Studying college studentsThe undergraduate major in Urban and Community Studies is an interdisciplinary program in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences with a focus on educating citizens on the multiple dimensions of urban and community life and preparing students for careers in public and community service as well as graduate study in social work, public administration, law, planning, public health, or other related areas.

The major has three parts. First, students receive a broad education in the study of cities, suburbs, neighborhoods and communities through core courses in three academic subject areas drawn from Economics, Geography, History, Political Science, Public Policy, Sociology, and Urban and Community Studies. Second, students acquire a solid foundation in analytical techniques such as quantitative methods (e.g., statistical analysis of survey research), qualitative methods (e.g., textual analysis of interview, observational, ethnographic and archival research),  and geographic information systems . Finally, students take additional electives in order to broaden their academic training or to develop a deeper specialization in selected areas.

Degree Plan as of Academic Year 2019/2020

Two required core courses = 6 credits
Introduction to Urban & Community Studies URBN 2000 (W)
Understanding Your Community or
Urban Semester: Seminar
URBN 4000 or

INTD 3594


Select three courses from three different departments = 9 credits
(Cross-listed courses count towards the non-URBN department)

Urban Development & Policy ECON 2439
Economics of Poverty ECON 2456
Globalization GEOG 2000
Introduction to Sustainable Cities GEOG 2400
Urban Geography GEOG/URBN 3200
Urban & Regional Planning GEOG 4210
History of Urban America HIST/URBN 3541 (W)
Immigrants & the Shaping of American History HIST 3554
African American History Since 1865 HIST/AFRA 3564
History of Latino/as in the US HIST 3674/LLAS 3220
Urban Politics POLS 3632 (W) or URBN 3632W
Public Admin. or Public Admin. in Theory & Practice POLS 3842 or PP 3031
Social Policy PP 4034
Social Welfare & Social Work SOCI 3425
Urban Sociology SOCI 3901/URBN 3275 (W)
Communities SOCI 3911
Urban Anthropology URBN 3210  (Formerly URBN 3000)
Select one of the following courses = 3 credits
Information Technology for Economics ECON 2327
Introduction to Geographic Information Systems GEOG/CE 2500 (formerly GEOG 4500)
Geographic Data Analysis GEOG 3500Q
Quantitative Analysis in Political Science POLS 2072Q
Survey Research Methods PP/URBN 2100
Public Policy Research Methods I (Program Evaluation) PP 3010
Methods of Social Research SOCI 3201
Introduction to Statistics II STAT 2215Q
Research Methods & (Quantitative) Analysis in UCS URBN 2301Q
Qualitative Analysis of UCS URBN 2302
Select two additional courses from group II, group III or from the list below = 6 credits
Migration ANTH 3150 (W)
Applied Regional Analysis: The CT Economy ECON 2328 (W)
Economics of Taxation & Government Spending ECON 2431
Public Finance ECON 3431 (W)
Urban & Regional Economics ECON 3439 (W) or URBN 3439
Service Learning Through Sport & Physical Activity EDLR 3547 (W)
Reading the American City ENGL 3235W
Geographical Analysis of Urban Social Issues GEOG 4200W
Crime, Policing, and Punishment in the US
HIST 2810
Topics in Public History HIST 3102
Social & Cultural History of CT & New England HIST 3520
Asian American Experience Since 1850 HIST 3530/AASI 3578
History of Urban Latin America HIST/URBN 3650
African American History to 1865 HIST/AFRA/HRTS 3563
Hip-Hop, Politics & Youth Culture in America HIST/AFRA 3568
Diversity Issues in Human Dev. & Family Studies HDFS 2001
Social & Community Influence on Children in the US HDFS 3110
Planning & Managing Human Service Programs HDFS 3510
Public Policy & the Family HDFS 3530
Child Welfare, Law & Social Policy HDFS 3540 (W)
Seminar in Urban Problems (Urban Semester) INTD 3584
State & Local Government POLS 2622
Comparative Perspectives on Human Rights POLS/HRTS 3212
Globalization and Political Change POLS 3406 (W)
American Political Economy POLS 3617
African American Politics POLS/AFRA 3642
Latino Political Behavior POLS 3662/LLAS 3270
The Policy-making Process POLS 3847
Public Policy PP 3001
Cases in Public Policy PP 3020 (W)
Race & Policy PP 3033/AFRA 3033/POLS 3633
State & Local Fiscal Problems PP 4033
Criminology SOCI 2301 (W)
Sociological Perspectives on Poverty SOCI 3429 (W)
Aging in American Society SOCI 3459/HDFS 3240 (W)
Ethnicity & Race SOCI 3501 (W) or AFRA 3501
Sociology of Religion SOCI 3521 (W)
Sociology of Gender SOCI 3601 (W)
African Americans & Social Protest SOCI/AFRA/HRTS 3825
Urban Problems SOCI 3903W or URBN 3276 (W)
City Life
SOCI 2907 (W)  (formerly SOCI 3907 (W))
City and Community in Film
Internship in UCS or Urban Semester: Seminar URBN 3981 & 3991** or INTD 3594 (W)
Foreign Study (With Department Head consent)
URBN 3993*
Special Topics URBN 3995
Variable Topics URBN 3998
Senior Thesis
URBN 4497W*
Independent Study
URBN 4999*
* = Courses that require instructor consent. (URBN 3993 requires Department Head Consent.)
** = Students seeking to do an internship must take URBN 3981 and URBN 3991 concurrently. One may take up to 6 credits for the combined courses but only 3 credits can be used toward the major, all other approved internship credits will be used to meet the universities 120 credit graduation requirement. Requires instructor consent.
(W) = These courses may be offered by the university with or without a Writing Component.
Students interested in pursuing a minor in Urban and Community Studies are advised to complete 1000-level courses in the social sciences, which are prerequisites for courses in Urban and Community Studies. These include, but are not limited to GEOG /URBN 1200; ECON 1201; POLS 1602; PP 1001; SOCI 1001, 1251; STAT 1000Q/1100Q; and URBN 1300 . They should also plan on enrolling in URBN 2000, which is open to sophomores, as soon as possible. (The minor is offered by the Urban and Community Studies Program).
If you are interested in learning more about the UCS major, please contact us at (959)200-3771.

PDF’s of Degree Requirements and Final Plan of Studies:

UCS Degree Requirements PDF – catalog copy 19/20

UCS Degree Requirements PDF – catalog copy 18/19

UCS Degree Requirements PDF – catalog copy 16/17

UCS DegreeRequirements PDF – catalog copy 15/16

UCS Degree Requirements PDF – catalog copy 14/15  • (UCS Final Plan of Study as of 14/15)

UCS Degree Requirements PDF – catalog copy 13/14 •  (UCS Final Plan of Study prior to 14/15)

(For degree requirements prior to catalog copy 13/14 please contact the UCS office at (959)200-3771 or visit the undergraduate course catalog.)