Which Schools Offer Courses in Native American Studies?

If you are interested in taking some classes or pursuing a degree in Native American studies, read this article for information about some well-known U.S. schools. See lists of courses in Native American studies, and get descriptions for selected courses. Schools offering Gender Diversity Studies degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

Native American Studies: Courses and Degree Programs Overview

Although Native American Studies programs are relatively new, interest in the topic has caused many universities to create departments specifically for the field. Some schools only offer isolated classes on the subject, while many offer dedicated Native American studies degree programs.

Degree programs are offered at all levels, and some schools also offer undergraduate minor and graduate certificate programs. They often include coursework in Native American history, culture, literature, linguistics and government, and students can choose specializations and electives to explore their areas of interest. For example, schools may have focus areas in Native Americans of North America, Mexico-Central America and South America.

Important Facts About Native American Studies

Degrees Bachelor's degree, master's degree, PhD
Concentrations May include leadership and building Native American nations; indigenous learning communities
Online Availability Many schools offer Native American studies courses online
Possible Careers Public administration, community and regional planning, tribal employee, Native American educator, museum curator, tribal law attorney

Dartmouth University

Founded in 1972, Dartmouth University's interdisciplinary Native American Studies Program offers students a varied selection of courses, as well as a major and a minor in the field. The program also offers guest speakers and workshops on topics such as indigenous ecological knowledge and symbolism in Plains Indians ledger art.


The Perspectives on Native American Studies course introduces students to the ways in which Native Americans approach issues such as tribal expression, identity and sovereignty. Several facets of this culture are examined, including visual arts, philosophy and anthropology. Some of the other courses offered through the Native American Studies department include the following:

  • Ancient Native Americans
  • Native American art history
  • Native American traditional oral literature
  • Gender issues of Native American life
  • Native American law

University of New Mexico

The University of New Mexico's Department of Native American Studies was formed in 1998 and aims not only to educate students, but also to collaborate with Native American communities. The department offer a bachelor's degree and a minor in Native American studies. The program also includes research, community service learning and internship opportunities.


The course Traditions in Native American Philosophy offers an introduction to both the historic and modern philosophical thought of Native peoples. The development of Native social systems is studied, as are the many Native philosophical contributions to the world. The University of New Mexico also offers the following courses:

  • Sociopolitical concepts in Native America
  • Principles of federal Indian law
  • Self-determination and indigenous human rights
  • Contemporary and traditional views on indigenous leadership
  • Education, power and indigenous communities
  • Native American children's literature
  • Native Americans in film
  • Native American Music

Other Schools

The following schools offer courses in Native American studies, though they are just a sample of what's available throughout the country. These may have departments devoted to this discipline and offer one or more programs of study at levels ranging from the undergraduate minor to the PhD.

  • Humboldt State University
  • Montana State University
  • Southern Oregon University
  • Stanford University
  • Syracuse University
  • University of California - Berkeley
  • University of California - Davis
  • University of California - Los Angeles
  • University of Georgia
  • University of Montana
  • University of Oklahoma

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

  • 1. Degree Options:

Popular Schools