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International Studies

Bachelor of Arts

Learn to skillfully navigate cross-cultural interactions


The world is becoming more interconnected every day, and Christians need to be well equipped for cross-cultural service. BJU’s international studies program is specifically designed to meet that need. Classes in social studies, history, business and a foreign language, combined with the BJU Core, all work together to provide you an excellent education that develops your biblical worldview and cross-cultural skills.

When you graduate, you will be well prepared to meet the challenges of cross-cultural service in the 21st century and well equipped with the knowledge and skills you need to navigate cross-cultural interactions successfully.

student in class


The international studies program at BJU is multidisciplinary, and you’ll have some flexibility to customize your program. Within international studies you’ll take courses such as Economics for the Professional, Cultural Anthropology, and Comparative Politics. The broad base of knowledge and the exercise of analytical and communications skills you’ll gain from classes like these ensure that you’ll be ready to contribute effectively in a variety of situations.

Acquiring the skills to communicate in a foreign language is an essential part of your education. Whether you choose Spanish, French, German or Chinese, you’ll find that adequate preparation in a foreign language is a definite advantage in cross-cultural interactions.

For the capstone project for your program, you’ll research and write a paper on an issue related to international studies. Recent papers by students have explored topics such as the role of women in the military and the problem of the loss of World War II memorabilia and graves in the South Pacific. This project is designed to challenge you to apply your research, analysis and communication skills to a significant real-world problem or question, perhaps laying the foundation for future research or action.

BJU Core

The BJU Core is a unique combination of liberal arts and Bible courses taken by every BJU student. Bible courses, as well as daily chapel services and godly professors, will nurture your growth in Christlikeness. As your biblical worldview is strengthened, you’ll learn how to apply the timeless truths of God’s Word to difficult questions that may arise cross-culturally. You’ll also be refreshed and encouraged by how the body of Christ transcends borders, cultures and races.

Liberal arts courses will further broaden your horizons, enabling you to connect with people from all walks of life. These courses will also equip you with skills essential for cross-cultural work and for all of life—skills such as critical thinking, problem-solving, effective communication, ethical decision making, adaptability, and much more.


A variety of electives are already included in the international studies program, from communication to history to political science. You may tailor your program with more courses in an area such as business, or with courses in teaching English as a second language, linguistics or missions.


Your Future


The international studies program opens the door to a wide array of opportunities, including:

  • Businessperson in the U.S. or abroad
  • Teaching English as a foreign language in school and/or business settings
  • Non-governmental organizations (NGO)
  • U.S. government agencies
  • Representing the U.S. as a Foreign Service officer
  • Private security
  • Serving in the military

Graduate Schools

Our international studies graduates have been accepted into graduate schools such as:

  • University of Miami
  • Indiana University

Graduate Experience

Our graduates are ready to use what they’ve learned at BJU to serve God in whatever capacity He directs them. Our graduates have filled these positions:

  • Writer and editor of textbooks
  • Administrative/personal assistant in China
  • Insurance agent
  • Department of State intern at U.S. consulates in Germany
  • International school administrator
  • Teacher of English as a second language at all levels
  • Salesperson with an international company (ScanSource)
  • Administrative assistant with a mission board

Career Support

BJU offers students a variety of ways to network with employers and organizations. A multitude of job opportunities are posted each year on Career Central, our online job board. In addition, more than 60 businesses and 150 Christian schools/mission boards/Christian organizations come on campus to recruit students through on-campus interviews and job/ministry fairs. Career Services also helps students by holding seminars on resume preparation and interview techniques.

Learning Experience

University Language Association

The University Language Association is a student-run organization that brings in speakers from various countries and occupations to give you opportunities to see the connections between a foreign language, such as Chinese or Spanish, and future careers. You’ll also learn about needs in Christian ministries around the world so you can give of yourself through prayer and other means for the glory of God.

Mission Teams

Each fall, faculty/staff-led mission teams are formed and students begin to raise financial support. The teams prepare throughout the school year and then begin their summer outreach using trade skills, music, teaching and preaching to spread the Word.


Photo of Carl Abrams
Carl Abrams
Division of Social Science

View Faculty

Because international studies is an interdisciplinary program, you’ll learn under great faculty who teach in various subject areas, such as TESL, foreign languages and business. They’re involved in the community, in groups such as Upstate International, which extends a welcome to people from other cultures to the Upstate. In addition to their practical experience in the field, nearly all of your faculty hold terminal degrees or the equivalent and teach in their areas of expertise.

Courses & Objectives

Sample Course Outline

1st Year

2nd Year

3rd Year

4th Year

  • Program
  • BJU Core
  • Elective

    Program Objectives

    Each student will:

    • Communicate effectively in cross-cultural settings.
    • Evaluate different political systems and economic theories.
    • Assess global political development in the modern era.
    • Apply biblical principles in cross-cultural settings.

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