Program Description

The Chicana and Chicano Studies Department (CHS) at California State University, Dominguez Hills is dedicated to providing students an interdisciplinary understanding of the political, economic, historical and cultural realities, perspectives and experiences of Chicana/o and Latina/o populations.  Chicanos/Latinos will comprise a majority population in California, a state characterized by diverse, multicultural and transnational audiences.  A Chicana/o Studies Department degree provides students with the critical skills and social knowledge to work and live in a society characterized by populations with varying social needs.  The department cultivates the intellectual gifts and academic talents of all its students through interactive, multimedia and arts-based pedagogies.  The department is responsive to the CSUDH service community through its curriculum program and activities.  Moreover, faculty members prioritize involvement in activities that promote student support, retention and graduation for Chicana/o and Latina/o students campus wide.

The Chicana/o Studies Department co-sponsors an extensive activities calendar throughout the academic year, involving events such as el 16 de septiembre, Día de la raza, Dia de los muertos, Día de la mujer, Cinco de mayo, and the Primavera music series.  In 2005, CHS co-sponsored the first-ever, annual campus-wide Chicana/o Latina/o Graduation Celebration, and the AB540 conference.  The Department also co-sponsors and supports the annual Latinas Juntas day-long event.  In support of student organizations, Chicana/o faculty members serve as advisors and work closely with the following student organizations Al Frente Graduate Studies Association, MEChA, Espiritu de Nuestro Futuro, Hermanas Unidas, La Rondalla, Kappa Delta Chi, Phi Iota Alpha fraternity and the Chicana/o Studies Department Association.

The major in Chicana and Chicano Studies is designed to provide a broad Liberal Arts education.  The goals of the major are as follows :

  • to promote critical thinking among majors so that they become conversant in the historical and structural forces of power which engender racism, sexism, homophobia, classism, and all forms of discrimination and thus act as conscientious individuals promoting civic well being;
  • to encourage majors to become sources of knowledge and change for Chicana/o Latina/o communities by acting upon their social realities and supporting positive transformative change within the society in order to improve life for all;
  • to prepare all students to engage in positive dialogues as a means for promoting social awareness and interaction among diverse peoples in a multiethnic and transnational society and; 
  • to promote cross cultural collaborations and inter-ethnic connections among all students as a means for encouraging civic cooperation.

Student Learning Outcomes

  • Students will apply critical thinking skills and analyses in written and oral presentations.
  • Students will employ critical research skills in using traditional and electronic sources for oral and written assignments.
  • Students will interpret, analyze and evaluate primary and secondary textual and cultural productions within their specific and global cultural, social and historical contexts.
  • Students will appraise historical and contemporary knowledge of conditions of power based on a multi-sectional analysis of race, class, gender, sexuality, ethnicity and immigration and how they impact Indigenous, Chicana/o and Latina/o communities and identities.
  • Students will evaluate gendered experiences and discourses of power and how they influence Indigenous, Chicana/o and Latina/o populations.
  • Students will understand changing global dynamics as they relate to Latin American social and economic development and immigration, particularly along the U.S. Mexican border.
  • Students will analyze historic and contemporary Chicano/Latino civic and political efforts and their impacts on shaping public policy.
  • Students will apply the theoretical foundations of critical theories used in Chicana/o Studies and how they are utilized in explaining the experiences of peoples of color in the United States and abroad.
  • Students will exercise practical leadership experience by organizing community-based events and working with Chicano/Latino community organizations through service learning courses and internships.