Requirement E


Requirement E is the Urban Studies Junior Seminar:

  • URBS UN3545 — The Shaping of the Modern City: The Historic City and it's Persistence in the Present - Prof. Aaron Passell
    This course will explore key social issues in the history of American urban form (sex, race) and follow them into the present by examining historic districts in contemporary New York City.  We will investigate the practice and politics of historic preservation from a number of perspectives (sociology, planning and politics).  The seminar will be grounded in close reading and discussion of existing scholarship in the social sciences, but will also require research on historic districts and neighborhood change, culminating in a group presentation and an individual research paper.
  • URBS UN3545 — The Shaping of the Modern City: History and Urban Space - Prof. Gergely Baics
    This course will explore key topics in American urban history, focusing primarily on issues related to urban space, including urban growth and development, built environment and urban form, sociospatial patterns and urban inequalities.  Seminar discussions will be grounded in reading key works of urban historical scholarship, complemented by small workshops on spatial history projects and primary source analysis.  Course assignments are aimed at developing critical research skills, and include original research projects, culminating in a group presentation and an individual research paper.

  • URBS UN3545 — The Shaping of the Modern City: Urban Inequality - Prof. Debbie Becher
    This course will explore the origins and experiences of US urban inequalities from the 1970's to the present.  We will examine social-science research about race, class, and cultural segregation; about living and laboring in unequal cities; and about gentrification and development. Students will read and discuss existing research but will also develop their own skills and experience in doing research.  During the semester, students will participate in class discussions, write short reading-reaction memos, and produce and present an original research paper.

  • HSUR UN3545 — Contemporary Issues in Urban Issues: Urban Politics and Policies in the Global Age - Prof. Kathryn Yatrakis
    While the general focus of this course is on American cities, cities throughout the world will increasingly be included as we move into the second decade of the 21st century, and understand that now more than half of the world's population lives in urban areas and it seems that the other half are moving there or wish to do so.  While some cities in the United States and Western Europe have been shrinking in size, cities in Asia and Africa are growing exponentially so that 90% of the projected increase in urban populations by 2050 will be concentrated in Asia and Africa. Through readings and discussion, we will examine current political, economic, social cultural and demographic forces that are continuing to shape urban areas today. One important theme of this course will be the integration of theoretical frameworks with urban realities.

  • You must complete at least two of your ‘A’ courses before taking the Junior Seminar.
  • In order to guarantee small classes, the seminar is limited to 16 students per section.
  • The Urban Studies program will sometimes create new sections, or request that students enroll in different sections, in order to keep the class sizes small and evenly-distributed.
  • Non-majors are occasionally admitted to the seminar as space permits, but only by permission of the instructor.
  • You must attend the first class session to secure your position on the roster.
  • For Barnard students, URBS UN3545 — The Shaping of the Modern City fulfills the Barnard General Education Requirement: Historical Studies (HIST).
  • If you intend to study abroad during your junior year, please see an Urban Studies faculty member to plan your schedule. You will make it up during the first semester of your senior year.