European Studies Council

The MacMillan Center
332 Luce Hall, 203.432.3423
Graduate Certificate of Concentration in European Studies

Francesca Trivellato (History)

Faculty and Participating Staff
For faculty listings, see European and Russian Studies under Degree-Granting Departments and Programs in this bulletin.

The European Studies Council promotes research programs on European politics, culture, economy, society, and history. The geographical scope of the council’s activities extends from Ireland to Italy, and from Portugal to the lands of the former Soviet Union. The council’s definition of Europe transcends conventional divisions between Western, Central, and Eastern Europe, and includes the Balkans and Russia. The U.S. Department of Education has repeatedly designated the council a National Resource Center and a FLAS Center under its HEA Title VI program.

The European Studies Council builds on existing programmatic strengths at Yale while serving as a catalyst for the development of new initiatives. Yale’s current resources in European Studies are vast and include the activities of many members of the faculty who have teaching and research specialties in the area. Such departments as Comparative Literature, Economics, English, History, History of Art, Political Science, Slavic Languages and Literatures, and Sociology regularly offer courses with a European focus. These are complemented by the rich offerings and faculty strength of the French, German, Italian, Slavic, and Spanish and Portuguese language and literature departments, as well as the European resources available in the professional schools and other programs, such as Film and Media Studies. By coordinating Yale’s existing resources, including those in the professional schools, encouraging individual and group research, and promoting an integrated comparative curriculum and degree programs, the council strongly supports the disciplinary and interdisciplinary study of European regions and their interactions. The council is also home to special programs in European Union Studies, Baltic Studies, Russian Studies, and Hellenic Studies; a Polish cultural initiative; and the Center for Historical Enquiry and the Social Sciences (CHESS).

In addition to the M.A. degree program, the council offers students in the University’s doctoral and other professional degree programs the chance to obtain a Graduate Certificate of Concentration in European Studies by fulfilling a supplementary curriculum. The undergraduate major in Russian and East European Studies is administered by the Department of Slavic Languages and Literatures.

The benefits provided to the Yale community by the European Studies Council include its affiliation with interuniversity and international organizations that can offer specialized training programs and research grants for graduate students (see, support conferences among European and North American scholars, and subsidize European visitors to Yale. The Fox International Fellowship Program, for example, offers generous fellowship support to qualified students who undertake research at specified institutions in the United Kingdom, Germany, France, and Russia; and the Geneva Exchange supports Yale doctoral students who wish to study at the Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies in Geneva, Switzerland. Furthermore, the council supplements the regular Yale curriculum with film series, lectures, and seminars by eminent scholars, artists, diplomats, and political officials. The European Studies Council constantly expands its formal connections with a variety of European institutions and regularly hosts a European Union Fellow sponsored by the European Commission.

Fields of Study

European and Slavic languages and literatures; economics; history; music; political science; law; sociology and other social sciences.

Graduate Certificate of Concentration in European Studies

Yale graduate students may pursue the Graduate Certificate of Concentration in European Studies in conjunction with graduate-degree programs in the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences and the professional schools. Candidates will choose to focus on one of two areas of concentration, either (1) Russia and Eastern Europe or (2) Central and Western Europe. Admission is contingent on the candidate’s acceptance and matriculation into a Yale graduate-degree program. To complete the certificate, candidates must demonstrate expertise in the area through their major graduate or professional field, as well as show command of the diverse interdisciplinary, geographic, and cultural-linguistic approaches associated with expertise in the area of concentration. In order to be awarded the certificate, candidates need to fulfill all requirements detailed below, as well as complete their Yale University graduate degree program.

Certificate candidates must comply with the general requirements for all MacMillan Center graduate certificates, as described at

Additional Requirements Specific to European Studies

  1. Minimum L4 language proficiency in two modern European languages, in addition to English. Students wishing to focus on Russia and Eastern Europe must demonstrate knowledge of Russian or an Eastern European language; those focusing on Central and Western Europe must demonstrate knowledge of one of the appropriate languages. Students must demonstrate proficiency in oral (speaking/listening), reading, and writing skills.
  2. Six graduate-level courses in the area of concentration, of which:
    1. three courses must offer transnational approaches to Europe-related issues, and
    2. of the remaining three courses, students focusing on Russia and Eastern Europe must take at least one course concerning the nations of Central and Western Europe. For those focusing on Central and Western Europe, at least one course must concern Russia and Eastern Europe.
  3. Interdisciplinary research qualifying paper written either in the context of one of the six courses in the area of concentration, or as independent work under faculty supervision. The paper is required to demonstrate field-specific research ability in the area of concentration. After they have completed substantial course work in the area, students must seek approval from the council faculty adviser for the research project they propose as the qualifying paper. Normally, students will submit their proposals no later than the fourth week of the term in which they plan to submit the qualifying paper.

For more information, contact the European Studies Council, Yale University, PO Box 208206, New Haven CT 06520-8206;; 203.432.3423.

For course listings, see European and Russian Studies under Degree-Granting Departments and Programs in this bulletin.