International Arts and Culture


GW Students at theater

The International Arts & Culture (IAC) cohort offers students the ability to incorporate a study of the humanities and active involvement in performance and studio arts into their first year experience. The IAC cohort draws students interested in the visual arts, performing arts, art history, and majors independent of art.

Students in this cohort are immersed in the artistic culture in and around Washington, DC. They attend performances, watch private screenings, and meet with innovative artists to learn more about their lives and bodies of work. The courses in this cohort include a course that focuses on Women and the Creative Process, a course on Artists as Activists,  a University Writing course, and a leadership seminar. These courses apply to general curriculum requirements in the Columbian College of Arts and Science and will fulfill electives in all other schools.


Academic Program

The academic program of IAC has four important pieces:

  • one semester sequence of "Women & the Creative Process" 
  • one semester sequence of “Artists as Activists”
  • one semester of University Writing 1020
  • two semester evening symposia series

The GW undergraduate tuition rate applies to students taking 12-18 credit hours per semester.


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Courses and Credits


Fall Semester Courses and Credits

Women in Arts

How can an ‘abstract’ and subjective discipline like art be experienced, discussed, and written about within a scholarly setting? This humanities course, taught by the Program Coordinator, consists of readings and discussions about aesthetics, creativity, and cultural values. The course is framed by an exploration of how works of art are conceptualized, developed, discussed, and evaluated, with a special emphasis on women artists contributions.

Course material includes film, performance and visual art works, theoretical texts, journal articles, and criticism papers.

University Writing Course

This course fulfils one literacy requirement. The University Writing Program provides comprehensive writing and research instruction and is required for all undergraduate students. WLP offers a choice of topics taught by the program’s University Writing faculty. This course is not cohort-specific and students may select any of the courses offered.


This one credit course does not fulfill an academic requirement, but counts towards the students’ overall earned credit-hours. The weekly symposia is designed to supplement the academic component of the program with a wide variety of extra-curricular opportunities, many of which are exclusive to members of WLP. Symposia fall into two main categories: women’s leadership and discipline-specific exploration.The discipline-specific events are designed to introduce students to successful leaders in art creation, curation, and cultural institutions, while also generating new ideas about aspects of community and leadership, and providing networking opportunities.



Spring Semester Courses and Credits


This course explores the modern and contemporary history of work by seminal artists who challenge political and societal structures and advocate for social change. How do successful artists speak truth in difficult times? What impact does their work have on existing political and social institutions? And how effective are these strategies of storytelling through art in engaging and energizing a community? We examine central texts and artworks that expose political, social, cultural, civil, and human rights abuses and compare different strategies that artists employ to highlight these topics. This course fulfills the Writing in the Disciplines requirement. 


The weekly symposium take place throughout the fall and spring semesters.