Indicators of Achievement

The American Ethnic Studies program is centered on developing students’ ability to critically analyze the role of race, ethnicity and power in the United States, and to effectively engage and communicate about difference. Our goal is that students completing the program understand and engage four key areas:

  • The historical construction of race and ethnicity in shaping the contemporary U.S. landscape
  • The political, economic and social dimensions of race and ethnicity, and the ways in which power gets embedded in these relationships
  • The role of symbolic and aesthetic expressions of traditionally underrepresented racial/ethnic communities in the U.S., particularly as they serve to maintain, resist, and/or transform privilege and oppression
  • The development of identity, resistance and protest movements in the context of racial and ethnic marginalization in the U.S.

Student Learning Outcomes for the American Ethnic Studies Minor

  1. History
    • Ability to articulate significant historical questions about changing constructions of race and ethnicity over time
    • Ability to articulate how historical forces shape constructions of race and ethnicity, and the impact of those constructions on particular groups at particular points in time
  2. Power
    • Ability to articulate significant questions and demonstrate an understanding of the relationship between political, economic, and social dimensions of race and ethnicity and their relationship to institutions and systems of power
  3. Culture
    • Ability to articulation of significant questions about the relationship between cultural expressions and efforts to maintain, resist and/or transform privilege and oppression
    • Demonstration of an understanding of the connections between cultural expression and power/privilege
  4. Resistance
    • Ability to articulate an understanding of the factors surrounding the emergence of identity, resistance and protest in contesting racial and ethnic marginalization
    • Ability to critically compare expressions of resistance among different groups or at different points in time and examine their impact
Willamette University

American Ethnic Studies


900 State Street
Salem Oregon 97301 U.S.A.

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