The American Studies major is one that focuses upon life and culture in the United States, past and present, using resources, techniques, and approaches from a variety of disciplines. The major examines the diversity of Americans, as well as their commonly-shared experiences, and incorporates race, gender, class, and ethnicity as categories for cultural analysis. Students majoring in American Studies plan, with faculty advisors, a program of study that reflects their interests in American society and culture: history, the arts, literature, government, economics, social structures, institutions, education, and philosophy. Their combination of a core of interdisciplinary American Studies courses on specific topics, themes, eras and ways to study American culture, together with American subject courses from different disciplines, provides both breadth and in-depth knowledge of the development of American culture. With the encouragement of the American Studies faculty, students often include study abroad, Washington Semester, or internship experience in their programs.