International Politics Certificate

Contact: Enbao Wang , Ph.D

The International Politics Certificate integrates a wide variety of existing courses into a cohesive whole focusing on international issues. This program of study is designed to prepare students for career opportunities in the new world system—a world system in which nongovernmental actors are proliferating, global communications networks multiplying, world travel expanding and in which states are becoming increasingly interdependent. The Certificate is particularly useful for students pursuing careers in the foreign service, international institutions, nongovernmental international organizations, and international business. The International Studies Certificate aims both to ready students for careers in the new world system and to foster global understanding.

The International Politics Certificate requires two semesters of a foreign language with prerequisite preparation in general education courses that emphasize world geography and culture. The core courses, also at the lower-division level, emphasize international political and economic structures and interrelationships. The student then chooses an area for concentrated study.

The International Politics Certificate is intended to familiarize students with the relations among nations and other actors in the international system. This option will focus on the institutions and agencies through which states and groups of people interact at the global level. Consideration will also be given to the political, social and cultural practices of the different people who comprise the global system. This option is particularly useful for students pursuing careers in international service or in international business or nongovernmental organizations.

Student Learning Outcomes

Upon completion of the International Studies Certificate (International Relations Concentration), students will be able to do the following:

  • understand major themes of global studies and current status and trend of globalization;
  • develop the theoretical expertise necessary to explain global issues and to anticipate emerging threats, challenges, and opportunities in the global arena;
  • identify key institutions and dynamics in the development of the contemporary international system as well as their historical foundations;
  • recognize the differences of nations in political, economic, social, religious and cultural areas as well as models of development;
  • apply relevant methodologies to produce research papers on global issues;
  • demonstrate basic proficiency in a language in addition to English.

Requirements (26 credits)

  1. Language (8 Credits)
  2. Politics and Economics (6 Credits): Choose two courses from the below
    • POLS 242 Intro To World Politics (3)
    • POLS 251 Intro to Comparative Politics (3)
    • ECON 100 Intro To Economics (3)
  3. Civilization and Culture (6 Credits): Choose two courses from the below
    • ANTH 205 Cultural Anthropology (3)
    • GEOG 102 World Regional Geography (3)
    • GEOG 103 Geog And Contemp Soc (3)
    • HIST 151 World History to 1500 (3)
    • HIST 152 World History since 1500 (3)
  4. Program Electives (6 Credits): Choose two courses or six credits from the below
    • POLS 304 Cultural Political Theory (3)
    • POLS 340 U.S. Foreign Policy (3)
    • POLS 342 International Law (3)
    • POLS 343 Int'l Conflict Management (3)
    • POLS 345 Model United Nations (3)
    • POLS 346 International Organizations (3)
    • POLS 348 International Human Rights (3)
    • POLS 351 Politics Of China Through Film (3)
    • POLS 353 Politics Of Japan (3)
    • POLS 355 Internatl Political Economy (3)
    • POLS 357 Politics of Pac Rim Thru Film (3)
    • POLS 442 War and the State (3)
    • POLS 457 U.S.-China Relations (3)


Students may be eligible for a waiver of the foreign language requirement (8 credits) if 1) they can document that English is not their first language or 2) they can document their foreign language proficiency by taking the language proficiency test administered by the Language Department of UH Hilo. Please note that students who are granted a waiver do not receive credit.

Any request for a waiver must be submitted in writing to the certificate advisor, Dr. Enbao Wang, with any supporting documentation.