Welcome to the Minor in Iranian Studies page

Minor in Iranian Studies

Thanks to generous support from the Farhang Foundation's Iranian Studies Initiative, the Middle East Studies program launched a Minor in Iranian Studies in Fall 2013. Courses on medieval and modern Iranian history and Persian literature and culture in translation are now offered, in addition to Persian language courses.

Please check for Fall 2014 offerings in the catalogue.

Four courses (16 units) are required for the minor in Iranian Studies if a student has already passed the following Lower Division language courses or has tested out through a proficiency/placement exam at USC's Language Center.


Pre-requisite Language Courses, Lower Division

MDES 120            Persian-I, 4 Units

MDES 150            Persian-II, 4 Units

MDES 220            Persian-III, 4 Units

MDES 250            Persian-IV, 4 Units

Persian-I through Persian-III can be waived by placement examination. Students placed beyond Persian-III can sit for the Persian-IV proficiency examination. If successful, they may register for Advance Persian-I (MDES 320).


Minor Degree Required Courses, Upper Division

Four courses—16 units from among the following

MDES 320            Advanced Persian-I, 4 Units (offered in fall 2014)
MDES 350            Advanced Persian-II, 4 Units (will be offered in Spring 2015)
MDES 349g          Ancient Empires, 4 Units
MDES 312            Iran in the Middle Ages, 4 Units
MDES 313            Modern Iran, 4 Units

MDES 324            Classical Persian Literature, 4 Units

MDES 325            Modern Persian Literature, 4 Units

MDES 461            Topics in Ancient Iranian Languages and Cultures, 4 Units


Alternatively, one of the four required courses may be chosen from the following list of upper-division courses that cover material relevant to Iran or place Iran in its broader Middle Eastern context.

ANTH 335            Comparative Muslim Societies

CLAS 360             Classical Arabic Literature in Translation [covers period 500-1500]

HIST 324g            Islam in Russia and the Soviet Union

HIST 382              The Middle East 500-1500 - MDES 180g

POSC 351             Middle East Politics

REL 315                Thought and Life of Islam

REL 316                Women and the Islamic Tradition

REL 414                History of Islamic Law

* Links are for Fall 2014 course catalogue.

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