great War: The History of World War I
The History of the Second World War
The Holocaust in History
Revolutionary Europe: The People in Arms
Recent European History, 1870 to the Present
Economic History of Europe
Intellectual History of 19th Century Europe
The History of Women and the Family in Europe, from 1500 to the Present
European Civilization in World Context: _____
Special Topics in International Business: _____
Introduction to International Business
Classics of Peace Literature
Nineteenth Century Philosophy
Contemporary Continental Philosophy
Politics in Europe
Politics of East-Central Europe
Topics in Comparative Politics: _____ (when covering Europe, among other regions)
Comparative Foreign Policy
Topics in International Relations: (when covering Europe, among other regions)
Sociological Theory
Industrial Revolution and Capitalist Development
Advanced Topics in Sociology: _____ (when covering comparative social policy between the United States and Europe)
History of Theatre II
Upper-Division National or Regional European Studies Requirements (0)
Satisfied by two approved country- or region-specific courses (6 hours), two of which must cover two different countries or regions. This list is not exhaustive; go to the European Studies website or speak with the undergraduate advisor each semester for a complete list of approved upper-division national or regional European Studies courses.
Contemporary French Architecture
Architecture Study Abroad (France, Italy, Germany, or United Kingdom)
The British Novel
Major British Writers after 1800
Studies in British Literature
Contemporary Authors: _____ (when British or Irish)
Studies in Twentieth-Century Drama: _____ (when at least 50 percent British/Irish)
Major Authors: _____ (when British or Irish)
The Literature of: _____ (when British or Irish)
Irish Literature and Culture: _____
Introduction to the Study of Southern European Societies
Scandinavian Life and Civilization
Topics in European Studies: _____ (when country-specific)
Irish Literature and Culture: ______
France and the French (taught in English)
Introduction to French Literature
French Literature of the Twentieth Century
German and Germany in Global Business Culture II
Renaissance Art in Italy: The 15th Century
Art in France 1848-1900: Modernisms
Biography of a City: _____ (European city only)
Hitler and Nazi Germany
France and Its Empire: From Acadia to Zidane
France from the Renaissance to the French Revolution
Rise of Modern Britain
Spain and its Empire, 1450-1700
British Political Thought
Literature in Translation: _____ (when a European literature)
Introduction to Italian Literature and Textual Analysis
Italy and the Italians I
and Italy and the Italians (taught in English)
Politics of East-Central Europe
Scandinavian Life and Civilization
Spanish Language and Culture for Business
Twentieth Century Spanish Studies: _____
Studies in Spanish Culture and Civilization: _____
Colloquium on Spanish Film

Note: This list is not exhaustive. Visit the European Studies website or the program office each semester for a complete list of upper-division national or regional European Studies courses.

Capstone-Final Senior Course

In the senior year, students complete one of the following options:

Option A: Senior Thesis in European Studies. Satisfied by EURS 501. A semester-long independent research project under the supervision of a faculty thesis director. Students should contact Lorie A. Vanchena, Academic Director of European Studies, vanchena@ku.edu, before registering for EURS 501.

Option B. Two additional upper-division European Studies courses. Satisfied by general European or country-specific electives chosen from the course lists above.

Junior/Senior (300+) European studies courses. Satisfied by 2 courses (6 hours) of general European or country-specific electives chosen from the course lists above.

Courses taken during a study abroad program in Europe may fulfill co-major requirements. Students should consult the Advising Specialist for European Studies about study abroad credit before their program departure.

Co-Major Hours & Major GPA

While completing all required courses, co-majors must also meet each of the following hour and grade-point average minimum standards:

Co-Major Hours
Satisfied by 24 hours of co-major courses.

Major Hours in Residence
Satisfied by a minimum of 24 hours of KU resident credit in the co-major. 

Major Junior/Senior Hours
Satisfied by a minimum of 24 hours from junior/senior courses (300+) in the co-major.

Major Junior/Senior Graduation GPA
Satisfied by a minimum of a 2.0 KU GPA in junior/senior courses (300+) in the major. GPA calculations include all junior/senior courses in the field of study including F’s and repeated courses. See the Semester/Cumulative GPA Calculator.

No more than 12 hours may be shared between a 27-hour European studies co-major and another major.

Departmental Honors

Honors in European Studies is open to co-majors who have earned, both at the time of entry into the program and at graduation, overall grade-point averages of 3.25 or higher and of 3.5 or higher in European Studies. A student must complete all co-major requirements, including EURS 502 Senior Honors Thesis in European Studies, with a grade of A.

The senior honors thesis affords exceptional students the opportunity to work closely with an individual faculty member on a specific research project over an extended period of time, usually two semesters. EURS 502 Senior Honors Thesis may be combined with EURS 501 Senior Thesis in European Studies, substantially increasing the length and scope of the final thesis, or the senior honors thesis may be a separate extension of the senior thesis.

A student in EURS 502 must defend the thesis in a 1-hour oral examination with faculty. The examination committee is composed of 3 faculty members, 1 of whom must be the thesis director. The student selects the committee members in consultation with the thesis director. Students should consult a program advisor early in the junior year.


The European Studies program strongly encourages students to enroll in one of KU’s many study abroad programs in Europe.

European Studies participates in the Humanities semester abroad program in Paris and Florence.

Summer language institutes offering upper-division courses in language or literature study may also qualify for European Studies co-major or minor credit. Contact a program advisor in the Office of Study Abroad, 108 Lippincott Hall, 785-864-3742.