Academic Bulletin 2023-2024 
    May 30, 2024  
Academic Bulletin 2023-2024

Community and Justice Studies Major

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Faculty: Bloeser, Byrnes, Moore-Roberson, Stephens, Swann-Quinn, Williams

The Community and Justice Studies major is a program in the Interdisciplinary Studies Area of Study. Community and Justice Studies majors may complete any minor to satisfy the college requirement that the major and minor be in different areas of study.

Community and Justice Studies Major Learning Outcomes

Students who successfully complete a major in Community and Justice Studies are expected to achieve the following outcomes in each of the listed areas:

  1. Civic Knowledge

    • Understand one’s sources of identity and their influence on civic values, assumptions, and responsibilities to a wider public*

    • Understand how her/his experiences of engagement relate to broader social, political, and economic contexts of place

    • Understand systematic and group influences on social problems from theoretical and applied perspectives

    • Understand theories of organizational decision-making, democratic change, or dynamics of community change

    • Gain civic and intercultural knowledge

  2. Civic Skills

    • Demonstrate skills of deliberation and bridge building across differences*

    • Function effectively in cross-cultural environments to create change

    • Use frameworks of multiple academic disciplines for ethical analysis of societal issues and conducting community research

  3. Civic Values

    • Develop a concern for issues of justice and equality

    • Develop a commitment to increase efficacy in public life, wiether through everyday citizenship, service, professional work, or activism

    • Demonstrate a determination to raise social and ethical issues and questions in and about public life

    • Develop a responsibility to a larger good*

    • Examine personal motivations and how they affect one’s own active citizenship**

    • Demonstrate the ability to reason ethically about social issues and to connect them to philosophical models of value

  4. Collective Action

    • Demonstrate effective engagement in local and global contexts

    • Participate in a significant project that recognizes and responds to real community needs and desires in ways that move beyond the charity model

    • Navigate political systems and processes, both formal and informal*

*AAC&U, Crucible Movement, p. 4
**Taken from Learning Outcomes developed by Tufts University

The Communication and Justice Studies Major

The Community and Justice Studies major, consisting of a minimum of 44 credits, leads to the Bachelor of Arts degree. At graduation, Community and Justice Studies majors must have a GPA of at least 2.0 in the major. The calculation is based on the grades of all courses presented for the major. Only the most recent grade is considered for courses that have been repeated. No courses for the major may be taken on a Credit/No Credit basis except for internships that are required to be taken CR/NC. A maximum of 8 transfer credits may be counted towards the major; exceptions must be approved by the department chair.        

Courses with prerequisites are marked with an asterisk (*).     


Take courses totaling 24 credits across the following themes. Take one course (4 credits) each from sections a, b, and c, and three courses (12 credits) from section d. Substitutions may be made with the approval of the program director.

D. COMJ Theme electives:

Take three courses (12 credits) within a self-described theme area to be determined with the advisor. Two of these must be at the 300 or 400 level. Students select 3 courses to tie together a theme of interest to the student in order to develop a deeper understanding of a particular idea, issue, or concept. Possible examples include Community Change and Activism, Public Policy, or Neoliberalism.

Civic Participation requirement:

Students are expected to commit to a sustained community engagement position for one year (e.g. Bonner, Davies, Allegheny Volunteer Service Leader, or other varieties of civically engaged internships or experiences). Students should complete this requirement during their Sophomore or Junior year because they will be asked to engage in reflection on this position within COMJ 460 - Community Organizing and Civic Professionalism .

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