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Bachelor of Arts in North American Studies Free University of Berlin




Course info


The BA program in North American Studies is characterized by combining expertise in the North American hemisphere (Canada, USA) with training in a total of six disciplines – history, cultural studies, literature studies, political science, sociology and economics. Students select a total of three disciplines (e.g. economics, history and literary studies). In addition, disciplinary perspectives are supplemented by inter- and transdisciplinary courses – e.g. in the form of a lecture series taught by faculty members of all six disciplines.

Why Study Here?

The John F. Kennedy Institute for North American Studies (JFKI) is an interdisciplinary institute for research and training at Free University Berlin. It offers students the opportunity of an academic specialization in numerous facets of North America (US, Canada). Courses are exclusively taught in English. German language skills are not required. No other American/Canadian studies program in German offers a comparable breadth of disciplines devoted to the North American hemisphere.

As an outward looking Area Studies Institute the JFKI prides itself on an excellent network – at home and abroad. The Institute maintains ties to numerous American and Canadian Studies Institutes via the Erasmus Program. Students may benefit from a year abroad at an American or Canadian university as part of the university-wide direct exchange program. Due to the Graduate School’s prestigious visiting professor program well-known researchers from North America regularly teach at the JFKI. The Institute also closely cooperates with the US- and Canadian embassies and institutions such as the American Academy. In addition, the Terra Foundation for American Art funds a visiting professor program in art history.

Free University Berlin offers students of North American an ideal and vibrant environment characterized by a multitude of research projects. Besides numerous individual research projects of faculty members, collaborative research projects focus on popular culture and seriality, American art history (funded by the Terra Foundation), the alt-right movement and trust and transparency in an age of surveillance (TATAS). Faculty members are also active in the two research clusters Contestations of the Liberal Script (SCRIPTS) and Temporal Communities.

Since its foundation in 2006, the Graduate School of North American Studies (GSNAS) award doctoral degrees in all of the six disciplines taught at the Institute. The JFKI is therefore one of the few institutes in Germany which offer training at the undergraduate (BA) and graduate level (MA, PhD).

The research library is based in the Institute and offers access to over 900,000 books, newspapers, journals, DVDs, cartoons, records and other digital media. Its easily accessible open stacks collection makes it one of the most sought-after research libraries on the US and Canada in Europe.

The JFKI has a very active student body. Students run a cafeteria in the basement of the Institute and organize regular events such as movie nights.

Career Opportunities

Students who obtain a BA degree in North American Studies command scientific knowledge and occupational skills that qualify for employment or a consecutive study program.

Most graduates work in the following fields of occupation:

Politics and political advocacy, business and business consulting, international and non-governmental organizations, federal, state and municipal planning and management, education, publishing houses, libraries, research and management in universities and other science-related institutions.

Executive positions or positions in teaching and research may however require further academic training (MA or PhD).

Course options

Here are the different ways in which you can study Bachelor of Arts in North American Studies.

Full Time (6 semesters)

Tuition fees

winter semester: €311.99


Oct, Apr


Free University of Berlin

Kaiserswerther Street 16-18,



14195, Germany

Entry requirement for international students

  • Test of English language proficiency (C1 CEFR).
  • An undergraduate degree program is a study program that leads to the student’s first degree or diploma for higher education.
  • IELTS (Academic) overall result 7.0 or higher; TOEFL Internet based iB: overall score 100 or higher and at least 25 in writing; Cambridge Certificate of Proficiency in English (CPE): grades A-C; Cambridge Certificate in Advanced English (CAE): grades A-B; Cambridge English Scale CPE, CAE und FCE (from January 2015): overall score 180 or higher and at least 180 in writing; International Baccalaureate (IB) Standard or Higher Level (SL/HL): 5 in English.

* Please check with your chosen school for the exact entry requirements for your programme.

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