UWM Undergraduate Catalog 2017-2018

College of Letters and Science

American Indian Studies

Michael Wilson, Associate Professor of English
Curtin Hall 495,   michael@uwm.edu

The American Indian Studies Program offers an undergraduate major through the Committee Interdisciplinary Major and an undergraduate certificate in American Indian Studies. For information on the American Indian Studies Certificate, see the L&S Certificate Programs section of this catalog.

The major in American Indian Studies provides the opportunity for students to explore scholarship on American Indian peoples with an interdisciplinary lens. The curriculum develops the depth of students’ experience with the methodologies and sources used in the field of American Indian Studies. Although interdisciplinary, American Indian Studies encompasses a distinct body of knowledge. Students majoring in American Indian Studies can select from a wide variety of courses organized under three areas: Culture and Creative Expression; History, Law, and Government; and Education and Community Policy Studies. 

The major curriculum is developed around a core of 15 credits that includes an introduction to the field, two focus courses, and six credits in research and practice. The focus courses are designed to ensure that students accomplish study in major areas related to the experience of American Indian tribal societies and communities. Beyond that, students are encouraged to shape their own programs to meet individual needs and interests through the required field/research capstone project and the selection of elective courses. The capstone research topic will be focused on a student’s particular interest area and will begin in the junior year. The project will be approved and supervised by a faculty member who will guide the student’s research, service project, or applied project through to formal evaluation by a committee of faculty members. A formal field project paper will be presented to the committee.

Course of Study: Major

The CIM submajor in American Indian Studies requires completion of 33 credits in approved American Indian Studies and American Indian Studies-related courses. Of these 33 credits, 15 credits in advanced-level courses numbered (300 and above) must be completed in residence at UWM. The College of Letters and Science requires that students earn at least a 2.500 GPA on all credits attempted for the major at UWM. In addition, a 2.500 GPA on all major credits, including any transfer work, is required. 

Required Core Courses, 6 cr


Introduction, 3 cr


AIS 101

Introduction to American Indian Studies


Research and Practice, 3 cr


AIS 600

Field Project – Capstone Research or Applied Project


Elective Courses, 27 cr
Students must select from the following jointly offered or cross-listed courses:


American Indian Studies Courses


AIS 105

Ethnobotany: Plants in Anishinaabe Culture


AIS 106

Anishinaabe Ethnobotany: Plants in Anishinaabe Philosophy


AIS 151

First Semester Anishinaabemowin (Ojibwe)


AIS 152

Second Semester Anishinaabemowin (Ojibwe)


AIS 203

Western Great Lakes Indian Community Life of the Past


AIS 251

Third Semester Anishinaabemowin (Ojibwe)


AIS 252

Fourth Semester Anishinaabemowin (Ojibwe)


AIS 360

Ezhi-Kinomaageying: Anishinaabe Curriculum


AIS 370

Anishinaabebiige: Archival to Contemporary Writing


Jointly Offered Courses


AIS/Hist 262

American Indian History to 1887


AIS/Hist 263

American Indian History 1887 to the Present


AIS/English 276

Introduction to American Indian Literature


AIS/Anthro 308

Archaeology of North America


AIS/Anthro 309

Archaeology of Central and South America


AIS/Anthro 310

Archaeology of Middle America


AIS/Anthro 311

The World of the Ancient Maya


AIS/Anthro 314

American Indian Societies and Cultures


AIS/Anthro 315

Peoples and Cultures of Mexico and Central America


AIS/Sociol 320

Social Change in American Indian Societies


AIS/Sociol 321

Contemporary Issues of the American Indian


AIS/Anthro 362

Globalization and Language Extinction


AIS/English 372

Survey of American Indian Literature


AIS/Hist 473

Wisconsin Indian History


AIS/Hist 474

Topics in American Indian History


AIS/Hist 475

American Indian History, Law, and Government


AIS/English 520

Studies in American Indian Literature


AIS/English 632

Seminar in American Indian Literature, U/G


Cross-Listed Courses


Anthro 213

American Indian Peoples of Wisconsin




Kimberly M. Blaeser, Prof., PhD
University of Notre Dame

Margaret Noodin, Asst. Prof., PhD
University of Minnesota


American Indian Studies (AIS)


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