The Bachelor of Arts in Middle Eastern Studies provides a comprehensive understanding of Middle Eastern societies, cultures, religions, history, politics, and conflicts. This online bachelor’s degree is useful for business executives, journalists, government contractors, military service members, political analysts, educators, conflict resolution practitioners or other professions requiring an in-depth knowledge of the Middle East.

Degree Program Objectives

In addition to the institutional and degree level learning objectives, graduates of this program are expected to achieve these learning outcomes:

  • Analyze the development of political and economic institutions.

  • Explain the role of international and transnational organizations in both a global and regional setting.

  • Describe how political, economic, social and military structures work within the region.

  • Articulate the role of colonization in the development of the nation state system in the ME.

  • Determine how conflict and shifting alliances shaped the politics of the region.

  • Summarize the challenges facing Middle Eastern countries individually and as a region.

  • Compare and contrast the different cultures and religions within the Middle East.

  • Evaluate existing cooperation efforts and the long-term viability of those efforts for success.

  • Analyze the role religion plays in the political, social, and economic fabric of the region.

Degree at a Glance

General Education Requirements30
Major Required42
Final Program Requirements3
Elective Requirements45
Total Semester Hours120

Degree Program Requirements

General Education Requirements (30 semester hours)

Arts and Humanities (6 semester hours) 1
Select 2 courses from the following:6
Arabic I
Arabic II
Art Appreciation
Film and Literature
Image Enhancement using Adobe Photoshop
French I
French II
German I
German II
Introduction to Japanese
Literature of American Encounters, Revolution, and Rebellion
From Abolition to #MeToo: Literature of the American Civil Rights Movement
Pivotal Figures in Early British Literature
British Literature from Wordsworth through the Wasteland
Leadership in World Literature: Antiquity to the Early Modern Period
Literature of the Newly Globalized World: The Individual’s Struggle to Adapt
Music Appreciation
World Music and Cultures
Introduction to Philosophy
Critical Thinking
Introduction to Ethics
Philosophy of Science
Introduction to Brazilian Portuguese
Introduction to World Religions
Russian I
Spanish I
Spanish II
Thinking and Acting Ethically
Civics, Political and Social Sciences (6 semester hours) 1
Select 2 courses from the following:6
Introduction to Anthropology
Introduction to Cultural Anthropology
Human Sexuality
Social Media and Society
Intercultural Communication
Humane Education: A Global Interdisciplinary Perspective
Introduction to Geography
Practical Food Safety and Awareness
International Relations I
Forgotten America--Under Represented Cultures in American Literature
Four Points of the Compass: Culture and Society Around the World
Introduction to Political Science
American Government I
Introduction to Psychology
Introduction to Sociology
Social Problems
American Popular Culture
Exploring Society and Cultures via Science Fiction
Communication: Writing, Oral, and Multimedia (9 semester hours)
COMM120Information and Digital Literacy3
ENGL110Making Writing Relevant3
IRLS200Information Literacy and Global Citizenship3
History (3 semester hours)
Select 1 course from the following:3
American History to 1877
American History since 1877
World Civilization before 1650
World Civilization since 1650
Western Civilization before The Thirty Years War
Western Civilization since The Thirty Years War
African-American History before 1877
African-American History since 1877
History of the American Indian
History of Science
The History and Context of STEM
Mathematics and Applied Reasoning (3 semester hours)
Select 1 course from the following:3
Accounting for Non Accounting Majors
Fundamentals of Programming
College Algebra
College Trigonometry
Introduction to Statistics
Math for Liberal Arts Majors
Natural Sciences (3 semester hours)
Select 1 course from the following:3
Introduction to Biology
Introduction to Human Anatomy and Physiology
Introduction to Chemistry
Introduction to Meteorology
Introduction to Geology
Introduction to Environmental Science
Introduction to Physics
Introduction to Astronomy
Introduction to STEM Disciplines
Total Semester Hours30

Major Required (42 semester hours)

IRLS210International Relations I3
IRLS213Political Geography3
IRLS260Middle Eastern Culture3
IRLS300Comparative Political Systems3
IRLS360Global Politics of Islam3
IRLS412Comparative Foreign Policy3
IRLS460Government & Security in the Middle East3
Select 7 courses from the following:21
Arabic I
Arabic II
Arabic III
History of the Middle East
Introduction to Human Security
Arab-Israeli Conflict: Contemp. Politics & Dipl.
Politics and Security in the Persian Gulf
Religions of the Middle East
Total Semester Hours42

Final Program Requirements (3 semester hours)

IRLS493Capstone Middle Eastern Studies (to be taken as the last course before graduation) 13
Total Semester Hours3

Elective Requirements (45 semester hours)

Select any courses that have not been used to fulfill major requirements. Credits applied toward a minor or certificate in an unrelated field may be used to fulfill elective credit for the major.