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Undergraduate Certificates

The University of Kentucky offers multiple undergraduate certificate programs that help students develop expertise within a specific field of interest. Currently, there are three certificate programs closely related to the international studies major: Global Studies, International FIlm Studies, Peace Studies.

Certificate of Global Studies

The Certificate in Global Studies is designed to show collaboration across all the undergraduate colleges in creating a focus for students’ scholarly work in international settings. Successful completers of this interdisciplinary Certificate have demonstrated their preparedness to live and work in a global community. There are four components: globally focused course work, second language course work, credit-bearing education abroad experience, and co-curricular programming.

Details and Requirements

Participation in the Undergraduate Certificate of Global Studies at the University of Kentucky demonstrates your commitment to participating in a global community. Study at home, study abroad; do language; be part of the international community, at home, and overseas.

CGP recognizes your international experience, language study, your globally focused course work, and, through co-curricular programming, your international engagement.

The Certificate of Global Studies will allow students to demonstrate their preparedness to live and work in a global community. By taking a series of courses with an international focus that amplifies the global dimension of their majors, by engaging in a credit-bearing education abroad experience, by enhancing their experience with a second language, and by participating in internationally focused co-curricular activities, students will expand their view of the world and their place in it, and their perspectives on their own societies at home.

As the workplace seeks employees who can work in international or multicultural teams, and as participation in U.S. society increasingly demands the skills of global citizenship, our students will benefit from an additional degree credential, alongside their major(s) and/or minor(s), that demonstrates their dedication to and experience with global perspectives. Having this Certificate on the transcript will also show that the students are interested in the international facets of their academic and/or pre-professional training, which will be attractive to potential graduate programs or employers.

The structure of the Certificate of Global Studies offers an academic credential as well as a coherently planned academic core, for students who otherwise might simply take a smattering of international courses or participate in some type of isolated international experience. At the heart of the Certificate is the required Education Abroad experience (study abroad, internship, research abroad), but the Certificate’s structure is designed to make that experience integral to the undergraduate program of study. A coherent program in which the time abroad is both preceded and followed by appropriate opportunities for reflection, and bolstered by rigorous academic course work, will enhance the impact of the international experience. Research has demonstrated that one advantage of education abroad is that, when appropriately designed, it can move students from dependent to independent learners, and can help them to acquire interpersonal and intercultural competence

In the Certificate curriculum, the skills that are acquired during the student’s experience abroad is reinforced by course work that situates that experience in both academic and preprofessional growth, beyond that which is in the major or minor course of study. If the course work takes place before the program abroad, the student will be more receptive to the experience, better prepared to cope with cultural difference, and more educated about socio-historical contexts. If the course work takes place after the student’s return, it offers opportunities for reflection and enrichment of the lessons learned abroad. In either case, the experiential learning in the international context goes hand-in-hand with course work that has an intercultural and global focus. The Certificate curriculum is designed to be feasible across the array of UK academic majors. If the student already has selected a major with an international focus, the Certificate’s additional course work and required component abroad will extend and deepen that curriculum. And if the student has a major that does not have a visible and discrete international focus, the Certificate structure offers the student a context within which to understand the major from an internationally aware perspective.


The Undergraduate Certificate in Global Studies has the following interlocking components:

2) Second language course work (through 201, or one semester of a language you didn't study in high school)


For further information about the Global Studies Certificate and its curriculum, please visit their website here and/or refer to the University of Kentucky Undergraduate Bulletin.

Questions? Contact the Director of Global Studies, Dr. Julie Human at

Certificate in International Film Studies

The certificate in International Film Studies is a highly interdisciplinary program that allows students to bring the knowledge they have gathered in their home departments to bear on their work in film studies. The certificate in International Film Studies emphasizes, in a comparative global context, how the language and history of film intersects with closely related movements in other artistic media, in philosophy and history, and in different cultural traditions.
The certificate in International Film Studies has three goals:
  1. Introduce students to the history and theoretical vocabulary of cinema.
  2. Provide a comparative approach through which students may reflect upon the nature and problematic concept of national film styles and their relation to each other in an increasingly “globalized” world.
  3. Foster expertise in film analysis and its expression.
Upon completion of the Undergraduate Certificate in International Film Studies, students will be able to:
  1. Analyze the formal and technical aspects of film language and style.
  2. Recognize and define the primary aesthetic movements of world cinema, and situate them in social and historical context.
  3. Develop a critical language appropriate to the analysis of film.
  4. Communicate their analyses effectively in written and spoken form.

For more information on program requirements, courses, and enrollment in the program, please visit their website here and/or refer to the University of Kentucky Undergraduate Bulletin.

Certificate in Peace Studies

The purpose of the Peace Studies program is to develop students with increased interests and understanding of issues of peace and justice from individual to global levels; to provide them with basic skills in peaceful communication, nonviolent and transformative conflict resolution; and to help them develop peaceful and cooperative cultures. The Peace Studies program will empower students to understand and reduce conflict at multiple levels, and will provide them with conflict resolution skills that are increasingly valued by employers, graduate programs, and are much needed in our communities.

A Peace Studies certificate offers a valuable credential and an appealing focus for students in many disciplines. While UK offers a plethora of courses relevant to Peace Studies, this is the single program that brings these elements into a coherent peacemaking focus. Because Peace Studies is inherently interdisciplinary, it can create an important context that may be missed when courses are completed within the framework of a single discipline. Students in Peace Studies will be better prepared to take advantage of co-curricular opportunities at UK. Many avenues also exist for fruitful synergy between the Peace Studies program and a student’s major and minor fields.

Program Requirements
The Peace Studies certificate is designed to be easily combined with a broad array of majors and minors across UK’s colleges and departments, and will increase a student’s credit hours needed for graduation only under rare circumstances. The Peace Studies program requires 12 credit hours. Six of the 12 required hours come from Peace Studies courses. These include the ‘portal’ course, PCE 201, which introduces students to Peace Studies, and the capstone course, PCE 410, which concludes the program.
Peace Studies Courses
PCE 201 Introduction to Peace Studies (3)
Meets UK Core requirement for Inquiry in the Social Sciences
PCE 410 Peace Studies Capstone Seminar (3)
Meets UK Core requirement for Citizenship-Global Dynamics
Peace Studies Electives
Peace Studies electives are selected from existing courses in the University catalog and reflect both different departments and colleges.
They are grouped into four Focus Areas:
Focus Area I: Peacebuilding (0-6)    
Addresses systems and infrastructure needed to create more peaceful societies.
Focus Area II: Peacemaking (0-6)
Addresses leadership skills, skills for resolving and transforming conflict.
Focus Area III: Promoting Understanding, Cooperation, and Development (0-6)
Addresses cross cultural issues, international organizations, economic and social development.
Focus Area IV: Addressing Global and Regional Pressures (0-6)
Addresses problems of population, scarcity, trade, sustainability, ecosystems, climate, and immigration.
For more information on the Peace Studies Certificate, please visit the program's website here.
Questions? Contact the Director of Peace Studies, Dr. Clayton Thyne at