Native-American Studies term papers

What is Native-American Studies?

Native-American Studies, also referred to as American Indian Studies, is an interdisciplinary study of the Native-American people and their history, culture and politics from past to present.  Actual Native-American Studies may vary concerning what peoples are studied based on the educational institution.  According to the University of California Davis, programs often offer “a formal comparative, interdisciplinary, and hemispheric approach to the study of indigenous cultures of the Americas.  This approach includes faculty specialized in a variety of disciplines including art, literature, religion, linguistics, history, anthropology, political science, ethnomusicology, performance and dance studies, and women and gender studies.”


History of Native-American Studies

Dissimilar to other historical or anthropological studies, Native-American Studies stems from the knowledge and experiences of the indigenous peoples.  Native-American history is stressed in this type of study.  In other words, much of the curriculum and widely studied aspects of Native-American Studies were derived from the native peoples themselves to help others gain a better understanding of their culture and way of life in the past and present.


Majoring or Minoring in Native-American Studies

Native-American Studies in offered at a variety of different educational institutions as either a major or minor in an undergraduate program or in a graduate program.  Majoring in Native-American Studies in an undergraduate program grants the individual a Bachelor’s Degree, while enrollment in a graduate program for the area of study grants the student a Master’s Degree.  Internships for Native-American Studies majors are widely available through universities, museums, historical preservation organizations and sites, and other institutions dealing with Native-American history, preservation, and/or growth.  Internships in this field are especially helpful in securing a job after graduation since it allows students to gain a better understanding of the type of work that is available to a Native-American Studies major.    


Career Opportunities for Native-American Studies Majors

A major in Native-American Studies is what is known as a liberal arts degree.  As such, a Native-American Studies major has a significant amount of career opportunities available to him/her following graduation.  Some common employers who seek employees with this type of degree include: museums, hospitals, social service agencies, Indian Health Services, environmental organizations, National Park Service, natural resource organizations, educational organizations, arts organizations, Bureau of Indian Affairs, health care services, and government agencies.  Jobs that are offered by some of these employers include: cultural and historic preservationist, marketing, museum and/or art gallery curator or employee, tourism director or assistant, social welfare worker, lobbyist, health services administrator or assistant, teacher or other educator, social service employee, advocate.   

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