Master of Arts (MA) Program

Graduates of the two-year tuition-free American Studies MA program at the ASC are equipped with specialized knowledge to understand the various cultural and social phenomena of the United States of America and the Western Hemisphere at large. They also have systematized and specialized knowledge of the terminology, theory, and methodology of interdisciplinary American Studies concerned with the Americas.

What you will learn

Thanks to the interdisciplinary curriculum, the graduates of the American Studies Center can not only recognize and understand the facts and processes of American traditions and societies but also collect, combine, interpret them and on that basis offer their judgments and opinions. They can explain, critically and creatively, the phenomena and processes observable in both Americas. They know how to acquire knowledge on their own and develop their research skills. The MA graduates can communicate with specialists in American studies and related fields using various communication channels and techniques. They know how to promote knowledge about the US and the entire Western Hemisphere. They can communicate in written and spoken English in the field of American studies at the B2+ level. They can write end-of-semester research papers and an MA thesis in expert English, using specialized terminology, and relying on interdisciplinary research methods. Our graduates have a good command of basic Spanish, at least at the A2.1 level, and in the course of studies they can choose to specialize in Latin America and the Caribbean region.

MA graduates have skills and competences allowing them to launch their careers in an array of professions-in business, foreign trade, journalism, media, culture, education, administration, foreign service and international organizations, as well as tourism. Besides, our alumni are ready to constantly develop and update their skills and they are encouraged during their studies to continue further their professional and academic development. They have skills and methodological competence to continue their studies at the doctoral and postgraduate levels.

MA Program for 2020/21

Semester 1

Hemispheric Lecture: International Relations in the Western Hemisphere

Key Readings in American Studies

Two of the following research proseminars of your choice:

  • Social Movements and Social Change in Contemporary America
  • Power and Society in the Americas
  • American Political Parties – The Past and the Present
  • Popular Genres in the United States
  • Politics in American Audiovisual Media
  • Slavery and the Making of the Americas

Academic Writing MA

Advanced English or Spanish at your level


Semester 2

One of the following research lectures of your choice:

  • American Romanticism: Figures, Tensions, Contexts
  • Cultural Implications of the Holocaust in the U.S., Israel, and Europe


Three of the following research proseminars of your choice:

  • American Cult Cinema
  • American Culture Wars
  • American Poetry: Politics, Movements, Manifestos
  • People and Their Lives and Stories in the 20th-Century United States
  • Gun Culture and Violence in American Society
  • Cold War Communications: U.S. Global Engagement in the “War of Words”


Advanced English or Spanish at your level


Semester 3

MA Seminar I

Texts in American culture/Texts in Latin American culture

Two senior research lectures:

  • (In the fall of 2021 we will have a new offer; for your information, however, for the fall 2020 we will be offering to second-year students Cultural Diversity of the Western Hemisphere; US and Poland; Imaginative Resonances: Literature and Science in the 19th-Century America. Naturally, once you get there your courses will be different)

Two elective courses:

  • For the fall 2020 we prepared the following electives for the second-year students: Gender, Populism, and the New Culture Wars: Social and Cultural Change in the Trump Era; Post-secularism and Religions in the Time of Globalization; The New Normal; Images of Native Americans)

Practical project


Semester 4

MA Seminar II

Open lectures held by the ASC and other departments.

Elective courses offered by other departments.


Program download

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. What is the limit for the number of places available in the year 2020-2021 in the MA program?
    We are allowed to admit 70 candidates; besides, we have 3 places for students transferring from other universities or other programs.
  2. Do I have to register for the exam, besides registering in the IRK online system?
    No, there is no need to do that. By registering in the IRK online system, you automatically register for the exam.
  3. If I am traveling on the day of the exam or because of some other reason simply can’t show up for the exam, is there a way for me to take the entrance exam online from a distance?
    No, to be admitted to the MA program you have to show up in person and take the exam. It’s scheduled for July 13, 2020, though due to the COVID-19 pandemic it may be postponed until a later date. There may be a second round of admissions in September.
  4. The entrance exam predates my BA diploma exam. Can I take the entrance exam anyway?
    Yes. Just be sure to file your diploma or a certificate attesting to the completion of the BA exam by September 30, 2020. The diploma is necessary for the admission to become complete; only after you submit all the required documents, the diploma included, will we be able to issue an official decision.

Course catalogues

Over the years the American Studies Center has offered a variety of courses for students to choose from. The catalogues are a quick and convenient tool to browse through the Center’s course offerings at the particular point in time.

Download The Latest Course Catalogue


Previous Catalogues


Class Attendance Rules

A student enrolled in an ASC class is allowed to miss no more than two class meetings in a given semester (no medical documentation is required). In case of further absences medical documentation must be presented to the instructor and the student is obliged to arrange with the instructor how to make up for the classes missed. If absences are due to causes other than illness (eg. travel for research purposes), the student should notify the teacher at least a week before the planned absence and make arrangements concerning the required make-up work. Absences due to research travel require written support from MA supervisor. Instructors have the right to fail students who have missed more than two class meetings for reasons not related to health.

NOTE: The above rules concern electives, proseminars and seminars in both the BA and the MA program; they do not concern lecture courses.

Schedules of exams

Dear Students,

We would like to remind you that, despite the fact that at the ASC we have an annual system of checking students’ transcripts, you are obliged to get credits for the courses and lectures which took place during the winter semester till the end of the make up session at the latest. Moreover, it is your task to make sure that grades in your USOS file and in your student’s book (indeks) are identical. When they are not you have to resolve the differences directly with the lecturers. According to the new university rules, grades entered into the USOS system serve as the basic documentation of your achievements. Besides, there is no possibility to enter the grades into the USOS system retroactively, so please make sure that all of them are in place by the end of the make up session.

MA Examinations

The deadlines for the submission of MA and BA theses as well as the planned dates of BA and MA exams at the ASC UW

Dear Students,

Below you will find the deadlines for the submission of MA and BA theses as well as the planned dates of BA and MA exams at the ASC UW in the academic year 2019/2020:

  • The deadline to submit a thesis: by March 4, 2020
    The exam dates: March 27, 2020
  • The deadline to submit a thesis: by June 18, 2020
    The exam dates:  July 8-17, 2020
  • The deadline to submit a thesis: by September 3, 2020
    The exam dates: September 22-24, 2020
  • The deadline to submit a thesis: by December 3, 2020
    The exam dates: December 18, 2020

I would like to emphasize that the ASC Director as well as the ASC Students’ Office will strictly adhere to the above deadlines and will not make any exceptions. Failure to submit a thesis by June 4, 2020 will irreversibly result in postponing of a BA or MA exam until the end of September 2020.

You are being informed about the planned exam dates and submission deadlines well ahead of time so you may consider them making plans for holidays and further education.


Dr. Małgorzata Gajda-Łaszewska
Counselor for Students’ Affairs

Open Academic Sessions (OZN)


Each ASC student receives an OZN card. The purpose of this requirement is to enhance ASC students’ intellectual development through participation in a variety of extracurricular academic activities: public lectures, debates, seminars, or cultural events such as film festivals. While the OZN calendar is kept full by the coordinator, many OZN events are suggested by faculty and students. We strongly encourage student initiative – the whole point is for you to attend events that interest you. The OZN requirement 30 points for MA studies. In most cases, 1 OZN is awarded for 45 minutes of an academic activity. Each ASC student receives an OZN card where events should be listed. Each event should be signed by the organizer or a member of ASC faculty present.

NOTE: OZN points are not attached to any single semester–you should collect them and receive credit throughout your studies.

Read more about the OZN program opportunities and grading here.

The Transatlantic Symposium

The Transatlantic Symposium is a program of academic exchange inaugurated by Prof. Reinhard Isensee at Humboldt University Berlin in cooperation with international partners in 2003. The University of Warsaw American Studies Center joined the program in 2012 and has been a regular partner ever since. As of 2011, Oregon State University at Corvallis has been the Symposium’s regular US partner. Former European and American partners include Bard College, Georgetown University, Viadrina University, University of Wroclaw, and American University in Bulgaria.

Each Symposium encompasses a graduate student conference, addressed primarily to M.A. students, and a study tour. At the conference, students present papers on the topic of that year’s Symposium. The tour includes meetings with representatives of national agencies, local government officials, and non-governmental organizations, as well as museum visits and other activities. The tour and the conference are coordinated by student organizers from participating universities with faculty supervision. The week-long program offers participants ample opportunity to engage in knowledge exchange.

The Symposium locations alternate between the United States (in even years) and Europe (in odd years). The Symposium traditionally takes place in the last week of March.

The Symposium is preceded by a series of pre-departure seminars starting in the fall. These seminars help students prepare their presentations and get ready for the trip. Participation in the Symposium is decided on a competitive basis whenever the number of interested candidates exceeds the available slots. In the past, the number of participating UW ASC students oscillated between 2 and 8, averaging between 4 and 5.

The ASC makes every effort to reduce the cost of participation to the students. While the cost incurred by students has decreased over the years, this depends on the funding available that year.

The UW ASC coordinator is Dr. Tomasz Basiuk.


dr Małgorzata Gajda-Łaszewska

ASC Counselor for Students’ Affairs

+48 22 55 333 19

Room 303